I have been working in the luxury industry as a sales and service manager for more than 2 years.
In this front-line position, I represented the company’s brand image by directly communicating with consumers and collecting their information. With 2 years’ experience in this role, I have developed my ability to sell and merchandise a product more effectively
Wine in China is often connected with prestige and social status, but from its very nature, wine is still a product. So how can one sell it better in China?
Hard-work and Perseverance
According to Don, St Pierre Jr, co-founder of the Chinese importing company, ASC Fine wines, China is on course to be the second largest wine-consuming country behind the United States within the next five years. However, even with such a big market, it is still very hard to sell wine in China. Firstly, China doesn’t have a wine drinking culture and in general is lacking basic wine knowledge. Selling wine requires good relationships and networks. It is not easy to open the market if you are new. The only thing you can do is never give up, attend different wine shows, cooperate with companies that already have a sales channel, etc.
A good seller often acts like an intermediate. On one hand, we have the consumer needs, and on the other hand, we possess the product information. In this process, the appropriate product information is the fundamental skill which sales people must master. This includes the product quality, price, service, market trends and competitive products, as well as customer information, which is formed from customer analysis, customer demands and local market analysis. As a seller, we must have a deep understanding of the market and how the market operates. Only in this way can we clearly market and propose the right product to the consumer.
Sales people have to grasp the real needs of customers during communication. This not only requires the understanding of consumer behavior, but also the careful interpretation of it. We should always summarise our behaviour during conversations with customers, and understand what kind of questions they would like to answer – for instance, what is the link between wine-choosing and social position or income.
Wine value-added service is a very good way to maintain consumers and build brand loyalty. We can organize wine tasting events regularly and build membership systems. Consumers can not only gain wine knowledge through events, but also make friends and connections. Membership also stands for prestige, which works very well for Chinese consumers.
There are still many tips that can be used when selling wine to China, and these will be discussed in my next post.