Traditional wine labels from the Bordeaux region of France are changing, slowly. Inspect a half-dozen labels: many include an image—drawn or photographed—of a stately country manor, often with vines planted out front. These less than exciting and hardly eye-catching images focus on the château (plural: châteaux)—the residence associated with a vineyard.
A non-scientific inspection of 100 random wine bottle labels at two ‘Maison du Vin’ (‘House of Wine’) stores in Bordeaux (which sell only wines from their sub-appellation, and which are associated with local winemaker societies) showed that 65% of labels include an image of a chateau, 18% highlight the crest or symbol associated with the château, 12% emphasize stylized designs and 5% include words only.
These châteaux images convey pride, but do they have marketing value?
A 2007 study from the University of California, Berkeley, identified that the image on a wine label has a stronger impact on market success and brand personality than the color or layout of the label. Images of grape motifs or chateaux and vineyards scored well, while those of ‘unusual animals’ ranked lowest.
The 2016 Survey of American Wine Consumer Preferences showed similar results—with 64% of Americans favoring traditional labels over ‘modern’ or ‘fun/whimsical’ labels.
This growing influence of young wine drinkers and changing interest in contemporary labels parallels a subtle trend in Bordeaux.
Continue reading: Forbes