China Food

Tang Binsen’s consumption philosophy

 

唐本人成熟的认知与方法论,是元气森林崛起的核心原因。

 


Tang Binsen is an enterpriser.

After selling his self-made game company, Tang Bingsen went through a short period of adjustment and exploration, and then founded Yuanqi forest in 2016. Although the cross-border range is very large, Yuanqi forest still retains Tang Binsen’s thinking and action consistency in the fields of track, brand, product, R & D and marketing.

From the results, compared with the new Internet consumer brands, Yuanqi forest has rich practical experience and omni channel solutions in “from 1 to 100” and low-cost growth of users, and is especially better than the system building, marketing planning and forward-looking layout of offline scenes; Compared with the traditional consumer goods companies in the process of digital transformation and suffering from pains, Yuanqi forest has Internet and technology genes. Since its establishment, it has been standing at the height of digital original enterprise, with user value as the core, and is committed to building a deep collection and feedback mechanism of business flow and information flow, so as to continuously improve the efficiency of data processing and the ability of auxiliary operation.

As a result, Yuanqi forest has become the focus of discussion on both the consumer side and the capital side, and its annual sales and valuation have also achieved a rapid growth of several times. As of April 2021, the value of Yuanqi forest, which has been established for five years, has reached 6 billion US dollars (about 39 billion yuan). Compared with Nongfu Shanquan, Kang Shifu and uni president, the value of Yuanqi forest is about 10%, 60% and 1.1 times of their market value respectively.

In the communication with investors, investees, current employees and former employees of Yuanqi forest, and in the carding of public speeches, we can see Tang Binsen’s various methodologies in the consumer industry, and try to restore them by categories. The significance of this paper is not to judge the popularity and gain and loss of Yuanqi forest, but to explore the new ideas and new features brought by excellent representatives of cross industry into the field of consumer goods based on Yuanqi forest, in order to have reference and inspiration.

Although “game tycoon turns to consumer goods” is Tang Binsen’s most famous label, Yuanqi forest is at least his fifth entrepreneurial project that can be named.

Since starting his business in the basement of Beihang in 2005, Tang Binsen has been involved in psychological testing, games, overseas distribution platform of games, navigation website, anti-virus software, food and beverage, etc. Food and drink is indeed the one that seems to be the least Internet like, but it is precisely because Internet thinking has been brought into food and drink that today’s vitality forest has come into being.

If we start from the beginning, Beihang is not a school with a strong entrepreneurial atmosphere, even slightly rigid because of its habitual strictness. The name of Beihang’s basement in the business circle is obviously not as loud as that of Huaqing Jiayuan, Wudaokou, 3 kilometers away. The source of Tang Binsen’s entrepreneurship was planted by his grandfather who grew up with him earlier. Today, the old man’s education is also an absolute senior intellectual. In his early years, he did cement business, but later he entered the office. It is said that he often quarreled with the leaders. It is also said that Tang Binsen also quarreled with his teacher when he was defending his graduation.

In his senior year, Tang Binsen took part in an international program development competition. After winning the championship, his 250000 bonus became the first pot of gold for entrepreneurship. Although I have been influenced by the business since I was a child, the early project psychological testing website and e-commerce software have not contained much business insight. They are more like the “feelings” and “ideals” of teenagers.

After graduating from graduate school, Tang Binsen’s team began to bear the pressure of survival. The game, which took two weeks to develop as an outsource, brought benefits that had not been achieved in the past three years. This incident has also completely changed Tang Binsen’s life since then. Don’t use tactical diligence to cover up his strategic laziness. It has become his first creed to go to the competitive Red Sea Road.

The game is a profiteering industry, but also a jungle world that only the strong can survive. In particular, Tang Binsen’s business of going out to sea is not only to make a decisive decision in long-distance operations, but also to guard against open guns and hidden arrows at all times. Coming out of such a high-pressure and high-intensity environment, Tang Binsen becomes more and more old-fashioned and brave. He is a big brother to the team, and ruthless to his opponents. Even today, we can still see this “sense of barbarism” in him. The company founded by Yuanqi forest’s former employees is usually suppressed by him.

In the process of entrepreneurship, Tang Binsen is constantly enriching himself and absorbing new nutrients. As he later said in his speech, “speed 1 means that you take your life to pay tuition, and speed n means that you take other people’s tuition to teach yourself.” that’s how Tang Bingsen grew up with speed n. He has read a lot of books, loves all kinds of biographies of entrepreneurs who have founded ten billion dollar enterprises, and has a good knowledge of some theories of Warren Buffett, Ren Zhengfei and Lei Jun.

