In the grand puzzle of brand magnetism, your online presence is only a slice of the pie.
Brand magnetism is a combination of forces that a company produces to attract customers. It draws customers to you and the products or services you provide. This effort is not limited to having a “Sales” or “Distribution” plan – it’s a series of objectives used to increase your brand awareness.
Many of these objectives can be identified under the Trellis Growth Partners’ Brand Magnetism model such as: internal team commitment or management’s vision and strategy, the consumer experience or online presence. Each force has to work cohesively for maximum effectiveness.
A streamlined, organized website can be an effective avenue to introduce customers to your brand story and the products that you offer.
In 2013, we were approached by Two Mountain Winery, located in Washington’s Yakima Valley, owned and operated by Patrick and Matt Rawn. The Brothers Rawn were interested in elevating the look of their website to align with their recently updated wine labels.
As part of our strategic approach, we discussed areas of improvement to highlight more benefits for the customer visiting the site – answering the question: How can we make navigating through our website more efficient and user-friendly?
Below we outline three steps we took to improve the user-experience on the Two Mountain Winery website. We partnered with web and graphic designer, Rachel Tourville of Graphic Lime.
Step 1: Apply a simple navigation menu
Two Mountain Winery opted to transform its website’s navigation from a custom-designed image to a horizontal placement along the top of the webpage. Selecting a more traditional design, customers visiting the website can easily find the specific area of the website they are targeting. The goal is to make it as easy as possible for your customers to learn about your company and purchase your product.
Streamlining your navigation menu is also an important step. Rather than having a page for multiple facets of your brand story, evaluate what specific content can be grouped together. For example, you can combine your winery history or brand story in the same section as you talk about your employees or company principals; this can be under the main navigation section “About Us.” For Two Mountain, we utilized drop down menus under the About Us and Wines section, which allowed us to segment information without having a long list of buttons in the main navigation.
Step 2: Incorporate e-commerce
Customers are increasingly buying online. Earlier this year, ShipCompliant released a comprehensive annual report on winery-to-consumer shipping. It was noted that in 2013 the volume of shipments increased 9.3% to 3.47 million cases, while total sales of winery-to-consumer shipments increased 7.7% to $1.57 billion.
At the start of our engagement, Two Mountain did not have an online purchasing option. This was working against them. While Two Mountain Winery saw success in having wine available for purchase in retail stores, and the options for phone or tasting room orders, statistics in the aforementioned report show that online sales are outpacing retail wine sales. Trends prove that e-commerce can be an important avenue for increasing sales.
Step 3: Add brand ambassadors (club members)
Having a wine club is a great program a winery can use to achieve steady revenue stream. In our Trellis Brand Magnetism model, club members serve as your company’s brand ambassadors. Think of them as positive spokespersons for your brand. These special customers have the power to influence other consumers, creating more brand awareness for your company. While it is more common for a winery to sell these memberships in person at an event or during a tasting room visit, having the same information readily available on your website and incorporating an avenue to sign up online allows a brand to gain more ambassadors.
Creating brand magnetism is one of our company’s primary goals when serving clients. Online presence is only one aspect of a cohesive effort. Stay tuned for part II of this series when we examine elevating the online presence of an organization, the Umpqua Valley Winegrowers Association.
For more information on brand magnetism, please visit http://www.trellisgrowthpartners.com/about.html.
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