You’ve done the research and you know the top selling MicroMarket products. Your market is expertly merchandised, and you’ve run some awesome promotions, but you notice that engagement is declining. What do you do? The answer could be your product mix. Variety is the spice of life, right? Infuse new life into your market by introducing new products.
Here are a few tips and tricks to successfully introduce new flavors and revitalize your sales.
1. Say it Loud
Send an email to your customers letting them know that there’s something new. Utilize signage (including digital) to highlight the new offering.
2. Hold a Tasting
Retailers such as Costco give out free samples not only as way to enhance the customer’s experience, but to drive sales. According to a study in the Atlantic, “[free] samples have boosted sales by as much as 2,000 percent.” Holding a tasting is a great way to encourage your customers to try the new product in a risk-free way and encourage them to purchase it in the future. Furthermore, a tasting gives operators an opportunity to immediately gauge customer reaction to the new product.
3. Select Product By Season
• Try introducing new products seasonally, like a new ice cream flavor in the summer or pumpkin spice in the fall.
• Offer products that are hard to find. Talk to your supplier about the availability of limited edition flavors.
• Introduce new, local flavors.
4. Optimize Product Location
Place new items at eye level so that it is the first thing your customers will see or near the kiosk so that they’ll see it as they check out and make an impulse purchase. Just as in real estate, location is key!
5. Review Your Data
The best way to truly know how a new product is doing is to review your data. Crunch the numbers to see if the new product is moving, if it may perform better in a different location, or if it needs to be scrapped altogether. Reviewing your inventory weekly will help you to make informed decisions in your market.
The frequency in which new products should be introduced varies from operator to operator with some saying twice per week to twice per month. You have to try what works best for your operations and your locations. However, a regular cadence of new products to try is a must to keep your market from going stale and your customers excited about your market.
Take a look at the #1 selling product in each food/beverage category for 2016
Promotions are one of the most useful features about micro markets. They keep a market location exciting and encourage additional purchases. Devin Smith, the director of product and brand development for All Star Services in Port Huron, MI has experienced their benefit first hand…continue reading!
365 Retail Markets to host user group conference, prior to NAMA OneShow.
Troy, MI—February 9, 2017—365 Retail Markets is pleased to announce that the 3rd annual MEET User Group Conference is officially coming to Las Vegas, Nevada on Tuesday, April 18th at The Venetian.
MEET is designed to Motivate, Educate, Entertain and Train current and future 365 customers to operate more efficient and profitable MicroMarkets using 365’s award winning technology. Following the education and training sessions, attendees will also get an exclusive first look at the latest products to launch from 365.
“As the 365 product ecosystem and global presence continues to expand, so does the need of our customers to learn and share. We are thankful to our sponsors for their support. Without them we would not be able to bring together great speakers from the industry.” said Joe Hessling, 365 Retail Markets CEO.
Participants will meet and learn from industry experts on technology, promotions, inventory management and unique selling practices. They will also have the opportunity to participate in panel-led discussions, as well as network with industry peers. The comprehensive education and training sessions have been designed to appeal to owners and operators, office administrators, MicroMarket managers, and technicians.
“We are thrilled to tie this to the NAMA OneShow again this year, as it is the premier event in our industry.” said Hessling
Admission into MEET is free for current 365 Retail Market customers ($365 for non-customers). Participants are responsible for their own airfare and hotel.
About 365 Retail Markets
365 Retail Markets, a rapidly growing, self-checkout technology company with offices in Metro Detroit, Santa Clara, and Orem offers the best-in-class point of sale platform for use in the workplace. Its proprietary 365 MicroMarket is a turnkey, unmanned market that allows customers to increase sales, improve the customer experience, and increase profits while decreasing operating costs. 365 Retail Markets has been pioneering innovation in the foodservice, hospitality and vending industries since 2008, and continues to revolutionize the market with superior technology and ultimate flexibility in customization and branding. 365 has won many awards for their innovation and growth, including recent inclusion in the Inc. 5000 List Of Fastest-Growing Private Companies In The US for the second year in a row.
Since hitting the marketplace in 2012, MicroMarket adoption and revenue have increased steadily with no signs of slowing down. The open market, fresh food offerings, and convenient technology have taken MicroMarkets from a costly investment to a sound, money-making venture and necessity for Operators looking towards the future. Your MicroMarket provider can help guide you towards selecting the best locations to open your new markets. However, we’ve compiled a short list of priority items to cover before you sign a contract with a host location.
