… in a long while.
It’s a short article that all small business owners must read. Now.
Business 2.0: How a small winery found Internet fame
This is the story of how Stormhoek Wines used blogs and word-of-mouth marketing to increase sales sixfold. Sixfold!!! Here’s the “Matt’s Notes” version of how they did it:
1.) Contact and hire an influential blogger to market the product.
2.) The blogger offered the product FREE to other bloggers.
3.) Even though they weren’t asked, those bloggers started writing about the wine, linking, and spreading the word. (Not always positive, either.)
4.) The original blogger organized “geek dinners” with more influential bloggers and tech industry A-listers at which the wine was served. Result? More buzz. More sales.
According to the article, all of this cost about $40,000 over two years. That’s out of the range of many other small businesses, but c’mon — if this story isn’t inspiring you to think about new, creative ways to market your products or services, well … nothing will.