Behind the curtain: more than meets
• There is so much more to wine tourism than the well
known grape producing regions, such as Napa and
Sonoma. There is an entire culture of wine and food
that is a large economic part of the region.
• Outside of those primary tourism destinations, and
perhaps some of the regions made famous by
Hollywood, what do you know of the international
wine tourism destinations of Okanagan Valley or Baja
• There is more to wine tourism than Napa, Bordeaux,
Exposing your region
• One of the primary challenges in attracting wine tourists is
making sure that your destination is known as a wine
destination beyond your local tourism audience.
• Creating a brand identity for an international tourism
audience is paramount to success. This is true for any wine
region that wishes to enhance their wine tourism audience.
• How do you reach them?
• Partner with your government, leverage social media, be
smart with PR and make it easy for tourists to find you
• We will explore how both Canada and Mexico are bringing
visitors to their regions
Learning how to use social media to
engage a global audience
• Social media has been evolving, particularly over the
last 5 years. The top social media platforms are
powerful tools to help you engage with wine tourists.
• Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and You Tube are great
ways to structure your message and hone the art of the
• Engage people one on one, or in large groups to create
brand awareness for wines, regions, or a countries
• Allows a consumer to Search, Connect, Engage and
spurs sales conversion
Twitter is one of the fastest growing channels in the social media domain. Businesses
from mom and pop shops to world wide brands like Nike utilize twitter to embrace and
enhance their brand image.
Twitter is about building relationships. If you embark on a twitter adventure, be sure
that you are able to engage with your followers in a meaningful way. What does this
mean? This means you will need to spend a dedicated amount of time reacting and
interacting with your followers. Companies and personalities that are successful on
twitter actively engage the consumer and begin conversations. Host a Q&A with a
winemaker. Host a discussion about the region you offer tours in.
Whether you’re a business or an individual, Twitter offers a wealth of ways to expose
your region to an international audience. Below are some examples of how we engaged
with Baja and Okanagan through social media!
Build Community on Social Media:
Notice that engagement moved from Twitter to Facebook
Build Community on Social Media: The Hashtag
• A hashtag (#hashtag) is a searchable conversation string on
twitter. The use of hashtags in the wine industry has
exploded in the past 5 years.
– Some great examples of hashtags are:
• Varietal days are also useful for associations that wish to
promote their region, such as #chardonnayday, which
focused on a specific varietal. You can opt to provide media
samples, group tastings, and other sponsored events but
you can also encourage the wider wine drinking public to
just grab a bottle of wine and tweet along.
• Events are planned to coincide with the varietal themes,
and wine drinkers around the world can meet each other
(virtually) and discuss the wine they are drinking.
Inform people who are interested in the
varietal but not familiar with your region
Build Community on Pinterest
Pin it! Button
Cho has over
Build Community on Pinterest
Pin it! Button
Cho has over
Build Community on Pinterest
Pin it! Button
Cho has over
Consistent branding is essential. Your message should be clear, across all social media platforms as
well as your traditional marketing materials.
Think of international brands such as Nike and Coke. Even though they have progressed through the
years, the brand images and core messages are still the same.
Coke is it. Just do it. These messages have been consistent through the years giving these brands a
core identity that is internationally recognizable today.
By building your brand, selling more tours or wine, you will increase your customer base long term.
As wine is a long tail business, building a lo9yal customer today will be a long term relationship
Using these new media tools can help you do this indirectly, by building loyal followers who are
interested in your brand. Blogging, social media platforms, and social networks help you outsource
your PR and marketing to a database of bloggers who can and will build your brand by word of
mouth. For free.
Engaging the press corps
Before 2012, few people from the US had heard of the
Okanagan. But, waging a 2 year campaign to bring 300
bloggers, media reps and wine industry professionals to the
region for the Annual Wine Bloggers Conference has paid off!
This year, the annual conference will take place in the
region’s heart of Penticton.
It’s important to expose your region to international
travelers. Just because tourist are not yet in your area,
doesn’t mean they will not venture to the area in the future.
By developing this message early and often, you can place
your region and your winery at the forefront of their travel
While BC wine is rare outside of the immediate location, the
clever use of marking has made it a clear and logical
destination in my travel mind. Why not pop over from
Vancouver for the weekend?
Kelowna is featured in the March Issue of United Airlines
magazine, which is great placement to capture impressions
of known travelers
The Power of PR in Print
• Sunset Magazine, the magazine of western living has over 1
• Covering BC, and 13 western states in the US, they recently
covered the Okanagan Wine Trail, exposing Canada’s Grape Lakes.
• By building on the successful west coast tourism to BC and Seattle,
sunset highlighted the area’s proximity to Kelowna, highlighting
local winery attractions.
The Power of PR
• Sec. Juan Tintos Funcke, Secretary of Tourism of Baja California, worked
with Allison + Partners to drive change from dangerous locale to attractive
– Started with press and news
– Also on wine and food to attract culinary tourists, who on the average when
travelling internationally spend 4 times the regular tourist
– Brought Anthony Bourdain to film an episode of “No Reservations”
– Articles in Saveur, Food + Wine, Wine Enthusiast followed and built on efforts
expanding the campaign’s reach
• Created Tourist Promotion Trust to get movies like “Titanic”
• He says, “"But we think the perception and the image with major events
like having famous people come to Baja and letting them talk about Baja
has really helped us.“
Focused Mainstream media home runs engage many tourists and despite decrease
in Mexico’s tourism, Baja’s actually increased and 2012 was “best season in five
• He also co-founded Mexico Tourism Promotion Council
Mexico Tourism Promotion Council
• Single site
• Get Promotion
• Book travel
• Connect with Social
Bringing the People to you
• Capitalize on your local tourism and local attractions
• Most wine tourism is incidental to other business in
the local region. For example, here in the US.
