What better way to kick off the start of summer than with a three-day festival of rosé? Now in its fourth year, the groundswell of support for the Rosé Revolution from rosé lovers over the last three years is testament to the popularity of this dry, Provençe-style wine in Australia.
The Three Days of Rosé will kick off to celebrate the arrival of summer over the season’s first weekend – 29, 30 November and 1 December 2013. A fantastic food match and perfect apéritif, dry rosé makes for the perfect summer wine.
Over three days, participating trade and wineries across the country will be offering consumers an opportunity to taste and trial gloriously dry and delicious rosé. Social media channels will be featuring the Rosé Revolution activity with the hashtag #roserev.
There are a number of events and social media opportunities for wineries and Rosé consumers across the Southern Hemisphere’s summer months (including a tweet up) and the Revolution is also putting a call out to all wine lovers, bars, restaurants and retailers to organise their own Rosé Revolution events. Event organisers can download a beautiful professionally designed Rosé Revolution flyer from the website and all eligible Rosé Revolution events will be supported through the Rosé Revolution social media channels.
For more information on how to get involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you’re a winery and are interested in joining in some of the consumer give aways and trial opportunities we’d also like to hear from you.
Vive la Rose Revolution!
It’s been a challenging few weeks! Two weeks ago I woke up with no hearing in my left ear. There were no prior warning signs that anything was wrong, and gone are the days of being out at loud rock concerts to cause damage to the ears from screeching music stars. It had been over a week since I’d flown and for once we had an early night the previous night. Whilst I was sure that the issue was minor, my husband forced me to go and see a GP to have it looked at given that I was well and the symptoms were abnormal.
The GP at the local Medical Centre was concerned and gave me a course of steroids to start but I really had cause for alarm a few days later when I saw my regular GP and he spent up to an hour examining me and calling every Ear Nose and Throat specialist in Sydney to find one who could see me the next day. After a series of auditory exams and tests he confirmed that I was deaf in the left ear and had a condition called Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss. The prognosis was not good – and many with this condition never hear again from the ear again. This was declared a medical emergency!
You can imagine my shocked reaction – there’s nothing rational about waking up deaf in an ear! And to be a medical condition that had to be put down to “we don’t know why it happens” left too many questions unanswered. We started on a course of steroids and have just had to wait (something those of you who know me well know is not one of my strong points) to see how the body reacted. The instinct to become Dr. Google kicked in and I found myself researching every known article about the condition – surely there had to be something I could do, but everything I read confirmed I was on the only known course of treatment and this was still one of those medical conditions where very little was known so we just had to persevere and see what each new day brought.
Senses were a whirlwind – I’d stand in the playground with the children of a morning and not be able to hear other conversations from parents, my phone would ring and the background noise would mean I would not hear it, and simple things that you take for granted were difficult as the senses tried to adjust to operating differently. To make things more challenging I had tinnitus in the ear with a constant whistling sound at a high pitch that made sleep difficult and brought on migraine like headaches.
Despite a grim prognosis initially, the odds seem to be on my side. Late last week we saw some improvements and whilst there’s still a few weeks till I see the specialist again my hearing has returned slightly (maybe at 50% of what it was) and the Tinnitus disappeared over the weekend. I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am and what a relief it is to be gradually seeing an improvement!
It’s easy to take our health for granted and try and fit as much in our day as possible, thinking that we’re invincible and just persevering and pushing ahead. Yet, it’s been a stark word of warning for me that we’re not invincible and sometimes the little things in life that we take for granted are worth sitting back and enjoying.
Why am I telling you this story? Because it’s forced me to stop and re-evaluate and remember the importance of the little things in life. I kept reminding myself that despite the prognosis there were far worse things that could have happened – cancer diagnosis, total deafness – so much worse conditions that others face. Yet it would have taken some adjusting. I have been fortunate, but if I had not have sought medical advice early, we’re sure that the results would be permanent and I’d be facing a different outcome. If there’s any lesson here it’s to seek treatment early and if there’s something abnormal, don’t wait to get it seen to – make it your absolute priority to have checked out immediately. What’s to lose?
The old saying “Take the time to stop and smell the roses” might be a cliché but it’s as relevant as ever – make a phone call to a friend for a chat, listen to the world around you and whisper I love you to the most important people in your life. You just never know what tomorrow will bring….
You’d have to be living under a rock to have missed the recent increase in binge drinking and alcohol-fuelled violence among Australians. It’s a scary shift of what used to be acceptable behaviour – having a few drinks with good friends formed part of the Aussie larrikin persona for years. But this loveable larrikin with a drinking problem could be your son, your friend, or your mother. Never has this issue been more in the spotlight than now, with prominent sports personalities making public claims that they have issues with alcohol consumption and the news outlet continuing to bring this discussion into the public debate.
This concern is hard to identify with if you’re not a binge drinker yourself, but as part of the alcohol industry, it’s time we all accepted that our product is having a negative social impact that can no longer be ignored.
Earlier this year (17 April 2013), the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education released its Annual Alcohol Poll. Yes, this is a lobby group and the Galaxy Research survey had only a small sample size of 1,533 people. However, their findings generate headlines that could influence consumers’ perception of the alcohol industry and influence our ability to market our products in the future.
MAJOR POINTS FROM THE ANNUAL ALCOHOL POLL
It was a 55-page report full of facts and figures. Just take a look at the most startling results:
I sat in the car listening to the talkback radio chatter about these findings. There were heartfelt stories shared by people struggling with their addictions and those watching their children suffer because they were consuming irresponsibly.