He summed up these experiences as “happy companies are always similar, while unfortunate companies have their own misfortunes.”. The so-called similarity lies not in the external form but in the internal essence. “Signal and noise” also tells him that the amount of information increases at the rate of 250 megabytes per day, but most of the information is just noise. The amount of objective facts is a relative constant, just as there are few laws in the world that are really worth summarizing.

Therefore, looking at the essence through the phenomenon and maintaining the respect and application of the consistency and continuity of the basic laws become the underlying logic of Tang Binsen’s future standing on such a high level. After the game, Tang Bingsen expanded many fields horizontally, and continued to summarize and self correct in the process. When the self-developed game “the dispute between kings” was launched, his cognition and methodology were very mature.

These mature experiences are soon brought to the vitality forest. As an outsider in the food and beverage industry, Tang Bingsen adheres to the profound insight and utilization of human nature of gamers, and has opened up a brand new battlefield represented by “0 sugar, 0 fat, 0 card”. His emphasis on data capability, and the implementation of rapid R & D and rapid testing also make the industry new. At the same time, he is not a subversive person. The game is a traditional industry in the Internet industry, and Tang Bingsen does not have the moral cleanliness of high-end Internet people. He still attaches great importance to and respects offline marketing and the dealer system.

Such a founder, who has made a lot of money and is full of personal charm, with the huge amount of money he has accumulated before, has quickly gathered a group of powerful generals around him through the combination of vitality forest and Challenger capital, and now he is marching towards the road of consumer goods empire.

But we still need to realize that even if we know a lot of truth, the process of progress is still full of hardships. 2018 is the key year for Yuanqi forest to improve from unknown to the beginning. At the annual meeting that year, Tang Binsen shed tears on the spot; Although 0 sugar 0 fat 0 card firmly occupy the minds of consumers, but also face many disputes, the company has been forced to explain and apologize for many times.

In 2021, there will be more players in the bubble water market, including some traditional giants like coca cola and Nongfu Shanquan. Whether 95% of Yuanqi forest’s so-called new products that have not yet been launched can continue to ignite the market remains to be tested by consumers.

Red Sea: Baijiu first, beverage second

In June 2014, Tang Binsen’s game company zhimingxing Tong was acquired by A-share listed company Chinese media, and in April 2016, Yuanqi forest was officially established, which is Tang Binsen’s re entrepreneurship exploration period.

Tang Bingsen didn’t plan to sell zhimingtong at first. Even small overseas game companies like Zynga, which are on the same battlefield with him, can be listed independently and have a valuation of several billion US dollars. Tang Binsen also wants to bring smart star to a shares. However, from 2012 to 2014, due to the split share structure reform, a shares experienced the longest 15 month IPO suspension period in history.

On the one hand, the list of companies queuing up for listing is getting longer and longer, and there is no hope for the resumption of IPO and independent listing. On the other hand, there are a lot of takeover offers from major companies, and the takeover price has been raised from US $100 million and US $200 million to nearly US $400 million. Tang Bingsen inevitably began to waver.

Later, Chinese media acquired zhimingxing Tong with a total consideration of 2.66 billion yuan and a 28 times Acquisition Premium. Tang Binsen’s personal book income (including cash and shares) reached 787 million yuan. However, the former senior management team of smart star Tong, represented by Tang Binsen, carried two gambling agreements including three-year performance, and renewed the four-year cooperation plan after the completion of gambling, until June 2020.

 
The term of the prohibition agreement does not expire until two years after leaving the company. The scope of prohibition is the same, similar or competitive business with smart star and its subsidiaries. The diversified development in the past has become an obstacle to the future choice, which also means that Tang Binsen can only enter a new field.

The good news is that with the launch of zhimingxingtong’s self-developed game “the dispute between the kings” in 2015 as the time node, Tang Binsen believes that his previous experience has been fully summed up and he has not made the previous mistakes again. Facts have also proved that “the dispute between the kings” became the most popular game in the history of internationalization of Chinese games at that time, and helped zhimingtong successfully complete the gambling agreement.

These experiences are naturally applied to the exploration of the new direction of entrepreneurship at this time. First of all, in the choice of the track, Tang Binsen has a major premise to go to the Red Sea track, which has been proven business model and full competition. In other words, success probability = industry probability × Team probability, team ability is strong, in the poor industry, still can’t succeed.

The reason why red sea has become red sea and blue sea is still blue sea is that red sea probably corresponds to a good industry with large market space. Even if there are many players involved, it is still profitable. The game is already an extremely fierce Red Sea. When making anti-virus software, Tang Binsen can break through the fierce competition with 360 and Baidu, and then go to the next red sea. Tang Binsen also has the confidence and pride.

