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Boston Among Key Targets for Beringer

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NEW YORK Recognizing that many wine ads look and sound alike, Beringer plans to stimulate consumers' imaginations with a "Beringer. How to get to Napa Valley" $10 million radio and print campaign breaking in November. The effort is the first for the company from Publicis & Hal Riney in San Francisco.

Radio ads give consumers detailed driving directions to local markets, such as Quincy Market in Boston, where they can purchase food and a bottle of Beringer. This will be followed by a recipe and a calculation of total drive time, the idea being that in 10 minutes or so, someone can symbolically get to Napa Valley by buying a bottle of Beringer. More than two dozen market-specific spots will be created. In total, the new radio will run in 30 markets.

Print, which will show bird's-eye views of Boston, Chicago and Los Angeles, respectively, will follow the same driving direction formula. It will run in November issues of Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, Wine Enthusiast and Wine Spectator. Print may be expanded regionally.

"We were more heritage and awards focused," said David Biggar, vice president, general manager of marketing for the luxury division for Beringer Blass Wine Estates. "We felt if you looked in some of the wine periodicals, all the wine ads are very similar."

The campaign has an escapist quality that plays off the Napa region's imagery, said Biggar. "When people ask me what I do for a living and I mention working in Napa Valley, images fill their heads. We want Beringer to be synonymous with Napa Valley and the Napa lifestyle."