Why your wine business startup will fail

I have seen many people creating things in wine business in the past years, plenty of skilled and bright thinker friends who are succeeding after hard work.

But there are also plenty of guys finishing their business school or wine school. And, if you are one of them, here is why you are going to fail. (I would say: “and that’s probably why you are going to fail)

You are just making something already done thousand of times in all its derivatives — boxes, shop, online, subscription — yes you are not Einstein and you won’t revolutionize the wine world. The wine market in its own is already a niche market. You don’t trust me? Compare to the video game or even travel industry potentials for example. And while selling something in 2016, you should already envision the next coming years.

You haven’t built up a community — you should have started to do networking and build up a community that believes in you and your products before anything — for example, Vivino started by creating a free service and developed a community of users, that is 14,3 million today, now it is easier to sell to them.

You are just another thorn in the foot of the wine producers because you don’t want to take care of logistics and just want to transmit orders to the wine producers, letting them do preparations, packing and shipping — re-think it and invest in it, and maybe find a good logistic partner — if you want them to keep working with you and remember that easy money doesn’t exist in the wine world.

You don’t propose options and flexibility — yes you want to sell more volumes so you focus on wine by the box (X6 or X12), but remember that very few consumers have wine cellars today, so they can’t store wine properly, and they most likely want to buy a wide range of wine — be open minded and flexible, and fit your customers needs.

You think it is easy to sell wine that you like — wine is just like food and art, it’s very subjective — and we can just admit that not everyone likes or enjoy wine.

You should accept that the wine market is already over flooded by businesses, wine producers — you will seriously have to think outside the box to make it happen.

You thought too big to start — you think you can make it easily as you had an idea and found great investors or VCs — what will you tell them when you loose all the money they put on the table? Having great ideas is just a small part of the process, it’s more important to make things happen and prove what you are capable of implementing.

Give it a try, you test-drive a car before buying it, you date a girl a few years before marrying her — so why don’t you get to know in detail the wines you sell to the consumers before? Usually, when I buy wine, it’s because I tasted it or someone I know and trust recommended it to me.

As most businesses and industries, there are plenty of things to be done and improved, but you would start better if you would anticipate all that can happen and, the most important: Think wisely about all the details and develop a solid business plan.

Be where your customers are, be where your potential new consumers are — but communicate directly with them, care, be real, tell your story (not some’s else) — use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat.

So now I guess it’s time to think it over again and work harder than ever — to succeed in any business nowadays you either have to fill up a need or create the need and desire for your future customers.

Be prepared and know how to anticipate.

FYI: this article originally appeared on my website.

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