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Best Kept Secret v Loud and Proud


Am I reading too much into Jamie’s comment…”a new parcel series” …suggests much more than the 1 wine :crossed_fingers:


I assume so, hence #001!

I needed to order more wine anyway so added a bottle to a mixed case and put it through last night, all went through OK.


and indeed the website now has the description…

An intensely rich red with generous blueberry and spice flavours, made from Spain’s native bobal grape.

This is the first launch from our new Bin Series range, a limited-edition collection of wines that represent all that The Wine Society has stood for since 1874: an insatiable passion for exploration and discovery, unbeatable value, unique stories and, most of all, truly delicious wine.


I’m noticing on instagram a few wine reviewers already have a bottle.

Is another new direction for the society sending out free samples to ‘influencers’ so they talk about it on social media?


What’s new about wine companies sending samples to reviewers to promote their wines? :thinking:


Errr! They are not mutual for a start??


Just like a press tasting.


It’s certainly not new - we’ve been working with wine writers, bloggers etc for many years and have been very open about it - for instance, we offer a couple of Community members the chance to attend our press tastings quarterly. :slight_smile: (There’s a chance to put your name forward for the next one right here, if you’re interested!) Our very own @Ewan is our trusty PR guy! :smiley:


They still have to sell their wine though? And part of that involves advertising including througu social media


I meant more that method, Press Tastings obviously being a long established method that I have no issue with.

Much like my earlier gripe I personally have an issue with this style of marketing, I refuse to attend an event I am interested in as every year they give away loads of tickets to instagrammers / bloggers who have no interest in the subject just to write about it yet charge horrendous prices for those whom it is a hobby. I tend to avoid companies who try and promote by sending freebies to ‘influencers’ too. Luckily there are still many who refuse to go down that route.

The posts I’ve seen are from wine writers who I respect but should the society start sending lots of bottles out to pretty much any ‘influencer’ for review before going on sale to members I personally would find it an issue and it would make me more likely to buy from other merchants who don’t use such practices.

Again, just my personal preferences and feelings on the matter. I’m sure many others disagree.


@Aaronb I get to quite a lot of press tastings. My experiences are that they are choked full of wine business suits who seem to take more time chatting than tasting. There are also lots of young wine students taking the opportunity to taste wines they couldn’t possibly afford to purchase.
I agree about the influencers, they are a bane of modern marketing. I use the Parker model. I do not receive samples and write about what I like.


Laura, I think we need to draw a line here from inviting a couple of enthusiastic members to a tasting, from sending invites / samples / goodie bags to “influencers” whose income is derived from product placement. I don’t know about the others, but I think we need to tread carefully with the latter.


Sorry to go off-piste for a moment, but can anyone tell me why I seem to have developed a rather nasty green spot on my head?


Don’t worry - I’m not interested in doing this, because it’s completely not our style. I think the term ‘influencer’ is over-used and often makes people think of Kardashian-esque deals with people who one might argue care more about getting paid than about what product they’re promoting, and I completely agree that wouldn’t be true to The Wine Society’s values.

On the flip-side, there are some fantastic people whom the industry these days might call ‘influencers’ (back when I was an ‘influencer’, the term didn’t exist!) but who aren’t traditional wine writers, but are still genuinely enthusiastic, authentic and knowledgeable with a good presence on social media. If they can help us reach discerning wine drinkers who don’t typically engage with traditional wine press, but do so in an authentic collaboration rather than just vapid product placement, I really don’t see how it’s any different from our work with the wine press. Same transparency, same values, same message, just a different platform.


But they’ve never done this! Also, advertising is becoming more digital and while I understand where you are coming from a LOT of younger people are more engaged with social media than ever before. TWS have to keep up and personally I think they are doing a pretty good job of it.


The problem for us consumers is - how do we tell the difference?


The whole point of influencers is to shout about things they are being paid (whether in kind or cash) to shout about. So where is the credibility in that. Many of the young are like sheep to fall for this type of hyped up patronage. Sadly, any impact is short lived and then on to the next thing.


The same way you’ve dealt with all other forms of advertising previously i’d imagine?

I am a bit surprised at some of the responses here. Surely it’s clear that occasionally you might come across some advertising that may either not be targeted at you or your demographic, or just doesn’t resonate with you in particular.

Are you all just not capable of ignoring and moving on, or failing that moderating your own social media feed at your end?

Younger generations do not consume media in the same way previous generations have, thats just a fact. TWS ignoring what is clearly an effective (and relatively low cost) form of advertising would arguably be almost negligent.


I trust that most people are wise enough to be able to tell the difference - especially when working with what in industry lingo is ‘micro influencers’ ie people who are more genuine but with less followers, as opposed to people with huge followings but little visible integrity (who we wouldn’t be interested in working with, of course). If you disagree then fair enough, but that doesn’t reflect the stats about how smart consumers are when it comes to judging how genuine influencers are.

You’re free to think that, but in my experience this is a huge generalisation and in no way reflects work we’ve done with ‘influencers’, whether wine press or otherwise. I can gladly point you to some interesting reading on the positives of working with the right influencers if you’re keen on learning more.


Well said Laura.