NATIONAL DRUG & ALCOHOL CENTRE RESEARCH
Then came another survey released last week by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at the University of NSW. One of the more disturbing findings was that more than 90% of men who drink alcohol to excess as teens keep doing so throughout their 20s. It goes to show that this isn’t experimental or a passing phase. The research, based on nearly 2000 Victorian teenagers aged between 14 and 17, was published in the British Medical Journal Open.
Director of the Public Health Advocacy Institute at Curtin University, Professor Mike Daube, said, “Easy access, lack of education and exposure to alcohol promotion are the key drivers that lead to excessive alcohol consumption.” This was endorsed on the weekend through more press talking about the issues around social media marketing of alcoholic beverages. See what the Herald Sun had to report.
It’s easy to put our head in the sand as marketers/producers of alcoholic products and pretend we’re not part of the problem, particularly if our products are at the top end of the market where prices are higher. But if our customers share the opinion that we should be doing something about it, shouldn’t we be listening to them?
Sixty-seven per cent of people surveyed felt that the alcohol industry needed to be doing something to address the concerns, yet only 5% of those surveyed thought that the industry was working to address the potential harm of their product, compared to 19% in the fast food industry and 13% in the gambling industry.
There are certainly ways we can start to think about marketing our brands more responsibly. The problem is, if we don’t start demonstrating how we are making a difference, we’ll be forced into a situation where regulations are mandated by the government.
WHAT CAN WE DO?
There are plenty of ways we can tackle the issues, from plain packaging and restricting the sale of alcohol to certain hours of the day to raising taxes on alcohol. Working with industry bodies is another way – on 16 August, The Winemakers’ Federation of Australia launched the Responsible Winery Initiative, urging all 2,800 Australian wineries to take nine simple steps at their cellar door and in their business. One of these steps is to use a standard cellar door tasting pour that can be easily equated to a standard drink, allowing tasters to measure exactly how much they’ve drunk over a period of time at any Australian winery.
The marketing recommendations in the initiative were to sign up for the Drinkwise Pregnancy Initiative, carry the approved Standard Drinks logo on all bottles, ensure compliance with the Alcohol Beverages Advertising Code, and establish clear guidelines for using social media. Businesses are also encouraged to develop a Workplace Alcohol Policy for staff.
A small way to make a difference is by thinking through the answers to these questions before we do our next promotion:
Let’s look beyond increasing sales and shifting volume through our stores. Wouldn’t it be great to know that our legacy as an industry has been responsible promotion, and that we tackled the issues head on, providing solutions for our future generations – not just within the industry but for our society as a whole.
For the last few years I’ve been hounding on about facebook’s promotional guidelines and how to play by the rules. Previously you’ve not been able to run promotions directly on the wall, or use facebook functionality (like, share, comment) to be able to enter a competition or give-away. To get around this (and remove liability from facebook) competitions needed to be hosted via a specific app like Shortstack, Wildfire, Woobox, Social House Promotions.
Well true to form, Facebook changed the game today and released new promotional guidelines that are designed to help businesses run promotions more easily. See https://www.facebook.com/facebookforbusiness/news/page-promotions-terms for details.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Whilst facebook has their own guidelines around promotions, there are also rules governed by respective state office of Gaming and Racing Authorities that you need to consider:
My thoughts on this policy change are mixed. Sure there were many business breaking the rules anyway who will be happy with the fact that they can now continue. But it also opens up the newsfeed to countless promotions, gimmicks and giveaways being run by brands just to be able to increase their edgerank scores. Instead of relevant information or snippets of information about our family and friends (what many use facebook for), there will potentially be a flood of cheap content produced just to get seen on the newsfeed and drive likes, but not necessarily achieving broader marketing objectives. Watch this space, facebook are sure to make some edgerank changes to be able to counteract!
The onus is now more than ever on creating a calendar of content that is engaging, relevant and on message. Add in the occasional competition or incentive to drive up interaction but stay true to what your brand is about. And if you are going to run a promotion on the wall, make sure that you’re specific about the prize, how to enter and what people need to do to enter to remove any ambiguity about the competition.
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR APPS?
Apps on facebook will still have their place – there’s lots of benefits in being able to capture details, run more engaging promotions and device a competition of value for customers. We’re helping to run a promotion on Plantagenet Wines Facebook page at the moment that would never have been possible to conduct with details being captured securely and tallying results easily if we were conducting this on the facebook wall. I’m sure that many of the app companies will continue to raise the bar and worth keeping an eye on their developments.
Love to know your thoughts on the changes in the comments below.
It’s so great to see so many companies embracing social media as a marketing tool these days. Only a few years ago, mention “facebook” or “Twitter” to company decision-makers and watch them squirm for fear of adopting these new communication tools. But despite having come so far, there’s still another hurdle to jump before the squirming stops – and that’s enforcing a social media policy.
Sure, responsible social media use might seem like commonsense, but if you have no formal protocols in place, how do you expect to have a course of redress when something goes wrong? We continue to see regular examples of social media accounts being hacked and disgruntled employees taking to social media platforms to air their grievances.
It’s time to get serious about how you communicate the use of social media within your organisation. Remember when email was becoming more widely used? Many organisations quickly implemented email policies into human resource practices – and yet even with the rapid growth of social media adoption, many companies fail to address this and make the necessary changes.
It may sound fear mongering and onerous, but creating a social media policy doesn’t need to be. It’s about communicating your expectations and ensuring staff understand their obligations. Check out a few examples of how these organisations have implemented a policy – they might inspire you to do the same:
It’s easy to see how the line between personal and corporate social media usage can often become blurred. But regardless of the size of your organisation, this issue needs to be something you raise at the executive level. Put a plan in place to mitigate your risk and everyone will sleep easier.