Posted by: gabriel@arborcrest | October 15, 2010

Discovering Social Media & Washington Wine

First off, we’d like to inform you that our friend and the starter of this blog, cara@arborcrest, has moved on to pursue an exciting new venture, and we wish her the best of luck in her endeavors.  As a result, I will be taking over the role of composer of the Cliff House Notes, and hope that I can live up to her high quality writing standards (and since she was a creative writing major I feel like I have big shoes to fill).

So, let me start off by introducing myself to help explain why I chose to make this my first blog.  I am gabriel@arborcrest (or you can just call me Gabe for short) and I’ve been a proud employee of this amazing family run winery for about four and a half years now.  Because I am (apparently) the most internet savvy person in the company I was asked to run our social media networking efforts now that this new industry has really began to blossom in the past year or so.  Among other things, part of my job here at Arbor Crest is to connect with you, our loyal friends and supporters, to provide you all with exciting news, information, and anecdotes about the winery and answer your questions about Arbor Crest and the Washington wine industry.  I’ve been doing this job for about 10 months now and over the course of that time I have found myself spending far more time on Facebook & Twitter, and now this blog, than I ever imagined possible; and the odd thing is they’re actually paying me to do it.

To be honest, when I initially took up this job I couldn’t really understand what the point of spending 8 hours a day on the internet talking and reading about wine could be.  “After all,” I thought,  “if I’m online all day how much information about wine can I process and share before I start repeating myself within a week?”  So, somewhat hesitantly at first, I began spending good chunks of my workday with Facebook & Twitter perpetually open in my browser and I started wading through hundreds of “blogs”, “tweets”, and “wall posts” to try and figure out what this crazy notion of Social Media Networking was all about and how it could potentially benefit Arbor Crest.

Now, approximately 10 months later,  I feel like I have finally got a pretty good grasp on understanding the relationship between social media and it’s benefits to the wine industry.   Sure it can be used as a means for cheap or free advertising, and I have admittedly taken advantage of that fact, but more importantly it has turned out to be a fun, educational and worthwhile method of gathering and sharing information about wine and connecting to people on a level that my time in our tasting rooms may not necessarily allow.  Essentially, those initial doubts and the skepticism I had going into this endeavor were completely misplaced and that shallow, repetitive pool of wine data that I expected to encounter has actually turned to be a seemingly never-ending stream of practical and interesting information on anything from the projected quality of this year’s harvest to the implementation of new wine technology in wine bars.  In fact, I’ve been in this industry for over four years now, and I feel like I’ve learned more about the Washington wine industry in the span of the past 10 months of working in social media than I had in the three plus years prior.

And you want to know what I’ve found is the best part of participating in social media…?  I now have a convenient way to pass the stories I find on to you via this blog, Twitter, and Facebook.

So at this point I would like to make use of this exciting medium and share a few of the Northwest wine bloggers that I’ve been following and their recent stories that I’ve enjoyed reading:

Paul Gregutt.com
Rating the Bloggers
How Ripe is Ripe Enough?

DRINKnectar The Washington Vintage of the Century?
From Granny Smith to Grapes Wenatchee Is Growing Greatness

Washingotn Wine Report
Boiling Down Initiatives 1000 & 1105
Wine on Tap – Coming Soon to a Wine Bar Near You

Wine Peeps
Should I Join a Wine Club?
Stemware Showdown: New Glasses Take on Riedel

Sips & The City
Grape Cup 2010
BLEND: “The World’s Best Food, Wine & Places”

Wino MagazineIf You Can’t Finish the Bottle, You Can Still
Use the Wine

Chinese Market Thirsty for Washington Wine

In coming posts, I’ll be sure to let you know about more wine writers that I’ve been following, including some of the bloggers in other parts of the nation, as well as provide you with other information about Arbor Crest and Washington Wine.

Next planned post…. Annual Case Sale Information!!!

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