As a child, I distinctly remember our disheveled and consistently irritated neighbor, Mr. Oberman, gas on about the weather to no end. Strategically intercepted when trying to sneak my dirt bike past his house, I sat through long diatribes covering the intricate differences between dangerous and tame fronts, the varying sizes and textures of hail, the way in which pressure changes affect moods and how I read someone’s personality by the clouds sitting idly overhead. Sure, he was a bit eccentric, but the entire conversation of weather and climate has left me with a rather sour note on its existence. And quite honestly, I don’t think I’m alone.
Find me someone who doesn’t have a grandfather, neighbor or uncle who loves to chat about the weather? Conversations typically go like this, “Well Jimmy, temperatures look to be sitting around 50 degrees, and if I’m not mistaken, I bet we’ll see a cold front come in by this afternoon. You know, it was just last year when I distinctly remember being with your sister at the state fair when the exact same front came in. It was in the early afternoon and….” If you’re like me, you’re long gone at this point, deep into a daydream about hiking the French Alps.
My point is this, when a winery talks about the climate of their region, I tend to have the same reaction as I did to Mr Oberman, I’m bored. If I haven’t seen your region, breathed in the air, walked among your vines, I can’t relate. I lack context and a sense of place. And even though the climate is directly related to the quality and style of your wine, 99% of your consumers don’t care. Why? Because if they’re not a wine geek, especially fond of climate conditions, or aspire to be a weatherman, it has zero impact on whether they will enjoy your wine that evening. But there is a way to pique their interest.
Most of us dream of vacations to faraway places. While sitting in a sterile florescent flooded 4 by 4 ft cubicle, we dream of the sweet smelling valleys in the German countryside; how the hot, searing sun penetrates our skin on the Spanish meseta; or how the wind tumbles through our hair among the Italian vineyards. We may not know specific wine regions, or the grapes native to the region, but we have our imagination. And what better way to get in touch with that imagination than through a video of your region?
Gottfried Lamprecht is an Austrian winemaker located in the wine region of Steiermark. He’s relatively new to the social media scene, but his videos are by far some of the best we’ve ever seen. They’re simple, heartfelt, authentic and strive to explain his vision and passion for the region. Having missed his 4th video, I took a moment to check it out this evening, and was riveted by his conversation on climate. Was it profound or complex? No. But what it was, was engaging, sincere and informative. Gottfried showed us vast swaths of snow covered lands, explaining the cultural and climatic differences between the southern wine region of Steiermark, as compared to that of Burgenland, all from a panoramic view 500 meters above sea level and far from his winery.
Note the “far from his winery” part, because this is a risk that most wineries won’t take. They prefer to stay close to home, consistently pounding the message “this is my winery and these are my wines”. Unfortunately, what many wineries fail to understand is that there is more to life than your winery, and by taking us on a journey to discover different aspects of your region, we associate our new found knowledge with you and your brand.
Check out Gottfried’s video and see if you don’t find yourself experiencing the crisp air upon your wind burned cheeks, the warmth of the sun upon your face, the yearning to stand alongside Gottfried overlooking the stunning Austrian terroir, and the indescribable desire to learn about Austrian climate conditions?