Millennials and the Tasting Room Model
Is your Direct-to-Consumer (DtC) model ready to change with the up-and-coming generation of millennials and their tastes? This story from Wine-Searcher has some nice insights as to why winery tasting room visits in Napa & Sonoma have been trending downwards in recent years. And how California wineries are now watching and taking note as tasting room visits in other locations like Oregon, Pennsylvania, New York and others are seeing double-digit growth!
These tasting room visits and DtC programs (like wine clubs and such) are especially important for small- to mid-sized wineries (and even the trend in Urban-wineries), as their DtC revenue & margins are an important part of their business model – even upwards of +75% of their total sales. In the story, for example, one of the wineries in the Willamette Valley area shared the stat that their DtC business-model accounts for only 30% of their total revenue, but that amount was almost 50% of their actual margins/profits!
Bringing in programs like educational sessions, yoga outings, dinner food/wine pairing events and more have been driving the taproom visits & growth in other parts of the country – so much so that the older, traditional wineries in California are starting to take notice. The younger Millennial generation is looking for something different from what their parents and grandparents had or experienced – so you should keep that in mind as you move forward on your winery project or as you look for ideas as to how grow your current business model!