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Benziger, Concannon & Imagery Wineries
What is your favorite wine / food pairing?
Benziger Paradiso de Maria Estate Sauvignon Blanc and sashimi.
What is unique about how you got into the wine business?
After graduating from Cal Berkeley, I managed the marketing POS warehouse in San Francisco for The Christian Brothers’ Wine and Brandy business. From there, I worked my way up through every facet of wine sales: domestic sales management, international sales, DTC sales and strategic planning.
What is your favorite wine business metric?
Wine Club Attrition Rate: this gives me insight into our club members’ satisfaction with the wines, the story, our winemaking practices, and their experiences in the tasting room, on-line, on the phone and other interactions.
What do you love about managing a wine business?
The wine, the people, the travel and the connection to the land. I am so fortunate to be in this business. It is where I met my wife and my boys were born in wine country (Sonoma and Napa). I have traveled throughout the US and the world selling wine and I have been able to come home to the greatest spot on earth (Glen Ellen).
What is a unique management challenge you’re facing right now and how are you dealing with it?
The restraints on attracting customers to the wineries during a pandemic has been the ultimate challenge. We have been aggressive in our sales through our virtual channels, building on years of developing close relationships with devoted customers, and attracting new customers with the help of the next generation of the Benziger family.
Parting thought for the month?
Mike Benziger inspired us to “Go beyond the expected and have fun doing it.” With everything 2020 has thrown at us, pandemic, wildfires, etc., I know our team will continue to go beyond the unexpected and still find the fun in doing it—even while sheltering in place, by rediscovering the joys of a simpler life.
Thank you, Brian!