1. Check state regulations
You’ll want to be aware of any licensing requirements and tax implications. Talk to the state vending associations. To date, the Food and Drug Administration has not created a defined classification for MicroMarkets and regulations vary from state to state. NAMA is an excellent resource to tap into when navigating the terrain. Be prepared to discuss:
Local health codes and if health permits or food handling cards are required.
Food quality control, including temp sensors, disposal of expired foods and staff training.
2. Scope out the competition
Visit the local Chamber of Commerce’s website to find out what other food options are available in the area. A location that is in close proximity to fast food restaurants and convenience stores may yield lower sales than a location that is more isolated.
3. Scour the terrain
MicroMarkets may not be the best fit for every location. Sit down with the host location and go over the checklist:
Employee size – For a full-size MicroMarket, the location should have 150 or more employees. Any less and you’d want to consider stocking more snacks and less fresh foods to avoid spoilage or putting in a nanomarket™ instead.
Break times – MicroMarkets are more attractive in blue-collar environments. The shortened break intervals, i.e. 2-15 minute breaks and a 30-minute break will encourage employees to stay on campus instead of venturing out for food.
Physical space – Does the location have a suitable breakroom space? Contacting a company that specializes in MicroMarket fixtures such as Fixturelite for consultation would be a good idea.
MicroMarkets are definitely an investment with the potential for a high return. However, it is important not to enter into this market without a plan. By doing your due diligence, you can avoid pitfalls and deliver a superior product to your customers.
Stuck with a small space? Watch this video for pointers on making the most of it!
Grand openings are an important part of the micro market process for Portland, OR-based Royal Vending. The company works with locations in advance to begin to build anticipation through signage and opening-day incentives. In doing so, Royal Vending sees 90 percent account usage around the micro market grand openings…continue reading!
According to Automatic Merchandiser’s 2016 State of the Coffee Service Industry, the industry has grown 4.5% to bring in $4.96 billion dollars. It is apparent that coffee fuels the workplace. Operators have many tools at their disposal to deliver a quality coffee service to their customers including bean-to-cup, single-serve cups and coffee vending. But what if you could offer your customers the perfect bite-sized caffeine boost that is a low calorie, quick, easy alternative to the standard cup of Joe?
The Micro Caffeine Movement is the consumption of small frequent doses of caffeine for improved energy and mental performance when compared to the average cup of coffee. Researchers suggest consuming between 20-200 mg of caffeine an hour for optimal results; the average cup of coffee 100-150 mg of caffeine. Research suggests that by ingesting smaller doses, you’ll get the full benefit of the caffeine in your system.
il Morso is taking the trend of micro-caffeine to new levels with their Edible Espresso. The squares are packed with 16-18 mg of caffeine – equivalent to a shot of espresso to il Morso. There are two recipes available for MicroMarkets: Americano and Coffee & Cream. These indulgent squares are made with only 3-5 ingredients per recipe and have only one gram of sugar and 15-25 calories per square. It’s a healthier alternative for your coffee-loving customers who may be a little heavy-handed with the cream and sugar. In addition, il Morso uses 100% organic and fair trade ingredients.
“It’s perfect for those times when you’re craving coffee, but you don’t want a full cup or you don’t have time to stop,” said il Morso’s CEO, Jason Berton, “This is your shortcut.”
Based in San Francisco, California, il Morso expanded its distribution channels to include MicroMarkets in September of last year and are currently found in 220 MicroMarket locations across the country.
Why does il Morso work so well in MicroMarkets?
As a low-calorie food, they can be incorporated into company health initiatives
They’ll appeal to everyone from Baby Boomers to Millennials who desire environmentally-conscious foods
And they nullify the coffee run by keeping employees on campus. At 99 cents a square, they are a quick shot of espresso, not a 30-minute coffee break.
“A lot of people keep them at their desk as an afternoon ritual after lunch,” says Byron Sierra-Mattos Director of Sales at il Morso.
