wine & spirits

How to Create the Perfect Wine Label


Wine making is a niche industry. Winemakers planning to make an impression with modern wine enthusiasts need the kind of marketing and brand image that appeals to a crowd that demands quality, originality, and value. That kind of top shelf marketing necessitates a type of thoughtfulness that other kinds of alcoholic drink marketing techniques don’t require. Because of this, wine labels need to be about more than just a logo; they need to both stand as something unique and as something that exemplifies the maker’s understanding of this product.

When it comes to designing a wine label, several crucial decisions need to be made that will eventually impact every potential customer’s relationship with that brand. Winemakers also need to make several decisions solely for the safety, quality, and shelf life of the product.

Visual Design for A Wine Label

For newly developed wines, it is imperative to design a new label that conveys the brand’s identity as well as the personality of the product.

Hip, younger brands looking to develop a more sophisticated wine may need to dial back on the usual visual flair for something more polished, but do so without sacrificing brand image. Similarly, something new and lighthearted added to a more high-end line of wines might feature bolder color choices and unconventional design elements—as long as it stays consistent with the overall brand aesthetic.

RELATED ARTICLE: Why Millennials Are Changing the Future of Wine

Ultimately, the visual design of a wine label comes down to brand identity. It is important to develop something that will resonate with the type of wine enthusiast the brand owner is trying to attract. Font, color palette and stylization all come down to the brand owner’s preferences for their unique brand identity.

Functional Wine Label Design

Wine labels do more than display brand imagery and report product information to the buyer. When it comes to wine, labels and bottle quality can help protect the product. For example, red wines require darker bottles to prevent oxidation from sun exposure. White wine makers bottle with clear bottles so buyers can see the purity and transparency of the product inside. A label design should flow with the type of bottle being used for the wine. For example, labels for red wine work well with darker bottles.

Request a quote today to get started on your own quest for wine label branding success.

4 AR Labels That Shook the Industry

AR-enhanced living wine labels from 19 Crimes

The idea of using augmented reality (AR) to boost a product was, until recently, something only found in the world of Harry Potter. Now, businesses using AR for their labeling is a fairly common practice—and something that shows a real return on the investment.

How Does AR Work on a Product Label?

Current AR technology is possible with most modern smartphones. Using the device’s camera, an AR reader app scans the surrounding environment and enhances the display for the user. This technology has evolved tremendously in just a few short years; AR is making incredible strides in fields outside of marketing like medical training, education, public safety and product development. Today, AR labels can provide customers with real-time product demonstrations, supplemental information, previews of how products will look and function.

RELATED ARTICLE: Augmented Reality vs. QR Codes

AR Labeling Success Stories

Companies considering AR-enabled labels for their branded products should look at some of the most recent successful AR campaigns. Four of the most impressive AR label examples from recent years include:

  • Buffalo Wild Wings. Everyone knows that Buffalo Wild Wings is a great place to enjoy good food and a game with friends and family. It’s also a great place for customers who enjoy tableside competitive games. Buffalo Wild Wings recently took tableside competitive games to the next level with an AR-enhanced viewing experience with the Big Shot Challenge for the NCAA Final Four.

  • Lego. Kids of all ages have enjoyed building with Lego for years, and the company just took their experience to the next level with AR-enabled viewing screens in their brick-and-mortar store locations. When a customer carries a box over to an AR screen, the screen starts playing a real-time AR display of the Lego set coming together on top of the box.

  • Red Bull. The Red Bull marketing team created the Red Bull Augmented Reality Racing game to provide customers with the unique experience of crafting their own digital racetracks using Red Bull cans, which they could then race using a smartphone or camera-enabled touchscreen device like an iPod Touch.

  • 19 Crimes. Think of this as Pokémon Go for adults. The name of this wine refers to 18th century Britain and a list of crimes that were punishable by “transportation”—offenders were sent to live in Australia in lieu of suffering the death penalty. Some of these infractions include impersonating an Egyptian, stealing letters, and bigamy. Now, these “criminals” come to life and tell their side of the story through inventive AR labels

AR can offer surprising, memorable, and valuable experiences in countless ways. Virtually every modern smartphone has a camera, and developing an AR-enabled app is easier than one might expect.

RELATED ARTICLE: 3 Features of AR Packaging You May Not Be Considering

Capture Your Audience’s Attention with AR-Enabled Product Labels

Century Label has nearly 40 years of experience helping customers create beautiful, memorable labels for various industries and applications, and we can help you transform a traditional label into a living experience.

