In a world where consumers are bombarded with stimuli coming from every direction, it is important that wine businesses have clear marketing messages and strategies that engage their consumer effectively.

Put simply, wine brands must stay on top of their marketing game to remain in the game.

With this in mind, the University of South Australia (‘UniSA’) and the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science, provide helpful executive short courses in wine marketing for industry professionals and postgraduate students looking to take their marketing game to the next level.

The collaboration offers two courses: Premium Food & Wine Marketing and Wine Marketing. Both courses run for five days, with the first four days spent in the classroom listening to a range of industry experts. On the fifth day of the course, students spend the day immersed in a South Australian wine region where they meet with premium food and wine businesses to discover the marketing practices being used.

In addition to local students, the institute is proud to host a small cohort of MBA students from the Bordeaux based Kedge Business School. With students also attending the course from a number of other countries including China, the learning environment is diverse and collaborative.

I recently joined the UniSA, Ehrenberg-Bass Institute and Kedge Business School students on the final day of their course. We headed to the McLaren Vale wine-growing region, known for it’s world-class wine, culinary experiences and natural attractions. We began the day at d’Arenberg, before heading to Hither & Yon and then onto Wirra Wirra.

At each winery, a small group of students began the visit by giving a presentation on what they understood about the businesses brand. Their understanding of the brand was based on information that was available online e.g. the winery’s website.

Associate Dean Dr. Armando Corsi of UniSA Business School said:

“The concept of marketing positioning is about the way a brand positions in the mind of customers. So, if the customers (i.e. in this case the students) don’t see the company the way the company proposes itself, then there’s something wrong.”

The student’s presentations at each winery were a great exercise to test this potential disconnect and see whether each business had a clear marketing message. At the end of each presentation there was a discussion around the brand and its marketing strategies. As it turned out, what the students presented about each of the businesses matched the brand message being conveyed by each winery.

The collaboration between each winery and the educational bodies provided an invaluable opportunity to gain insight into real life businesses and the way that they market their brand.

What these wine businesses had in common was that they were all on top of their marketing game. Each business knew who their consumer was and what that consumer wanted.

If you are looking to up your marketing game in 2020, the institute will run the Wine Marketing course again in September. More information can be found at the following link

Written by Mariette Morris, 2019 WCA Wine Media Cadet