The 2020 Wine Media Conference Virtual Summit took place August 20-22, 2020, with a special makeup session on September 1. All sessions were free to watch live. You can purchase an All-Access Pass to watch sessions on your own schedule.
Tuesday, September 1
Register Now Live Q&A: Social Media in 2020 and Beyond: You’re a brand or content creator in 2020, which means that you more than likely have questions about social media. In this intimate Q&A, brand strategist Phil Pallen will answer your most burning questions about content creation and social media. From posting cadence to growing on Instagram to wine-specific questions, this time is all about equipping YOU with the tools to succeed online.
Please watch his session here and come to the new live Q&A with questions!
Thursday, August 20
Purchase Now 7 AM PT/ 10 AM ET 3 Reasons Why Your Instagram Strategy Isn’t Working: Instagram has quickly become the number one social media platform influencers use to spread their stories. If you are not using it – and using it effectively – you are missing out on a big opportunity. Yet being successful on Instagram is not automatic, with pitfalls abounding. In this session, celebrity brand strategist Phil Pallen, who’s worked with hundreds of brands around the world, will pinpoint the top misses users make on Instagram and how to avoid them. As a bonus, you’ll learn the top marketing time wasters on Instagram and lessons to learn from brands that come out on top.
Purchase Now 9 AM PT/ 12 PM ET Wineries, Wine Writers, and the Pandemic: Covid-19 has dominated all our lives for the past five months and this is no less true in the wine industry. Tasting rooms were forced to close, reopen with constraints, and in some cases close again. Wineries and other businesses have had to implement safety protocols to safeguard their workers. Consumers have changed their consumption and purchasing patterns and wineries have had to react. In this panel, we’ll hear from four wineries (Craig Camp, Troon Vineyard, Oregon; Meaghan Frank, Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery, New York; Leah Derton, William Chris Wines, Texas; Joy Sterling, Iron Horse Vineyards, California) about what effects the pandemic has had on them, what they predict for the future, and how wine writers can be involved with wineries at this crucial time. Our moderator is wine writer Fred Swan.
Purchase Now 11 AM PT/ 2 PM ET Vodcasting for Success: Demand for video content is at an all-time high yet the majority of self-produced content under performs in terms of production value and messaging. This session is a quick tutorial on video webcasting or vodcasting that goes beyond looking your best on camera to explore getting the most out of the equipment and technology that you have on hand, the benefits of using a green screen, the necessity of writing a script/outline for yourself and your guests and how you can promote your videos. Deborah Parker Wong, DWSET will break down examples and show you a behind-the-scenes look at the wine industry’s top-performing virtual tastings.
Purchase Now 1 PM PT/ 4 PM ET Reporting Techniques for Better Wine Writing: Anybody can have an opinion, but a great blog or news post is based on facts, and those come from reporting. W. Blake Gray brings a journalist’s eye to blogging, and can help you improve your work with some very simple thoughts and processes. When writing about a wine or winery, what should you look up? How much should you trust information from a press release? What information should you take from other blog posts or sites? When do you need to interview someone, and when is it OK to just use Wikipedia? When you do need an interview, how do you set it up? And what do you ask? If you want to make the leap to selling your work to publications with editors, you’ll need the reporting fundamentals. Even if you’re content to keep all your work on your own blog, you’ll earn more readers by writing the definitive blog post about whatever wine or story you’re interested in. W. Blake Gray is well known for his investigative journalism, his willingness to find and report on stories others ignore, and his confidence in not holding back his opinions when he feels it is needed. In this session, join Blake and interviewer Randy Caparoso as we learn how to expand your writing arsenal to include investigative journalism in the wine industry.
Purchase Now 3 PM PT/ 6 PM ET A Conversation With Dorothy Gaiter and John Brecher: Dorothy Gaiter and John Brecher have been tasting and studying wine since 1973, conceived and wrote The Wall Street Journal’s wine column, “Tastings,” from 1998 to 2010, and created the annual, international “Open That Bottle Night” celebration of wine and friendship. They have a lot of experience in the world of wine media. In this session, their publisher at Grape Collective where they currently write, Christopher Barnes, will lead Dorothy and John through an hour of their thoughts on wine writing. We’ll learn how things have changed since they started writing and in the ten years since they stopped their WSJ column, what their views are on the effects of 2020’s news stories on wine media, how they feel about being seen as the preeminent couple of wine writing, and their advice for aspiring and established wine writers of today.
