Reason #3 – I’m A Newbie

Today is Wednesday, so it’s time to post my third reason for voters to vote for my A Really Goode Job video, as well as for Murphy Goode to pick me as their Lifestyle Correspondent. It’s simple: I am a newbie. Although we all have our own ideas on what MG is looking for in this hire, if I was them, I would look for someone with social media chops, who is great at storytelling, but not necessarily someone who is an established wine blogger. The benefit of hiring someone like that is that you can mold this person, who is not going to come to the job with preconceived notions or winery preferences.

In any job, as long as a new hire demonstrates key skills and characteristics, and is anxious and excited to learn, the industry-specific knowledge can be taught. This job is no different. However, the skills and the understanding of Web 2.0 tools, community and dynamics can not be taught in such a short time: it has to have been learned through years of interaction, learning and practicing. Even though I am not a wine blogger and not a professional sommelier, I do have a passion for wine, have been drinking it my whole life (watch my video to find out how old I was when I had my first drink of wine), and love its conversation-enhancing and community-building quality. And lastly, because I am new to the wine-making process, it will be easy for consumers to identify with me and go on a journey with me to learn wine tasting and wine making.

So vote for me! Pick me! I am a wine newbie, but I am passionate about learning wine and winemaking, and learn quickly (once I learned a whole semester of Algebra in one weekend!). I am passionate (on the border of fanaticism) about social media, Twitter and blogging, and as I have demonstrated with this blog, I have the chops to produce text, photo and video content. I have the tools, yet I am a blank canvas.

Published in: on June 17, 2009 at 6:00 pm  Comments (1)  

Gary Vaynerchuk: “Twitter has allowed me to scale my caring”

I was lucky enough to be able to listen to the inspiring keynote by GaryVee of Wine Library TV at the 140 Characters Conference today. This speech was a bit different from Gary’s usual high-energy #crushit campaign.  Just as passionate and high-energy as usual, Gary changed direction a little and talked about caring and engaging in conversation with those who are talking about you or your product. As a brand strategist, I am amazed how brands don’t use the power of Twitter to find, interact with and care about people who are talking about them.

More priceless advice from Gary: we need to stop our obsession with the number of followers we have. I agree: it’s the quality that matters, not the quantity. Spammers can grow the number of followers with an astronomic speed via auto-follows. But does anyone care what they have to say? Will anyone retweet their message? It’s a resounding no, because they have zero social capital. If you care, you will eventually grow your social capital and your Whuffie.

Gary says it best himself, so check it out here! (And now that Gary has baby Misha, he has promised to eliminate the F word  – well, not quite eliminate, he only said it once 🙂

Published in: on June 17, 2009 at 4:22 pm  Comments (2)  

It is Goode to be Romantic


Maria and Greg with Wine Glass

 I remember my first time in Sonoma. I had just started dating my boyfriend, a dizzyingy smart  social applications entrepreneur known as Gregarious on Twitter. In an incredibly romantic   move, he flew me out to San Francisco, where he spends at least half his time. The trip  included a weekend trip to Sonoma to celebrate a friend’s birthday. And that is how he won  over my heart. I wanted to create this post to pay tribute to Sonoma, because no wine blog is  complete without a telling a story of the surrounding culture.  





I think the successful Lifestyle Correspondent for Murphy Goode, in addition to being a killer social media strategist, passionate about wine, will have to also be a passionate about the Sonoma region and its culture. Anyone who has been there and experienced it properly, will forever remember it. It is such a gorgeous and extremely romantic place with a very distinct culture. The culture is rustic, laid back, romantic, and obviously very much a wine culture. The romance of the wine, grapes, sun-drenched lush greenery, couples in love, friends chatting and laughing over a bottle of wine… Ah, just thinking back about my time there makes me feel like I am still there and makes me miss it ever more.  


For another incredibly romantic story, please check out the story of Rick Bakass proposal, published on the blog of Frank Gutierrez.

See you all in Sonoma!

