Connecting Consumers to New Wines with Joe Fattorini


by Drew Hendricks
Last updated Nov 3, 2021

Legends Behind the Craft Podcast
Joe Fattorini

Joe Fattorini, also known as Obi Wine Kenobi, is the Managing Director of Trade at Pix, a digital platform connecting people with wine they love. He is an award-winning wine marketer, having won both the IWSC Wine Communicator of the Year Award and IWC Personality of the Year, and has two decades of experience as a critically-acclaimed writer and broadcaster, and is a presenter in The Wine Show.

Joe began his career in academia. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in Hotel and Hospitality Management from the University of Strathclyde and is one of the few that holds a Master of Philosophy, The Relationship Between Food and Religion. He is the author of Managing Wine and Wine Sales (Tourism and Hospitality Management Series) which is used in schools today. 

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Joe Fattorini shares the inspiring beginning of combining media and wine marketing
  • Joe discusses his track record and cross-cultural differences in the perception of the wine industry 
  • How do you create a platform based on value and trust for consumers? 
  • Joe details how the wine discovery search engine, Pix, is aimed at connecting consumers with wine
  • Is there a better way to connect consumers to small wineries?
  • Joe talks about behaviors of consumers searching for key elements in wine recommendations 
  • What would Joe drink on a desert island?

In this episode with Joe Fattorini

When you’ve had a long day and need to unwind, or you’re searching for that delicious wine you had on vacation, where can you find retailers at your fingertips and wine in your area?

Joe Fattorini has traveled across the globe and is leading the caravan in bringing wine lovers and wine sellers together on one platform. Joe understands the people behind the wine — the behaviors of the consumer and market. But how do you turn shoppers into buyers?

On this episode of the Legends Behind the Craft podcast, Drew Hendricks and critically-acclaimed writer, broadcaster, and Managing Director of Trade at Pix, Joe Fattorini discuss the journey of discovering new wines and consumer behavior. They discuss the cross-cultural differences of the wine industry, funneling ideas into a digital platform, and unique ways to connect small wineries and retailers with consumers.

Resources Mentioned in this episode

Sponsor for this episode…

This episode is brought to you by Barrels Ahead.

Barrels Ahead is a wine and craft marketing agency that propels organic growth by using a powerful combination of content development, Search Engine Optimization, and paid search.

At Barrels Ahead, we know that your business is unique. That’s why we work with you to create a one-of-a-kind marketing strategy that highlights your authenticity, tells your story, and makes your business stand out from your competitors.

Our team at Barrels Ahead helps you leverage your knowledge so you can enjoy the results and revenue your business deserves.

So, what are you waiting for? Unlock your results today!

To learn more, visit barrelsahead.com or email us at hello@barrelsahead.com to schedule a strategy call.

Episode Transcript

Intro  0:03  

Welcome to the Legends Behind the Craft podcast where we feature top leaders in the wine and craft beverage industry with your host Drew Hendricks. Now let’s get started with the show

Drew Hendricks  0:19  

Drew Hendricks here. I’m the host of the Legends Behind the Craft podcast where I talk with leaders in the wine and craft beverage industry, from tech companies that enable wineries to operate at maximum efficiency. Today’s guest Joe Fattorini, whose work over the past 20 years has brought new levels of wine appreciation to people around the world. Today’s episode is sponsored by Barrels Ahead, at Barrels Ahead, we work with you to implement a one of a kind marketing strategy one that highlights your authenticity, tells your story, and connects you with your ideal customers. In short, if you’re a business looking to retain a winery or craft beverage producer as a client Barrels Ahead, we’ll figure out a plan to make it happen. Go to barrelsahead.com today to learn more. I am super excited to take to talk with Joe Fattorini. Joe is the presenter of Sundance and Acorn TVs The Wine Show, which is now in its third season. He’s also the trade director of Pix, a new wine discovery platform. A couple of weeks ago, I interviewed Paul Mabray, the founder of Pix was excited to delve in a little bit deeper into this platform. Welcome to the show, Joe,

Joe Fattorini  1:24  

my last job, I would go back and I was very rather rubs and we sold wine to the Queen, amongst other people. And so you know, I would go back and you’d be doing the one show one day or fly back in and now and I’d be in a meeting, I had a very odd thing there. Because once we filmed part of season two in very rather, there’s actually before I joined this beautiful old 17th century shop. So I think the shop opened in 1698. So I think is the oldest wine shop in the world. So I went in for meetings one day, and I came out of the door. And there was a lady that she’d been from vehicles from Vietnam. And she literally fell off the pavement into the road. And I was terrified, she’s gonna get run over, I sort of ran across and held her up. And she was looking staggered. Anyway, it turned out that as part of a trip coming from Vietnam, she comes to where the why she was filmed there was literally taking a photo on her phone. As to her the presenter walked out to the front door. And she was so staggered, she literally sort of fell back because since the records that have said, I just like when I work in my office, I come in and so on. So she has to take a selfie, she was lonely, we had quite a long chat. That’s great.

Drew Hendricks  2:42  

That’s funny. Before I do want to talk about Pix, but I got I got to talk a little bit about your history. I mean, it’s a storied history, I’ve done a lot of stuff, but my backgrounds in philosophy and I saw on your, on your website that you had to have a degree in a Master’s of philosophy and food and religion. Tell me about that. And how it’s, you know, it has shaped your life.

