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By Elizabeth Hans McCrone

Bryan St. AmantIf someone told you that you could increase your business by a whopping 50 percent through an affordable technology using the principles of preference based marketing, would you be willing to give it a shot?

According to Bryan St. Amant, the Founder and CEO of VinterActive LLC, that’s exactly what’s on the table for wineries, large and small, in an era where competition is fierce and the industry fights for consumer confidence and continuing brand loyalty.

Automated marketing, which VinterActive specializes in, is the practice of using technology to address consumer preferences and providing solutions to their needs.

It engages consumers with personalized messages generated in real time based on their purchasing behavior and interests, increasing the likelihood of timeliness and relevance for that target audience.

St. Amant maintains that the simple tactic of using automated marketing emails that are integrated with transactional messages, such as order confirmations, generated $1.83 for every message sent in 2018.

This fact alone, he points out, is excellent news for smaller wineries that may not have access to a comprehensive automated marketing software package, but want to grow incremental revenue without increasing workload.

“If you’re a winery in Northern California where there’s lots of competition, how are you going to increase your list or boost your revenue by 50 percent?” St. Amant asks rhetorically. “I have some evidence. I’ve been doing research every year on what’s working in the wine industry. I’m telling you, customers love it. They’re voting with their dollars and cents.”

St. Amant believes that the wine industry, which has been historically slow in adopting new technologies overall, has not yet fully embraced automated wine marketing to the extent that it could.

He recognizes that for many wineries it could be a matter of expense as well as a reluctance to invest in what might seem like complicated software programming that is untried and unfamiliar.

The good news, he asserts, is that the technological costs have come way down and new possibilities are continually developed. VinterActive, for instance, is able to offer a package to wineries for as little as $99/month.

“This year, the API’s (Application Program Interface) have become available,” he declares. “API’s allow integration between email marketing and POS data. If you’re going to have timely, relevant messaging, you need that data in real time.”

“I’m excited,” St. Amant adds. “I’ve been talking about this for 17 years and it’s finally happening. “

VinterActive is currently in a research partnership with the Wine Industry Network (WIN) to discover more about wineries that are employing automated wine marketing strategies and how they are working.

Take the automated marketing survey and help discover valuable data on the wine industry’s attitude and experience with automated marketing. Survey participants will receive a free copy of the survey results benchmark report.

“We have about 1,000 wineries on our list to contact,” St. Amant reports. “We’ll get an idea about what wineries are doing now and how they’re planning for the future. It will tell you about your competitors.”

“Imagine you have a crystal ball,” he continues. “Wouldn’t you want to know what works and what your competitors are doing? Well, there’s no crystal ball, but there’s some data at least. And data is how we live our lives.”

Automated Marketing seminar

St. Amant will be presenting the results of the VinterActive/WIN survey during a conference session at the upcoming WIN Expo Trade Show and Conference in Santa Rosa this coming December.

The title of his workshop is “The Technology Impact on Wine Sales; Are You Ready for Automated Marketing?

Elizabeth “E” Slater, the Founder of In Short Direct Marketing and Michael Wangbickler, the President of Balzac Communications and Marketing will be presenting at the session as well.

For more information and registration, go to http://wineindustryexpo.com.

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