US wine market defined by six new consumer groups Posted by: Alana House November 27, 2018 New data from Wine Intelligence has revealed US drinkers are changing their behaviour towards the wine category. According to Wine Intelligence, the US is the most populous wine market in the world with 84 million regular wine drinkers. "With a wine market as large as this, it is only natural that consumers display different behaviors and attitudes in the wine category," it notes. The US is Australia's third largest export market for wine. According to Wine Australia figures for the year ended September 30, 2018, a $38m decline in exports to the US. “Growing the China and the USA markets is the key focus of the Australian Government’s Export and Regional Wine Support Package ($50m Package),” said Andreas Clark, CEO of Wine Australia. “We have redoubled our efforts in the US to capture more of the premium end of the market as American consumers trade up to higher priced wines. “There is positive sentiment about Australian wine in the US among key influencers and consumers. While consolidation at the distribution level of the three-tier system is proving to be a difficult barrier to overcome, the hard work of Australian exporters willing to get in to market is starting to pay off.” Wine Intelligence's latest US Portraits 2018 report identifies six distinct consumer segments in the US market and describes how they differ from each other in terms of profile and behaviors. The six categories are identified using data from Wine Intelligence's Vinitrac online surveys with 12,632 regular wine drinks, with an even spread of age and gender. "Notably, since our last US Portraits report in 2016 some segments have shifted in behaviour, prompting new names and new proportions," Wine Intelligence noted. The 2018 US Portraits segments include ... Engaged Explorers: One of the younger segments, they are the most frequent wine drinkers and the highest spenders, buying from a broad repertoire of wine styles, countries and regions. The most experimental group, actively seeking opportunities to build wine experiences. Premium Brand Suburbans: Mid to older aged, they are frequent wine drinkers, yet amongst the lowest spenders per bottle, sticking to the wines and brands they know. Their category experience leads them to have the highest wine knowledge of all segments. Contented Treaters: Mid and older affluent drinkers who are high spenders on wine, yet enjoy wine relatively infrequently. Knowledgeable and involved, who enjoy a broad range of wine types and styles, and are often influenced by a wines origin. Social Newbies: The youngest wine drinking segment, they drink wine on average twice a week, are mid spenders, with wine not yet fully integrated into their lifestyle. They have limited wine category knowledge yet and rely heavily on recommendations when it comes to buying wine. Senior Bargain Hunters: The least frequent and one of the oldest wine drinking segments. Time in the category has led to relatively strong wine knowledge, however they still purchase from a narrow repertoire of wine styles and brands, being strongly value driven. Kitchen Casuals: One of the oldest segments, they are infrequent wine drinkers, with very few consuming wine in the on-premise. They show a limited interest in the wine category, sticking to the narrow range of wines they know.