Fermented Thoughts: Can Wine Blogs be trusted?
The Upshot: The study heartily implies that most folks would rather trust a wine store clerk over a wine blogger for recommendations on wine, thus wine blogs are irrelevant or at the worst dead. According to the study they site; Independent bloggers are one of the least trusted sources for wine information in the UK, USA and France, according to research published by the Wine Intelligence and reported by Harper's Wine and Spirits online Wine Magazine. This part just doesn't make any sense at all, if you just think about it for a moment. I mean the whole story is silly, most [95%] wine bloggers have ZERO to gain from making a recommendation on a certain wine, while the guy/gal at the local wine shops recommendation is at best suspect.
The Wine Intelligence study supposedly supports the idea that, "50% of wine consumers [they polled] trust the advice given over the counter by a wine merchant, compared to one in five who trust what independent bloggers have to say about a wine" Read More. So my question to you Mr and Mrs.Wine Shopper, why would you take the recommendation of some wine guy/gal in the wine store over that of a wine blogger? What would make you think that the recommendation given over the counter [think Bevmo] is more sincere or straight forward than the guy/gal behind the keyboard passionately writing their heart out for next to nothing in compensation?
This part of the report is some of the most discouraging information that I've read about the state of Wine Blogging in the US market. The report cites that, "the US, wine merchants are even more revered, with 80% of consumers surveyed saying they trust wine merchants." Read More That is an really interesting statistic especially in the light of the fact that 90% of the folks that represent my audience are from the US and that this wine-blog is in the Top 10% of all US websites. I know that does not dispute the claims of the Wine Intelligence study, but if wine-bloggers were so mis-trusted than why, oh why are there so many folks reading blogs like this one? Hmmm, I would love to know the answer to that question. In fact I see many folks in wine-shops these days, shopping using their phone, scanning the UPC to evaluate price and perhaps consulting a wine blog whose review was pulled up in a google search.
Here's what I think is going on; I mean anyone can cork-off and say this or that about wine-blogs and the folks who write those blogs and pretty much get away it. We don't have teams of lawyers, willing to fight the man [major wine pubs], who I suspect may have perhaps sponsored this so-called "study" in an effort to deflect the fact that many wine bloggers are starting to erode away their audiences and potentially taking some their advertising revenue. The use of flagrantly flimsy studies to make the point that wine-bloggers are irrelevant, this is what I call sour grapes.