Women agree to disagree on wine

by Eve Resnick on June 8, 2011

in International Markets

A recent survey conducted by Vinexpo on women and wine in United Kingdom, France, Germany, Hong Kong and the US showed that cultural differences are an important factor of differentiation in appreciating wine.

What did those women agree upon? They usually prefer red wine over white wine. They are driving the sales for rosé wines:  16% said they’d rather drink rosé (over only 6% in 2009). This is an increase of 160% in 2 years! 70% drink wine while socializing with friends or on a date: 68% consider wine important and even essential on a romantic dinner. French women are leading the trend with 50% of the answers while 10% of British women and 5% of Hong Kong female drinkers would not go on a date without some wine.

This first breach in the consensus opens the door to the deeper cultural differences. Women do not agree on the factors leading to their choice. 70% of French women consider that the country of origin is their first criteria while it is important for only 50,8% of British women. In the USA, grape variety is the most important criteria – not surprisingly. Price (58,5%) and country of origin (67,8%) are most important in Hong Kong.

The deepest difference appears with the question : is wine part of tradition or a part of your lifestyle? American women answer loudly and strongly that wine is part of a lifestyle while for French women it is part of the tradition.

This survey is an interesting marketing tool because it was conducted on line in 5 countries in partnership with several sites of various magazines: Elle in France and Hong Kong, Konsum Göttinnen in Germany, Wine Enthusiast in the US and Decanter in England. Interestingly enough, the sites partnering with Vinexpo are not wine-related in France, Hong Kong and Germany. They are more lifestyle- or -women-related magazines. In UK and in the US, it is the opposite: the surveyed women were readers of wine magazines, but they claimed wine as a lifestyle choice.

Even more fascinating is the use of Internet as a tool. The survey revealed that the women wine drinkers in the age 18-30 are using most the Internet (14%) while in France only 3% go on line to look for wine. Let’s just hope that Internet will be more and more used to discover wine(s) from all over the world, and not only by women.

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