Joe Fattorini  3:04  

You know, that’s actually probably the only thing my mother is terribly proud of me because she’s she’s a great scholar of religion. Actually. She found it fascinating. I went to a hotelschool, responsibly big business school in Scotland because I lived in Glasgow in Scotland for 18 years. Which doesn’t mean I’m bilingual, because God regions so impossibly difficult for the rest of the world to understand, but I can follow it. And I wanted to get an American one on a date, we went to watch Trainspotting, and apart from being astonished that they had to have subtitles in the United States for it. She also came out and we never met again. When I sort of said this, this film was about where I come from. I was never ever dating you. Yeah. And when I left her, I finished my degree, I was asked to come back and I came back to teach and I did an MPhil. And in the UK, when I said Well, can I not do a PhD? And I had this tutor. He said, Oh no, he said PhDs rather modern German qualifications. It was a sort of class thing that you did an MPhil instead, because that was what smart academics and scientists this one it was about.

Looking fundamentally do we really ask question is if I had to answer was do religions? Do they use food? Simply because it’s nearby and its usefulness? I think that you can manipulate in some ways to make sense of the world? Or is it a way of codifying things this are on the whole quite good rules to follow, but I don’t eat shellfish. If you live in the desert. There’s pretty good rule to follow. So you then codify that within a religious pleading, and actually one of the things that I came to the conclusion is yes, that possibly sometimes happens. But actually what’s much more useful is you go and take a thing that is kind of malleable, my food and the You interact with every day. And you tell a story about yourself through the way that you interact with the rules that you impose on it and the kinship that you have. And it’s bizarrely useful, because ever since then I sort of spent my entire life understanding how people do that with wine, really. And that’s one of those, the big differences. And I have in some ways with the world wine, and it’s one of the things that comes to MPs. genuinely don’t think with that objective about the way we enjoy wine, which is nice for us to think we’re very objective about it. It’s why I have a real thing about I just don’t think that palate matching apps provide anything useful. Because what suits your palate, at home on Thursday nights, watching the TV, it’s a totally different thing to what suits your palate, when you’re in a really smart restaurant, trying to impress somebody, you know, on a date, whatever. That’s the thing is, and actually, it’s a bit like religion. And we there’s a there’s an element, Ashley and Pete and we, we have a, we’re looking at various routes in and one of the things that people can do you is a search bar, we type in a search bar, but from my experience, as a retailer, somebody will come in saying I want this an answer to this problem. So I want a wine from the Napa Valley. I want something that goes to speak to holidays. I want a gift that I can send to Spokane, Washington. The other thing some people come in and they’re a tribe, there’s like a religion. So I remember when I was very young, one bunch of people would come in and it’s somebody is wearing a tweed suit with plus twos. I don’t give a one plus twos. It’s like breaches. Those are golf trousers with long socks. They’ve been shooting. Okay. They’re a tribe, you’re fundamentally going to go for why burgundy, pretty ropey, stringy, old clarity, you know, a bottle of ports, some sharing in? There’s a whole series of things that I kind of know that tribally, that’s what you want if somebody comes in, and they’ve got lots of tattoos and a big beard, natural wine. Good, right? Let’s go and get you in the natural wine store. And that’s actually what I did in my infill is tribes, it’s people explaining who they are to the rest of the world through what they drink. And funnily enough, in the United States, we’re doing some research because I then did lots of research around that one house University and one of the big bits was trying to I did a paper and it was explaining why British people love to critics to write tasting notes, whereas Americans were much more based around scores. And one of the things was, I use the examples Thorstein Veblen, if you’ve ever come across Veblen goods, he was the man who invented the term conspicuous consumption consumption. And the Veblen goods is something which is more desirable and more expensive it yet but he wrote in a slightly satirical book, The Theory of the leisure class, he wrote about how moneyed turn of the century Scots fifth Gen. F. Scott Fitzgerald Americans, the turn their jobs, they didn’t want to be seen as Luke didn’t leave seen as like European aristocrats. They want to turn their hobbies into kinda jobs. So that became connoisseurs. I think he used the term creditable VMs and beverages. But he, if you if your wine portfolio is entirely scored, is kind of like the stock market. He’s sort of on a scale. Whereas Hugh Johnson, great British writer, he always said, you know, how can I get one score? Because it’s like scoring my friends. In the European context, we tend to view it much more in a sense, or how would I describe my friends, you know, and some people you’d like you really like to be you really want to see them once a year. The other people you met on holiday and it’s great fun for two weeks, but to be honest, you won’t be lost if you’ve never met them again. Some people you’d like to meet once a week for a bit of a cozy drink down at the pub. And wine descriptions allow us to go and have that so is it that was it is bizarrely useful actually an MPhil on food and religion. He says. But yeah, I come back to that.

Drew Hendricks  9:13  

Oh, for sure. Now that the a little bit of a sidebar, I just finished reading the book on Entangled by Roland Sheldrick, and it’s about fungi and the Inner Inner relationships of fungi. And he does talk about how, um, religions have shaped the perceptions of fungi. In traditionally like in a Christian in the Christian English, religion. fungi was not really they were just like the devil’s thing. It was something that’s decaying versus some of the South American religions. They celebrated fungus. And it really the the general perception of it was really shaped by that completely.

