What Would Make Millennials and Gen-Z Buy More Wine?

How do you get Millennials and Gen-Z to invest in wine? A question on the lips of many wine producers and marketers around the globe.

Wine-Searcher provides a brief history of recent failed attempts to reach younger consumers. From the short-lived fame of Moscato to rapper and stoner Snoop Dogs best efforts to market his 19 Crimes brand, the wine industry have tried their utmost to grab the buying power of the younger generations, to no avail. The canned wine approach as well as the natural wine approached did not really succeed either. So what’s next?

Author W. Blake Gray suggests the folowing:

How to sell more wine to Millennials and Gen-Zs

The wine industry should consider going to Jay-Z, a white Burgundy fan, and begging on bended knee for he and his wife, also a musician of some renown, to do some sort of combined album about wine. Trade him a Napa Valley estate for it. It would be worth it.

The movie “Sideways” sold a boatload of Pinot Noir. Maybe the Gallo family should hire some brilliant writer/director to come up with a wine movie. I think Joss Whedon is looking for work. Imagine an ordinary woman working in some dead-end job who one day drinks a glass of Merlot and turns into a superhero! Or maybe there’s a sinister alien conspiracy to turn all our brains into mush, and it turns out old-vine Zinfandel is the only cure. Get to work, Joss.

One thing the wine industry needs to do is fight back against the drumbeat of negativity regarding health and alcohol. It’s limited in what it can say, as federal regulators won’t allow them to say that wine is good for you. But there are a lot of poorly done studies coming out of England lately and that has a cumulative effect.

The answer to that problem is pro athletes. Basketball players love wine, and we read some amusing stories about it, but it hasn’t really been touted by the industry. The wine industry should try it, because if a top-condition athlete can enjoy wine after the game, it shows that it’s not as bad for you as the neo-Prohibitionists claim.

This could be cyclical. Whiskey was down and out as an industry 30 years ago, and look at it now. Maybe whoever comes along after Gen-Z will decide to take up wine just because their parents did not. But can the wine industry afford to wait to find out?