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Wine Valet Knows Your Taste Better Than You

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Wine is a complicated thing. Some describe wine as being “alive.” Because of the way oxygen alters the flavor, there are a lot of contributing factors when it comes to tasting wine. It can be intimidating if you don’t know what you’re tasting. It can be anxiety-inducing if you do for fear of being labeled a snob. If you’re trying to learn more about wine, it can be irritating if you don’t taste the flavor notes being described to you. What wine is supposed to be is a pleasure. Wine Valet, an Australian company, wants you to relax with wine as intended. 

\”You\’re a WINE SNOB!\”

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Too often consumers report being let down by a wine that was recommended to them. Wines are often rated good or bad based on an expert’s opinion. But every palate is different. Just because the expert said it was good, doesn’t mean that YOU will think it is good.”

Sarah Sweeney had been disappointed with the wines she was tasting. Like any wine lover, she kept trying and trying but could not match her expectations with the wines she was consuming. Things weren’t always a fit. Few things are as disappointing as a mediocre glass of wine. 

In 2018 I decided that I would ‘get into’ wine. I wanted to know what I liked and why I liked it and so I took up a regular wine subscription service because I thought that would help.

A wine subscription service is a fairly new concept. One that lines up with the broader subscription service trend. Companies like Winc, Boxt, The Vice Wine NDA, wine.com, Our Daily Red are all subscription services. You select your wine, it’s delivered. Simple, right? 

Wine is complicated, remember? 

I started dating a guy who would, without fail, serve up spectacular wines for us to share whenever we ate. I quickly noticed the disparity between the quality of the wines I was drinking from my subscription service and the wines my hot date was pouring.

Letting It Breathe

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That “hot date” was Alain Guilleman. He was bringing wines to the table so sophisticated in flavor that Sweeney had to know where he got them. 

When I enquired further, I discovered that he had his own liquor licence. This was because in the past he had difficulty sourcing the wines he liked and so took it upon himself to approach the wholesalers directly. They wouldn’t sell directly to a member of the public, so he went about getting his own liquor licence and returned to the wholesalers.” 

Anyone dipping their toes into the fine wine pool latch quickly onto someone with access. They have the good stuff. Why wouldn’t you want to keep that connection? But no one wants to be a mooch. Share the secret, why don’t you? 

I felt it was unfair for the rest of us who were wading through the quagmire of wine to discover what we liked. It was a natural consequence to found a company that would bring the best wines to the consumer, hence the name Wine Valet. It also made sense that we do it together, and so our company was born.”

This Idea Has \”Legs\”

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Sweeney and Guillemain, now married, founded Wine Valet to bring the perfect wines directly to the consumer. And not just what people tell you is the best. WineValet brings your best wine to you. 

What other wine subscription services don’t do very well is learn what you like and don’t like. That’s where Wine Valet stands out. While other companies let the consumer do all the leg work, Wine Valet makes it easier for you. How do they do it?

By no longer expecting the consumer to work out what they like. We do it for them. All they need to do is taste a few wines with us so we can learn a little about them and then we can create recommendations for them, the same way Spotify and Netflix does.”

Sweeney and Guillemain developed an app that carefully learns your tastes and suggests wines accordingly. There are so many ways to describe what you like. You also don’t always know what you like. You may think you don’t like a riesling… until you try one that surprises you. 

A Sophisticated Palate

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Our app, which is only available in Australia at present, boasts the development of a new technology that analyses a person’s taste preferences and matches them with the characteristics of wines, resulting in higher rates of accurate recommendations. This means that at Wine Valet we know you and we know your palate. We’ve got you.

Wine is supposed to be a pleasure. The snobbery is unnecessary and only serves to alienate people. There’s also no need to be intimidated by wine. Wine Valet aims to elevate wine to the masses instead of limiting it to a privileged few. 

We recently ran a corporate event where the guests were a mix of novices and almost-expert wine drinkers. Throughout the course of the evening, all people were able to enjoy the experience since it is hyper-personalised. There are no wrong answers when rating a wine based on what you like and the discovery is fun for all.

