Brand Building, Demo Booth, Service Center

Long time Tokyowheel customer Jeffrey, and I have discussed getting a ‘First Up’ tent with some demo wheels setup for the Austin Driveway series.

We would like to expand Tokyowheel’s presence in the US, and let more people check out our wheels in person. We would also like to support local cyclists, clubs, and events. This seems like a great way to accomplish all those things.

Let’s use this thread to plan and execute this project

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Jeffrey, here is your original idea. I think it’s spot on.

So my idea nothing new but it’d be a booth with a couple of banners that
could be set up at races. The booth would involve a “First Up” canopy, a
table with some flyers/tech specs on your wheels, options and then maybe 3
to 4 sets clinchers and 1 - 2 sets of tubulars. I feel most people want
something tangible when deciding to invest on wheels. Would you be
interested in something like this? I could ask Andrew Willis, the race
promoter for The Driveway Series, for a spot at the D’way and man the booth
when not racing and then there’s CX season which starts soon and runs thru
January. What are your thoughts?

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I’ll be searching for a canopy that can be customized with the Tokyowheel logo and banners. It’ll be great if we can get things together for the last part of this season and the upcoming CX season If not, then I’ll work with James to get something in place for next year.

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Hi Jeffrey,

Thanks for everything. This is great. I want to work with you and make this a reality ASAP. Here is my thought process.

  • Having a local presence just like you described is the next major step forward for Tokyowheel.

  • We’ve been contacted by may people all over the world that are interested in retailing/distributing/working for Tokyowheel. Most of these people are not working in the industry now and want to find a way to get started. This ‘Demo Booth / Local Presence’ would be a great way to get these type of people involved.

  • I see Austin Texas as sort of a first test for something that would be great to do worldwide

Also

  • [Insider Info]. We have a current supply chain issue: We offer a 365 Day return policy. Not very many people take us up on that return policy, but when they do it poses a logistical problem.
  • It’s expensive for Tokyowheel to have customer ship wheels back to our wheel building Factory in China (WE pay about $200 import tax to receive the return wheels, and also shipping fees are high as you would imagine)
  • The wheels are in perfect condition, but used so we can’t resell them.

I will use Austin as the example for my next explanation but I am also imagining this happening in many countries worldwide.

When a customer chooses to return a wheelset (which is a perfectly functioning wheelset), instead of shipping to our Factory, they ship it to the local demo booth (for the purpose of this discussion that would be Jeffrey in Austin). And that wheel is available for demo or perhaps allocation to a rider for sponsorship.

This would allow us to expand the demo booth program in an economically efficient way.

There are some possible concerns about customers abusing the system and returning wheels specifically to send them to the Demo Booth, but I don’t that’s a real issue.

So, in summary this is a great way to accomplish multiple goals.

NEXT
About the booth materials, let me know what costs you find for a ‘first-up’ tent and some ‘flags’. I will compare to what we can do with out awesome asian manufacturing connections and then we’ll go forward from there.

LASTLY

As I mentioned I am in California with my wife and boys now. We are thinking it might be good to come to Austin in October, and get things rolling with the Demo Booth. Race season wise, what’s our best timing to get things going?

Thanks Jeffrey, let’s get this going ASAP!

In Belgium we have many cycling clubs.

We can send out a mailing with info about the brand "Tokyowheel"and its products and that it is new in belgium.
We can test this first locally, of course we can also use the many dutch facebook groups.
We provide a number of test wheels @ the "Tokyowheel servicecenter"or other bikeshop, so people can look an feel in the shop and in some cases make a test drive with the wheels.

A banner with all the colors and models would be useful.

A website(dutch) with all the models and specifications. (where customers can place an online order)
A whole bunch of flyers :slight_smile: to hand out to all kinds of cycling events.
A booth with a couple of banners that could be set up at cycling events.

