Dealing with the wine media
Monday 26 March
Don't make me grumpy!!
Last week I filled in a questionnaire for an upcoming article about how to deal with the wine media, which turned out into a bit of a rant. I couldn’t believe it, the floodgates opened before me and I couldn’t stem the tide. I’m turning into a grumpy old woman, I thought.
So, here are some handy hints that might make the wine media look more favourably on your winery…
First off, what was my bugbear, I was asked? “Unsolicited samples,” I replied, ”sent out willy nilly when I don’t have any articles coming up that are vaguely related. “ It’s lovely to get free wine, but at the same time if you called first or sent an email to check if it was relevant you might save yourself a lot of money in postage and wine. Your accountant will also thank you.
And don’t send them in polystyrene. Aren’t wineries meant to be clean and green? I’ve had some people giggle at that request but you can’t recycle it, and it makes me snarl before I’ve even opened it up!
This weekend, God forbid I received an unsolicited sample in a polystyrene box. Not naming names, but initials V M, you know who you are.
If you do send a sample, we certainly don’t need tasting notes with the samples, which arrive in the polystyrene carton nine times out of 10. Surely the whole point of sending a bottle is so we can make our own mind up?
More technical information would be good such as pH, TA, alcohol, plus RRP and stockists - and your contact information! It’s as simple as putting a sticky label on the bottle with all these details rather than sending another piece of paper that is easily lost.
This morning I received two press releases telling me about bronze and silver medal wins. If it’s not a trophy at a major international competition, it will get deleted. Village shows, county fairs and competitions with your friend Jimmy don’t count.
And don’t send an email for every single wine that’s launched. It just makes us scratchy.
Remember, journalists are always looking for new and interesting things. Give us updates how the season is going – we often aren’t in the wine regions so it would be good to receive such information.
Are you running any trials in the vineyard or winery – that’s always interesting too. Is a member of your team doing something out of the ordinary? Wine is about stories and people. We have to go fishing in a large ocean for stories, so make sure you hook on to our bait.
And, if all else fails, spell our names correctly.
Right, that’s it, I’m off watch myself in Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.