Of course, like any innovative and passionate idea, there were doubts. Wine Valet is trying to accomplish something other wine subscription services aren’t quite succeeding in. It’s no secret that many in the wine industry like the fact that it’s exclusive. That, however, trivializes wine into a luxury item when everyone deserves a fine glass of wine. 

Don\’t Stress About The Dregs

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We had mentors and people in the industry telling us that what we have isn’t that special and that it’s been done before. These were intelligent and insightful people, and yet they would often struggle to catch our vision. It is challenging to articulate a complex and novel idea. 

There were certainly some days where we looked at each other and said, ‘is this idea actually any good?’  We have had to continue to believe in the vision and support each other when there was very little support from outside.

That hasn’t stopped Sweeney and Guillemain from pursuing this novel idea. Wine Valet wants to be the great equalizer in the wine world. If more people learned that wine is not just for fancy folk, and if more people felt confident saying they enjoyed wine the world would be a happier place. 

Wine Valet is currently only available in Australia. Fingers crossed it makes it to the States soon.

Chris Blondell is a Philadelphia-based writer and social media strategist with a current focus on tech industry news. He has written about startups and entrepreneurs based in Denver, Seattle, Chicago, New Haven, and more. He has also written content for a true-crime blog, Sword and Scale, and developed social media content for a local spice shop. An occasional comedian, Chris Blondell also spends his time writing humorous content and performing stand-up for local audiences.

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Business

ClickUp – One App To Replace Them All

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If your company is having productivity and organizational issues, you may want to check out ClickUp

Founded in 2017 by Alex Yurkowski and Zeb Evans, ClickUp is a customizable productivity platform that replaces other workplace apps for all users and all departments in an organization. Rather than having a communication app, a payroll app, a human resources app, you can have all one app for all departments. 

Sounds easier, right? 

The idea is that using this all-in-one application will increase team productivity. ClickUp works for any and every type of team within a company or organization. Team members can plan, organize, and collaborate on projects. They can also create documents, reminders, goals, calendars, and even sweet little inbox tools. 

Basically, anything you need to run an organization or company can be done through ClickUp. Anything to simplify management is probably going to be a success. If you have to communicate through different platforms and mediums, things can get disorganized, lost, or plain-old “screwed up.” 

ClickUp is a fully customizable app, intended for anyone to adapt the app as it fits best. Different companies require different methods of organization. What a cybersecurity company needs versus what a fashion lifestyle brand needs are vastly different. An all-in-one task management app needs to be versatile enough to support all industries. 

ClickUp seems to be managing that just fine. With funding at $135 million and a valuation of $1 billion, ClickUp is on the up. 

  • 2017 – Founded by Alex Yurkowski and Zeb Evans

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Sustainability in PR – How Alyson Roy of AMP3 Approaches Social Responsibility

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Public relations are the one aspect of startup life that entrepreneurs either care too little about or care too much about. Alyson Roy, cofounder of AMP3 PR, stands out among a crowded field. 

The way PR has evolved over the last decade and a half. It\’s not what it was. I think start ups and entrepreneurs need to know what PR is today in 2021.

Alyson Roy has a full understanding of what companies need and want from a PR agency. Having run AMP3 for 17 years now, if anyone has her finger on the public relations pulse, it’s Alyson Roy. 

What Is AMP3?

AMP3 “amplifies” its clients in three areas: traditional PR and media outreach, social media and influencer marketing, and special experiential events. This multilateral approach is combined in a unique boutique experience that sets AMP3 apart from other PR agencies. 

It\’s a level of service where we become an extension of our clients internal marketing team. we\’re one in the same. It\’s not the client-brand relationship. [We are] on the front line helping them grow as a company.

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In the past ten to fifteen years, public relations has evolved tremendously. Since social media’s dominance, PR has had to slowly peel away from traditional press conferences and releases and figure a whole new strategy to consider. 