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I like your ideas and I’ve opened up discussion with James about a booth, banners, flags, etc with Tokyowheel logo and the bullet points of 110% guarantee, the 365 day ride, crash replacement discount, etc. Cyclocross season is just about to start over here in Texas, USA so I’d like to get a booth and see if it helps with the brand. I know that people want something to pick up and hold, spin and feel the bearings, look at the carbon layup for any bubbles, etc so I hope to get a few sets and display but that all depends on Tokyowheel and James’ vision. I just want to help other cyclist who want to step into the carbon wheel arena without spending >$2500 if they don’t need to get a quality wheel.

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I agree with both of you and I think we are planning the same thing, I am going to see how we can combine this discussion (technically on the forum ) and work together on this. I would like to see us do a test in Austin and then immediately implement that in other locations like Belgium.

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People have stopped and asked me about my wheelset and Wanted to know more in depth on where and how I obtained them. We discussed cost, warranty information, reliability and durability, ect. The main issue I have with people is… demonstrating the product to customer’s or fellow riders that are so convinced that big name wheel makers products are better just because they believe that if you want quality, it comes with a high price. (The higher the price, the better the quality) And I try to explain that they aren’t necessarily better or worse, but more built on branding hype and there name. getting them past the hype and telling them that tokyowheel makes a product that’s less than half the price of comparable big name brand wheels and as reliable as the big brands is a tough sale point Without physically having them demo the wheels in person.

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Hi James and Jeffrey, this brand building model would work well in Australia at races/events. Cycling and Triathlon is a huge market and increasingly more social and serious riders are transitioning to carbon wheels, but without much of a marketing presence at events.

We often do this for our club sponsors at our triathlons or open days and I would be interested helping build the brand in this way if it is in line with Tokyowheels plans.

Owain

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So first the easy answers. Racing season for road is winding down. Last big race is State RR Sept 27/28. Cyclocross is soon to begin see complete list here. http://www.txbra.org/events/ Triathlon season is also about done for this region of the USA. Customized canopy such as a ‘First Up’ would run $350-450 depending on size. All prices $US. Generic color with no silk screened signage $150-200. Custom flutter flags $149 with only Tokyowheel screen on it. Vinyl banner with reinforced grommets $60-65 and an A-frame sidewalk (sandwich) sign $66 for the frame and $40 per side for the signage. This does not include shipping since I can source some from local companies. Display for the wheels is not as easy but I’ve got some leads. That’s about it for now. Need to run; more later.

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@attilashelton, I just booked a flight to Austin for October 5th (Will probably stay about 10 days). I will see how the Tent/flags compare through our production network, and we’ll get those ASAP. This is a great step forward and a top priority in my eyes. Thanks for the great support, let’s continue!

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Oct 5th is the 2nd day of a cyclocross race in Austin. I owe you Texas BBQ dinner so hope you like brisket. I will send contact # later. Your family will enjoy staying downtown; Barton Springs (natural spring pool 200 meters long and crystal clear) but chilly water at 20-21°C. If camping the look for Pecan Grove on Barton Springs or Mckinney Falls about 7 km from downtown. Nice museum/ science center for kids downtown. Will be in touch.

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Great, I’ve got our Production Manager working on sourcing tents, flags, banner, and wheel display stands. And we can compare the benefits of creating a first 'protype/ locally in Austin vs. beginning with a more scalable production in Asia. My hopes are that this ‘demo booth’ workflow can be replicated worldwide.

On another topic. I was just emailing with @gorkosua. We have been discussion for many months about getting him involved with Tokyowheel. Actually I’ve been talking with many people, on this topic. Anyway, we were talking about a monetary compensation structure for operating a ‘demo booth’ and basic sales rep style activities. We discussed the folowing, and it seems like a good idea, you feedback is greatly appreciated.

Demo booth operator (or team), Have a tracking link (Perhaps on a customized business card, etc) that offers customers a special bonus or small discount. And when customer makes a purchase through that link, a commission is paid. Seems simple enough.

Although I didn’t discuss it with @gorkosua, I think that there may be an opportunity for these individuals to take on a greater role in Tokyowheel as they demonstrate success, and regular non-commision compensation would be appropriate for additional responsibilities and tasks.