5 Ways MicroMarkets Serve the Millennial-driven Workplace
According to Deloitte University Press, Millennials “have recently inched past the other generations to corner the largest share of the US labor market.” For the first time in history, individuals who grew up in the digital age are bringing in new ideas and making demands on the type of work environment they thrive in. They are also the generation most likely to switch companies in 2-5 years (Deloitte, 2016), leading organizations to adopt new methods of attracting Millennials and keeping them engaged. MicroMarkets add to a company’s ability to retain Millennials because of their advanced technology, unique breakroom experience, and ability to offer diverse products. Here are 5 ways that MicroMarkets can appeal to the new generation of workers:
Strong Company Culture
Millennials are not easily “impressed by the sheer scale of a business, its age, or the general buzz that surrounds it (Deloitte, 2016).” Therefore, companies striving to attract and retain Millennials should invest in tools that will foster a strong culture, including organization transparency, technology, and food. MicroMarkets offer quality products, open layouts, multiple payment options (including fingerprint and payroll deduct), and employee discounts.
Having a MicroMarket is a great way to show millennial employees that their employer is not only interested in work output, but their nutritional input. According to Forbes, for Millennials, “a job is no longer just a job ― it’s their life as well.” To attract and retain this type of worker, companies need to demonstrate mutual investment in their lives by offering ways to maintain the lifestyle they envision for themselves while working hard for the organization. That includes diverse product offerings, dietary foods, and the ability to make choices based on nutritional information.
Open, Collaborative Space
MicroMarkets lend themselves well to modern spaces. The open flow of the market combined with comfortable seating, such as couches or booths, gives the millennial worker a place other than the boardroom to interact and collaborate with coworkers. MicroMarkets are the new water cooler.
Healthy Food Options
Nearly 80% of Millennials say that they are using healthy foods as a preventative measure for illness and disease (USA Today, 2015). MicroMarkets can help employers capitalize on this growing trend towards healthier lifestyles by stocking nutritional foods, including gluten-free and protein-rich options. Items such as Jack Link’s beef jerky and Wonderful pistachios are simple offerings to start with. Believe it or not, many common vending products serve this purpose, if you know what to look for. KIND Bars, Sargento cheese sticks, and Orville Redenbacher popcorn are some healthier gluten-free snacks. (But be careful, as gluten-free products can vary by brand!) MicroMarkets also enable the availability of fresh fruits, vegetables, yogurt, salads, and other prepared foods. These products can be leveraged to tie the breakroom experience into a company’s overall wellness initiatives.
Local, Sustainable Products
MicroMarkets enable stocking of locally sourced products, thus protecting the environment and supporting the local economy. According to a 2015 Nielsen study, 66% of Millennials say they’re willing to pay more for products and services that come from companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact. Millennials want to feel good about the products they’re purchasing and their impact on the world. Providing local products enhances positive experiences and loyalty with MicroMarkets.
Looking for away to refresh your breakroom and enhance your company’s culture? Watch this video and see how 365 Retail Markets and Fixturelite can help.
Five Star Food Service never settles. The Chattanooga, TN-based company, a leader in micro market installations, has not only placed more than 500 micro market locations, but is also expanding the concept to be more inclusive of today’s changing workplace. The company recently launched a new micro market concept, dubbed the “Micro Market Lounge”…continue reading.
Troy, MI – January 5, 2017 – 365 Retail Markets is pleased to announce the recent appointment of John Chidiac to President of 365 International.
As President, John is responsible for continuing the expansion of the best-in-class Vending, MicroMarket and Foodservice technologies across the globe. He and his team will work on developing new markets and grow the self-service technology business outside the United States.
“As our long time COO, John has learned the MicroMarket business inside and out, combine that with his international experience and we are confident our customers will receive the highest level of support and exposure to the latest self-service technology innovations worldwide, as was done successfully in the United States,” said Joseph Hessling, CEO of 365 Retail Markets. “John has the skills and relationships across the globe to drive our aggressive international growth strategy.”
John has over 20 years of experience with leading global technology companies with leadership experience in sales, business development and operations. Prior to joining 365 Retail Markets in July of 2014 as Chief Operating Officer and Member of the Board of Directors, John held multiple executive positions in the US, Europe and the Middle East with technology, telecom and investment companies.
“I am honored to take on this new challenge and expand on the tremendous success of 365. With current operations in Canada, the UK and Italy, I look forward to further growth worldwide,” concluded Chidiac. “Having a team of talented experts, a history of excellent customer support and a great brand will make this strategic expansion much easier.”
