On Aug. 21, a total solar eclipse will sweep across America for the first time in almost 100 years, casting millions of people into temporary darkness. One astronomer has said it will be the “most photographed, most shared, most tweeted event in human history.” Mike Kentrianakis, the solar eclipse project manager for the American Astronomical Society, deemed it “the most gorgeous natural wonder you will ever see.”
Whether you’re situated in one of the meccas of totality or not, it’s safe to assume that folks around you will be gathering for this astronomical affair… and they’re going to want wine. Here are some ways to turn this celestial celebration into a super successful sales and marketing opportunity.
Host A Viewing Party
You needn’t attempt to host the viewing party of the century, complete with ice sculptures, acrobats, and live music, to cash in on the eclipse. Simply inviting your local community to come enjoy some wine and nibbles before or after they step outside and stare at the sky (with protective eyewear, of course!) could be incentive enough for attracting visitors. Create an email campaign with tools such as list builder to reach out to people who live within easy driving distance of your tasting room. Since your guests may be wandering inside and out, make sure you’ve got a Tablet POS system in place to make wine purchases and club sign-ups easy no matter where they’re hanging out.
Remember that astronomer’s bold claim above that this will be the most photographed, most shared, and most tweeted about event EVER?! Who knows if that’s true, but regardless, it’s definitely going to be a big flippin’ deal across the internet.
If hosting people at the winery or tasting room isn’t an option, you can still encourage people to enjoy the eclipse with your wine in hand by engaging your followers and prospects on social media. Create your own hashtag for people to use as they share photos of themselves watching the eclipse while drinking your wine. Take advantage of the fact that tons of potential customers will be scrolling through their social feeds by creating a Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram ad to run that day or week. Additionally, use this opportunity to show off your organization’s “personality”. Post pictures of your staff wearing eclipse glasses or prepping for that awesome event you planned (see what I did there?).
Of course, if you are hosting an event, you’ll definitely want to spread the word on social media and post pictures/videos as the festivities unfold. Even if your followers don’t attend, they’ll see that you’re not afraid to have fun, and perhaps, make more of an effort to visit your tasting room in the future.
A Rare Deal For A Rare Event
Speaking of generating buzz, you can capitalize on all the excitement by running a special offer in honor of this special occurrence. Maybe you pour some “out of this world” library wines to visitors at the tasting room or give 15% off via social media/email when someone uses the promo code ECLIPSE at checkout. Since Mondays are typically slower business days (or a day when your tasting room might be closed), running a special offer is an effective and easy way to take full advantage of the occasion.
Whether you’re participating in all the hoopla or not, it's still a good idea to see what your community has going on and be prepared for increased visitors or orders. Smaller cities are being advised to prepare for "infrastructure overload" with vehicle and pedestrian traffic, potential disruptions in cell phone service, and even a shortage in restroom facilities. Yikes!
Most importantly, listen to your mother… do NOT look directly at the sun! Stock up on safety glasses, pour some wine, and enjoy the show (and the increased sales!)
Want to learn more about connecting with customers and boosting wine sales? Register for our free "Intro to vinSUITE" Webinar on Wednesday 8/16 at 11am (PDT).