Approximately 90% of wine tourism is directly related
to visiting family & friends. Additional wine tourism is
an adjunct to business travel.
• By tying wine tourism in to local attractions, you can
capitalize on a large user base already in your area.
• In the Okanagan, the lake is a popular destination for
summer water sports. Lakeside wineries are an easy
and obvious add on destination to these visitors.
Celebrating your uniqueness
• What makes you different? Why should a
tourist visit your establishment, and not the
one down the street?
What makes you special, Okanagan?
5 hours from Vancouver
6 hours from Seattle
1 hour flight from both
Multiple micro climates
Regional focus on varietals
Lake Okanagan is the largest body of water in the Okanagan Valley. A year round
destination for summer sports, and winter skiing, the region was first make famous
by the local orchards.
• Today, the Okanagan Valley is British Columbia's oldest grape-growing
region. Distinct microclimates occur throughout the Valley, from the hot, sandy,
desert soils in the southern valley to the cooler vineyard sites in the north, with
their deep topsoil and clay.
• Wine vary broadly throughout the valleys. In the north, aromatic whites are the
stars. In the south and on the Naramata Bench, Bordeaux style reds are in fashion.
• The BC Wine Institute attracts wine professionals from all over the world, creating a
multi-national and diverse culture.
What makes you special, Baja?
•Baja’s wine country produces 90 percent of
•Winery Counts (2011)
48 Wineries Guadalupe Valley
5 Ensenada City
8 Old Wine Route (South of Ensenada)
2 Ojos Negros Valley (East of Ensenada)
4 Tecate, so 67 Total
•Wine was outlawed in Mexico from the 1500’s
• The Valle de Guadalupe is a semi-arid region
embraced by a dramatic mountain range and
soft marine breezes. This unique microclimate
serves to protect the organic grapes and cool
the vines at nightfall
•Blends are very popular in Baja wineries
•Beyond wines, the region also produces
fantastic cheeses and olive
What makes you special: Baja?
Rich culinary history
Culture of hospitality
Mexico made significant investments over the last
10 years and particularly in 2010 – 2012 to spur
Among them was to develop 10 Gastronomy Trails
Baja earned the top spot (above tequila)
Baja California’s wine history stretches
back to the 1700s with the planting of the
first vineyards, and today the region
produces about two million cases annually
and has won international awards. In
2000, Secture, Baja California
government’s tourism department,
created Baja’s now famous wine route,
which connects Tecate to Ensenada
through the seven wine-producing valleys,
Guadalupe, Santo Tomás, Ojos Negros, Las
Palmas, San Antonio de las Minas, San
Vicente and La Grulla.
Case Study: Okanagan Valley, BC
• Over 25 wineries are located in Kelowna with well over 200 wineries in the
whole Okanagan Valley region.
• The Okanagan Valley is British Columbia’s largest and oldest wine
region. The commercial wine industry died out during prohibition,
but was revived in the 1930s.
– It was not until the 1970s that wine in the Okanagan became center stage.
• It is second only in size to the Niagara region in Ontario.
• Variety is the spice of life! Merlot, Syrah, Cab Franc, Riesling,
• The southern end of the region is the northern top of the Sonoran
Desert, giving it a common soil type to Eastern Washington
• The first commercial vineyard was established by the Osoyoos
Indian Band, making it the only winery owned by First Nation
Case Study – Baja California, Mexico
Investments and innovations have boosted Baja as a destination and specifically as a wine destination
Have captured celebrities business like: Larry King, Al Gore, Sylvester Stallone, Rick Bayless and Anthony
Bourdain, Robert Redford
Drug cartel activity and news stories are shocking, but Mexico has invested in:
Among Mexico’s Tourism Routes, Baja is #1
90% of MX wine is produced in Baja and Food Mexi-med “grows with /goes with”
Wine is attractive adjunct to:
a:078 (like 800 #) access for tourists seeking assistance
tourist office assistance
green angels protection on the highway
partner with US consulate
Sport fishing Tourists
Medical Procedure Tourists
Landscape is beautiful
Cruise ships have Baja as 2nd most popular destination in Mexico. As challenges in other Mexican states
caused cruise ships to close ports, Ensenada has stayed open and built more traffic to Baja’s wine scene
Easy reach of populous Southern California region makes it convenient for local tourists from US actually
reactivated interest in Baja
Opened Wine museum in Valle del Guadalupe
Case Study – Okanagan: Have a
festival every season
The Okanagan celebrates every seasonal as a
special period in the lifecycle of wine. With four
seasonal wine festivals, each focusing on a
different milestone in the grape’s lifecycle.
• Spring – the vines are waking up and local winemakers are celebrating a new
• Summer – brings warm weather and outdoor dining; crisp whites and summer
water sports on the lake.
• Fall – the warm desert days and cool nights are prime for ripe grapes and harvest
• Winter – the vines are sleeping and the winemakers are hard at work making
magic happen. In the few quiet weeks between harvest and the winemaking,
enjoy wines on the nearby ski slopes and big red wines on cold winter nights.
Vamos a celebrar la Vendimia!
• Held every year in August to draw visitors to the region,
Vendimia attracted more than 729,000 visitors in 2011,
hosts both small-family wine producers and large-scale
manufacturers and small restaurants to the finest dining
options. Wine country also offers boutique hotels, spas,
craft centers, community museums, a missionary site, bed
& breakfast hotels, art galleries, indigenous culture and
• The Vendimia events feature wine tastings, music, contests,
art exhibitions and more. Highlights include concerts at
Santo Tomás.; Music and Wine in the Clouds with noted
;food and wine pairings and other events throughout the
region as well as the closing Paella Fest where more than
80 teams typically compete