Part III of Better Branding through Consumer Direct.

Differentiating Your Brand – It’s harder than you think!

Defining your brand and making sure the messaging is consistent means being clear on what is most important to your brand.

Three Key Brand Points

The first step is to decide on three – and only three – key points.  Make sure they are authentic, positive and compelling. Once you are clear, focus your team – including everyone working in your tasting room or representing you on the phone – on these three points. Clarity here will really make their job easier.  Then help them bring these key brand points come to life by telling relevant, juicy, memorable stories.

Start with Why

A great example of how to clarify your brand messaging comes from Simon Sinek’s Ted Talk on How Great Leaders Inspire. To help find your brand’s uniqueness, start with WHY.

Borrowing from Simon . . .every company’s employees knows what they do. Some know how they do it. Very few people know why they do what they do.  Making a profit does not count, that’s a result.  The WHY is the purpose.  It is values based.  The right people – both employees and customers – will identify it.

If Apple was like just another company here is how they would market:  “We are Apple.  We make great computers, beautifully designed.  This one is white and costs $1,000.  Want to buy one?”  They would have started with WHAT (computers, white, $1,000) and added a little bit of HOW (beautifully designed).

However that is not how they do it.  Instead they start with WHY:  “We are Apple.  We are a rebel with a cause.  Our sole purpose is to think differently.  To change the status quo.  To change your relationship with technology.  We specialize in break-through, beautiful, user-friendly design.  We happen to sell computers.  Want to buy one?”

See how different this approach is?

What Sets You Apart

Our Mystery Shopping research shows that most of our Tasting Room frontline staff members are stuck in the WHAT:

  • We make 5,000 cases
  • We have three wines for sell, including some
  • Award winning Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Then for each wine . . . aroma, color, body, taste, stats.

If we have a lot of SKUs this can turn into a huge laundry list of WHATs they have to memorize.

Most are so exhausted after sharing all these incredibly important WHATs that they may never even get to our HOWs.  Like:

  • Specifics on how your vineyard designate differ
  • On how specific clones or soil types vary
  • On how the 3rd generation of the family is actively working in the business.
  • On organic or biodynamic practices.

There are two great ways to really differentiate your brand when it comes to the Tasting Room experience:

  1. Share your WHY through memorable storytelling and if possible – support this essence throughout your guest experience.
  2. The second way – but only if you have it – is to flaunt an EXTREME HOW:
  • If you are a cult producer I know, focused only on the best so you sort berry by berry – literally berry by berry – that’s an extreme HOW.
  • If you are high end Cabernet producer I know, focused on zero defects so you sniff every single cork – literally sniff every single cork – before you bottle, that’s an extreme how.
  • If you are a high end Chardonnay & Pinot Noir producer I know, focused on sharing the importance of fruit intensity from your hillside vineyards so you put every single visitor into the four wheel drive and show them steep hillside vineyards first hand – in a memorable, slightly scary way – that’s an extreme how.

Everyone has a compelling WHY.  Some have an EXTREME HOW.  It is our job to help our team members tell these tales.