Second, the best profit model is the “casino model” company. Do not participate in gambling, but earn the benefits of mathematical probability and service charge. In the competition with overseas game companies, Tang Bingsen realized that “the essence of the game is to manage human nature”. The reason why the Chinese team does well is that it can mobilize the hatred, show off and competition in human nature.

Under this logic, securities companies are also “casino mode” companies. After Tang Bingsen decided to sell zhimingxing Tong, the first company to pay more attention to care and cultivation is tiger securities. As its angel investor, Tang Binsen moved tiger securities’ team into the Zhizhen building of Beihang, right next to zhimingxing Tong’s office, until they moved out due to team expansion and increased staff. At least until December 2015, Tang Bingsen still insisted on meeting at Tiger securities once a week. The next company with such treatment is already Yuanqi forest.

After Tang Bingsen, tiger securities soon obtained the personal investment of Wang Xing, founder of meituan, and the 100 million yuan financing of Xiaomi group, and finally listed on the US stock market in March 2019, with a current market value of nearly 3 billion US dollars.

Consumer goods are also an area that Tang Binsen is optimistic about. China’s dividends in the past 20 years are all related to “infrastructure”, such as the world’s longest highway and railway, 4G / 5G communication network and China’s supply chain, which has become the world’s factory. Tiktok, Taobao, Jingdong and many other channels have developed. Micro-blog, Xiao Hong, Kwai, and jitter have developed. The next 20 years will be the opportunity for the development of new brands and new consumer goods.

There are still many kinds of consumer goods. The consumer goods Tang Binsen wants to make must also be the consumer goods that can mobilize human nature and human emotion. Luxury goods naturally meet the requirements. After all, with the addition of brand logo, the price of luxury goods will increase by hundreds of times. At the same time, Tang Binsen, a value investor in a shares, said: “Maotai is the only luxury in China.”. Baijiu is the most promising consumer goods industry in Tang bin.

In November 2015, Tang Binsen invested in the new Baijiu brand of Jiangsu, which was founded by Chen Zhenyu, the fifth generation of Chen’s wine shop. He has repeatedly increased his code since then. Now his company has controlled 51% of the stock of Guan Yun. According to Chen Zhenyu’s statement to the media, when meeting with Tang Binsen, the first page of PPT was the market scale of the Baijiu industry. Tang Binsen said directly, “this skip over it, I studied it.” Turning to the third page and talking about the products, Tang Bingsen has decided to invest 5 million yuan and shake hands with him immediately.

In Tang Binsen’s judgment of the subdivision industry, including Baijiu, the profit margin is high, but more importantly, whether it can grow at low cost. The marginal cost of the game industry tends to zero. One user earns 1 yuan, and the theoretical space of 100 million users is 100 million income; But it’s hard for the retail industry to achieve this. If a pancake fruit shop can make 10000 yuan a year, no one will say that it will make 100 million yuan if it opens 10000.

Under this framework, Baijiu is the first and beverage second. Most of these two drinks do not need to be stuck in the mire of the shop. The longer the Baijiu is, the more valuable it is. There is no need to worry about the inventory problem. The dealer will deliver the goods out, which means that the whole business has completed a round of growth. The data also shows that all the companies of FMCG in China together account for 60% of the profits of the whole industry. Coca Cola, a giant in the beverage industry, has a market value of 100 billion US dollars.

Since it’s a good track, if others can’t do it well, they will do it by themselves. After watching the Baijiu, Tang Binsen invested in a beverage company. But the company was quickly abandoned. Tang Binsen personally went to the mountains and registered in April 2016.

products: positioning, benchmarking, micro innovation

After the track, determining the brand and product direction has become the primary task. In this regard, Tang Binsen is a loyal supporter of positioning theory. Positioning theory was put forward by the famous American marketing experts iris and Jack Trout in the 1970s. It has a far-reaching influence in the field of enterprise strategy and marketing, and has been continuing and developing up to now. However, some people think that under the operation of trout China, positioning theory has far more influence in China than in other countries in the world.

The so-called positioning refers to finding a vacancy in the minds of consumers and then planting a nail. The first two steps of the four step method are to analyze the whole external environment and determine “who are our competitors and what are their values”; Avoid the strength of competitors’ customers’ mind, or use the weakness of their strength to establish the dominant position of the brand.

The process of determining competitors is also the process of looking for benchmarking, such as Yuanqi forest benchmarking Coca Cola, tea burning benchmarking Japanese ITO garden and Suntory tea drinks, bubble water benchmarking Parisian water, San pello and zero degree Coca Cola, alien energy drinks benchmarking Red Bull.