Joe Fattorini  9:48  

You see how long those sort of positions last? You know, this moment in Sweden, and I’m reading a fascinating book about it’s called the children of the Ashton the L The Vikings, and amongst the things you just getting the Vikings have fascinating. Now there’s a wine elements is to have these amazing relationships with people in the forest. Norwegians are still obsessed with trolls and spirits in the forest. This is 1400 years ago that there was sort of Viking Age. And yet, it’s still sort of sits in that the, one of the things they found in lots of pores is this sudden explosion in wine paraphernalia. And he was clear that the ruling class of Vikings, it’s that long ago, wine was a social thing, it was a way of marking yourself out. And even to this day, and even with, you know, the monopoly markets, it’s as classy thing to go and drink wine, you know, in this part of the world, whereas it’s so different from it being an every man drink when you go to, you know, places like France and Italy and Spain was, you know, it’s much more common man’s drink, if you like, is these northern cultures who’ve embedded it into into that sort of elite culture. And those things become very usefully, anybody, you retailers just naturally know this kind of stuff. You’re a wine retail, if you drank the back, you just kind of know it knew you have it in your, you know, in your gut. Sometimes, actually, wine communicators don’t really know it, because they’ve never the ability to, if you like to survive on shifting this stuff, it’s a great motivator to survive, because you’re going in selling it. And you’re silly words. And so your understanding of how wine interacts into a release people actually isn’t as intense as wine retailers, my merchants, because they’re the ones, you know, who it really matters, that they can shift it. And, you know, it’s quite nice, I’m glad at Pix that we have that kind of culture that goes actually who the guys in the room who the women in the room have sold this stuff. Alright, you okay, what do you think this will do? It’s going to go work. And, uh, you know, why in tech, and we’ve seen this extraordinary shift towards wine online? Absolutely. I say to, if you are a retailer, if you’re a winery, trust your instincts, when it comes to this you actually know much more as a winery or as a retailer, then you perhaps have the confidence to think you do. Because you know, actually what’s to happen. The Tech is a tool. All it is, and it does exactly the same thing. Or excuse the same process that you’ve been doing for ages, the really important bit is that you’re in control of that process. And you say it’s like this. And you know, there are some amazing things that are out there. And then don’t try and read into it how I’m sort of knocking, but is not the best way when somebody goes, I’ve got some amazing piece of technology doesn’t amazing technical thing. Let’s find how we can apply this to wine. Because what you ended up doing is, and I can give you an example, years ago, I was involved in a an app called plonk. Oh, yeah, from the very early app. I was one retailer. And the idea was you answered a series of questions. And it would say, right, this is your wine time.

Drew Hendricks  13:04  

Do you like your coffee with milk or cheese or that type of those, that

Joe Fattorini  13:09  

whole thing that is totally that. And, and then we started seeing all this data coming in. And one of the interesting bits was this. We knew where people using the app from the geolocation. And it turned out this is in the UK, it turned out that there was one particular group of big users whose Palace apparently changed at Waterloo station. And it was quite specific, it was also the station. And what we worked out was that when they were sitting when you’re at home, which is broadly in southwest London, so you go from Battersea sort of voxel out to the southwest, they all drank Australian shares. When they got on the Waterloo and city line and went into the city of London where they all worked in finance, they all drank clarity, because it’s situationally different when you are when you’ve just done a deal, you know, big private equity when you all go out and you drink Clara because that’s what you go and do when you’ve done private equity deal. When you’re at home in barns or Wimbledon. Well, he cracked open of all of Penfolds because that’s what you do when you’re at home. The notion that your pallets, then, of course, the pallets didn’t change at all. It was just showing that actually, the app couldn’t tell it wasn’t able to tell causally, what was the cause of why they were drinking those things. And yes, it was a clever app. You know, everybody was like, well, we can do this thing. Let’s apply it to wine. That’s not actually how we should work with wine we should go. How do people engage with wind? How do we make technology accelerate that process? Make it easier quicker? connect people together answer problems more efficiently.

Drew Hendricks  14:39  

Yeah. Now how has Pix on tackling this issue? How is it doing it differently?

Joe Fattorini  14:46  

I’ll tell you one big thing, listening to people a lot. I joined peace. I mean, I started working kind of lost them. I’ve been talking to Paul for a long time. And in fact, it’s well over a year since we first talked about me coming along But I probably joined last November, and an awful lot of times listening to essentially wine cellars. And that can be anybody from a wine, DTC winery, enterprise level wine businesses right away through retailers. And then you also then go and talk to and then talk in different ways to retailers. I’ll give you sort of an example. So often wineries will come to us and they’ll say, do you think it could go and do this? And we go, I don’t know. Let’s go and find out. Let’s go and see what it does. And actually, the way it came about, you know, we sort of said to wineries, okay, what would you like we said, wine cellars knew what we’re like, well, we’d like a platform where it doesn’t cost us anything to go on it. Okay. Okay, we’ll do that. And we would like to be able to own the customer data, which means the transaction however, that’s not going, Okay, I’m not getting much out of this deal. But we’ll work on that. And it needs to be free for users to use so that we can get lots of uses or not. Okay, so we can settle this thing. I’m going to how we make any money, but yeah, okay. And so then what we came up with this notion that okay, create it like Google is exactly like Google. So yeah, free to use free to list on you transact on your website, whoever you are as a as a wine cellar. So you keep that customer data. We don’t take cops we don’t, you know, bill you for the customers you’ve had. If you want to jump to the front of the queue, essentially like a Disney World Fastpass, then you would do keyword bidding for interesting keywords. And you can get quite sophisticated now with the way that works. So it’s not just oh, can I buy Napa Chow said it was a terrible keyword, you might want to say, look, every time my key competitor jumps up on a search, I would like to sit next door to them. Or I want to bid for people looking for food to go eat Italian wine within a five mile radius of my store. Because I’ve got half a pallet and Montepulciano that I need to move before the next load comes in. So here we came that way. The stuff that we got from the other side was lots of users said we hate Doom scrolling, we, what we did was good value to us is not cheap. Yes, sometimes I want the cheapest offer the best value offer. What’s more important is that I trust when buying it from the I can find out who’s down the road. I’m actually not buying it for me, I’m buying it for somebody else. So I want to know who’s going to be able to deliver it to me reasonably efficiently. I actually want to get on the wires mailing list, kind of buying direct from the winery rather than going through a three tier retailer. So there’s lots of those parts. And the I’m a for my

