The boredom of current wine shows-It astonishes me time after time, that wine producers would pour our thousands in tasting stock, yet take no interest in who actually tastes their wine. The recent WineX wine show in Johannesburg was another example of how money is to be poured down the throats of unappreciative tasters with no reward.
As I am no longer a member of the retail industry, no one feels the need to impress me, and as such, I am incognito, which suits me just fine. However, it also made me realise why South Africans consume so little wine. Wine producers have very little, if any enthusiasm, for their own product it seems. With the exception of Bertus Fourie (he put Diemersfontein on the map) now at Val de Vie, and Lindhorst, who actually had a very good, and ingenious way of attracting attention, the wine producers bored me to death. Sorry guys, some of you are my friends, or used to be, but your marketing skills suck.
WineX organisers per se, are also not doing much to promote the very producers that pay them thousands merely to have the opportunity to waste their money and their precious stock. The only person showing real profit being the very organisers of the different wine shows. If we could only have the marketing skills of the Aussies, our wine would long since have been on everyone's lips-worldwide, but we don't, we are sitting with a seriously shite local consumption of wine, with no one seeming very interested in promoting wine. I win an award then "YOU MUST LOVE WINE" as per Mr Andre van Rensburg of Vergelegen...who once ridiculed me for daring to say his wine was merely nice...I belief his words were..."your grandmother is nice". It is this very arrogance in wine circles that prevent growth and new marketing ideas.
I recently suggested to a young wine maker that we should attend the marketing Guru, Graham Knox's wine marketing event, which he flatly declined, telling me he has his own ideas. It's this "I know best" attitude that has been the death of many products, not only wine.
We need to know our market, a belief in our own product is not good enough, we need to convince the consumer of that view and cannot do it without knowledge of our consumers, hence the lack of uptake under young South Africans and the non-white population, they remain an unknown entity as very little marketing analysis has been done to determine their needs...in wine or wine products.
Wake up...you are boring and your product won't sell