Success Stories : Alyssa Rapp of Bottlenotes.com

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Bottlenotes.com has become the favorite online destination for 20- to 30-somethings who are new to wine and curious about it. Founded by Alyssa Rapp in 2005, the company has increased subscribers of its daily wine tips e-mail from 30,000 in January 2009 to around 130,000 now. Drawing on the popularity of sites like Facebook, Bottlenotes’ focus on social media is what makes the company unique, not to mention successful. This year, while much of the business world is still reeling from the economic meltdown, Bottlenotes expects to double its revenue over 2009, and projects that it will double it again in 2011.

But, Bottlenotes did not start out as a media platform. When first founded, Bottlenotes was essentially a wine marketing firm and e-commerce site. Near the end of 2008 though, Rapp and her team transformed the site into the community- and content-driven site it has become today. The goal, she says, was to make it something akin to a Wine Spectator of the 21st century.

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