students, my business and my behavioral scientist. So I teach a lot and lecture a lot on behavioral science. That sounds slightly removed. A lot of it is how do we turn shoppers into buyers? How do we get that thing where we sort of say to people, let’s, let’s give you the right information, which isn’t necessarily lots, it’s often the right information that gets you to that point where you go. Okay, yeah, that suits me. So things like rather than we always assume, Oh, customer reviews are amazing customer views. Amazing. They’re not really. Did you ever hear that? I think I think it was in Napa that the French Laundry have the same open tables score as McDonald’s. I think that was true. And it was on the basis it was because they didn’t genuinely merit the same score. Now the French Laundry is amazing. But it’s really expensive. I think it had like a 4.2 or something because people said it was really, really good, but it’s like so expensive. And they’re like McDonald’s is very cheap. But it guarantees that you won’t get diarrhea if you eat it two o’clock in the morning. So it’s like a 4.2 diarrhea free midnight dining. That’s really cheap. For what? Yeah, then so far apart and wine is kind of the same, you know, natural wine or come up as a sort of 3.8 and it is no really 3.8 It’s either a five or a two. Nobody in the world goes on natural line, right? So all right, it’s kind of okay. You want to love it or loathe it. So we were doing away with that. And professional schools, I think it’s a slightly different matter, you know, you’ve got kind of personal critics, but actually guiding people through things like a Netflix tagging. And that’s important. How do we go and guide people into saying these wines I sometimes around particular flavor characteristics, but this sort of mood. We know the number one needs dates around people you know, we know people buy wine but around need state perhaps more than style. So they’ll go money status, or put the feet up on quite done in, you know, tomorrow night, I’ll be on in fees, a nice bottle of wine. What suits that kind of nice date some other people I’ve got friends around, I don’t want to be embarrassed. I want to go and be a little bit flash to flash. And I want to treat myself kind of into this water level. So having that sort of tagging, I think is key. So we’re building lots of those things into the platform. I’m rambling now. Oh, that’s all

Drew Hendricks  20:07  

right. No, that’s fantastic. I like the I like what you’re talking about the need state and the behavioral. The, um, as far as writing it, does the platform then recommend that based on what person’s the person’s looking for?

Joe Fattorini  20:18  

Yeah. And as you we have to, to, to, to test. So we have David Round, master of wine, the loveliest map, I have to tell you, you have to be David round. He’s just so utterly wonderful. And he is our head of wine. And he leaves his lot when he got the job, because he sort of said, I’m really sorry. And so I’ve got to go and judge some wine awards. So I’ll take some days out of my holiday and stuff. He said, No, no, we’ll pay you to go and judge vinyl is really, the only people in the world who pay me is that we need you to know what’s trending, what’s happening, you know, to be able to honestly come and say, you know, what, I can recommend bits and pieces, you know, and start building that. So his first here, along with a group of students now is actually from the Napa Valley Wine Academy, is to do things like if you like, a, what else you’re going to like this kind of similar, but you know, different? What are we going to pull out for those tribes sort of a series of classic wines? Or is their reserve kind of funky firstborns? What are some treats that you can go and build in? So he’s building that up? Now over time, we have a very clever computer, don’t ask me to explain it. I got to graph database, and Neo for J. and ice then switched off. But he asked us to learn that kind of thing. And it starts to go, I can see how people are making these connections, I can see how you’ve made these interesting connections. So I’ll have a bit of a stab in the same way. Spotify does, or unless you when you start to think about what’s 45 dogs, you know, Spotify playlists? I think there’s a really close analogy to Spotify. Spotify, Playlists are about right there another list for dinner parties. You’ll never get a Spotify playlist that comes up very rarely when it comes up with something and you go, Wow, I love that. What was this? Shiny pink shiny Ultra blast? Dance? Am I think it’s called? is one of those songs. Where’s Spotify? So did me I went I love this. This is absolutely brilliant. How about three times a year, I hope Pix, nails it with your wine selections, maybe a bit more than that. But as you’re going to be really good again, I know you kind of like these things. Here’s a selection of stuff. And I’m going to give you some tools to narrow in whether it’s exactly for you. So he gets you into a kind of playlist. And then it says, here’s some little extra blurbs that let you get know that really is for me, you know, boy, a bit shabby fan. This is like, you know, give you quite an interesting example. If you’re kind of big Chambly fan, I want the engine I want the machine to come up and see Simpsons Chardonnay from Kent in England is totally your back. Because it’s something that is like sugary taste to you as it used to taste. And we wanting to go and find ways where we go and get those connections we help people discover and they go well Kenzi Chardonnay is for me linear, you know, dry, gorgeously refined Chardonnay. That’s my I sort of cup of tea. So that’s the sort of work that we’re doing at the moment. And David leads all that.

