Wine Not: Lessons in Shifting a Luxury Product for the Millennial Market

They’re young, thirsty, and ready to pop the cork—but Millennials aren’t drinking wine like their parents did. Boomers value the snobbiness of wine, while Millennials care more about authenticity and adventure than luxury, looking to spend an average of $10-12 per bottle. But Millennials are on the brink of outspending their Boomer predecessors, and will be the dominant group in purchasing power by 2017. Suddenly, luxury products that in the past might have lured consumers and built their brands around exclusivity and lavishness need to prepare for a new generation of consumers who aren’t necessarily looking for an elite-only experience. As wine importer Melissa Saunders was quoted, “[T]his generation is blowing all [the pretense] out of the water. They don’t care about the pretentiousness of a wine, they want something that is authentic and speaks to them. This is a huge marketing opportunity.” The industry is shifting to serve this generation who represents one third of core drinkers, and in doing so, they’re forging new paths in how a previously luxury-focused market can creatively evolve to open up to a consumer with drastically different purchasing values.
 
New startups are seeing great potential in Millennials as the next generation of winos. Uproot Wines targets the affluent segment of Gen Y with minimalist labeling that graphically represents flavor notes and original blends in limited quantities. Club W sources lower-priced wines using big data to appeal to the “Palate Profile” of Millennials who can’t afford to buy top-tier wines but still want a regular glass of the good stuff. Meanwhile, lower-end retailers are getting into the wine game to attract Millennials who have a little bit more to spend. 7-Eleven recently added “ultra-premium” wines for an average of $19.99 a…

 
 

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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “My favorite app is Airbnb because I like to travel on a budget.” –Female, 22, NY

Traditional entertainment brands have been tapping into online talent at an increasing rate, and Nickelodeon took advantage of the recent VidCon digital celebrity event to scout for new talent. The network, which is “exploring distributing content from online video creators via its digital brands” held a casting call at the event to find creative among the hundreds of assembled vloggers. Google says that YouTube reaches more people in the U.S. than any cable network among 18-49-year-olds. (Business Insider)

For the first time in years, and after a prolonged period of increasing obesity, American kids (and adults) are finally eating less. The number of calories that the average child in the U.S. takes in each day has fallen by 9%, and a cutback in soda drinking is a major reason behind the drop. The amount of full calorie soda the average American drinks has dropped a full 25% since the ‘90s. Obesity rates have also been reversing for younger children, “suggesting the calorie reductions are making a difference.” (NYTimes)

Going to a Millennial wedding? Bring cash, not a toaster. The generation is reportedly eschewing traditional gifts to instead request “cold, hard cash” for their nuptials. Couples are using their wedding funds for things like fun honeymoons they wouldn’t be able to afford themselves, or to start a house down payment savings. The fact that more Millennials live together before marriage and are very likely to have all the household goods they might need is a big reason behind the trend of tossing gravy boats and dishes in favor of financial gifts. (Refinery 29NYTimes)

MTV is tackling some current debates in the Millennial generation by creating content on the subject of racial bias. The generation has idealized color-blindness, but is maturing to find the approach doesn’t solve racial issues. MTV’s documentary special White People asked young white people across the country to look at their privilege and education, and the network has also launched a digital anti-bias campaign featuring content like a “Bias Cleanse” and a “snap judgment quiz.” (USA Today)

Watch out Uber, another car sharing platform is amping up their creative marketing. Taxi app Gett has partnered with Veuve Clicquot to create a champagne on-demand campaign that delivers bottles of chilled bubbly, along with two flutes, around London within 10 minutes. Gett’s marketing in the UK is a “bid to snatch market share from Uber” and the app is clearly borrowing from their competitor’s “everything on-demand” promotional strategy. (Marketing Magazine)

Quote of the Day: “I unplugged because I just wanted some me time- also wanted to see if i would be able to do it.” –Female, 32, NC

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