Purchase Recording 4:30 PM PT/ 7:30 PM ET Velenosi Wines At-Home Tasting: Join Laura Donadoni for a 30-minute guided wine tasting of the La Marche Wine Regions sponsored by Velenosi. Wines will be pre-shipped to your house and this session is limited to the first 15 media sign-ups who are registered attendees of WMC21. Media must choose between this session and the other At-Home Tastings and must post about the session on their blog or social media channels.
Friday, August 21
Purchase Now 7 AM PT/ 10 AM ET Real Talk with Black Wine Media: Join us as we have a candid conversation with four black wine writers. Our panelists will discuss their personal experiences in the wine industry, their views on the current discussions on racism in our industry, and their thoughts on the systemic racial injustice in the United States and across the globe as well as the protests against it. Our panelists are the four ladies from Swirl Suite, including moderator Sarita Cheaves from Vine Me Up, Tanisha Townsend from Girl Meets Glass, Glynis Hill from Vino Noire, and Leslie Frelow from Vino 301, all of whom are Wine Media Conference alumni.
Purchase Now 9 AM PT/ 12 PM ET Enhance the Value of Your Wine Writing With SEO Strategies: Whether you focus on wine reviews or prefer to write about wineries, winemakers, grape varietals, or industry trends, you already know your writing has to be an interesting telling of the story. But another step wine writers often forget is to make sure their writing reaches the widest possible audience. You can do this by using Search Engine Optimization and Content Marketing strategies. As a wine industry writer, you can add more value to the content you create by incorporating SEO strategies that will bring your writing to more readers. And of course, more readers benefits you too in terms of increased writing opportunities or pay. Join us for wine writing SEO strategies with Scott Fish.
Purchase Now 1 AM PT/ 2 PM ET The Importance of Authentic Newsletters: The snake-oil days of email spam are long gone, 2020 is all about creating sincere, authentic connections via email while directing your readership through a personalized sales funnel. In this session, A.J. Weinzettel will start with the foundation of creating a genuine voice while telling a story to build trust. Storytelling is only the first dimension, though. I will take a deep dive into the importance of creating multiple landing pages and little tips and tricks to automate the personalization of content while never breaking the ever-important foundation of trust.
Purchase Now 1 PM PT/ 4 PM ET Easy Wine Photography – Tips To Getting Great Wine Shots Every Time brought to you by Brooks Winery: Wine photography is not easy photography. Photos of bottles themselves, staged on your kitchen table, can be boring and appear amateurish, which is not what you want on your website. In this session, Christina Peters, will show you several easy tips to getting great wine photos – no fancy camera needed. She’ll also discuss how to work with the glassware and bottles to clean up all those pesky reflections that get in your way of making a fabulous wine shot.
Purchase Now 3 PM PT/ 6 PM ET Use Your Social Media Like a Professional: Almost all wine writers engage in social media. Some might be doing so just for social reasons, while others participate to engage with a community, to learn from others, to enhance one’s credibility, or to share one’s writings. All these uses of social media are valid but as a wine writer you can get more out of your time invested by treating it like a professional does: establish a campaign, pick the appropriate platforms, coordinate postings across platforms, and track results. Whether you want to promote an article you wrote, advertise an event you are coordinating, or anything else, learn how to use social media professionally to get more results. Our speaker is Kelly Wagner from Purple Giraffe in Adelaide, Australia.
Purchase Recording 4:30 PM PT/ 7:30 PM ET DOC delle Venezie At-Home Tasting: Join Laura Donadoni for a 30-minute guided wine tasting of Pinot Grigios from the Delle Venezie DOC. Wines will be pre-shipped to your house and this session is limited to the first 15 media sign-ups who are registered attendees of WMC21. Media must choose between this session and the other At-Home Tastings and must post about the session on their blog or social media channels.
Saturday, August 22
Purchase Now 9 AM PT/ 12 PM ET Writing About the Business of Wine: Many wine writers start with the basics by reviewing wines then move into stories about wineries, winemakers, grape varietals, and wine regions. But this leaves an entire aspect of wine – the business of wine – that is often left to the professional periodicals to write about or simply left uncovered. Yet the business of wine – the process that goes from farm through production to consumer – is a topic of immense importance and one open to all wine writers. In fact, in this session we’ll discuss why covering the business of wine is important, how all wine writers can move into writing about this side of the industry, why it is actually easier to get paid assignments covering the industry side, and what tips and tricks there are for doing so professionally and with broad appeal. Our panel includes Felicity Carter of Meininger’s Wine Business International, Elin McCoy of Bloomberg News, and moderator Cyril Penn of Wine Business Monthly.