Drew Hendricks  23:29  

That’s fantastic that it reminds me of like me, you would normally only get that on the sales floor with someone that actually knew their shit. Like when you’re going into the wine store, they would know based on your dress based on your character. The fact that you bought Sibley in the past I would know exactly who direct would if I saw that person walking I would know exactly how to recommend that wine from Ken and your platforms doing that work for you.

Joe Fattorini  23:54  

And I think doing we’ll do I think is probably the best thing is we have to be we don’t have to ask for permission. I use the analogy the other day. You know that bit in was in Ghost as Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore and they’re making the thing at the moment is a bit of a longer play. We kind of got our thumbs into it and insert it’s a cup. We haven’t made the very tall elegant vase that yes, we’ll get them in two ways we get it. What do we have at the moment, three and a half 4000 Wine sellers who are part of Pix so we were bringing in their wines. Some of the producers some of them are retailers

Drew Hendricks  24:32  

so it’s amazing. This air at the time this is we’re recording this Pix is not live yet. This is not recording this for October so we should be live by then but it’s amazing depth 3000 4000 retails already for

Joe Fattorini  24:46  

within our beta test to the police actually a Christmas we were getting so many we have to stop it and people get we didn’t do any more ringing people up we just 70 we got enough because then we realized we had a total category in inventory within the To test around 350,000 lines calling on apps, and then an offer universal around 1513 to 15 million offers on those lines. So you imagine some will only pop up once some will pop up in 50, retailers, 100 retailers across the United States, you know, some we get a sort of magnitude difference there. So yeah, we we sort of bring or bring those people in. And there’s a real mix of different retailers who, you know, who sort of come in there. So we actually were we started out when I first made the course, it was really important to me, I said you nobody will settle you just go and talk to one or two really big guys. No, I want to go talk to small little, you know, DTC wineries, I want this to be a place where if I’m a DTC winery, I can fight on my own terms. And honestly, you can, because when people start getting into searches and things, we can go and find you a group of people who really like your kind of wines that we can really connect you up with, you’re not just going to be item 5007 42, or something on a long list. It’s allowing us to go and Hound people in now, it will take us a while to go and fashion that plate, go and build it out. And we will grow out from those 4003 and a half 1000 4000 retailers, you know, it was 144,000 wines a year coming to the United States, something like that. And so we

Drew Hendricks  26:30  

are forming tribes. Yes, you are helping these small DDC wineries find their tribe, and their tribe may not be those people that visit the winery.

Joe Fattorini  26:41  

Good for them? Absolutely. And, you know, we know one of the big challenges at TCC is sometimes breaking out and I can’t remember what the statistic was about a number of people who buy DTC wines who live within something like 20 miles of the winery, you know, that the vast 90% of people tend to live in the state of California, who are states of California wineries. And yet there are people out there who would really love to go and try these wines in the course the same is true for everything union makes wine, you know, effectively. It’s a national industry. And so yes, and guys, send me a note the other day, he says, I’m so excited to be part of the Pix movement. It’s like, wow, we’re doing all right, if we’re sort of ready for a T shirt with a fist on it, you know? Yeah, we’re on our way. That’s brilliant stuff. So and I think people do see it as and we hope. You know, yes, we wanted to be successful business, we want to go grow. But I think all of us call me, David, we will be banging on about this forever, then. Most people listening to this will go Oh, crikey. I’ve heard Paul maybe banging on about e-commerce and one and live forever in a day. And I’ve always shut up. And I’ve been sort of banging on about finding better ways to connect to one of these broad audience only. Yes, I love selling wine to everybody. But the wine shows audience, our intelligence and sophisticated people with smart jobs. In every strata of society, we do really well amongst nurses. So it was loads of nurses and midwives. See in the UK. What’s the hard job being a nurse midwife in the UK police officers, I’ve got a great friend, cranny he’s called. And he was an armed police officer at number 10 Downing Street, he was a huge fan of the show still keeps in touch with me that now you get this amazing array of people who’ve got you know, good jobs, and they like to go home and have a glass of wine. And they are underserved. Partly not by anyone in particular. But just by the way, the things are structured, they just want sometimes a bit of simpler information. They want to get closer to the retailer, they want to sometimes a bit embarrassed about asking for stuff in a shop, you know, it’s a no somebody came up and he said, Oh, the problem you’ll have is that nobody will want to go and pull out your when we go on our mobile app because we’re starting on the online desktop. Well, nobody said nobody will want to pull that out in the shop. I would argue the opposite. I think that there are why people don’t like putting out an app in a shop. Most people would rather do that than be really embarrassed in front of a sales assistant. This shouldn’t need to be yes,

Drew Hendricks  29:23  

I can see this the sales assistant start to walk over and they pull out their phone, very busy. Actually, they would be pulling out their phone,

