Raise a glass to social media with Cheshire Mersey Wine School


November 03, 2015 read

Raise a glass to social media with Cheshire Mersey Wine School

Here at 3FoldCreate we are partial to a nice glass of vino. Well, who isn’t? So after attending a rather splendid wine tasting course hosted by Richard and Mark Winnington from the Cheshire Mersey Wine School - winners of the East Cheshire Chamber of Commerce & Enterprise 'Most Promising New Business of The Year' Award 2015 - we had to find out the secrets behind their killer social media strategy.

3FoldCreate: How did you get started in wine education?

We got started in wine education after gaining our Wine & Spirit qualifications and management experience through the Majestic Wine retail graduate scheme straight out of university. We knew that customers have a desire to learn more about what they were buying, what they enjoy drinking and why they enjoyed drinking it.

We also know that people want to have fun whilst learning, so we aim to bring a more contemporary, less stuffy approach to what is a very traditional product.

3FoldCreate: It's a niche market - how did you use social media to find your customers?

As active users of all social media platforms ourselves we knew how best to attract potential customers to our business pages. We used it as a way of interacting with customers who have an interest in wine. We make it very visual so we can gage what courses people would attend and why.

3FoldCreate: What platforms work best for your company?

Facebook is by far the most effective as we can sponsor adverts, insert links to specific pages like booking forms, and we can add content and pictures without word limit restrictions.

We get the most out of it by keeping the balance of fun, interactive posts as well as the serious ‘selling to the customer’ posts. No one wants to follow a page that posts links to their events non-stop, so we interject fun and humour into posts as well - which may be nothing to do with our courses but it keeps the customers following us and engaging with us.

Trip Advisor is also hugely important for us. This platform often gets overlooked - people are more inclined to head there when they’ve had a dreadful experience. Thankfully all 57 reviews we’ve received so far have received a five star 100% excellent rating, and customers have said that was a big reason for booking a wine tasting experience with us after reading reviews.

3FoldCreate: How has social media made a difference to your business?

During our second year it definitely made a difference. Lots of people tell us they’ve seen our social media pages before booking, as keeping and looking busy is always a great way to attract new customers. The use of advertising and targeting who you advertise to, where you advertise and for how long has been more effective than advertising in print media. It’s gained us more likes/followers and sales.

3FoldCreate: You obviously have a real passion for wine. How important is a genuine interest in what you're doing when promoting your services online?

It’s the most important part! You are your business, especially in a small business like ours. We’re the face of the wine school so enthusiasm and passion have to be the reason you get out of bed in the morning. We hold many events in the evenings, but keeping on top of our website, social media, newsletters, back office work, etc, all take passion as well. If you love what you do then people recognise that.

3FoldCreate: What are your top tips for a great social campaign?

Our key tips would be to keep it regular. There’s no point having social media if you’re not active regularly as social media never sleeps.

Make posts engaging and relevant. We read about trends in the wine & spirits industry regularly to keep on top of what’s in and what’s not.

And make your posts fun and easy for customers to engage with. Wine facts and questions are a great way for us to chat to customers on social media.

Follow Cheshire Mersey Wine School on Twitter, join them on Facebook, and check out their website for more information on their fabulous wine tasting courses. Gift vouchers from Cheshire Mersey Wine School have no expiry date, so you can use them at your leisure. Also, check out their Christmas Gift Experience packages. Go on, treat yourself! 

Social media never sleeps

— Richard and Mark Winnington, Owners, Cheshire Mersey Wine School
Richard (R) and Mark (L) Winnington