Publication: Beverage Media

The Revolving Door of Wine Labels

July 22, 2014

Columbia Crest’s Grand Estate line of wines is a best-seller at Kreston Wine & Spirits, but owner Bob Kreston did a double take when a shipment arrived not that long ago. “I thought it was a mis-shipment,” recalls Kreston, who owns two full-service stores in Dover, Delaware. “I was ready to send it back, tell them I hadn’t ordered that. And if I was confused… I had customers coming up to me to ask why we had stopped carrying Columbia Crest.”

The new Grand Estate label, with its shield shape, clean lines and dominant “C,” was night-to-day from the old one. “Sometimes I wonder,” says Kreston, “why they need to fix something that isn’t broken.”

That’s a question that more and more retailers are asking—more and more often. It may be that a brand that has fallen out of favor, or they may be aiming at a different demographic target. Some suppliers make small changes to their labels regularly, as part of an overall marketing plan. While the motivations may be diverse, the packaging adjustments can add up—and it’s retailers who wind up having to deal with it.

In fact, say a number of branding and marketing experts, this re-jiggering […]

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