Joe Fattorini  29:33  

which is one thing we can be quite cheap. You know, we’re talking and this is a future state. This is where we’re heading to. And it’s an entirely This isn’t me doing science fiction. This is entirely possible. It’s just a question of getting. We we have quite a lot of queue location if you like within firms and we’re able to go and do some quite interesting stuff around keyword bidding known by by geographies and so on. What would really work for me is if I walked into a wine store, somebody sign in DC or walk into a wine store If my takes up told me the five wines that thought that I would really enjoy, I gotta tell you, I would buy all five and only know about wine. But I knew it would probably throw up five wines that I’m unlikely to have ever tried before. There’ll be a bit out of the ordinary, there’ll be, you know, I kind of thing. And also, I’m a total sucker, that kind of thing makes my life easier. And I’ll browse around and look at all the bits now go, Yeah, I’ll have the ones on my phone, can I just have these things? That will, and that’s me, you know, I’m kind of into wine, I’m really engaged with it. I’m not saying I won’t sometimes go and say look, I’ll leave that to one side, I am on the hunt, Pawan ko roti from a specific vintage, really like it to smell of old horses. And that will be me on on other occasions. But you know, we all will change as we go through the through the week. Oh, I’ve

Drew Hendricks  30:52  

been thought mine. I’ve been having sold wine for years. I love it when I’m in a position where someone’s actually recommending stuff, and usually by all of it. And then taking your Spotify thing, I can see your vision, we’ve got five wines, two of them are going to be right in the middle of that like recommendation pool, one’s going to be on the outskirts to the right one’s going to be outskirts to the left. And you’re going to then kind of push push your appreciation of those wines and find something new.

Joe Fattorini  31:17  

We use the term songs. A lot of it being a discovery platform. Discovery, we know this is me going back to my MPhil discovery is one of those things, this is important for us conceptually, wine journey if you like and we talked about people saying I’m going to wine journey, discovering new things is a really important part of why people get into why people often have a favorite beer and they kind of go back. Yes, some people have a favorite wine, but actually for a lot of people pass the charm of it, and the joy of it is going and discovering new things all the time. But it’s hard to do. Because, you know, discovery brings with it risk, you know, we’re going off into, you know, the New World, and what am I going to go and find and there be, you know, Giants kind of thing. So, and I think that is quite deep seated almost evolutionary traits and people. So where we are able to go and say, Yeah, we’re going to help you discover just not that far, it’s going to take you to the next station on the river. You know, we’re not going to go the full Colonel Kurtz, we’re just going to go a couple of stops up, and then we’ll stop. And we’ll sort of take that bit further, that becomes a very attractive thing, because people sort of say, oh, go along, go along a little bit. And discoveries, more than one or two things. One thing we do know, we tend to think sometimes a wine choices being linear. So somebody comes in, and they gradually narrow down their choices until they come to the thing that they want. Turns out, that’s actually not true. And we’ve done quite a lot of interesting, wider works very good research from Google’s UK team. Actually, what happens is people actually go into two modes, they come in, particularly in an e-commerce thing. And to a degree, actually, in regular retail, they start by exploring, they swirl around, and they explore a number of options. They then go into an evaluation mode, and they swirl around the evaluates whether that’s the right answer for them. Now, if you’ve got a very linear sales funnel idea, and a lot of e-commerce is quite linear, the problem is if it’s the wrong when they’re evaluating, it’s not the right answer, then I got to get right back to the beginning, or they just drop out altogether. And we see this a lot where you’ve got these kind of sales funnel ideas, that people just go, wow, wasn’t really what I was looking for, I’ll go away somewhere else. Or go back to the beginning again, now. We’ve tried to build it in where we give people the options to kind of evaluate is not quite right. Here are some other exploration options, which is broadly, you might also like these things. So it’s a little bit different. And then they go through this cycle. Again, there’s a kind of figure of eight they go explore a bit, okay, write, test out those evaluations. And those evaluations are often based around. Is it the right answer to my problem? So it’s things like, is the right great variety? Is it classy enough? Is it taste the right sort of thing? Will it go with lamb? It’s also, can I buy it in the next 20 minutes? Will somebody deliver it to my friends, you know, you don’t have to buy by the case kind of get single basally. It’s that sort of a loop and trying to keep all those things in mind is quite interesting and challenging and creating a user experience.

Drew Hendricks  34:22  

I like how you’re showing almost an infinite loop of like a figure eight, whereas originally, I was thinking of a flywheel. But yours is actually a lot more complex because you go down, you dip around. Like Yeah, eat that.

