Amy Hoopes: 2015 Marketing Hall of Femme Honoree

Amy Hoopes is hardly a stranger to the celebration of outstanding women in traditionally male workplaces. Wente Vineyards operates a restaurant on its estate in California wine country and runs a Guest Chef Series featuring the “Bay Area’s Most Acclaimed Women Chefs.” The in-person event is emblematic of Hoopes’s marketing taste profile, which combines a full-bodied brand with a bouquet of bonhomie. She learned to put people in her four P’s of marketing with a fashion industry promotion early in her career at E&J Gallo, and continues the practice at Wente. She’s connected with Food Network on product placements and personal associations with celebrity chefs.

“One of my greatest learnings from the Ecco Domani experience at Gallo was that people make the difference,” Hoopes says. “It was truly a team effort and I was fortunate to work on one of the most impressive cross-functional teams in the industry.”

Hoopes looks to ply people-connections in a multichannel fashion. On National Chardonnay Day last year, for example, a live toast involving Wente family members sparked a million tweets among wine enthusiasts in two hours.

“When it comes to making a wine purchase, today’s consumer is less impacted by wine reviews and more heavily swayed by opinions of their friends and family,” Hoopes says.

Marketing strategy: It’s all about people: observing, understanding, and interacting in ways that resonate with each individual and their lives. 

Winning ways: Education is the key to success. Not only is it imperative to teach your consumers about your brands, but it is equally important to ensure that your employees are knowledgeable and engaged in sharing your brand story and your values.

Defining moment: Early in my career at E&J Gallo I was given an opportunity to think differently about brand building for Ecco Domani wines. The mission was to connect an Italian table wine with high fashion (think Milan), and be the first brand in Gallo’s import portfolio to make imported wines accessible. I learned that people make the difference. It was truly a team effort.

Trend watching: We’re continually adapting our marketing approach to ensure that we’re connecting with our consumers.

Words to live by: We don’t lose. We either win or we learn.

Good read: There are too many to choose from.  I can’t just read one at a time either. On a continuous quest for knowledge, I look to feed both sides of my brain – business strategy and creative inspiration – and then there’s always an extra book for pure pleasure.

Good advice: Communication is a two way activity. Sharing your brands POV is just the start, listening is where the real action and insight take place.

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