Big On Small: The Official Podcast for Small Business talks with Donna Stoney. Tune in to learn how this winemaker is making history and using wine to invite culture change.


Have you ever noticed that a hero, a real hero, often doesn't see themselves as one? Today’s guest is no different. Donna Stoney is the epitome of a humble hero. She's spent three decades building a career that places people and their quality of life at the center of everything that she has done.

A serial entrepreneur, Donna is the Founder of Stoney Wines, as well as the Executive Director at StoneyBrooke Residential Services LLC, helping adults with disabilities. When she opened Stoney Wines in 2019, she found herself breaking down barriers and perception as Oregon's first back female head winemaker; but this was not her first history-making endeavor.

Big on Small, The Official Small Business Podcast, explores the big ideas that are helping small organizations survive and thrive. Hosts Karolyn Hart and Samantha Castro interview the inspiring people who are running small businesses, agencies, towns, charities, schools and teams. One of our favourite things to explore? Differentiation strategies that are not only disruptive but truly empowering!

One of the most inspiring differentiation strategies that set Donna’s approach to winemaking apart is her commitment to turning every bottle into a conversation. Here's why that's amazing!


Ep. 006 - Wine Not Make History? with Donna Stoney

While many wineries embrace Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) sales through wine clubs, Donna reinvents this traditional business model as a powerful, life-changing form of community. She builds community through not one, but several different wine clubs, including one based on “Ally Membership” with a focus on how we’re better together. You not only get two bottles of Donna’s delicious wine each month; members receive educational materials and information empowering them to be better allies to marginalized peoples.

A second club is for “Sister Friends”, cultivating transformative life conversations amongst women. The “Sons We Bear”, a third club, brings men together. Tune in to learn more about how this club inspired a culture-shift that’s blossomed into an annual retreat.

In this episode, we discover how Donna’s big decision to follow her passions resulted in transforming the lives of people all around her, from college basketball to creating a community that is ALL-inclusive. Donna reveals the power of pairing your purpose and passion in an episode that we know is sure to lift your spirits and leave you inspired. Tune in above, or visit the official Big on Small podcast website, where we share even more resources to empower YOUR small business with this episode!

Pro tip for small winery owners:

Direct-to-Consumer (DtC) sales account for a whopping 60 percent of winery revenue. Think you’re too small to cash in? For wineries making less than 2,500 cases per year, that number jumps to 74 percent.

Knowing your customer means repeat sales, and those customers spend up to 67 percent more than first-time shoppers.

Want another pour?

Here are some of the tips we've shared in past articles to help small winery owners grow their business and thrive:




Big Sales for Small Wineries: The Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Growth Guide
Big Sales for Small Wineries
The Ultimate Do-It-Yourself Growth Guide

This FREE eBook is specifically designed for established boutique wineries (those producing less than 10,000 cases) as a step-by-step guide to achieving your best year in sales yet. It is packed with practical advice on everything from questions to ask the person who is managing your marketing, to insights into what consumers actually want in a Wine Club, and even a list of creative ideas to help generate additional revenue streams. Included in this FREE Guide:

  • Transformation Readiness Assessment
  • Successful Sales Strategies
  • Trusted and Proven Advice

Check it out now!


Big on Small - The Official Small Business Podcast

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If you have a small business question that needs answering or want to show some love to a small business in your life, call and leave a message on the Big On Small Hotline at 1-844-967-CHAT (2428) or visit the contact page here.


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Topics: food & beverage, wineries, wine club, small business, small business owners, Karolyn Hart, success strategies, competitive strategy, differentiation strategy, Samantha Castro, podcast, growth strategies, DtC sales, grow your business, business insights, small winery, wine growers, black leadership, Big on Small, racial equality, Stoney Wines, disruptive leaders, Oregon, allyship, Donna Stoney, winemakers, StoneyBrooke Residential Services LLC, quality of life

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