Internally, we would use this information to calculate Return on Investment over time, and this would help us allocate more or less capital to these activities as time goes on.

Feedback please. Thanks!

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Hello, as we discussed previously think it’s a good opportunity, especially as Christmas approaches and I think that is the best chance to ent in the Spanish market because people buy at this time as you point in the calendar. The demo with the gift of a small bonus to new customers at a discount or gift something I think to call a lot of attention and if after the demo runner satisfied surely buy the wheels.
What the economic compensation to commercial I think like everything in life you can talk and negotiate, which in principle can not give back what you could do is reward us with coupon codes or even demo wheels.
Feedback Please. Thanks!

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I like the idea of advertising that has been said here, the truth is that I think has great potential, if each race or test that would attend would open a stand before and see us compete with them would call much attention. One could raise the idea of leaving a bike shop in confidence a game for customers to go to the store the see and ask for them ?.
People buy by brand and more than anything else, the important thing is to look and brand feel and look better than our own bikes Tokyowheell ?.
In Spain he spends a lot lately on carbon wheels, people want good wheels at an affordable price for your pocket, if we could make them see that our brand is good and affordable I think we would have a big market especially as I have discussed with face prior to Christmas.
Many fellow races they are looking for reliable, lightweight and affordable, if we got into this serious market a great success.
What do you think?

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Would be good to maybe have a booth “kit” that could be packed up and shipped around. Maybe I (or anyone) would want to setup a booth at a local triathlon pre-race expo, demo the gear, answer questions, etc.

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Hello James.

I believe that direct sales and internet is the future, but also I think for it to work well and fast, a good job of marketing is needed.
I mean that people no longer have doubts interrnet purchased, but usually looking for a known or a known brand and proven quality product.
If people see and touch the product has no problem buying online.

I think the first thing to do is try to get people not think this brand is like any other Chinese brand of low quality. To do this I think it could start by announcing the brand (officially) in major forums Spain, for it would have to talk to the administrators of the forums but could try. If possible, since these forums I could support in Spanish to any questions via email or phone and also to publicize the brand.

Also, as I said a month ago, the BILBAO INTERNATIONAL BIKE EXHIBITION would be a great opportunity to present and advertise the brand, with a small stand, a small sample of the wheels and wide publicity could do a great job.

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hello,

the idea for a promo kit( tents, flags, banner, and wheel display stands) it’ s great,
it will help very much for a good race stand,
also a canopy and waters bottles can help.
we will work on this.

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Great idea @seanemclean, It would also be great for us to have some ‘kits’ in our warehouse ready for dispatch to anywhere worldwide. This means that size and weight should be considered while we are sourcing the booth materials. P.S. Sean, where are you located?

@Dimitirs__CycleLand, as a retailer, how do you imagine you would get the ‘race stand’. Would you buy it, would Tokyowheel provide it to you free of cost, would it be a performance based bonus?? Your feedback is appreciated!

Also, would you like to have a Tokyowheel ‘Kiosk’ in your store. Maybe something with an iPad integrated for custom ordering. And if you had this Kiosk, with custom ordering iPad, would this change the way your return on investment (ROI) was calculated, and would there be a chance for a different, more benificial, business model.

For example, we provide the Kiosk, customers order from the kiosk, your upfront costs are minimised, and you receive a slightly lower margin on each sale? This might need to become a separate ‘Retail Kiosk’ thread.

@jrenesarberas very good points, thanks for the priceless feedback. I have always thought that local cycling clubs were a huge opportunity to satisfy some of the points you mentioned. Are you part of a local club? If your club was affiliated with Tokyowheel or many riders in your club were using Tokyowheels, would this satisfy the points you mentioned.

As for attending the

This is a great idea, and we should attend these types of events in the near future, but I think we are a few steps away from this now. Certainly getting our demo booth / race stand / trade show booth materials is key.

As for introducing in the forums, I think this is a great thing we can do now. What do you think is necessary to do this? Should I create a thread, or would you like to create a thread. Do you need anything before you would be able to do this. Let me know.

@James_Ferrer

James - Just north of Philadelphia, PA

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