How Wine Road has promoted the event
How Wine Road has promoted the event
We wanted to send along an overview of where and how we have promoted Barrel Tasting 2019.
This year we focused on wine publications and targeted online advertising, more than traditional print and radio which we have done in the past.  Most (not all) advertising outlets are listed below.
Full-page ad in Food & Wine & bon appétit.

Barrel Tasting Promotions

This year we "hit the ground running" early to promote Barrel Tasting.
We were a feature in Wine Spectator's Sips & Tips email to 150,000 subscribers.
We partnered with Priority Wine Pass, who included Wine Road Barrel Tasting in their email blast to 1 million BevMo subscribers.
7 x 7 in San Francisco featured Barrel Tasting
Decanter Magazine ran a 1/2 page ad in their December issue (41,000 subscribers). Decanter email blast (100,000 impressions) in January.
San Jose Mercury News - listed in their round-up of wine events. Festivals
Napa/Sonoma Magazine, email blast to their A-list, for events, 20,000 subscribers.
Email invitations were sent to our 50,000 WINE ROAD subscribers on Jan. 22, a reminder in our newsletter Feb. 7 and a "last call" for tickets on Feb. 19th. We will send a "2nd Weekend" reminder March 4th, promoting tickets at the door.
VinePair sent an email invitation to their 150,000 subscribers in January, we also had a sponsored blog post by VinePair in December.
      Wine Spectator's         Sips & Tips
This was VinePair email. Click to read the full email.
  Click to read the VinePair blog post.

Targeted Online Ads

Working through a company called Adverator, we have used targeted online ads to "foodies" in the following markets: San Diego, Dallas, Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Seattle, Chicago.  We contracted for 100,000 impressions per market and are tracking about a 1% click rate.
In the 2-month time frame, 5780 people clicked on the ad and viewed the event details.

Toast the Future

We added a new welcome reception/tasting at 3 locations on the Friday of each weekend. These wineries are each hosting 30 guests for a barrel tasting with heavy appetizers to kick off the weekend. Tickets are $90 per person and it includes the weekend of tasting. This event was intended to connect with interested wine buyers looking to expand their tasting experience for the weekend. The response has been outstanding!  

Breakfast with the Winemakers

A concept we developed in 2016 for our 40th Anniversary celebration. It has been so well received by guests, host wineries and the attending winemakers that we continue to offer this experience on the Saturday morning of all three of our annual events. For Barrel Tasting that means there are two breakfasts - March 2nd & 9th. Each breakfast includes 3 winemakers for an open forum Q & A with 20 guests. Guests pay $20 per person for this opportunity.

Google Ad Words 

We have been promoting Barrel Tasting via ad words since December, which has resulted in 1200 clicks to our BT page.
Trip Advisor Our contract with TripAdvisor began in Sept, promoting Wine & Food Affair, then flipped to Winter WINEland and now Barrel Tasting. Our campaign has had a total of 884,000 impressions in the past 6 months. We have had a .33 CTR (click through rate) thus far. Three times higher than their comparative campaigns, the benchmark is .08.   When the event ends, our TripAdvisor promotion will move on to feature our Wine Road Tasting Pass. 
Video  We headed out to wineries in October to videotape winemakers during harvest, talking about the grapes being harvested then, would be "in the barrel" for Barrel Tasting Weekend. We have been sharing those 10 different videos on multiple social media platforms (FB, twitter, Insta). Collectively they have had a reach of nearly 60,000 impressions and 8900 views. You can see several of the videos on our Wine Road YouTube Channel.

Winemakers Uncorked 

Additionally, we were part of the TV show, Winemakers Uncorked. This was filmed during Barrel Tasting 2018. It aired on KPIX (CBS) in SF this past October.  This episode tells the story of what happens during Barrel Tasting, why guests should join us, and what they can expect to see/taste. When it aired, it was seen in 10,000 bay area households. We have continued to share the link for greater exposure. 

Greater Bay Area...

We can't assume everyone knows about Barrel Tasting or that locals are not interested in the event. Therefore we continue to include a minimal dollar spend in the local and bay area markets. This includes radio on KSRO and KGO in San Francisco, the SF Chronicle print and SF Gate online as well as the Press Democrat, both print and online, and a limited amount of local radio. 


 We have begun to experiment with geo-targeting customers on their way to Sonoma County. We are fencing in the airline terminals with direct flights to Sonoma County and promoting ads for both Barrel Tasting and our Wine Road Tasting Pass. We are awaiting analytics to measure the click through.   

Twitter Posts (examples below)

Instagram Posts (examples below)

 Please Use These Hashtags When Promoting The Event

#wineroadlife  #BarrelTasting2019
#SonomaCounty   #wine   #wineroad

#barrelsamples   #winetasting   #visitwineroad

Advance Ticket Sales - ENDED Last Night

Here is a comparison, year over year. This does NOT include tickets sold at the door in prior years, which has typically been around 2000 (combined both weekends).
2019 1st Weekend Ticket 3563     Sunday Ticket  238    Drivers 255  new - Friday Night 73
2018 1st Weekend Ticket 3926     Sunday Ticket  247    Drivers 284
2017 1st Weekend Ticket  4858    Sunday Ticket  383     Drivers 344
2016 1st Weekend Ticket  5489    Sunday Ticket  477      Drivers 351
2019 2nd Weekend Ticket  2114    Sunday Ticket 117     Drivers 124   new - Friday Night  45 
2018 2nd Weekend Ticket  2437    Sunday Ticket 163     Drivers 141
2017 2nd Weekend Ticket  2792    Sunday Ticket 221     Drivers 205
2016 2nd Weekend Ticket  3223    Sunday Ticket 403     Drivers 218
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