Written in the front: This is also a map of corporate social responsibility: not opening stores around primary and secondary schools is the bottom line of the company; there are important tips in Direct stores and franchise stores: e-cigarettes contain nicotine, and minors are forbidden to buy and use by them; and in the eye-catching position of new product packaging, warning sentences are marked, SNOWPLUS also achieved the first e-cigarettes in China.
A northern man’s “five golden flowers” road
In this autumn, He Wei, a Hohhot businessman, owns 5 franchise stores of SNOWPLUS e-cigarettes. He joked that it was “five golden flowers” – his first store opened less than two months ago, with sales exceeding 80000 yuan and the cost are recovered. “I’ll open five more before the end of this year.” Said the 55 year old northern man.
Before June of this year, He Wei, who had many shop opening experiences, didn’t know about SNOWPLUS. However, the joining conditions of the vape made him excited quickly: including joining in as an individual with a joining fee of 0; enjoying the subsidies of store design and decoration; as well as giving away large gift bags and promotional materials (such as display shelves and disposable vapes), etc. In the second and third tier cities, the total investment to open a shop only needs about 50000 yuan, which is a typical “small and delicate”.
The preparation time for his opening was reduced to 15 days. “I have been in contact with the Internet bar and billiards hall before. Apart from the fact that it often costs 23 million yuan, I can only see the benefits in 1-2 years. The battle line is too long.” He Wei said. Especially in the environment of cash dominated in 2019, it is easy to have difficulties in capital turnover.
“SNOWPLUS also provides us with professional operational training.” A franchisee from the Yangtze River Delta said. Within SNOWPLUS, such training is planned for the upcoming business school courses. This course includes inviting franchisees to the Beijing headquarters and Shenzhen supply chain, so that they can go deep into the vast market of e-cigarettes and the “big factory sense” of SNOWPLUS, for example, the laboratory with SNOWPLUS is more than 4000 square meters and it is established according to CNAS standards, which will be put into use next year.
“We regard each franchisee as our commercial ambassador and image ambassador, and they will play an important role in e-cigarette market education for us.” Wang Ying, head of SNOWPLUS business school, said.
In addition to He Wei, SNOWPLUS has benefited from many stores. For example, a shop located in Jinqiao, Shanghai, has a pre investment cost of less than 100000 yuan, and the franchise fee of SNOWPLUS has been zero, which subsidizes most of the decoration fees, and provides a large number of materials and publicity support. Three months later, the store has a total sales of 200000 yuan, and its monthly average profit can reach about 40%.
New favorite of dealer owners, offline super new products
In early June, the first franchise store in East China opened in Wuhan; at the end of June, the first franchise store in Northeast China opened in Dalian; in mid July, the first franchise stores in Southwest China and North China opened in Chengdu and Shijiazhuang respectively According to the operation data of SNOWPLUS, 85% of all franchised stores of SNOWPLUS have returned to their stores within three months. Now most e-cigarette investment returns in the period of 4-6 months. Because of this, since May 2019, nearly 1000 stores of SNOWPLUS have been located in more than 40 core cities in China.
For SNOWPLUS, the black horse in the electronic cigarette industry, He Wei has another identity – one of nearly 300 distributors. Different from the mode of opening franchise stores, these dealers take goods from SNOWPLUS, and then, with the help of SNOWPLUS sales team, lay them into various existing offline channels, such as chain convenience stores, husband and wife stores, etc., which can be seen everywhere. They even replace the location of condoms on the cash rich counter.
“Our job is to help dealers lay out stores and promote products.” Su Xiaowen, city manager of SNOWPLUS, a city in Jiangsu Province. He and his team will carry 20 or 30 kg of goods and visit at least 30 stores every day. In some stores with poor sales, they will sell together with the owner and then feed back the collected information to the dealer. The post-90s entrepreneur often uses “entrepreneurship is not a family, but a long march of 25000 km” to motivate his team. SNOWPLUS is also completing a major strategic upgrade recently: further strengthening the sales and service work in several core cities including Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong.
Distribution and franchising, one light and one heavy – a large number of purchase and wide channels for dealers; franchisees are dedicated to each individual store, equivalent to “monopoly”. It is an important reason for the rapid growth of sales volume of SNOWPLUS to grasp both hands and be hard.
“High quality distributors are, in a sense, our core business partners.” “Unlike our friends, we don’t adopt the so-called provincial or even national model, and we open valuable business opportunities to willing and powerful dealers,” said a sales director of SNOWPLUS. They are distributed in more than 180 large and medium-sized cities. Together with SNOWPLUS, they cultivate the category of e-cigarettes. ”
“It’s like a left-hand jab, plus a right-hand punch, and a combination.” A dealer from the Yangtze River Delta said. Like He Wei, he works as a distributor and franchiser.
