French and Chinese choose Adelaide as ‘top drop’ for wine marketing

French and Chinese students at Bird in Hand winery. BUSINESS AND LAW
French and Chinese students at Bird in Hand winery.

France boasts thousands of years of wine making and some of the finest wines in the world, but French (and Chinese) students come to Adelaide to learn about wine and spirits marketing.

This is the seventh year that Professor Herve Remaud, from KEDGE Business School in Bordeaux, has accompanied students from its Global MBA program to Adelaide to learn from the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science at UniSA, and visit South Australia’s famous wine regions.

Prof Remaud says Bordeaux in France makes almost as much wine as all of Australia

“This includes Bordeaux’s cru classé (classed growths) such as Chateau Lafite Rothschild – currently a mere $2390 a bottle at Dan Murphy’s for the 2010 vintage,” Prof Remaud says.

“If a great part of this success is due to history and quality, sustaining a vibrant wine and tourist industry is a different story and we have to learn modern marketing techniques, which is why we come to Australia.

“Because of the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute’s knowledge of brands and consumer behaviour, our group learned things that we cannot access elsewhere.”

On the final day of the course, students travelled through the Adelaide Hills to visit wineries and critically review the challenges wine brands face in order to grow sales and brand reputation.

Students toured several wineries and one distillery including Shaw & Smith, Bird In Hand, Applewood and Paracombe.

Among the students was Lucas Leclerc, technical director and winemaker at Chateau Lafon Rochet, a Bordeaux classed growth founded in the 17th Century.

“Wine marketing is nothing if we don’t see it on the spot,” Leclerc says. “Visiting all the wineries, we have understood how difficult or easy it is to implement a good marketing strategy.”

The Ehrenberg-Bass Institute is a long-term partner of KEDGE Business School’s Global MBA program, welcoming MBA students from its Bordeaux, Marseille and Shanghai campuses to UniSA since 2001. Recently the wine marketing course opened up enrolment to UniSA postgraduate students and industry professionals.

Dr Armando Corsi, a senior researcher at the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science who runs the course, sees great benefits for Australian students.

“The UniSA postgrad students and industry professionals benefit from mixing with wine marketing students from France and China learning consumer purchasing behaviour for wine and spirits; how to build online presence; and the fundamental of negotiation with channel partners.”