Brand battle: Get Wines Direct vs. Vinomofo

Wine retail brands

Online wine retailers Get Wines Direct and Vinomofo have very similar product and sales channels but very different brands.

With such similar product offerings, can brand play a role in influencing sales?

Get Wines Direct and Vinomofo both focus on heavily discounted quality wine, often from lesser known or boutique wine makers. Their sales are driven primarily through online or phone orders. Get Wines Direct also has a retail outlet in Melbourne but most of their promotions focus on driving orders through online or via the phone.

Both companies encourage you to sign up to their newsletter. The emails are usually daily and very sales focussed with a strong call to action. It’s all about building compelling special offers and incentives to get you to buy as quickly as possible. Vinomofo often limits the offer to a matter of hours and features a countdown to reinforce the urgency.

However, when it comes to their branding, the two retailers are worlds apart. Vinomofo is cheeky, irreverent and entertaining, whereas Get Wines Direct is more a traditional salesperson who is shouting to get our attention.

Online wine retailer brand

Get Wines Direct is old school retail with a focus on price and product. The communication can be hard to navigate as it is very cluttered. The visual style is very corny with cliched and dated imagery and graphics. The emails and website are very text heavy and there is very little consideration or even consistency that helps build a distinctive brand identity. The personal link to ‘Tony Sells’ is perhaps their only differentiator but even this is not clear as to who Tony is and what credibility he adds to the brand.

Wine retail brand

Vinomofo is the new kid that is disrupting what has traditionally been a stuffy industry. The brand creates a bold and memorable impression from the first moment you make contact, right through until the vino hits your door. The brand identity is well considered and designed but also supported by a clear brand proposition and activated with a striking personality. The brand influences everything, from the witty copy writing to the powerful graphics. For example, their product naming “Black Market Deal” and messaging, “boom, the vino is yours!”.

Vinomofo clearly ‘get’ their audience and how to emotionally connect with them. They also perhaps know who is not their audience and I suspect they are actually pleased that some don’t like their ‘not so serious’ approach.But does the brand really matter?

Get Wines Direct has been around for 13 years and claims to be the number 1 online wine retailer. Vinomofo is only three years old but has already received numerous business awards. Judging from media reports, Get Wines is tracking around $50 million in annual revenue and Vinomofo is on track to hit $30 million this year. They both claim that they are taking a significant chunk of revenue from the traditional wine retailers.

On social, both brands have around 37,000 likes on Facebook. However, Vinomofo has a much stronger Twitter following with 15,000, compared to Get Wines Direct who only has 159 followers.

online wine retailer brandAbove: A sample of promotional emails from both companies.

Personally, I receive emails and have ordered and enjoyed the wine from both brands. However, I’ve realised that when I receive the Get Wines email, I rarely read it. Get Wines Direct emails are extremely difficult to read (especially on my phone) and despite them having some great deals that I probably would buy, often I don’t. Whereas, I usually open Vinomofo’s email and struggle to resist placing an order (they make it so easy).

Vinomofo has also managed to sell me wine without revealing the brand name. This is pretty impressive. They’ve convinced me (and many others) to buy wine that I can’t taste first and they won’t tell me the brand. Clearly, Vinomofo have build a great deal of trust with their consumers.

While I would never suggest Get Wines Direct try to emulate Vinomofo, they can certainly learn a lot from the new challenger brand. Get Wines Direct may be the market leader but it doesn’t reflect this as a brand. There is certainly a great deal of opportunity to strengthen the Get Wines Direct brand.

What do you think? Are you are Get Wines Direct or Vinomofo fan? Do you think the brand plays a role in your purchasing?

Michael Hughes
Managing Partner, Strategy

11 Comments

  1. In my view, VinoMofo and Get Wines are miles apart.

    Andre, the CEO of VinoMofo has stated publicly, “We’d only sell wines that we would drink ourselves”.
    You definitely don’t get the same sense from Get Wines. I’m sure they do sell some quality products, but their presentation is lacklustre so you get the sense it would be a bit more of a lucky dip. In the thousands of dollars (literally) I’ve given to VinoMofo, I’ve only ever had one sub-par wine and that was a sparkling Rose (part of a mixed batch and the total opposite of my taste preference). Everything else, whether I knew the wine beforehand or not has been incredible.

    So while Get Wines might claim to be the market leader, VinoMofo is miles ahead in my eyes. They will continue to get far too much of my money, whereas Get Wines won’t. I’ll tell everyone who will listen to jump on the VinoMofo bandwagon.

    In other news, ordering from Get Wines? Come on, Michael, you’re better than that.

  2. barossawinemaker

    GWD all about their own brands…pretty poor assumption block78, I live in the barossa and know dozens of small winemakers GWD have helped over the last 10 years by buying their wines and always paying on time, agree Vinomofo’s branding looks impressive, in actual fact I think you have plagiarised it slightly.

    • I think Block 78 has sour grapes. Has he been burnt buy GWD?
      I have been with GWD for may years. They have always looked after me and the staff there are very helpful. I prefer to order over the phone with them as i get personal attention and extra deals. Yes some wines that i have never tried before may not be to my liking but they have no problem with returns and refunds. If i’m not happy, my guy, there will then find something that will be more to my liking. Its good to try new wines you can find some real gems out there.
      Yet to try Vinomofo but i’m happy with my current situation

  3. I used to buy a lot of wine from Vinomofo as one of their early customers, but drifted off when they sold out to CatchoftheDay. Had to discontinue emails as they went from a standard six a week (weekday am plus Friday pm) to six a day! Used to enjoy the irreverence.

    GWD seem to thrive on bankrupt wineries where wine was supposedly $120/btl now $20 – at best get a $20 wine, wonder why they collapsed?

    In response to Pete’s comment on the sparkling Rose – different taste preferences – but to my mind this wine is superb.

  4. Wine Drinker

    I started out using GWD before VinoMofo came along and was happy enough. However, after giving Vinomofo a chance I’ve never looked back.

    I’ve spent thousands of dollars with Vinomofo and have never been disappointed. It’s not just the fun, engaging advertising, it’s the level of service they provide – it’s miles ahead. I have my own wine broker (Jordan) who is absolutely sensational. He knows what I like and isn’t too pushy on the phone (I guess he doesn’t have to be, I always buy). I truly get the sense that they care at Vinomofo, this is missing at GWD.

  5. sommeliersimon28

    I know my wines and although I will agree personal taste varies, I know a good drop from a bad drop.

    I find this article interesting as Get Wines is stuck in the dark ages with their email communications and VinoMofo is obviously the leader in this sense.

    Service, I give Get Wines a 9 & VinoMofo a 5. Get Wines are helpful and really tailored my order to the information I provided. VinoMofo just kept putting me back to their secret deals which I have tried and did not like. I don’t like ordering over the web as I like to speak with someone real and get a good background of the wine I will be buying.

    Quality, I give VinoMofo a 7 & Get Wines a 10. VinoMofo simply cannot compare to GetWines, which I also find surprising because Get Wines is significantly cheaper.

    Verdict, I will only shop with Get Wines as I don’t like to waste my money on exaggerated thin weak wines.

  6. Both VinoMofo and GWD do an ok job in my opinion however, when it comes to getting quality deliveries of wine I always these days opt for Wineselectors, they’ve been around for 40 years and the wines are from established boutique producers. I like it because I tour a region each time I get a delivery, so I can focus on the character of one area. Plus I like my food and they support the whole food and matching experience.

    That’s my two cents.

  7. I have been a customer of GWD for many years. Over this time I have a great relationship with them, I usually talk to the the same person who knows what I like and I can’t remember ever having a dodgy wine.

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