Maria and Friends in Sonoma

Published in: on June 16, 2009 at 6:53 pm  Comments (1)  

Holistic Marketing – Don’t Tweet in a Vacuum

Today I am revisiting my “5 reasons why you should vote for me” series and putting reason #2 out there. So here it goes.. In addition to my reach and command of social tools, I am a holistic marketer and business person. I have been studying marketing my whole life, having obtained a BS in Commerce from the McIntire School of Commerce at UVa and an MBA with a marketing focus from Robert H. Smith School of Business (you can view my LinkedIn profile here). That means very little, but what’s important is that I have a vast understanding of the marketing mix, and how it fits into operations of the company. On this blog, I have started and will continue discussing issues pertaining not only to social media in wine, and Murphy Goode in particular, but also how social media efforts will fit into the overall marketing approach. Check out my posts on distribution and targeting and messaging

In short, I don’t tweet and blog in a vacuum, but rather use social media tools to reinforce and support a marketing strategy to reach a desired demographic. If you support this view, please vote for me here

Published in: on June 16, 2009 at 3:18 pm  Comments (2)  

A Very Goode Consumer Target

As part of the A Really Goode Job project, we are all very focused on twittering, blogging and social media. However, it is important to keep in mind that social media is a part of the marketing mix, aimed at enhancing strategic efforts and reaching a desired consumer demographic. As a career business and marketing person, I am always analyzing businesses and the success of their marketing efforts. As I started working on the A Really Goode Job project, I asked myself who the ideal target demographic is for any winery in general, and Murphy Goode in particular.

Every company wants to establish a life-long relationship with a customer, to ensure that it can derive the most lifetime value out of each customer, after having spent money to get this person to buy for the first time. The faster you can make your consumer a loyalist and the longer you can keep him / her engaged with the brand, the higher the lifetime value. An adult beverage company, thus, wants to convert at an age as close to 21 as possible. Let’s examine the drinking habits of kids around that age. After having gone through college, they are used to drinking cheap beer and taking shots of Jager. Wine is not part of fraternity parties usually, and most of these kids feel intimidated by wine after they graduate from college and move on to their first job and first “adult” apartment. At that point, the consumer, especially male, is not thinking of wine as a beverage of choice. To get the most market share and the most customer lifetime value, Murphy Goode should find a way to attract this newly-out-of-college demographic, with a special sub-segment of young men.

I have put together this mock commercial to demonstrate what an ideal advertising concept would look like. At that age, a young man is interested in having a date with a young lady turn out well. Because young ladies have a stronger connection to wine at that age, she is more likely to drink wine on a date, and the young man is interested in impressing her with ordering a wine that will please both her and him. This is the perfect positioning for Murphy Goode: the wine that guarantees a date that is as smooth as the wine. Remember, for a goode date, make it Murphy Goode!

Please enjoy the video and leave comments!

P.S. This post is all about messaging (or “Promotions” in the 4 Ps of Marketing). I dealt with Placement in a previous post. As far as product and price, I think Murphy Goode is well-positioned to appeal to this demographic, as the wines maintain an extremely high quality-to-price ratio, and are an “affordable luxury” suitable to a recent grad’s pocketbook. As far as media through which to reach this hard-to-reach demographic the online space is definitely the first place I would reach for.

Published in: on June 15, 2009 at 4:11 pm  Comments (13)  

Reason #1 to vote for me: I’m Huge on Twitter (and I ain’t afraid to use it)



I'm Huge On Twitter

I'm Huge On Twitter

Ok, that was a little tongue-in-cheek, I admit. Quoting Ron Burgundy, “I’m kind of a big deal”.

In all seriousness… As voting for “A Really Goode Job” draws to a close within the next couple of weeks (I believe that voting will be open past the application deadline, which is this Friday, June 19th), I wanted to put forth 5 Goode reasons why you (yes you!) should vote for me, TheGoodeMaria. As part of the process, we have just 60 seconds to present ourselves in a video as the worthiest of candidates, which doesn’t allow for a very  complete picture. To that end, I created this blog and a Twitter account above and beyond my regular one. To further drive my message, I have come up with the following concept: over the following 5 days, I will focus on a very Goode reason why I am the best candidate for this job. So here we go!

As a social media junkie, I am knee deep in using, discovering and studying social technologies. I read and write blogs, interact with the community, Digg, YouTube, Tumble, Tweet and Facebook. I would have to say that Twitter is my favorite medium, as it allows for the most real-time and relevant interaction and deep, measurable reach. My reason #1 has to do with my ability to generate buzz via Twitter, as well as my deep reach on this platform.

Even though I started at a disadvantage to the job candidates that started the process weeks, even months ago (my video only went up last Thursday), I promoted the video with gusto since Thursday and generated 80 retweets and 1500 page views within the first 24 hours. As of the time of this writing, I have around 80 votes on my video, and it’s been up for just 4.5 days. Extrapolating on this trend, I would have had 600 votes within a month and easily 1000 votes since the contest started. Given my reach, I would have been easily one of the top vote-getters on the site. To ensure that I can increase conversion from pageviews to votes, I even created this handy webcast tutorial on how to vote.

