Wine clubs have increased in popularity in recent years, but the amount of wine clubs has also consequently soared. Given the rise in competition, to ensure your wine club’s success and ability to become the best wine club in the UK, it is essential that you know how to grow a wine club so that it attracts long-standing customers, and lots of them.
That’s easier said than done. Many directors or owners may be tempted to cut their wine club membership cost to appeal to more customers. However, while that can be successful in the short term, wine club membership in the UK is often not solely dependent on price. Instead, the best wine club in the UK differentiates itself on a number of levels so that it is the clear option for many.
Here, we identify those differentiating ways that you can use to grow your wine club membership in the UK other than by cutting your wine club membership cost.
There are several ways that you can increase your wine club membership in the UK. The way you choose should depend on your target customer and what part of the market you pitch your brand at. The ways we list below can definitely always help a wine club grow, but some may be more suitable than others depending on your specific product.
If people are signing up to a wine club, they are already avid lovers of wine. While their knowledge may not be at expert level yet, you know they still have a big interest in drinking wine - of any colour. For that reason, and especially since covid restrictions have been lifted, it can be a good idea to offer wine tasting events. Wine tasting events are a great way to up sales of your wine, but also help strengthen the ties a person has with your club. By meeting in person, you can build upon your relationship and help your customer think that their membership is invaluable. That helps grow your wine club as means that you are less likely to lose customers in the long term.
Teaming up with other companies that sell to a similar target customer can be a great way to grow your membership as joining your wine club will start to be seen more as a lifestyle choice that offers many advantages - not just great access to great tasting wine. That will help maximise your company’s appeal to a wider number of customers too and can help increase your profitability.
Another way to make certain that you do not lose customers unnecessarily is to ensure you always meet certain standards. Wine clubs naturally have an element of luxury to them and, as a result, should always offer great quality wine at a good value price along with excellent customer service. Consequently, make sure that your customer service department is up to speed on how to deal with quibbles and queries. If anyone has a bad interaction with your company, you can never be sure of how bad the reputational damage is to your firm, but it is always difficult to rectify that damage. That’s way customer service must always be attentive, quick and accessible.
Having different tiers of membership could well be a good option for you to grow your membership. By offering a cheaper version, for example, you may find that your membership numbers increase as there is a more affordable price point for some that cannot justify the normal cost. On the flip side of that, offering a luxury tier membership can be a great way to grow your membership, as well as your profit margins. The majority of the infrastructure to offer a luxury membership is already in place, yet by charging more for it - and also offering a few select VIP style extras - you may find that diversifying your income stream helps reap profitable rewards.
Rewarding loyal customers is a great way to up your customer service game. Many wine clubs, for example, give their most loyal customers gifts around Christmas. That could be a bottle of boutique gin or simply a magnum size bottle of a customer’s favourite wine. It can be anything, but the important thing to remember is that the goodwill factor that you build up in doing so helps ensure the longevity of membership with a customer. Customers like being thought of by companies, and simply including an extra bottle of wine in a delivery every once in a while can go a long way to build a great rapport.
Having a strong social media presence can be a highly effective way of converting customers to actual customers. By growing the amount of followers you have online, you are already reaching out and advertising to people who are more likely to buy from you anyway. Plus, social media is a fantastic opportunity to help cement your brand and market yourself in a way that you differentiate yourself from your competitors. While it can be difficult to ascertain sometimes what customers have definitely come from a social media channel, in our increasingly online day and age, having some sort of social media presence is a necessity.
Referral schemes offer excellent returns on investment. By simply telling current customers that they can earn credit on their account if they successfully refer a friend, you have a low cost method of marketing to customers who are actually more likely to buy your product anyway. Word of mouth referral is one of the strongest and most effective ways of converting a customer, and it is also one of the lowest cost ways of converting customers too. It’s therefore a win-win situation for all, so it is well worth the effort to set up. Especially if you are looking to grow your wine club membership numbers to help drive long term success.
By its nature, a wine club is a luxury in a person’s life. No one needs to buy wine, let alone be part of a club that allows you access to different wine sellers and brands. As a result, it is crucial for marketeers at wine clubs as well as wine club owners to ensure their branding stays on point in addition to making certain their wine club is useful to their customers. If customers no longer see it as useful and valuable in their lives, they will quickly view wine club membership as totally superfluous to their needs and cancel their membership fees.
A wine club is therefore successful when it adds value to a person’s life which can be done in a number of ways. Firstly, it can educate a person in all things wine. That can be anything from providing content regarding types of grape to what helps make a vintage year for a vineyard. Wine has long been seen as an elitist world, so making it more accessible through education is an easy way to set a wine club apart from the rest. Information does not have to be restricted to discussing only wine. Creating content about what food to pair with wine is a good alternative, among talking about wine tasting holidays and travel - among many many other ideas.
Secondly, a wine club can offer members access to good quality wine at a good value price point. By becoming more of a cooperative style group, a wine club means it has the ability to negotiate better prices directly with vineyards and wine producers. Some wine club owners could use that to improve their own profit margins, but other wine clubs pass on the savings to their customers. Doing so can help keep customers for longer and, as a result, help drive long term success and growth.
Finally, wine clubs in can be successful if they expose their customers to new wines, grapes and drinks in general. This is another form of educating customers and helps keep their interest piqued in a wine club. If a wine club constantly pushes a person’s wine tastes and boundaries, they will remain keen to subscribe to the club for a very long period of time. If things become samey, you may find that interest from some customers starts to dissipate which may feed into a wine club’s dwindling membership numbers.
If you are a membership director at a wine club, or a wine club business, increasing the numbers who have signed up to a wine club’s services is obviously essential. The more customers you have, the more profitable and successful you will be. Yet, it is crucial to remember that customer retention is just as important as targeting new customers. Customer retention will help drive growth in the future. It provides a steady and regular income stream with which a company can use to fund marketing campaigns or make investments elsewhere that will help a company expand even further.