Another wonderful Salud! auction weekend is underway. Since moving to the Pacific Northwest almost five years ago, this event has become near and dear to me and our company. I was honored to be asked to become a member of the procurement committee a couple years ago and have since enjoyed linking everything from Graham's and Dow's Port to Brasada Ranch and client wines to this honorable cause supporting health care for Oregon's vineyard workers.
As usual, there were some stunning Salud Cuvee Pinot Noirs at last night's tasting at Domaine Drouhin. This annual event brings together some of Oregon's finest producers who have agreed to donate a barrel (25 cases) of a special blend, which is sold via auction.
It is always curious to me how purveyors in the epicurean space choose to present themselves. Most of the tables last night were void of information, which is a lost opportunity. A simple, yet smartly designed card with the winery's information and perhaps a special offer for Salud! attendees would help attendees remember their favorite wines and help convert awareness to purchase.
One supporter took a very different approach: Volcanic Mineral Refresher, a family-owned water company based in Ashland, Oregon. In addition to rack cards, they had a unique promotion benefiting Salud! and their brand. Attendees were encouraged to "like" Volcanic on Facebook and make a donation to Salud!. Those who donate $20 or more gain a coupon for a bottle of water; those who donate $200 and up will receive a case. This smart promotion helped me remember the product, gained them a "like" and increased my contribution to Salud!. (We raised $350 for the organization during our industry sales and marketing research earlier this year; I've increased my donation amount to $370.)