Cuvée Privée - Reinventing the customer experience through personalisation

Cuvée Privée - How a business can scale revenue & boost customer loyalty by leveraging innovation & applying creativity to a subscription-based model.

Adopting a subscription-based business model is not only a way to ensure long-term revenue but could become a true game-changer able to re-transform your business as a whole. If approached with a creative and innovative mindset, subscription-based services can open up new ways to sell products, engage with your stakeholders and create strong customer relationships and bonds.

Applying innovation and creativity to subscription-based models

Adopting a subscription-based business model is not only a way to ensure long-term revenue but could become a true game-changer able to re-transform your business as a whole. If approached with a creative and innovative mindset, subscription-based services can open up new ways to sell products, engage with your stakeholders and create strong customer relationships and bonds.

Cuvée Privée, a small business based in France (but operating across all the main European markets), is an extraordinary example of how a business can scale revenue and boost customer loyalty by leveraging on innovation and applying creativity to traditional subscription-based models.

But what is Cuvée Privée offering? To summarise, the business is giving the possibility to anyone to 'adopt' a vineyard in France and receive bottles of the best locally produced cuvées delivered directly to your doorstep. All this for an annual subscription fee.

Adopting a vineyard: how the subscription works

What the company calls 'adopt a vineyard' represents the core service around which Cuvée Privée is building its entire offer. To allow people to adopt a vineyard, the company has put in place an efficient subscription model, which allows anyone to subscribe to the service in just a few steps. Here is how it works:

  1. On the company's website, customers can choose the vines of their choice from a selection of the best vineyards in France.
  2. Within five days from the subscription date, customers receive a welcome box with a personal thank you message from the winemaker, together with 1 to 6 bottles from their own vines and a 'certificate of adoption'.
  3. One year after the subscription, the customer receives 6 further bottles coming from the same vineyard labelled with his own name.

Looking at the model, it is easy to understand the success of the initiative, as the subscription is much more than just a wine delivery service. The personalisation of the service, the creation of a connection between the winemaker and the customer and the feeling of 'owning' a vineyard play a key role in enriching the offer and building an invaluable customer experience. A solution that also allows Cuvée Privée to set a premium price to the offer.

Building a premium experience around the product

The success behind 'adopt a vineyard' consists not only in the delivery of excellent service and product but on the premium customer experience the company has cleverly created around the product.

To create an extraordinary experience, Cuvée Privée has focused its efforts on creating an 'experiential' customer journey, leveraging on the feelings of the customer, the value 'behind' the product, and the engagement.

To create an experience around the product, the company is enriching the service with a series of small but meaningful perks capable of bringing added value to each customer. At the core of the experience is the creation of a relationship between the customer and the winemaker.

Photo by Matt Lamers on Unsplash

Together with the welcome box with the first bottle of wine, each customer receives an 'adoption certificate' with a thank you message from that winemaker and a brief history of the estate. The customer then receives then monthly updates on the vineyard via a personalised newsletter, showing the progression of the vines.

What I particularly appreciate is to receive news from my vines and to see them develop throughout the year. A few days ago, I went to visit the property to meet the winemaker and to discover the medallion with my name. - Customer review

But Cuvée Privée went even beyond the creation of pure online and remote engagement, and instead wanted to establish a real bond between the consumer and the producer. In fact, included in the subscription, each customer has a private visit of the vineyard, with the possibility to get to know the winemaker directly. Once there, the 'adopter' will discover his vine, which has been labelled with his own name.

Photo from Cuvée Privée Instagram profile

The feeling of 'owning' a vineyard, the possibility to follow its development through the seasons and the chance to meet the producer are all invaluable components for the customer. Here, the use of very simple tools like the label displaying the customer's name on the vine and the adoption certificate is enabling Cuvée Privée to create a premium experience with relatively inexpensive tools, an experience that makes the service unique and stand out from the rest.

The approach of Cuvée Privée represents an extraordinary example of how a simple product can be transformed into an experience by adding small but extremely relevant details that speak directly to the customer and add value to the service.

Packaging the product: creating a sense of exclusivity

Alongside the creation of a premium experience, the 'packaging' of the product plays another crucial role in the success of the 'adopt a vineyard' initiative. Packaging the product doesn't only mean how the product is presented in its physical appearance, but how the product is able to bring value to the customer thanks to the extra features present in the whole 'package'.

To package the product with extra value, Cuvée Privée plays with the creation of a sense of exclusivity to make the subscription feel unique for its customers. To create such a sense of exclusivity the company has created the 'Cuvée Privée Wine Club'.

Every customer subscribing to the 'adopt a vineyard' initiative will get automatic access to the club. The club gives exclusive access to events such as wine tastings and workshops with the winemakers both online and offline, as well as access to the 'Private Cellar' where they can get access to the entire wine catalogue at producer prices.

The strategy adopted by Cuvée Privée helps to foster a sense of privilege, making the customer feel part of something exclusive and unique. This sense of exclusivity not only adds value to the offer but helps to create an even stronger relationship with the customer, which is made to feel part of something.

The power of storytelling

Storytelling represents another fundamental aspect to take into consideration whilst building an effective brand and an engaging customer experience. Storytelling is a way to show what's behind a product, sharing the story of the people that are making it unique. By sharing their everyday lives, stories, passions, and motivations, businesses have an extra weapon to engage with customers.

For Cuvée Privé its people, and specifically the winemakers, are the 'face' of the business and true ambassadors of the brand. Their daily work, passion and expertise are constantly shown to the customers through their communication channels.

The stories of winemakers are evenly displayed throughout the website, from the homepage to the booking page, and every wine is contextualised with information and stories about each producer.

In this way the website becomes not only a tool to sell a service but to create an 'aura' around it, inspiring the user to get to know more about it. The regular updates customers receive via the newsletter, alongside the more 'physical' thank you letter are other powerful ways to showcase stories and connecting producers with customers.

Alongside the website, social media channels and in particular, Instagram, are the main communication tools used by Cuvée Privée to run powerful storytelling campaigns. With its ultra-visual approach, Instagram represents the perfect channel to inspire and engage actual and prospective customers with powerful stories and imagery from the vineyards.

Their strategy mainly consists in sharing short videos and photos from the winemakers, with short descriptions of stories and anecdotes about their everyday lives. The storytelling is not limited to share stories of winemakers but also on showcasing the unique moments customers can live when visiting the vineyards. For this, Instagram reels and stories are the main features adopted used to re-share videos of enthusiastic adopters unboxing their wines and showing their moments in the wine estates.

Cuvée Privée, with its unconventional and creative approach to service delivery, is an excellent example of how a business can readapt and reapply a traditional business model to deliver a completely new service to its customers focused on the experience. The business also represents a best practice in the field of product and service innovation: by adding value to the product through personalisation, engagement and invaluable extra perks, Cuvée Privée was able to develop an experience-based product that is premium and unique to its customers.

Key Takeaways

Published on:
May 2020
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