Moreover, within 2 weeks, I generated 160 followers to my TheGoodeMaria twitter account, which given some extra time, would easily reach into 1,000s. As the contest wears on, and as I hope to end up in the top 10, I will continue to connect with the Twitter community, engaging in conversations, generating buzz and pageviews, via interesting and relevant content. Even though the number of votes is not the most important part of the process, the best candidates will have to demonstrate that they are able to engage and generate buzz. I am going all in, and I hope that my commitment and passion will motivate and inspire you all to vote!

If you think I add value, please take a moment and vote for me here. I truly appreciate and am humbled by your support.

Published in: on June 15, 2009 at 12:38 pm  Comments (3)  

What comes first: promotion or distribution? The 4 Ps of goode marketing

Today I finally found a bottle of Murphy Goode wine in NYC, on my 7th attempt. I went to three stores in New Jersey and three in NYC. Partially it was my own fault because I didn’t use the store locator (on Murphy Goode site) for the first four stores; I just figured that if it’s a pretty major store, it would have a good selection.

The last two didn’t have the MG wine, even though they were listed in the official store locator. Curiously, one of them had a wooden MG display unit, but no wine. I asked the store owner why they didn’t have it, and he said it was a space issue. I asked if demand was too low, and he said that if he had it, people would probably buy it, because it’s pretty goode (pun added by me, not the store owner). 🙂 

I see two reinforcing issues here: poor presence at retail level and absence of consumer pull (consumer not asking for it by name). Poor distribution could be caused by several factors, such as: wine distributor politics (which I don’t know much about – but hope to learn – right now, I just know it’s a 3-tier system) and lack of field sales focus on the East Coast market (which can probably be attributed to distribution politics as well). Since the wine is not in the store, and most consumers haven’t been exposed to MG’s messaging in NYC, consumers lack the awareness to ask for it by name. In turn, because consumers aren’t asking for it, and sales don’t justify carrying the item, the stores just don’t carry it.

Since the A Really Goode Job contest started, awareness of Murphy Goode has shot up astronomically, and hopefully it’s just the beginning of growing the nationwide recognition of this brand. The Lifestyle Correspondent will need to continue building upon this momentum, to keep generating buzz and demand. As more and more consumers will ask for it by name and buy it, more and more stores will carry it, in turn reinforcing demand, and driving sales.

So what comes first: distribution or promotion? I think they have to be carefully orchestrated to work in synch with each other. After all, distribution and promotion are two of the 4 P’s of Marketing.

Published in: on June 13, 2009 at 4:32 pm  Comments (7)  

Voting for your favorite Lifestyle Correspondent

I have started to promote my video on Twitter today, and have received many questions on how the voting process works. Through an extremely successful day of tweeting, retweeting, facebooking, IM’ing and emailing, my video generated over 1000 views in its first day! However, that resulted in only 30 votes.

I think confusion is partly to blame, as well as confirmation emails getting lost in voters’ spam mailboxes. Also, people are fearful of giving up their email addresses for the fear of getting spammed. However, in this particular case, Murphy Goode is not going to send you anything (other than the confirmation email for your vote), unless you opt in by checking the box. For the benefit of not only my voters, but all the other voters, I created this educational screencast. I hope you find this helpful and vote for your favorite applicant (me of course!) Please let me know if you have any questions or feedback.

Have a very Goode Day!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about "Voting for your favorite Lifestyle Co…", posted with vodpod

Published in: on June 12, 2009 at 1:57 am  Comments (4)  

My #areallygoodejob video is up!

The day has finally arrived! After careful review, the Murphy Goode team approved my video to go on the A Really Goode Job site.  Please check it out here and vote for me! When voting, please note that it’s a 2-step process. Once you enter your email address, you receive link inside a confirmation email, which needs to be clicked in order for the vote to be counted. I thank you in advance for your support!

Please click HERE to cast your vote!

If you want to see a higher-definition version of the video (it was too large to submit to the competition), you can see it here:

Published in: on June 11, 2009 at 1:01 pm  Leave a Comment  

Bubbly Karen Hartline bubbles over with love for white wine

Red or white? That is the question that I have been asking many folks at tech events during last week’s Internet Week NY (and will continue doing so in upcoming weeks). I caught up with Karen Hartline of Mashable and Brian Solis fame. Karen prefers white because it’s refreshing. Could that be because the bubbly Hartline is like a refreshing drink herself? Check her out here!

Published in: on June 10, 2009 at 1:36 am  Leave a Comment