Tang Binsen, who is always in the Red Sea, is not afraid to compete with big companies. In his speech, he also attributed the victory of small companies against big companies to the power law (final result = base number) × The power exponent of the base, r = K × A ^ n). The advantage of giant companies lies in the large base, but just as the 365 power of 1.01 is far greater than that of 0.99, in the long run, the party with a large base can win the final victory.

In the benchmarking of products, we also use the theory of geographic arbitrage. Successful businessmen make use of the information gap to gain benefits, and thus guide the category expansion path of Yuanqi forest.

For example, the burning tea listed in November 2016 is compared with itoyuan and Suntory in Japan, and sugar free tea has a high penetration rate among local consumers; Beihai ranch yogurt, which was launched in August 2018, corresponds to chobani, a Greek yogurt brand in the United States. The latter has caught up with the consumption upgrading trend in the U.S. yogurt Market, with sales exceeding $1 billion in five years; The alien energy drink launched in May 2020 is benchmarked against monster, the most eye-catching company in the U.S. Food and beverage industry since the 21st century. Huang Hai, a consumer goods investor, once pointed out that the average market growth rate of the energy beverage industry in the next five years (2020-2025) will remain around 8% – 10%, far exceeding the overall growth rate of the beverage industry.

It is one of the common means in the game industry to find out the weakness of competitors in their strength, and use micro innovation on the basis of their mature products to defeat competitors, “copy first and then change”. The game type is no different from MoBa, RPG, FPS, SLG and so on. In every subdivision, I copy you, you copy me, and even you have me, I have you. Changing the skin and adjusting a parameter is a new game. Tang Bingsen is not unfamiliar with it, and he does not exclude it.

In some media reports, Tang Binsen is called “father of happy farm”, but this is not accurate. Kaixin farm, which is popular in China, was actually built by another game company. Tang Binsen’s team was entrusted by Qianxiang Kaixin, the predecessor of renren.com. It took two weeks to copy the basic framework and playing method of this phenomenal game, and then pushed it to the international market, mainly operating in Brazil, Russia and other overseas social platforms. It’s just that the company that initially developed the happy farm soon went into decline. Although it may not be Tang Binsen’s original intention, the aura of happy farm was often extended to him.

As the first cognitive point that consumers can contact, the importance of brand name and product name is self-evident“ The naming of “Yuanqi” also conforms to one of the basic methods of positioning theory: mobilizing the existing cognition in the mind of consumers and reconnecting the existing connections. Although the pseudo Japanese system has been criticized for some time, for it, when consumers have connected “made in Japan” with “high quality”, how to connect “made in Japan” is the real proposition.

Of course, this does not mean that Tang Binsen has any research or insight into social consumption psychology. His pragmatism and efficiency drive may play a greater role in this decision-making.

Finding valuable gaps in the mental map of consumers also means that good names are a scarce resource. It’s also very common that you find it, but have been registered by others. In order to obtain such a scarce resource, don Binsen doesn’t mind spending 30 million to buy a name.

“0 sugar, 0 fat, 0 card” originated from the positioning concept of extremely simplifying information, in order to play the role of “one word occupying the mind”. For example, Volvo is “safe” and crest is “mothproof”. We should deal with the social links of information explosion and excessive dissemination, select the original information that is most easy to enter the mind, and then resolutely implement it.

The extension of location theory compares language to a nail and vision to a hammer to describe the profound influence of visual information on the brain compared with written information. For example, the blue classic Baijiu liquor in the Yanghe River, the battle between Wang Lao Ji and JDB’s red pot reflects the strategic value of the visual hammer. Yuanqi forest’s tea burning and bubble water will focus on “burning” and “Qi”, and bubble fruit juice will combine fruit ingredients with bottle body radian design, which is also out of the same consideration.

Another anecdote is that the original idea to enlarge the word “burning” came from focus media founder Jiang nanchun. It is said that Tang Bingsen has a close relationship with this advertising tycoon. The reason why the early investment institutions of Yuanqi forest had the figure of Guangkong Zhongying capital is that the fund was jointly funded by Guangda holding and Fenzhong media.

Internet based R & D:

High standard, fast test, fast iteration

Another business model Tang Binsen admires is Duan Yongping, the behind the scenes boss of Bubugao, oppo and vivo. He once let Tang Bingsen read a sentence no less than ten times: “if consumer goods companies pay too much attention to marketing and do not pay attention to products, there must be no future.”

