Varietal wine days are nothing new, marketing calendars are adorned with plenty of “gimmicky” days and themes, which provide marketers and social media managers with something to post about on a regular basis. When there is a news drought or no new product or service to talk about, they can be a Godsend.

But there’s more to it than that. The success of one of these days is arguably down to how well they are leveraged, and how well people collaborate. Successful varietal days like Chardonnay Day and Cabernet Day are prime examples of the momentum that can be built if an industry gets behind a date.

It may come as a surprise that our most popular red grape varietal in Australia has no day on the calendar to celebrate all we’ve achieved. And yet it’s argued that the planting of Shiraz in Australia pre-dates the James Busby Collection in the early 1830s!

International Syrah Day is marked on the global varietal day calendar for February 16th, but as the grapes are named differently in the Northern and Southern hemisphere (Shiraz is often referred to as Syrah in the Northern hemisphere), there has only ever been a small focus on Australian wines on Syrah Day. This means that no day has been designated for our beloved style of Aussie Shiraz. We’re about to change that.

So, in this post COVID-19 digital world we’re putting our stamp on a date for perpetuity! This year the day will be held on Thursday, 23 July, and thereafter we hope that the tradition will continue on the fourth Thursday of July each year.

Whether you’re based in Australia and call it Shiraz, or prefer the stylistic change of Syrah, there’s much to be celebrated about the diversity of this style. Let’s call it Shiraz with some extra pizzazz, because there’s so much complexity and breadth to the styles being made down under in Australia and New Zealand. It’s also the perfect excuse to discover a different drop or go back and enjoy one of your favourite producers. Some of the facts:

  • In 2020, Australian wineries crushed 376,000 tonnes of Shiraz (25% of total crush) **
  • In the 2020 vintage, Shiraz compared with other varieties increased its share by one percentage point to 45 per cent of all red varieties and 25 per cent of the total crush.
  • The upward trend in the purchase price for Shiraz reflects the demand for Australian Shiraz wines, especially in the domestic market.
  • In regions like the Barossa Valley, Shiraz made up 71.5% of the estimated total value all grapes in 2020. In Coonawarra Shiraz represented 24% of total value of all grapes and in McLaren Vale 66%. of estimated total value of all grapes.

Source: * Wine Australia National Vintage Report 2020

More information on Shiraz from Wine Australia is available here 

Some further background on Australian Shiraz and some of the old vines located throughout Australia is highlighted by our client Best’s Great Western.

Mastermind Consulting CEO Trish Barry noted “For almost a decade we’ve worked with Australian wineries to leverage varietal wine days and we’ve seen firsthand the sales impact that can be achieved with some focused messaging and activity. It has been phenomenal and yet our most popular red grape varietal is not in the spotlight! Given it is key red wine season, it made sense to put this Aussie icon in the spotlight for a day and thus Shiraz Day is born.”

Download Shiraz Day Support Material

The Mastermind team have created some graphics to help you leverage this new date and create some buzz around your brand. There are some downloadable social media posts that are free to use, just don’t forget to use #shirazwineday if you’re posting!

To download some creative to help your brand leverage

Need some suggestions on how to leverage a varietal day for your brand? Here are three ways you can help sell more wine and get your brand in front of an audience:

  1. Send targeted email communication to customers who have bought Shiraz from you in the past – include a special offer that they won’t find elsewhere
  2. Think about how you can tell your brand or region’s Shiraz story – an opportunity to collaborate with others in your region to give a taste of the different styles of Shiraz being made
  3. Tell your story on social media – not only creating and scheduling a Facebook and Instagram post for the day, but also differentiate by writing blog posts on the subject of Shiraz, thinking about pulling together a panel of experts to talk about Shiraz on Facebook or Instagram Live, or perhaps partnering with other local identities to talk food and wine matching.

For more information and ideas you can also refer to one of our past blog posts over on our website. Alternatively send us an email and we’d love to chat through how we can help.