Chief Data Officer

Two Free Opportunities for You, in Wine + Data


This week I’d like to share two opportunities with you, and I hope very much that you’ll join in.

Opportunity One: Highlight Your Wines and Your Work in Data

Earlier this summer Enolytics was invited to present our work, and lead a wine tasting, at the kick-off dinner the night before the Chief Data Officer (CDO) Executive Summit in Atlanta. (An Enolytics 101 post, back in June, described the experience.) Word of the program got around, and we’re now scheduled to present at another CDO Executive Summit, this time in San Francisco on December 10.

It’s an incredibly exciting opportunity. Talking about wine + data to CDOs in Atlanta is one thing; talking about it to CDOs in San Francisco is something else. This link gives you an idea of who will be in the room.

The San Francisco program is where you come in. Rather than Enolytics leading the wine tasting portion, we’d like to extend an invitation to wineries who are using data in interesting ways. During our part of the presentation, we’ll highlight the work of each winery that’s there, and then program attendees will move to a walk-around portion where wineries will pour your wines and speak to a graphic that illustrates how you’re currently using data in your business.

Your part? Bringing the wine and talking about how you use data.

Our part? Highlighting your work and welcoming you to the tasting.

The Summit attendees’ part? Expanding their perspective on what’s possible with data, in a category they don’t often consider.

Interested? I hope so. Please let us know here.

Sidebar: Is your business in another segment of bev alcohol, like spirits or beer? Please let us know that too, as it’s a growing area of interest. What we’re doing in wine is transferrable to what’s possible in spirits and beer.

Opportunity Two: Weighing in on POS and DTC

Wine Business Monthly dedicated much of their August 2019 issue to technology, including next-gen POS and DTC software and increased investment in ecommerce. To quote Cyril Penn’s Letter from the Editor at the front of the magazine:

"A little over a year ago, I attended a marketing conference where wine marketing and technology executives exchanges ideas. There were roughly 150 industry professionals in attendance, most of them were folks working in wine marketing or sales. During a discussion about e-commerce, a speaker asked for a show of hands to indicate how many people were 'happy' with their point-of-sale (POS) system. Nobody in the room raised their hand."

I read that and cringed, knowing how important this is to the wine industry. Why is it such a pain point? We’d like to understand it better, from your point of view. Even if you don’t want to collaborate actively, we’d appreciate hearing your feedback.

Interested? I hope so. Please let us know here.

I look forward as always to your thoughts and, this week in particular, to your input in response –

Thank you,


The Hardest Part About What We Do. (It’s Also Why We Do It.)


When it comes to fresh ideas for your business, there’s a lot to be said for cross-pollinating. That is, getting outside the routines of your industry and exploring how other people approach the sort of challenges you face.

I’m all for it.

I’m also all for spending time with people and colleagues who GET you straight away, and what you’re doing, and how very hard it can be.

That’s exactly how it felt on Tuesday evening this past week, when Enolytics was invited to kick off the CDO Executive Summit at the St Regis Hotel in Atlanta. There was not a single other person from the wine industry in that room, but it felt like the Chief Data Officers in the audience GOT us straight away, and what we’re doing, and how very hard it can be.

It felt that way to me, and I’m not even our Chief Data Officer.

Chris, who is our CDO, was there too and here’s what he had to say:

Clearly every industry struggles with the same big issue, which is convincing decision makers to confirm their gut feeling through informed data. Many executives believe they know better and aren’t taking the data people serious. Until… they get a taste of it. Quite often, the data scientist become their best new friend. But it’s often a frustrating journey to get the executives on board.

“Getting the executives on board” is a challenge for sure, but here’s what struck me most about the conversation and the Q&A part of the program that evening:

The hardest part of what the CDOs do is also the hardest part of what we do, and that’s telling the story.

The story, that is, about why data matters, and how it will help our business. Whether our business is insurance or manufacturing or finance or wine, we need to communicate the effect of our work.

In other words, we need to tell the story of why we do what we do.

Sure, there will be a business case for it, that shows solid logic around raising the price of an existing product, for example, or the revenue potential of developing something different from what’s currently in our portfolio.

That’s the cerebral part of things, that lives in our heads.

But what Chris and I heard from the audience even after the session was over, and in follow up conversations since then, was how much heart was in our work. What they saw, and felt, was how much we sincerely want to help the industry of wine be more successful and, ultimately, how much more enjoyable we want the wine experience to be for the consumer.

That is, in the end, why we do what we do.

Convincing clients and bosses of the usefulness of data is the hardest thing we do – “we” being Enolytics and every CDO who heard our story Tuesday night. What resonated this week more than ever was the need to combine the cerebral, rational component that lives in our heads with the motivation that lives in our hearts.

That’s the sweet spot of the story of why we do what we do, and why we keep doing it.

Thank you, as always, for tuning in.

PS Enjoy your holiday weekend next week! We’ll see you back here on July 12.