Millennials: The New Wino Generation

Posted by: Jeff Fromm

Who doesn’t enjoy a good glass of wine at the end of a long day or when sitting down to dinner with a group of friends?  Fortunately, what was once considered only a luxury beverage is now being served more often in social settings that we have not seen before.  Millennials are becoming enthusiastic wine connoisseurs and are changing the marketing game for many of the top brands.

Millennials are the largest consumer group in history and now hold a dominant portion of the purchasing power in our economy.  Millennials are also now the youngest legal drinkers and are drinking at a rate that is much higher than previous generations.  Research shows that 65 percent of Millennials who are between the ages of 26 and 34 drink wine every day or several days a week.

Brands that are winning with Millennials are featuring wines that have creative labeling, allow Millennials to experiment with different flavors and involve Millennials in the creation process.

Creative labeling 

Millennials are a creative generation who value minimalistic design and bold colors.  Many young Millennials who do not have a strong wine education look to packaging when making a decision about which wine to purchase.  Effective labels tell a story that Millennials can relate to and reflects their own personalities.  Vision Wine and Spirits Importer released the new TXT Cellar brand that connects with Millennials through its packaging.  The bottles feature labels that are brightly colored and align with the Millennial lifestyle.  The minimalistic design and bold words, OMG, WTF, LMAO and LOL are all phrases that Millennial can relate to.

Flavor profiles

Traditional methods of wine pairing are not important to Millennials.  They are drinking wine on their own terms and are not being tied down by what used to be considered the proper wine for a specific meal.  Flavor profiles have also become much sweeter in order to adapt to new Millennial preferences.  Boomers were a generation that valued bold reds with bitter varieties.  In contrast, Millennials prefer sweeter wines that have more floral tones.  Millennials also value flavor experimentation and will try new creative options instead of sticking with one flavor.  For Millennials, the fun factor is an important aspect of the dining experience.

Creation process

Co-creation is a huge draw for Millennials. Millennials have a strong desire to know about the companies and backgrounds of the products they use.  This holds true in the wine industry as well.  Now, social media has enabled wine drinkers to develop a relationship with wine makers, distributors and other drinkers all over the world.  Millennials are letting producers know what kinds of flavors they want and are making recommendations to their peers about what they like and don’t like.

Millennials are becoming the new generation of winos.  They are seeking out exciting brands that speak to them on a personal level and offer new flavor profiles.  Millennials value brands that offer them an experience not just a product.  Brands that adapt to this new model of marketing will win with Millennials.

Leah Swartz contributed to this post. 

Photo Credit: Hades2k via Flickr & TXT Cellar

About Jeff Fromm

Although not a Millennial as defined by his age, Jeff Fromm is the Millennial Marketing Guy. Jeff is President of FutureCast, a marketing consultancy that specializes in Millennial trends, and is a contributing writer at...See Jeff's full bio.