Joe Fattorini  34:33  

Funny, you know, you should say that you’re saying about your about fungi. The way this one of the things I’ve learned, and you may not know this, but I’m British, and most of the things that I’ve learned is that fanny pack means something very, very different in the United States, and the other is that there’s this word flywheel, and I’ve never come across this idea of flywheel and so the the sort of notion, it gets used a lot, but it’s become sort of embedded but flywheels are amazing things. But actually, they’re just circular, they just kind of run around around. So people get into their mind this sort of thing about things running, running around and jump off and do the other flow, and then come back in again. And it’s funny how sometimes when you is it called the command, but the name of it is that hypothesis that the way we view the world is often written by the words that we use. So if you’ve got a, you know, a language, who has no word for the color blue, which sort of doesn’t exist, too, but it’s one of those bits when you get worse, that sort of come in and suddenly found that in a world of wine, that sometimes returns about wine, they get used a lot in the UK, but aren’t used at all in the United States. And so of course, that thing never really gets looked for it just sort of almost doesn’t exist because there is an objective thing, but nobody really digs into it. Gooseberry is very common to say gooseberry or lychee, Newspace. And leeches, you know, you can breed very useful if you’re selling wine in Ukraine, obsessed with gooseberries, they really like it. But you know, we see a race for that we will have to refine that as we go around the world. Remember, we were trying to remember the name. There’s a Chinese when there’s when we made The Wine Show, and brilliant guy. Young looms master smellies, also doing MW. And he says one of the biggest problems he had in translating Western tasting terms for Chinese audiences was that you could do it literally. With any mentors, you use words like butter toast, that meant nothing to anybody in China, because they didn’t have toast and they didn’t know button. You can then go and say well, what does it literally sort of taste Davina using a word for us, which was better. So you did get certain words. And so one of those was like wolfberry Yang Mei is called. And it’s even better actually than our Raspberry code annoying, because it literally tastes like the code renewing. We thought they always kind of rushed me strawberry. Actually, it takes some young May, I can tell you, he said then but those come with no emotional resonances. So he says in Mercer, Bata toast is quite his maternal. We know sort of comforting, it’s kind of reminder of your childhood. And he said we were fiddling around trying to find words that habits because nonetheless, anyway, he says how do you get? That’s Chinese breakfast rice, apparently did not uncommon. If your mom’s busy or your dad’s getting ready, it’ll crust on the side of it. And he said, but it’s really tasty. And so whatever the word was for the burnt, right, the slightly toasted rice on your breakfast cookie. And he said it brings in all those memories of being a young child in China and you’re on a cold day and your mom saying well thank you go and have that will be good and sending you off for breakfast. He said that’s the word we use to describe her. So now it’s such a lovely story that we all get together.

Drew Hendricks  38:12  

That’s fantastic, but full of the full evocative emotions behind just the just the aroma or just the actual fruit. It’s really more about what that fruit represents. Yeah,

Joe Fattorini  38:23  

really, can I say RC about it the English word. You always end up using the word proofs in both proofs in like a cup of tea and and Madeline cake. And then you write incredibly long, boring book about it’s not boring as I’m sorry. That’s a Prusa notion of it brief, this is true. And smell and aroma sits very close to the parts of your brain that connect with emotional memory and so on. And the emotion is emotion can be inherited, whereas learned behavior can’t and so people can have inherited connections with some of those things, as well as some really interesting stuff. Jamie Goode writes very well on it. In some of his books he’s doing he’s got I taste read. My mother is synesthesia, so she tastes in color. So she doesn’t like green wines. That does not mean what we would say green wines. Because when you say what does she like? She says she likes purple wine. So the green and orange ones she doesn’t like but she doesn’t like purple. And is because when she statements gets vivid images of color in her mind is a synthetic taster. And it’s not uncommon actually, if you ever saw female consultant that synesthesia cases and it’s weird because they sort of say, just really like red stuff with you know, blue flecks on it and has nothing to do with the color of the wine, how they perceive

Drew Hendricks  39:49  

it, the perception of it. Now how’s Pix dealing with all these cultural differences and nuances as you go across the world.

Joe Fattorini  39:57  

You know, what we do we still see the United States in the UK because The inventors realize they are very similar markets to both the largest and most valuable consumer sort of import markets in the world. They’re both quite sophisticated markets as well. So they’re really interesting places to go and uses testbeds. With, I want to say sophisticated, at the industries within them are sophisticated, you’ve got incredibly experienced retailers, from very, very small to very, very large, where you’ve got people who understand the market very well in the United States. And of course, in the UK, and the UK has this really interesting secondary market, particularly because big central wine trading, I can see the Latin X community, the United States, I was looking at it as a wine market is bigger than I think both Brazil and South Korea. And so before you Trundle off and go to South Korea or Brazil, as you want to make sure

Drew Hendricks  40:50  

you there for a second there, Joe, I saw the screen go away. But we’re the last 20 seconds. Okay, notice that was in history, what what is it that out?

Joe Fattorini  40:59  

But it’s more like? I’ll jump into roughly when I kind of think I know you were before we go in the United States in the UK, before you go out to let’s say we take South Korea as a wine market. So yes, we could go and, you know, get involved with the South Korean wine market. But actually, a bigger market is the Latin X community in United States. And in a way, it’s more interesting to go and make sure that we’ve really got to grips with. So it’s a very valuable, really interesting market within a market that we’re already serving, going and looking after, you know, I talk a lot with people like Julia Kony or two towns that, you know, I’ve done some really interesting work, talking about the power of the bipoc, one consumer markets in the United States, as you all want to make sure that we’re going and properly serving the US and the UK, across this entire population. Because then we know, we can take that to Canada, Australia, you know, Anglophone markets in the first instance, which are different, but they’re not hugely different thing, you can sort of migrate into other sort of markets look at Germany, which again, is a little bit of a difference. It’s sort of its nuances, or Denmark, which quite an interesting small market, you can kind of do some tests there, in the end, you know, 124, ranges of 28, or something markets that we’d really love to go and be in and use the rollout through to them. But I think you want to make sure you can properly nail it at home without to be key markets first, and make sure that, you know, we set ourselves up right from beginning and it was a very early part of the business. So we said, you know, we wanted to be this platform that was genuinely embrace. And you want to say diversity. I mean, you know, it relived this as part of this, the way it was working, that it was genuinely inclusive. And actually, it’s quite hard to do, you’ve got to make sure you do it right. You’ve got to really put because do the work in that phrase. And that means not suddenly racing again. But next month, what’s the next market is making sure you properly served everybody in those markets that you first say, Yeah, we’re going to come and serve you as a market. And we’ve had some brilliant, you know, phenomenal responses. People have been great posts. Now this is going on October. So this was in July, we’ve got the drop, which is our online publications. Butter was talking about a drop because it’s editorially Hooli. Independence. So it’s a bit like the New York Times editorial and commercial. And I know them but we don’t. We don’t spend a lot of time engaging. And I you know, they do what they do. There’s a brilliant thing. Yes, they have a dear friend of mine, actually Tremaine stone, the real wealth of wine in the wine Hip Hop show. And he has a thing it was like, What’s your three desert island wines? And it’s great. You know, we haven’t seen voices like that coming into the traditional wine trades, being absolutely at the heart of this. And going in engaging with people, you know, in other parts of the wine sector, nearly enough. So it’s lots to go on, before we’ve even launched.

