Blogging Campaign Doubles Sales, Disrupts Norm, Trumps Tradition


Gapingvoid blogger Hugh Macleod worked with U.K. wine brand Stormhoek to use blogging as a means to increase sales. It worked. Big time, doubling sales in less than 12 months. The increases didn't come from the hundred or so bottles he sent out to U.K. bloggers who might blog about it and get a few of their friends to buy a bottle. Surely, they did drink the wine and did blog about it but the big increase in sales came from what Macleod calls The Porous Membrane, the wall between internal brand conversations and external consumer conversations.

Macleod posits blogs are a good way to make things happen indirectly and that they are disruptive to the status quo. To double sales inside of a year can't possiblely come from a few more people drinking a couple of bottles of wine. It can, however, come from a vastly improved internal attitude and sales process. The simple fact that the wine was out there and was being blogged about became part of the story telling sales process. As the sales force went out to supermarket buyers and importers, there was a new, different and exciting story to tell. Additionally, a retail outlet is far more likely to take on an increased inventory if it knows the product is getting talked about. The mindset is that if they're talking, they're more likely to buy. That's exactly what happened.

Stormhoek joins Audi, Budget and others who have intelligently grasped the benefits of blogging as a communications channel beyond the simple product or character blog so many other marketers have launched which are just poorly focused websites created blog style. It's all really very simple and it's been said so many times before. Blogging enables conversation. If people converse with one another, they better understand each other. If they better understand one other, they better interact with each other. If they better interact with one another, things happen more smoothly. A big budget brand campaign is a briefly-worded, single-messaged megaphone approach. Not much can be forced through that megaphone and what is forced through is often misinterpreted. A blogging campaign throws the megaphone on the floor and picks up the martini glass creating a cocktail party at which people talk to people normally in a language unencumbered by pointless brand blather.

by Steve Hall    Dec-31-05   Click to Comment   
Topic: Campaigns, Opinion, Weblogs   

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Stormhoek is from South Africa...

Posted by: rachel on January 2, 2006 10:44 PM

and now you are blogging about their blogging campaign. i think i am going to blog about this.

Posted by: anon on January 2, 2006 11:37 PM

I'm not sure that a "blogging campaign" will work for long, especially one that is planted or for a product that's not that great.

If your blog begins to look like product placement, then I think your readership will suffer.

Posted by: Rob Mattheu on January 3, 2006 6:59 AM

Well I think that the point here is giving the sales team a new story and thats a great motivator to the sales process, its all about hype and blogs are great for building buzz, selling products I'm not so sure about (yet) but as a buzz machine they are proven, we are planning loads of blog campaigns for 2006.

Happy new year Adrants to you, your crew and your readers.

Asa Bailey.

Posted by: Asa Bailey on January 3, 2006 8:14 AM

Blogging campaigns cured my canker sore.

Posted by: Ben Popken on January 3, 2006 10:07 AM

Maybe I've gotten really good at tuning out ads, but I took this post as a sort of case study to inspire other companies to consider web 2.0 thinking (in this case blogging) to connect with their customers. Thanks! I'll be mentioning it.


Posted by: Roxanne Darling on January 3, 2006 11:38 AM