About 365 Retail Markets
365 Retail Markets, a rapidly growing self-service technology company with offices in Metro Detroit, Santa Clara, and Provo, creates technology that connects people with products at work. Our proprietary 365 technology provides a turnkey platform that allows customers to increase sales, improve the customer experience, and increase profits, while reducing operating costs!
Consumer demand for healthy, fresh food is not a trend set to die out anytime soon. In fact, according to a 2014 Technomic study, “health is an important snack selection factor for half (50%) of adults. ” We spoke to Lifestyle Foods and Southern Refreshment Services to get the skinny on why fresh food is essential to your MicroMarket business.
“In the fast-paced business world, everyone is looking for fast, healthy, but still tasty options for lunch. Fresh food has become a must.” says Chris Hart, Director of MicroMarkets for Southern Refreshment Services, an award-winning vending and MicroMarket operator. “By having the MicroMarket, it opens up a whole new world of more options available to your business than ever before, with just vending machines alone.”
Operators are actively seeking out reputable health food companies, such as Lifestyle Foods, to provide premium options to MicroMarket consumers. Lifestyle Foods makes a wide range of pre-packaged healthy snacks and meals using “clean” ingredients to keep their foods free of preservatives, and abundant with nutrition and taste.
“Consumers are becoming more knowledgeable and are looking for something fresh, healthy, and unprocessed,” says Adam Deardorff of Lifestyle Foods.
Still not convinced? Here are five more reasons why fresh food is essential to growing your MicroMarket business.
Give your customers what they want! According to Technomic, 78% of consumers are making a strong effort to eat more fresh options instead of processed foods.
Support your locations’ health and wellness initiatives. With fresh options, companies can offer incentives to their employees when they purchase healthier foods.
Diversify your product offerings. Lifestyle Foods has noticed an increased interest in fresh “Lean Cuisine-like” meals.
Fresh foods account for up to 15-20% of operator sales. Southern Refreshment reveals that offering lunch and breakfast options (such as sandwiches, salads, and breakfast burritos), can increase sales by keeping employees in the office, buying more of your products instead of visiting outside restaurants and cafes.
Appeal to consumers with diet restrictions. “There is a high demand for vegetarian and vegan selections that we can now easily accommodate as well,” says Hart.
You’ve probably heard that consumers are moving towards ‘fresh’ food. Indeed, 2015 data from Nielsen revealed that U.S. fresh food sales increased 5 percent during the past four years, along with consumer buzz and interest in eating and living well…continue reading.
Innovation: Brent Mouritsen for being open minded, predicting events and being adventurous in code, food and life.
Collaboration: Paul Mergelhas a done a great job of leading numerous projects all while collaborating with many teams. He already has an extensive knowledge of the 365 product line and is always willing to help where he can.
Accountability: Garrett Faughtdeserves the A mug. You can always count on him to get his work done, even if it means staying late or coming in early.
Service:Tony Ranellagoes out of his way to keep the RMA process moving along in production; any time we ask for help, he makes us a priority and works with me to implement changes so that it’s not a problem in the future. He goes above and beyond what is asked of him every time. Thanks so much Tony!
Happiness:Kristina Delgado deserves the Happiness mug, because despite some stressful life stuff going on is always smiling and making the best of everything. It’s always a pleasure to chat with her!
From left to right: Andrew Burland, Arron Roscoe, Adam Maier, Vanessa Podlaskowski and Mary Schuster
From left to right: Dennis Yee, Tim Converse, Stephen Rutkowski and Courtney Redman
365 Retail Markets CEO, Joe Hessling will be speaking at the European Vending Experience (EVEX) 2016 show, held on November 24 & 25 in Cannes, France.
In collaboration with the French Vending Association (NAVSA), the European Vending Association (EVA) has organized information sessions, Q&A panels, vendor exhibits, and an awards dinner with forward-thinking topics focused on boosting business success, technology, and innovation.
EVEX is a unique annual event for all sectors of the vending and office coffee service (OCS) industry, and incorporates the EVA AGM and Conference. Its diverse topics are designed to be insightful and relevant, with practical business knowledge shared among event attendees. EVEX also usefully combines a mini exhibition directly targeted to industry experts.
Join the excitement to see Joe discuss MicroMarkets: A Successful Business Concept on November 24.