A Great Brand is a Story Well Told

onewoman

One Woman Wines.

I knew there was something different and special about this brand the moment I saw the sign from the Highway.

I was biking around North Fork Long Island visiting wineries with my husband last weekend. The wines were very good, but after a few tastings the brands began to blur and blend together.

Not this one.

As soon as we approached the sign for One Woman Wines on the edge of the highway I was intrigued.

A short ride later down a gravel road to a charming red tasting house. My suspicions were confirmed.

Here was a brand with a great, and authentic story.


Founded by Claudia Purita, an Italian immigrant who grew up on her family’s farm in Calibria Italy, the vineyard and the wines reflect her commitment to sustainability, hard work, and personal vision. Much of the vineyard has been hand-planted and is meticulously maintained by Claudia herself.

What I love about this brand is that the “One Woman” name, the simple, elegant wine labels all portray this quiet, determined, vision of this unique woman.

The brand story is felt the moment you begin to look around and taste the wines.

Claudia herself is a constant background presence. But her daughter, Gabriella, is a friendly whirlwind behind the tasting counter. And much like her mother she is a hard worker wearing many hats as she looks after all of the events, marketing and promotion for the winery.

I asked Gabriella about the origin of the brand name and she told me that a few years after planting they still didn’t have a name for their soon to be bottled product. Her mother rejected many of the proposed names as being too frivolous. Finally Gabriella and her father decided on “One Woman” to pay homage to Claudia and her determination and vision.

From the very beginning this brand had an authenticity that can be (pardon the pun) tasted.

That story continues to ripen as Gabriella has recently added a “tasting under the stars” promotion. Every other Saturday night in the summer the vineyard and tasting room are open from 6-10pm. There is wonderful live music and visitors are encouraged to bring their own picnics and relax in the candle-lit garden in front of the tasting room.

In true One Woman spirit, you are also allowed to bring your own wine. While the One Woman tasting room is open for purchases that evening, for the Purita family the experience is more about creating a moment of community, than generating sales. It’s one of the most wonderful, magical evenings I have had in a long time.

While Gabriella flits from table to table chatting with guests and making sure everyone is feeling welcome and comfortable in her “home”, you can see Claudia quietly toiling away in the background. Tending to the vines and continuing to be a one woman force of nature.

I am inspired by this brand, because it has an authentic point of view and story to tell. And it does a great job of making this story felt (not just heard) in all of the brand touch points.

That’s my point of view. What’s your twist?

What great brand stories do you have to share?

4 thoughts on “A Great Brand is a Story Well Told

  1. Hi!

    I love this story and completely appreciate brands such as this… where the people behind the brand inspire you based on their determination and passion.

    A brand that did that for me recently is Cookie Good (www.cookiegood.com). The founders are a husband and wife team who just wanted to make cookies that make you feel good. I loved their story because Ross is a writer who just happened to also like baking … and when the writer’s strike hit in L.A. instead of rolling over he picked himself up and created this amazing company to bring his other passion to life and give people goodness at the same time.

    Good people doing what they love is always inspiring to me!

    Best,
    Rachael

  2. Julie,

    I’ve been a faithful reader since I saw you speak at Bentley University’s Conference two years ago. I must say until then I hardly knew much about the corporate brand you work for, and not being a marketing major branding was just a term to me.

    Since your talk I’ve had a new appreciation for the art of branding and catch myself thinking twice about all the media around me and the brands companies are putting forth. I’ve wanted to chime in often, but now, 36,000 feet in the air it seems particularly appropriate. I decided to check out said corporate entity while traveling this time, and am I glad I did. So far nothing but a great experience. Talk about having your “stuff” together and delivering a complete brand. I can’t believe this is the first time I’ve been able to experience it, but it certainly won’t be the last. I’m headed to Wine country to partake in my own experiment of brand awareness, and I’ll arrive relaxed and ready for the task at hand. I leave you for one company to comment on if you feel like it. Starbucks… Not being a Starbuck afficienado, it seems they’ve begun a rebirth at least marketing wise. They are more bold and provocative now in my opinion. The tagline “green delivers” is catchy, what’s your spin?

    Thanks for your great insights, please keep writing, I enjoy hearing what you have to say.

    Bryon

  3. Bryron thanks for your kind words and I am glad you are enjoying your flight.

    It’s funny you should mention Starbucks…I was at a Marketing Summit at the New York Stock Exchange yesterday sponsored by the Wall Street Journal and Interbrand and Howard Schultz was the final speaker of the day.

    Instead of speaking in a traditional way about his company’s brand, he gave an impassioned plea for all of the business leaders in the room to use their respective capital enterprises as a force for good and to take action in the current political and economic crisis. He believes it is the responsibility of business to create jobs and that waiting for government to turn this around in an election year is hopeless.
    (If you check out my jcottin twitter stream at #mktgsummit you can see more of the direct quotes). I’m sure you’ve seen the town hall they organized (137,000 people dialed in) and he just announced the sale of a $5 bracelet in Starbucks whose proceeds will go directly to help entrepreneurs in the stores’ local neighborhoods.

    At first I was a bit thrown off by this. I wasn’t sure what all this “do-gooding” really had to do with selling more coffee. But then when he said the one word he uses to describe the Starbucks brand is not “third place” as a lot of us think..but “humanity”. And through that lens, it made more sense to me. Sharing cups of coffee has always been about connecting with people and taking a moment for reflection.

    I believe what they are doing by getting more involved in the political realm is authentic to what they stand for and will have a positive brand effect (and hopefully make some dent- even a small one- in the economic situation). I wonder if this is part of “green delivers”.

    I’d love to hear your thoughts on this (as well as other BrandTwist readers). What do you think of Starbucks new marketing?

    Have fun in Napa.

    Cheers!

    Julie

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