The 40 Millennial students in WineBiz Class 305W at SSU were asked to analyze wine clubs in the Napa/Sonoma area and to select their top three favorites. Criteria were based on best practices in wine clubs and included the following:
1) Number of different club levels – at least 2 choices is preferable
2) Price ranges for each level – a variety of ranges is preferable from low to high
3) Shipping frequency – every 2 to 3 months is better, because lowers cost or discounted shipping
4) Club level by varietal preference e,g. red wine, white, sparkling, etc.
5) % discount for additional purchases
6) Number of benefits for being a club member, e.g. discounts, events, personal concierge, etc
7) Types of special events – the more unique and interesting, the better…
8) Anniversary gifts for staying in club a year or more
9) Anything else special or unique about the club
We were provided a list of 30 wineries by the SSU Wine Business Program. The 30 wineries had been nominated by the founders of the program – of which there are more than 200. Therefore, the 30 wineries were nominated by their peers as having excellent wine clubs.
In order to analyze the 30 wine clubs, the 40 students in the class were divided into teams and each team was asked to research 3 to 4 wine clubs and complete an evaluation form using the criteria above. Each team reviewed the results and selected a winning wine club to send to the sweepstakes round.
We then put the top winery from each team on the board — according to criteria — so we had 8 wine clubs in the sweepstakes round. One student from each team presented the wine club components, and then the whole class was asked to vote on their top 3 preferences. This resulted in the following awards:
1st Place Wine Club – Mumm’s (www.mummnapa.com)
2nd Place Wine Club = Benziger (www.benziger.com)
The Millennial students appeared to like the wineries that had multiple levels with a range of pricing from inexpensive to expensive. For example Mumm’s basic level is only $45 for 3 bottles of wine every 2 months. Another important criterion was the type of events offered. The more creative the event, the more votes it received. For example, Mumm has a lobster tasting where they pour whole cooked lobsters on a long table and everyone gets to dive in and drink with sparkling wine. St. Supery lets club members have first chance at a private box at a Giant’s game, etc.
Bus 305W would like to congratulate this year’s winners of the Top 3 Wine Clubs of Napa/Sonoma.