Drew Hendricks  44:05  

That’s amazing, very, very, almost the Spotify model, you’ve got your core, and you’re just kind of fully pushing out in the different geographies as your you don’t want to just jump to jump completely to something completely unfamiliar. Just kind of push the boundaries. Yeah,

Joe Fattorini  44:19  

you know, even in what we do, we just test iterate, grow, test, iterate, grow, and you got to do it sort of gradually. I think, the last mile. Paul’s a it’s an inspirational leader is a great person to work with. And stop being in startups is really hard. Working in tech is even harder. As you we learned fairly early on, yes, we can go and do all these amazing things in the future. But all the time you just get 10 or 15 people you try with them, you see what the problems are, because you can scale up very rapidly and instal technical solutions. Now certainly say to this, you know, when people are developing their own platforms, which certainly should think about If you have written some sort of system yet yell king, but my three year old is having a bath, and he’s having none of it in the background. He’s a very tired boy. And you can go and do an awful lot of absolutely amazing things at scale with technology. Just make sure you’re doing them really, really well in small groups first. So even if it’s your own little, you know, store, get five or 10 people to go and test it first, get 100 people to go and test it and just make sure it’s working, make sure you can accommodate those 100 people ordering things. Because what you don’t want to go and do is suddenly go and open it out to the world, you’re $10,000 New. And that was what people found in in COVID. You know, they have these platforms that are only ever really been robustly tested up to like 10 orders a day. And I remember talking to people in the city, I’ve gone from 10 orders a day to 500. You know, and I just can’t cope with that. So some we’re seeing that in its own in our own little iterations.

Drew Hendricks  45:55  

Well, that’s it. That’s all those are good growing pains, for sure. For sure. To Joe, as we’re kind of wrapping down, I gotta ask you, you mentioned that what are your three desert island wines?

Joe Fattorini  46:06  

And what is the pink and what was the real

Drew Hendricks  46:08  

thing that’s

Joe Fattorini  46:11  

one of the rules where you can have a luxurious one. You had a wild card, and you have something that was kind of everyday it was more thing that you went back to on a regular basis. And the wild card had to be something that wasn’t very expensive. So yeah, Jemaine had an interesting discard so and he had some slave Collini, Moorish Shea and that kind of stuff. So my luxury was was the cannubi Barolo from the lotto. Which I’ve had a number of vintages I’ve been very lucky. I was there last year and got a lot of a lot of although if you can’t get it, I do recommend it’s a weird wild card actually do know, is sort of very pale red grape variety, which is about that was that one my go to sort of every day, it was felt in a very Dania Cannes, Glasgow with my name you can imagine as an Italian till some of the ones I adore, you know what I’m going to just tell you that take solace in a very Danya and I’ll be kind of okay, for a very long time. And then I had it’s a special Solera of Palo cortado Sherry, and I’m Cherie, not completely obsessed with going and drinking lots of interesting Sherry And peloton is such a complete treat. There’s a lovely historical thing about sort of sharing and you think back to London in the 17th century, and people were drinking Sherry then. And one thing that we forget is that the highest quality wines then were mostly blends. It was you know, things like Portland, cherry and Madeira and things there’s all these blended vintages in Champagne, which kind of is to help the peaks and the troughs. So yeah, that was that was my sort of it’s always just to make people more people go and drink cherry to be honest because Sherry Lou, so those were quite hard that I could have gone on at any number of other things.

Drew Hendricks  48:07  

Yeah, no, that’s fantastic. I read along your lines with the Italian wines and and to Sherry for the for the for the outlier. Like it. Brilliant. I’m gonna have to let you Yeah, let you get on with your your evening here. Make sure you got a busy day and you’re right in the middle of this launch. So Joe, where can people find out more about you

Joe Fattorini  48:28  

go to they can go anywhere can email the Joe@pix.wine Pix P I X Joe@pix.wine, I would love to hear from anybody we’ll pick up and I will show you how very simple it is. If we broadly, it takes no effort to go and join pics because we ingest data directly from people. So drop me an email, I’ll show you how to go and do it. And I’m also at Joe Fattorini on Twitter and Instagram and everywhere you want to go and find me kind of easy. So at Joe Fattorini Anywhere do top of the line. Love to hear from people.

Drew Hendricks  49:03  

Awesome. Joe, thank you so much for joining us today.

Joe Fattorini  49:07  

Drew it’s a pleasure

Outro  49:16  

Thanks for listening to the Legends Behind the Craft podcast. We’ll see you again next time and be sure to click Subscribe to get future episodes.