Our label design team will work closely with you to determine the best applications for AR technology in your product labels, taking you through every step of the process, preserving the integrity of your brand and using high-quality printing techniques. Contact us today to learn more about AR-enabled labels and start thinking of the possibilities for your brand.

Why Millennials Are Changing the Future of Wine

Why should wine sellers start paying more attention to millennials? The wine industry generates about $62 billion every year, and millennials account for about 42% of wine sales. This is far too big a market for any wine company to ignore.

Unlike previous generations, millennials grew up with much easier access to wine. Not only are millennials more likely to purchase “cheap” wines like canned wine and bag-in-box wine, but they are generally more willing to go farther and spend more on imports, special blends, and exclusive runs of limited-edition wines.

Modern Consumers Need Modern Marketing

Modern millennials who enjoy wine are not following the “traditional” wine marketing methods; they spend more time looking at influencer content on social media. Instead of long-winded reviews from sommeliers and text-rich newsletters, millennials are more likely to pay attention to concise advertisements that get the point across quickly. Social media is absolutely crucial. Millennials prefer companies that offer adventure, human connection, and good stories.

Millennials are also more concerned with intrigue and adventure over expense and the appearance of luxury. Many California wine sellers report that their millennial customers aren’t interested in the expensive and exclusive vintage bottles; they’re more interested in something different than the usual handful of the most popular varieties.

Millennials Love Labels That Pop

On top of social media marketing prowess, authentic advertising, and making personal connections through label branding, wine sellers also need to focus on aesthetics—namely, wine labels and marketing that grab millennials’ attention.

Research shows that front pack labels are the primary factor for a customer to determine the value of a product. One study using a group of millennials in Portland, Oregon found that these customers responded best to features such as label texture, colored sealing foil, label and bottle colors, font, simplicity, and iconography when choosing which wine to purchase.

The study found that wine bottles millennials thought offered the best value had de/embossment features on the label. Bottles millennials thought were “fine wines” were heavier, used foiling, and had textured labels.

Other research on which wine labels pop most to younger consumers found that bright colors–such as reds and oranges–are most attractive, along with other unique elements such as clever, creative, and stylish images. One study resulted in Twin Fin wine voted as the “Most Attractive.” The bottle boasted a colorful photo of a convertible on the beach, along with a bright orange cap.

The more colorful and interesting the label, the more it stands out to millennial wine shoppers. Women in particular prefer creative and eye-catching wine labels, while men responded more robustly to plain and less-colorful labels. Wine sellers can use this information to target a certain audience.

Furthermore, millennial survey respondents said that descriptions of aromas and flavors are the most important information to include on the back of a label. Awards the wine has won and climate information can also increase the odds of making a purchase, as could a romantic story of the wine’s origins (although this factor fell low on the list).

Many wine companies are using even more dramatic marketing methods with their labels. Incorporating humor has become increasingly effective for some brands, while others are using augmented reality as a way for consumers to interact digitally.

Ramping up your labeling and related marketing efforts will grab the right kind of attention from the shelf.

Wine Sellers Need to Change How They Stock Wine

A decade or so ago, many wine sellers could count on their usual varieties comprising the lion’s share of sales. Basic, safe choices typically made up about 70% of an average wine company’s sales, but that number is dwindling rapidly. Now, basic wine offerings may only make up about 30% of sales because millennials aren’t interested in the usual fare that was popular a decade ago. Millennials are making more adventurous wine selections. They want imports and exclusives, and wine sellers all over the country are taking notice.

Previous generations may have relied on wine critics to make their wine-purchasing decisions, but that is not the case for millennials. Modern wine companies need to offer something new, enticing, and adventurous to capture the attention of a young but very discerning market of wine lovers. They prefer authenticity over pretentiousness and often go right to the source and connect with wine companies, distributors, sommeliers, and social media influencers directly.

Modern wine marketers need to capitalize on this audience to capture the massive market share of the wine industry that millennial customers command. Millennials are not like previous generations that valued their wine based on the price paid for it. Marketers can succeed by showcasing sustainability, authenticity, and offering robust backstories to their smaller runs and cheaper wine offerings.

Let’s Get Started

The team at Century Label is ready to help you take your vision and apply it to your products. We will offer guidance to ensure that the proper high-quality printing techniques are used in order to preserve the integrity of your brand.

Our customer care specialists are standing by to make sure every order is exactly the way you imagined it, meeting your expectations. Request a quote today to get started on your own quest for wine label branding success.