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How Winc uses subscriber feedback to make wines millennials go crazy for

How Winc uses subscriber feedback to make wines millennials go crazy for
Winc’s $13 Finke’s Sparkling White Blend was designed as an affordable alternative to champagne. [Photo: Jamie Chung]





Subscription wine club Winc became one of the top-50 wineries in the U.S. last year by flipping the typical business model on its head. While traditional vintners make a wine and then market it, Winc creates bottles based on more than 5 million customer ratings from its 75% millennial subscriber base. “Our winemaking team has done an incredible job of taking those signals and sourcing the grapes,” says cofounder Brian Smith, whose company produced roughly 100 labels and shipped an estimated 300,000 cases in 2018. For the second summer in a row, the company sold out of its Summer Water Societé—a three-month program that delivers a case of the $18-a-bottle Summer Water Rosé to subscribers in June, July, and August—and racked up a 1,000-person waiting list. Sales of the label overall grew more than 100% last summer, thanks to boosts from independent restaurants and retailers. In the four years since the company pivoted to making its own wines (instead of just distributing others’ labels), its revenue has grown 292%.

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