The secrets of secret societies

The case of wine

Document identifier:
Access full text here:10.1016/j.bushor.2015.07.002
Keyword: Social Sciences, Economics and Business, Business Administration, Samhällsvetenskap, Ekonomi och näringsliv, Företagsekonomi, Industrial Marketing, Industriell marknadsföring
Publication year: 2015
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Secret societies have intrigued humanity since earliest times. In this article we explore secret societies in the context of wine and how these institutions might be insightful in formulating marketing strategies. We contrast the characteristics of secret societies with those of existing secret wine societies such as The Wine Society and La Confrérie. Yet while some of these functions and characteristics transfer well, many ‘secret’ wine societies aren’t actually that secret. Some of the characteristics of secret societies are also found in consumer brand communities. Armed with this knowledge, wine marketers can exploit the characteristics of secret societies to target market segments with precision and to gain the benefits of focused distribution opportunities.


Daniel Hall

Division of Industrial Marketing, KTH Royal Institute of Technology
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Leyland F. Pitt

Segal Graduate School of Business, Simon Fraser University, Beedie School of Business Simon Fraser University, Vancouver
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Åsa Wallström

Luleå tekniska universitet; Industriell Ekonomi
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