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WineDirect Blog

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November 6, 2015 | Jim Agger

Wine club cancellations: Create an opportunity

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Wine club cancellations can provide valuable insights to wineries. 

Wineries promote their wine clubs as a way to encourage repeat purchases, foster loyal customers and create personalized experience for their most avid fans. However, managing a wine club can be quite difficult, and cancellations are common. There are variety of reasons wine club members might cancel, and Rob McMillan of SVB on Wine listed a handful worth noting:

  • They have experienced a financial change and have begun to prioritize something else over wine club membership.
  • They have a new medical condition that prohibits them from continuing to drink wine.
  • They discovered a better wine club with better prices, selections and delivery options.

While there are certain circumstances wineries cannot avoid when it comes to wine club cancellations, there is always an opportunity available to either gain valuable insight or create a lasting relationship with a customer.

The power of knowing
Perhaps one of the most important opportunities a cancellation presents to wineries is the opportunity to learn more about their target consumer and improve their wine club offerings to attract more long-term members. With this in mind, wineries should try to survey members once they've requested a cancellation. A survey can be presented to customers either on the cancellation confirmation screen or through an email after the cancellation is complete. However the survey is distributed, wineries should leverage the insights to make their wine club more appealing for existing and future members. Additionally, once changes are made, wineries can use survey data and a targeted email campaign to communicate those enhancements to former members and maybe even win them back.

Incentives should go beyond the wine club
The key goal of offering a wine club in the first place is to attract loyal customers and drive repeat purchases. For one, wineries should definitely give reasons to stay when customers request to cancel their wine club memberships. However, wineries should also take the extra step to offer incentives for cancelling members to continue to support their online wine store. Reduced shipping or a discounted wine tasting pack could both be considered valuable incentives to wine drinkers that will keep them coming back.

End with grace
Above all, wineries are charged with creating exceptional customer experiences, even when members decide to leave a wine club. Econsultancy cited the example of canceling a subscription with Now TV. Following the cancellation, Now TV sent a confirmation email that also invited the user back any time. Wineries should be sure to end a relationship with a wine club member gracefully, which enhance the customer's perception of the brand and even encourage them to come back in the future.

Wine clubs are an opportunity for wineries to create memorable customer experiences and increase sales. Even when members decide to cancel, wineries should go above and beyond to provide excellent customer service and leverage the circumstance as an opportunity to improve their offering and grow their customer base.

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