Almost two years ago, Murphy Goode led the way into one of the biggest and most recognized social marketing events in wine history. Our ethos is always about helping wineries succeed through digital means. To reward their digital bravery, and as an act of goodwill, we offered that the winner of the competition would have our free consulting support but only if they were one of the candidates we vetted and chose (our goal was to pick 4). In our ignorance we forgot that Murphy Goode was now owned by Jackson Wine Estates and that our attempt to help actually disrupted the competition. Fortunately Jim Kopp (who was leading the competition at the time) called us and we worked out an arrangement that if ANY of the candidates won, ours or their choice, we’d honor that arrangement thus bringing equilibrium back to the process.
So then we embarked on an arduous journey of choosing candidates which we nicknamed “The VinTank 4.” Since we set our own deadline, some great candidates that entered the contest later (and were incredible in social media) were not considered when we selected “our picks.” But quickly after finding our four, there were four other candidate that we liked so well we added them to the list. “The VinTank 4″ became “The VinTank 4+” which everyone just called “The VinTank 8.” It was also our aspiration that since this was the first major social media role for the wine industry, that we would help ALL eight get into the business so they could have a network of peers to work together in co-competition, bounce ideas off one another, leverage our resources, and give their knowledge back to the wine industry. We wanted to help create the pioneer group of wine social media workers in the industry. We wanted to create a social media wine family. We wanted to help a group of digital pioneers.
You can look back in history to see our choices and thoughts: http://www.vintank.com/2009/05/supporting-a-goode-candidate/
So today, as I looked at some tweets from familiar faces, I wanted to write a post to ask, “where are they now?” Over the next weeks (as I get emails from the team) – I’ll write posts of where they are, what they have been doing, what challenges they faced, and what successes they accomplished in the last two years.
Tomorrow: Hardy Wallace aka DirtySouthWine aka Kung Foo Master aka A-1 aka The Grizzle aka Social Media Hero.