Since 75% of Rioja sales are in Spain, it’s important for Rioja to grow its user base by attracting new consumers in our home market. This is not an easy task because of young Spaniards’ lack of interest in wine. A study carried out in 2006 by the Rioja Regulatory Council revealed that interest in wine begins to grow at around age 28, which coincides with young people’s getting their first well-paying job. The numbers aren’t encouraging. In the 18 to 24 age group , only 15% are regular users and 31% don’t drink wine at all. The statistics improve a little for the 25 to 35 year olds, with 22% regular consumers and 26% non-users. Perhaps the most revealing information is that young people don’t drink wine because they believe they don’t know enough about it to ask for a good bottle. This suggests that getting some general knowledge about wine is the first step. But where to go? The survey carried out in Spain sought to discover what young Spaniards are passionate about, with a view to providing information about Rioja in that context.
It was found that travel and music were important to 8,3 out of 10 young Spaniards, with concerts, sports, technology, going out with friends and reading close behind. So The Regulatory Council created a website devoted to those passionate pastimes in the hope that it would be a reference point, not only for travel, music and concerts but for gaining wine knowledge as well. For example, in the site you can watch over 1,000 concerts, listen to the best indie music stations, learn how to make a movie, read about sports, avoid the pitfalls of travel planning, and lots of other activities, as well as learn how wine is made, understand wine vocabulary, visit Rioja wineries and the best wine bars and restaurants where Rioja is served in New York and London. The URL is http://www.riojapasion.com (in Spanish only, but most of the links are to sites in English).
It’s too early to measure the impact the campaign has on Rioja sales to young Spaniards but it’s a start!