Do you MOG?

MOG is one of the newer communities to have arisen and it’s dedicated to and features profiles of musicians like Ben Gibbard. Unlike MySpace, which has become slightly commercialized and is used by every petty marketer to invite people to parties or sell cell-phones, MOG is strictly for music. What I like about the site is the ability to see as well as listen to what other people listen to; there’s a MOG-O-METER which reads all your most recently played iTunes tracks, and then it makes recommendations of what you should listen to. Better than that, you can actually listen to music on other people’s pages for free, without downloading it.

Calwineries.com
is a perfect example of how such brand innovation has stepped out of the music-only sphere and can be applied to wine. The formation of a community is exactly what the industry needs, wine people like talking, and so there are discussion boards, there’s information about any California winery you need, and one can even find emerging industry heavyweights such as Pinotblogger weighing in, which makes for a promising and powerful voice to be addressing this emerging wine community. Josh@pinotblogger.com has really opened up communication, with the recently launched Podcast and by going so far as to publish his cell-phone number on the blog, there’s no doubt that such graceful transparency is the future of wine marketing, especially for wines like Capozzi, and Stormhoek, and Vilafonte, which have all made unbelievable use of the online channel in building brands.


However, my feeling is that many California Wineries already enjoy a voice, and it’d be great if the conversation could be expanded and was between California and the world, rather than just California and California. Thinking about it this morning while reading The Pour where Asimov had quite recently spoken about various Natural wines, and linked through to a particular Rioja winery-site which enables you to do a cellar door tour, I couldn’t help but thinking that there’s a bigger picture here. Focusing on California when you have the entire world to talk about is to look too closely at the grapes when there’s an entire vineyard (to plagiarize seeing the wood through the trees.)

Grape Radio
had a fantastic Podcast a while back from a Pinot Symposium, and wine-makers from Peay Vineyards and around were all discussing Pinot Clones and Swan, which had been gotten from Burgundy. However, the same clones have also gone to South Africa, New Zealand and Oregon, and it would be much more interesting to hear a world symposium where top growers held a tasting and related experiences of the same clone in completely different continents, let alone terroir? In real life it would be expensive to organize, but if the discussion were held online, where winemakers could freely exchange comments on a single discussion board, not just wineries from California, but wineries from across the globe, much interest could be sparked and a lot could be gained.
Long term, it is not only an opportunity for foreign wines to get share of mouth in the US, but it’s also for Californian and US wines to get mind-share overseas. The best known Californian wine in the UK is Gallo, and if you want to find Frog’s Leap or anything from upstate New York you simply can’t, whilst you can find wine from Uruguay or Argentina quite easily in any London store.

Capozzi and Stormhoek, though from different countries entirely, have a lot to learn from one another, but at the moment there isn’t a platform to do it on. Grape Thinking, as many of you have guessed by now, will be that platform. In the coming months we’re going to launch an international wine community, where oenophiles will not only be able to affiliate themselves with global wineries, but they’ll be able to purchase the wine and review it themselves. Israeli Wines, a particular passion of mine, amongst others, will be given a platform to not only market themselves on the same platform as Australia and New Zealand, but because its digital there will be no fights for shelf-space or case-displays. Grapethinking will be the ‘digital vine’ connecting global vineyards, winemakers, bloggers, restaurateurs and wine lovers into the first global digital cocktail party where wine, opinions and dreams can be shared.

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Posted in Music, Passion, Technology, Wine, Wine/11 | 8 Comments »

  • http://vinobandito.blogspot.com Brad

    I’m not sure if you’ve seen it but you should definitely check out http://www.corkd.com. It has the potential to be an incredible wine community.

    -Brad Maier
    http://vinobandito.blogspot.com

  • http://vinobandito.blogspot.com Brad

    I’m not sure if you’ve seen it but you should definitely check out http://www.corkd.com. It has the potential to be an incredible wine community.

    -Brad Maier
    http://vinobandito.blogspot.com

  • http://RuarriRogan.com Ruarri

    Cork’d is okay… although for a few months they had Gallo and Mondavi at the top of their list of ‘fine wine.’ The other thing is ‘corkd’ is pronounced ‘corked’ – and I think that the name is poorly chosen. Firstly, because I usually try stay away from corked wine, and also because it neglects screwcap or other enclosures… just doesn’t seem like they thought it through too well.

  • http://RuarriRogan.com Ruarri

    Cork’d is okay… although for a few months they had Gallo and Mondavi at the top of their list of ‘fine wine.’ The other thing is ‘corkd’ is pronounced ‘corked’ – and I think that the name is poorly chosen. Firstly, because I usually try stay away from corked wine, and also because it neglects screwcap or other enclosures… just doesn’t seem like they thought it through too well.

  • http://vinobandito.blogspot.com Brad

    I believe if I remember correctly that cork’d is a joking reference. As far as the reason for the strange wine choices its because its a site that relies on user generated content. As more people particpate the quality of the content will rise. What my comment was intended to get at was the fact that cork’d is far and away the most well designed web app for wine and provides the best structure for a wine community to be successful. For an industry that has such a hard time marketing to the millennial generation cork’d is one of the first that comes to play with a level of technology that will actually impress younger people like myself.

    -Brad

  • http://vinobandito.blogspot.com Brad

    I believe if I remember correctly that cork’d is a joking reference. As far as the reason for the strange wine choices its because its a site that relies on user generated content. As more people particpate the quality of the content will rise. What my comment was intended to get at was the fact that cork’d is far and away the most well designed web app for wine and provides the best structure for a wine community to be successful. For an industry that has such a hard time marketing to the millennial generation cork’d is one of the first that comes to play with a level of technology that will actually impress younger people like myself.

    -Brad

  • http://www.grapethinking.com Ruarri

    You are right, the Web 2.0 design is good and it has a lot of potential. They just need to update their blog – I think the last entry was in February – and maybe get some more bottle shots. The user generated content is the way forward, consumers like to be involved, well at least people I know, including myself do. Thanks for the comments Brad…

  • http://www.grapethinking.com Ruarri

    You are right, the Web 2.0 design is good and it has a lot of potential. They just need to update their blog – I think the last entry was in February – and maybe get some more bottle shots. The user generated content is the way forward, consumers like to be involved, well at least people I know, including myself do. Thanks for the comments Brad…

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