BY Karlene Lukovitz

Hispanics’ wine consumption has grown by 35% since 2005, and they accounted for more than 50% of wine consumption growth during the slow-growth years of 2005 to 2008, according to Experian Simmons. But you’d be unlikely to spot those trends based on the perfunctory Hispanic marketing commonplace in the wine market.

“Translating a mainstream ad or [in-store] wine taste cards into Spanish, with no context or cultural relevancy, isn’t our idea of a Hispanic ‘campaign,'” comments Francesca Schuler, CMO for Treasury Wine Estates, owner of Beringer Vineyards.

Beringer is now out to show how it’s done. Every element of the brand’s new, multi-platform pilot campaign is based on in-depth consumer research and designed to demonstrate how its wines fit naturally into Hispanic lifestyles, traditions, social occasions and cuisines, says Schuler.

Themed “Invita El Sabor” (“Welcome Home the Flavor”), the campaign, from Los Angeles agency Baru Advertising, spans a variety of formats on Spanish-language broadcast television, POS promotional materials and dry sampling in grocery stores with Hispanic customer bases and at Hispanic events, and public relations.

The campaign launched this week with a 30-second TV spot featuring Latinos enjoying Beringer wines in three settings: a backyard barbeque with friends, a family dinner, and a couple cooking dinner together. The spot aired first in the Los Angeles market, reflecting Beringer’s status as the oldest continuously operating winery in Napa Valley, as well as the fact that 37% of U.S. Hispanic wine consumption comes from the country’s Western region.

While the TV spot sets a tone or cultural context, a major part of the campaign consists of educational elements designed to reduce the “intimidation” factor associated with wine, which are being implemented through marketing partnerships with Univision 34 and Telemundo 52. Vignettes, also launched this week, are airing on Univision’s lifestyle television show “Tu Estilo” and on Telemundo’s entertainment/lifestyle show “Acceso Total.”

These include segments on food and Beringer wine pairings, “Wine 101” (how wine gets its colors and flavors) and a history of the Beringer brothers — all presented by Leticia Chacon Rodriguez, one of Beringer’s premium winemakers. In addition, two wine-pairing “promercials” featuring voiceovers done by Univision talent — one on holiday meals and one on grilling — will air on “Tu Estilo,” and a 13-part series (two minutes each) featuring Los Angeles chefs pairing their dishes with Beringer wines will air on “Acceso Total.”

In-store and at-event materials will include a “wine wheel” that suggests specific Beringer varieties that pair well with three different Latino meal flavor groups. “Retailers are very excited, because they’re looking for ways to serve the Hispanic community,” notes Schuler. In addition, a Spanish-language page is being developed within, and Beringer Vineyards is adding twice-weekly Spanish-language tours and tastings (also available by appointment).

Obviously, Beringer sees its pilot campaign, which will continue through the end of this year, as an opportunity to create and enhance brand preference and loyalty in a very promising growth market (7.3 million Latinos 21 and older consume wine, and 20% report drinking one or more glasses of wine in the past 30 days, for an average of five glasses per month).

But Schuler stresses that the initiative is first and foremost “very consistent with [Beringer’s overall] brand strategy,” which emphasizes “inclusiveness” — meaning that its wide range of quality wines have broad appeal across demographic groups and lifestyles.

Karlene Lukovitz is a regular contributor to MediaPost’s “Marketing Daily,” “Audience Development,” “InPublishing” (U.K.), and other business publications, and edits “IPDA Newsstand Forum.”

Story Courtesy: Media Post Engage:Hispanics

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