Of course, with Facebook being in big trouble lately, Alyson Roy and company have had to consider new strategies yet again. 

Taking Responsibility For The Community

Everyone is aware of the damage that social media can do. Just for mental health and mental health awareness that\’s been a conversation.” 

So, AMP3 launched Impact. A social responsibility division of AMP3 that encourages and celebrates a company’s ability to give back to the community. 

We were seeing a need for brands to really start putting their core values and social responsibility at the virtual forefront.”

We’re big believers [that] it\’s not an option – it\’s a requirement – for brands to be doing something. Not every brand can do all the things but every brand can do something.”

AMP3’s mission to encourage – and require – the brands they represent is a noble and different strategy. It’s almost certain that Alyson Roy and AMP3 recognize the larger picture of what consumers want and like in a company. 

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Why Companies Need To Care

With news stories like Facebook putting “company over country,” (as Zuckerberg is reported to have ended his staff meetings with; fist pump in the air included), it’s the smart move for companies to, you know, care

Companies may not necessarily know what they can offer. But that’s why you collaborate with a company like AMP3. They take the time and energy to find out what your company has to offer the world. When we have the means to uplift our community, we should. AMP3 requiring that trait in companies they represent shows an initiative not often seen. 

By 2022, Alyson Roy wants 100% of AMP3’s clients to be a part of this Impact division. As public relations evolve, and media writ large with it, you can expect to see Alyson Roy and AMP3 at the forefront of that evolution. 

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We are growing at a rapid pace. I think PR is going to continue to evolve, I think again, it\’s not going to be that traditional relationship based service. It\’s going to be this strategic group of tools together with metrics. I think PR is going to be where communications and branding overlap to drive impact in measurable results.

AMP3 is a fashion and lifestyle public relations agency located in New York. Their finely tuned and innovative, boutique approach to PR is one that stands out.

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The Future of HR is eqtble

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People are the backbone of any organization. People are more important than the product. Without people, you have no product.” – Joseph Ifiegbu, co-founder of eqtble

Founded in 2020 by Joseph Ifiegbu, Ethan Veres, and Gabe Horwitz, eqtble is a next-generation human resources data platform with the goal of turning employee data into valuable insights. This SaaS works to increase a company’s HR efficiency through intuitive goals and metrics tracking. 

Many think of HR as the folks you talk to when there’s a problem or if you need fliers printed and hung around the office. HR is actually a critical part of any company. They do all the hiring, firing, and maintaining of a healthy, productive office. 

All of the work that goes into running a strong HR department can get complicated. For example, a hiring manager may have more applications to read through than time permits. This can create a bottleneck effect where good applicants can fall through the cracks. eqtble allows companies to catch errors like this and prevent them from happening. 

How Does eqtble Work?

eqtble is “sector agnostic,” meaning it’s not limited to one industry. eqtble is capable of working for any HR department for any company in any industry. Its target customers are high-growth companies that have between 250-3000 employees. So, eqtble is best used in situations where a company is more flexible to adaptations. It’s most effective in ensuring diversity, inclusion, and equity (get it?). 

The new, innovative human resources analytics platform is capable of collecting data from more than 100 sources (including Workaday, ADP, Oracle, PeopleSoft, Qualtrics, and Culture Amp) and deliver insights and visualizations about four specific areas:

  • Talent recruitment
  • Workforce
  • Engagement (including attrition, or when workers quit)
  • Compensation

This SaaS platform can help HR teams learn exactly why candidates are declining offers. Is the pay not competitive enough? Is the staff not diverse enough? What strategies can be implemented to make positive changes for the workforce? 

eqtble is currently working with over 150 HR and human capital management systems. It’s changing the way companies approach diversity and inclusion with innovative analytics meant to drive actionable change. 

Instead of just talking about diversity, inclusion, and equity, companies can make it happen. Thanks to eqtble. 

  • 2020 – eqtble founded by Joseph Ifiegbu, Ethan Veres, Gabe Horwitz.

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