NAPA -- A new firm in Napa wants to help small wineries wineries not only craft their packaging design but also develop brand strategy and marketing, better manage their logistics and get more Internet exposure.
4parts Design (www.4partsdesign.com, 415-339-0281), the brainchild of a fine-wine cork distributor and local experts in wine label design and printing, started early last year and now works with about 100 wineries. Clients include Don Sebastiani & Sons and sister companies The Other Guys and Mia's Kitchen in Sonoma, Folio Fine Wine Partners in Napa, high-end boutique vintner Fidelitas in Washington state and custom winemakers Judd's Hill MicroCrush east of Napa and Spelletich Cellars in south Napa.
[caption id="attachment_50673" align="alignleft" width="318" caption="4parts silk-screen wine labels"][/caption]
"We look at the design portion as the engine in the car, and marketing and other elements are as wheels on the car," said partner David Hanson-Jerrard.
He ran Lafitte Cork & Capsule in Napa for seven years before joining forces with Travis Pollard, digital business manager of Tapp Label Technologies' Napa plant. Lead designer Hayley Partridge came from Sonoma-based custom wine microbrand builder Crushpad, where she created more than 2,000 labels for clients worldwide, ranging from celebrities to hobbyists.
"At Lafitte, I saw a huge opportunity in the U.S. wine market for a company that can help small wineries try to maintain competitiveness with huge wineries," Mr. Hanson-Jerrard said. Design, marketing, strategy and logistics -- the "four parts" in the firm's name -- came from discussions with prospective clients about services they needed.
The firm is aiming to fit between specialized branding and design firms such as CF Napa and Tinknell & Tinknell and logistics consultants such as FreeRun Winery Services.
[caption id="attachment_50674" align="alignright" width="249" caption="4parts Design helped Mia Sebastiani create a Wine Country look for her premium foods brand Mia's Kitchen."][/caption]
Beyond label design, 4parts offers help with positioning brands for various sales channels -- in restaurants or in fine wine shops, in chain stores or independent retailers -- and differing levels of consumer interaction with the brand.
A big discussion in wine packaging design these days is whether to use and how to employ customer-response methods on labels or other marketing materials such as traditional QR codes, SpyderLynk's SnapTag or Microsoft Tag.