Press Release

DTC Wine Symposium 2024 Keynotes to Focus on AI, Marketing Truths and Tasting Room Realities – Get Your Tickets Now to Learn the Tools to Grow Your Business! 

October 19, 2023 It’s no secret the last few years of operating DTC wineries and tasting rooms have come with unprecedented highs and lows, and as consumer behavior and spending continues to evolve, it’s once again time to look forward to the annual DTC Wine Symposium, where business leaders can converge to learn new perspectives and network with likeminded leaders with the goal to drive profitable growth. Today, the DTC Wine Symposium has announced its keynote topics for the 17th annual event, which will be focused on how the wine industry can harness the power of AI, the lessons behind authentic marketing, and why it’s important to engage Gen X and Boomers in your tasting room initiatives.  

Presented by and a fundraiser for Free the Grapes!, the DTC Wine Symposium will be held January 17-18, 2024, at the Hilton Concord Hotel in Concord, California. Participants can expect thought-provoking keynotes, useful workshop sessions, and Town Hall-type discussions on a variety of current topics as well as a tradeshow of the industry’s leading suppliers. 

Here is a summary of confirmed keynote addresses:

  • Marketing Truths: 5 Truths I Know About Marketing + One I Know About Wine.You don’t need a degree in marketing to succeed in your winery’s marketing efforts. What you do need is to earn the right to tell your story, treat people like people, and talk like a human, not a corporation. Kat Gordon, Named Visionary of the Year by Advertising Age, will share some stories to bring these lessons alive in a fun and memorable way.
  • AI is Taking Over: How Will the Wine Industry Harness the Power of AI? Every week, there’s a new development in AI: ChatGPT, Midjourney, Bard. What’s next? Join us as author, speaker and advisor, Rishad Tobaccowala, discusses how AI will reshape the wine industry – from using tools for customization and improving customer service, to how the tools can deepen relationships and hospitality.
  • Embracing Gen X and Boomers in DTC: Debunking Myths and Unveiling Profitable Tasting Room Realities. Wine industry headlines are lamenting the perceived disinterest of Gen Z and Millennial consumers in wine. However, is this issue as dire as it’s portrayed? In this thought-provoking keynote address, Lulie Halstead of Wine Intelligence will explore the truths and misconceptions surrounding consumer behavior in the wine industry. By presenting compelling evidence, she will make a compelling case for recognizing the value of engaging Gen X and Boomers within the realm of tasting rooms and direct-to-consumer initiatives. 
  • Free the Grapes Update / State of the States Legislative Address. This annual update summarizes Free the Grapes’ recent consumer activations and legislative support. It is immediately followed by a summary of the implications of recent legislative wins, and priorities for winery compliance in 2024, presented by Steve Gross, VP, State Relations, Wine Institute.

For more DTCWS updates, subscribe to Free the Grapes! newsletter at and follow the DTC Wine Symposium on LinkedIn,   

About the DTC Wine Symposium 

The DTC Wine Symposium is presented by and a fundraiser for Free the Grapes! The event has funded the Free the Grapes’ PR campaign and the Coalition for Free Trade’s legal work (CFT “retired” in 2014 after achieving its goals). Free the Grapes! works closely with industry lobbyists and regional associations to streamline onerous shipping regulations and to increase the number of legal states, which have grown to 47 and represent 98% of the US population. But the organization’s work is not done: three states ban all shipments, and seven states allow shipments but with major restrictions. The conference is the primary fundraiser for Free the Grapes!, which executes state-specific advocacy campaigns encouraging consumers to write to their legislators and works with media and advocacy groups to keep the issue alive in the media in support of favorable legislation. 


Media Contact: Ashley Kraynak, Benson Marketing Group, 917.633.6002 

Comments are closed.