Build it and they will come. Or rather, should that be, listen and they will come?
Some pundits, market analysts and reports highlight that millennials have shunned wine in favour of beer and other drinks. Some say many have completely moved away from alcohol.
Equally qualified groups argue that wine consumption by millennials remains strong.
Depending on the source, the pendulum swings.
DO MILLENNIALS ACTUALLY CARE ABOUT WINE?
To add another data based perspective to the discussion, we mined nearly three years of consumer Quini wine tasting sensory and event participation data. Specifically, we wanted to see to what degree millennials (24 – 42 years of age) engaged with our consumer tasting panels and wine tasting events.
We also looked for Generation Z (0 – 23 years old) involvement. This group today makes up 25 percent of the U.S. population. It is also a larger cohort than the millennials.
Wine producers and brand managers, take notice. This can be your next big customer base. But they must be approached and engaged early.
The data findings will be the subject of a presentation this coming June, at the 3rd Annual Wine & Hospitality Management Workshop to be held at the SC Johnson College of Business program space in New York City. The workshop is organized by The Cornell Institute for Food and Beverage Management (CIFBM), along with the Alliance for Research on Wine and Hospitality Management.
Millennials have been engaging with wine on Quini more than Gen X (43 – 54 years old) and baby boomers (55-70 years of age).
During the second half of 2017, 20 percent more millennials participated in Quini-led wine tastings, than Gen X drinkers. The differential went up to 100 percent, when measured against the boomers.
In 2018, millennials’ participation outpaced Gen X drinkers by 10 percent.
The number increased back up to 20 percent in the first two months in 2019.
When compared against boomers’ participation, the differential, through February 2019, is astronomical. Feel free to drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like the actual number.
WINE REVIEWS DISTRIBUTION
The results reaffirm that, given the right environment and tools, millennials are stepping up and engaging with wine.
In 2017, the median number of wine reviews done on Quini by a millennial drinker was 29.5. For a Gen X, it was 28 and for a boomer, 22.5.
For 2018 the median was 18 reviews by millennials, 18 by Gen X’ers and 24 by boomers.
The surprise in 2018 was Gen Z consumers. They contributed a median of 24 reviews, equal to the boomers.
In January and February of 2019, the median for this group remained a strong 24. Higher than millennials (20 reviews), generation X’ers (21 reviews) and boomers (21 reviews).
BUT BUT BUT, DO MILLENNIALS KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT WINE?
To help answer this question, we analyzed the wine ratings distribution on Quini. That is how high or low the different generations tend to rate wines, on Quini’s 0-100 point scale.
The data shows that age and wine experience do not matter as much as one would have thought.
Younger drinkers seem to be as diligent and expressive in their wine ratings than older, more experienced drinkers. At times they tend to be even tougher critics.
In 2017, the median rating by a millennial wine drinker on Quini stood at 81.70/100. That of a Gen X member was 81.22/100 and that of a boomer was 78.22/100.
In 2018 the numbers were 79.61, 79.65 and 80.34, respectively.
Generation Z drinkers proved they are equally qualified to express an opinion about wine. Diligently they completed full wine reviews, detailing their observations around a wine’s various aspects, just like their more experienced peers.
The wine rating median by a Gen Z was 79.42. Thus far in 2019, they hold tough with a 77.26/100 median rating.
How do you interpret what the data is telling you? How can you use it to position your brands and accelerate your growth?
How we do it at Quini is simple. We make our wine tastings unique and memorable, by digitizing the tasting experience at our events. Participants get to save their tasting notes on their smartphone, to refer to them the next time they go out to dinner or to a liquor store. They also get relevant wine recommendations on their Quini app too, and we enable them to share their wine reviews and experiences on social media with their friends and family, in real time.
You can do this too. In your tasting rooms or restaurants, retail stores or wine clubs, staff training and customer education programs, in person and online.
ARE YOU LISTENING?
Drop us a note at email@example.com with any questions. To schedule a demonstration of the QUINI DATA™ sensory and attitudinal data collection, analytics and customer engagement platform, please send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.