Purchase Now 11 AM PT/ 2 PM ET Travel Writing for Wine Media: Wine writers often stick to the subject they know best: wine. Yet adding travel to your writing brings a number of benefits. For SEO purposes, the number of readers searching for stories about travel vastly outnumbers those searching for wine. In dollar terms, including travel can open opportunities for paid writing or funded trips. But perhaps more important is that wine goes well with both travel, giving your writing the chance to shine and be more appealing to your readers. In this panel, we’ll hear from a number of wine writers who successfully integrate travel into their writing. Our panelists include travel and wine writer Marcy Gordon and Per Karlsson from BKWine Magazine with moderator Frank Morgan from Drink What YOU Like.
Purchase Now 1 PM PT/ 4 PM ET When They Let Us Visit Again – How to Plan the Best Possible and Most Information-rich Wine Country Visit: COVID has given wine tourism a time out. Though our current travel is relegated to the couch or the computer, each of us will be itching to visit critical wine areas as soon as we’re allowed back onto planes. What are the steps we should take to protect ourselves when traveling in the COVID era? How should we judge a region’s ability to host visitors responsibly? And once we’ve decided where we want to go, how can we best maximize our visits to that region. Join Master of Wine Bree Boskov, award-winning writer and photographer Lauren Mowery and Doug Frost, MS, MW as they outline their strategies for planning and executing information rich tours of the world’s vineyard areas. For each of them, there are differing goals that apply to different places; they explain their rationales for choosing certain itineraries over others. How many days is ideal? How many visits a day are best? Should you rely upon local writers, or regional councils, to set up your tours? And what focus might be brought to bear if you are traveling to some of the most exciting vineyard spots? Learn what each of them think is most important to learn from the most traditional and the most revolutionary winemakers, and the places that are most emotionally resonant for them.
Purchase Now 3 PM PT/ 6 PM ET Wine Media in 2020 – Where Do We Stand?: 2020 has proven to be a crazy year with a pandemic, recession, and Black Lives Matter protests. And we are just over halfway through. These events have affected everyone in the world, including wine writers. We’ll talk to several of them to hear their views on the turbulence affecting the world, how their year has been affected, what they are doing to adjust, and how they are planning for 2021. Our panelists include moderator Alder Yarrow of Vinography, Max Allen from Australia, Thaddeus Buggs, and R.H. Drexel.
Purchase Recording 4:30 PM PT / 7:30 PM ET At-Home Tasting With Oregon Wine Board: The Oregon Wine Board is a semi-independent Oregon state agency managing marketing, research and education initiatives that support and advance the Oregon wine and wine grape industry. This tasting will consist of one biodynamic wine from each of two producers and a discussion about the biodynamic winemaking process in Oregon. Our participating wineries are Troon Vineyard and Winderlea Vineyard and Winery. Wines will be pre-shipped to your house and this session is limited to the first 20 media sign-ups who are registered attendees of WMC21. Media must choose between this session and the other At-Home Tastings and must post about the session on their blog or social media channels. This tasting will be led by:
- Sally Murdoch, Oregon Wine Board, Communications Manager
- Craig Camp, Troon Vineyard, Winegrower
- Donna Morris, Winderlea Vineyard and Winery, Proprietor
- Bill Sweat, Winderlea Vineyard and Winery, Proprietor
Purchase Recording 6 PM PT / 9 PM ET At-Home Tasting With WineSmith, “A Message in Every Bottle”: Tasting with Clark Smith, winemaker for WineSmith Wines & Consulting and author of Postmodern Winemaking, Wine & Spirits Magazine’s 2013 Book of the Year.
Clark will relate discoveries derived from his 58 vintages of what wine really is – definitely not what’s taught in school. In the tasting that follows, we will together explore the WineSmith project, which exists to demonstrate that California can be home to the best of European styles, given only the will to do so. The wines embody its guiding principles: experimentation, restrained Eurocentric style, structural integrity, profundity, palate energy and graceful longevity. Tasting includes:
- 2017 “Brut Zero” SCM Sparkling Grenache – 12.5% ABV
- 2015 St. Laurent, Ricci Vineyard, Carneros – 11.8% ABV
- 2018 Clarksburg Norton – 12.9% ABV
- 2015 Lake County Cabernet Franc – 13.5% ABV
- 2014 Humboldt County Meritage Roman Reserve – 12.8% ABV
- NV Yolo Petit Manseng – 12.9% ABV
Wines will be pre-shipped to your house and this session is limited to the first 20 media sign-ups who are registered attendees of WMC21. Media must choose between this session and the other At-Home Tastings and must post about the session on their blog or social media channels.