Lulie Halstead, a prominent figure in the wine business, recently addressed the New Zealand Winegrowers Business Forum, sharing valuable insights from her 25-year experience in the industry. She highlighted a common mistake in wine marketing: the tendency of marketers to project their own preferences onto consumers, leading to a misalignment between what is offered and what consumers actually seek. Halstead emphasised the importance of true differentiation in the market, noting that quality alone is not a sufficient differentiator, as many producers globally can claim high-quality products.
She advised wine companies to focus on understanding their consumers deeply, using cost-effective methods like data analysis and direct observation. Halstead also stressed the importance of maintaining consistent and distinctive brand assets, cautioning against frequent changes in branding, especially by newcomers to the industry.
Furthermore, Halstead challenged the industry’s focus on age demographics, advocating for a shift towards understanding consumer attitudes, regardless of age.