“Since 2018, more and more players have entered the e-cigarette circuit. Almost every month, a dozen new products have been born, and the blue sea is becoming the Red Sea.” “At present, the threshold of electronic cigarette products is not high, so the channel end determines the market share,” said a person from the electronic cigarette industry committee of China Electronic Chamber of Commerce
This person thinks: the fierce action of SNOWPLUS offline comes from a new idea — to define e-cigarettes as fast-consumering products. The so-called fast consumption refers to those things with shorter service life and faster consumption speed. In its operation mode, it pays attention to the influence of packaging, branding and popularization. As a substitute product, the charm of e-cigarettes lies in that it can cover more channels than any traditional consumer goods. In addition to traditional grocery stores, tobacco and wine shops and convenience stores, bars, restaurants, cafes, hotels, sports color centers and even gyms are all channels that can generate good sales. In August 2019, star Zheng Kai sent out a micro blog for E-Coffee, a nicotine free product produced by SNOWPLUS. The background shows the gym. But before that, some head brands even gave this kind of cigarette replacing “business model”.
“We took the lead in opening the CVS channel and TT channel of traditional FMCG products – entering the head chain stores and convenience stores, such as Sinopec’s Yijie, PetroChina’s Kunlun hospitality, domestic meiikea, foreign-funded Rosen, etc.” Liu Chaohua, offline sales director of SNOWPLUS, said. By the end of 2018, the total number of CVS stores in China is 120000, which is from China Chain Operation Association (CCFA).
“There are also some interesting special scenes, such as gas stations. Many drivers light a cigarette to relax their nerves when they are tired and rest, but fireworks are strictly prohibited here. As a result, there is a new use scenario for atomized electronic cigarettes such as SNOWPLUS. The speed of SNOWPLUS entering the gas station is very fast. It has covered North China in two months and spread to Shandong Province. We have the exclusive right to sell pod in gas stations. ” He added.
Liu Chaohua, 44, who has 22 years of experience in FMCG, previously served as the vice president of Wrigley candy (China) sales and led an executive team of more than 10000 people, directly covering 1.3 million retail terminal stores in more than 200 cities across the country.
Similar to Liu Chaohua’s background, most of SNOWPLUS’s off-line sales leaders are senior people from such fast-moving giants as Heineken, Budweiser InBev, Mars Wrigley, jiaduobao and Unilever, who have directly brought successful experience. “This is a strategic issue. We didn’t give priority to the strong channels of e-cigarettes, such as fighting with friends and businessmen online for the stock, but chose a broader channel of fast-moving consumer goods to boost the increase and let more people know the bullet changing e-cigarettes. ” Liu Shuo, head of brand channel sales and mobile sales of SNOWPLUS, said.
In July of this year, Liu Shuo joined the SNOWPLUS team and was responsible for channel sales and sales operation. Before that, he was a “beer expert” – once engaged in national channel marketing and sales operation management in Budweiser, Heineken and other companies. He joked that he had been on the road of “research”. “For the sunrise industry of e-cigarettes, we always keep a learning attitude and embrace market changes and new trends. In order to develop new channels, we are also constantly developing products suitable for this channel and adjusting the corresponding prices. ” Liu added.
Now, with the exception of Tibet and Taiwan, SNOWPLUS covers all provincial administrative regions in China, with more than 180 cities. In some remote areas, such as Shihezi, Xinjiang, there are also offline stores of SNOWPLUS. Data from third parties show that at present, the total number of offline stores of the brand is no less than 100000.
Fast product iteration to meet store demand
And the new product “NEON” launched by SNOWPLUS in August this year has become the favorite of night watchers because it can emit beautiful fluorescence in the dark. This is known by the industry as another classic case of developing new products based on sales scenarios.
On October 27, 2019, in the territory of China, e-cigarette SNOWPLUS once again made a mark of its own – Wanda Plaza in Harbin, Heilongjiang Province, located in the center of the city, an offline direct store opened.
“This is another small step for SNOWPLUS.” Liu Nian, the head of the store, said, “we will one day open the store to Mohe based on the capital city.”
Compared with the lightest fast-moving and heavier franchising, direct marketing is the heaviest. In addition to selling products, this kind of store directly belonging to the company also plays the role of image display. For example, in the direct store under the headquarters of Beijing International Trade – SNOWPLUS, the salesmen will not only promote the products, but also spread the entrepreneurial story of SNOWPLUS and the culture of e-cigarettes. The white Hoodie printed with snoowpluslogo has become a beautiful scenery among the people in a hurry.
Just opened Harbin direct store, posted a striking reminder: electronic cigarettes contain nicotine, minors are forbidden to buy and use. “We specially designed this prompt in black and white – it’s a warning to distinguish other colorful advertisements.” Liu Chaohua said.
In addition, it is also the bottom line of SNOWPLUS not to open stores around primary and secondary schools, and it is also the first one in China’s e-cigarette industry to mark warning statements in the striking position of product packaging.
“This is true corporate social responsibility. We hope that with the expansion of SNOWPLUS map in the country, the protection of minors will be infiltrated into every corner. ” Liu Chaohua said.