 
Whether the theory of geographic arbitrage or minimally invasive innovation, it does not mean that we do not pay attention to products. On the contrary, big companies have better resources, more budget and investment, and the fundamental reason why Tang Binsen leads smart star to survive from the giant game industry is to continue to build a strong team, continue to believe in user first, pixel level products to create the highest standards and best reputation in the industry.

One of the paths to good products is strict requirements on standards and non stinginess on costs. Sirloin, the founder of AFU’s essential oil and the carving of beef sirloin, quoted the sentence of Tang bin son in the official account of the public: “we are the only beverage company in China that drinks water more than bottles.”

For example, the cost of erythritol used in Yuanqi forest is 100 times higher than that of aspartame; The raw material for burning tea is more than 100 yuan per kilogram of tea, while the original tea of other brands is in the price range of 50 yuan to 60 yuan; In order to ensure the feeling of “sufficient air” of bubble water, the annual logistics cost must be increased by 5 to 6 points.

After burning tea, Yuanqi forest tried another tea drink with higher content of tea polyphenols, and the final product will produce sediment. Although this is also more common in the beverage industry, “shake before drinking” can be solved, but in order to avoid consumers’ doubts about deterioration, this product was finally cut off.

On the basis of high standards, fast testing and fast iteration are the core product R & D ideas of Yuanqi forest, which is regarded as an important performance of introducing Internet thinking into the food and beverage industry.

The product development process of Yuanqi forest is: the product department puts forward the requirements, the R & D department implements them, and the production department implements them. In this link, product managers have the highest voice. Because of the idea of geographical arbitrage and micro innovation, the product managers of Yuanqi forest are not limited to the traditional food and beverage background, and some even come from the game industry.

However, geo arbitrage only provides product trends and product ideas, and the final step affecting beverage consumption decisions is still taste. As a straight man born in the 1980s with an engineering background, Tang Binsen, who often appeared in a striped polo shirt in his early days, neither understood the various tastes of food and drink, nor realized that he had no voice in them.

  The second on the right is Tang Binsen, and the second on the left is Lei Jun. this picture is taken when the 2015 Android version of the row of kings was exclusively released by Xiaomi mutual entertainment in China  

Compared with those who think they understand users’ needs but are not, this attitude of “not knowing for not knowing” is actually beneficial, but it also leads Yuanqi forest to two paths: one is against the other and the other is against the right: products are based on the opinions of professionals, such as consulting companies, or on user experience and user feedback.

According to the document issued by Yuanqi forest service, around 2016, Yuanqi forest used to spend 5 million yuan to produce a predecessor product of burning tea. However, due to the gap between the finished product and the expectation, after a heated internal debate on the handling method of this batch of goods, it finally decided to invest another 1 million yuan to destroy all these products.

This story was cross verified in a public speech by Zong Hao, vice president of Yuanqi forest. The other half of the story is that this part of the products were asked to do market research by consulting companies, and then they wanted to position, plan and place orders for factory production. As a result, “they (people) don’t like to drink, let alone sell to consumers.”.

After this, Tang Binsen gradually introduced the typical logic of testing this game industry into Yuanqi forest. Focusing on the needs of users and taking the user experience and feedback as the only standard to measure the product, compared with the 1-2-year R & D cycle of traditional companies, Yuanqi forest compressed the time to 3-6 months, and did a drink taste test once or twice a day on average, and quickly adjusted and improved according to the test results. The steps and indicators of the test have also been streamlined and standardized. Whether you are willing to drink and whether you are willing to recommend it to your family and friends has become a must ask question.

After the new product passes the internal test, it will enter the external test process, which is usually a small-scale test in a specific area or channel. The material of product appearance design and advertising is also included in the test scope. After passing the test, it will be fully launched, which can also provide the basis for further marketing. For example, the listing of burning tea is the result of repeated tests of dozens of drinks on the Internet. Just like byte beat is an “app factory”, Yuanqi forest, as Tang Binsen said at the dealer conference at the end of 2020, still has 95% of its products not put on the market.

At the same time, up to now, there are still new beverage companies stepping on the pit of “producing large quantities of products in advance, finding problems and then calling a halt”. However, for Yuanqi forest, the cost of trial and error has been reduced to about 4.5 million per batch, less than one tenth of the initial cost.

High pricing: no good performance price ratio

Expensive, also is Tang Binsen’s product standard. Because the price performance is regarded as an excuse for the brand side to make bad products, the other half of Duan Yongping’s sentence is “taking the price performance route, there will not be a good future.”. In Yuanqi forest, the prices of 5 yuan bubble water and burning tea, 10 yuan juice bubble water and 12 yuan milk tea are much higher than those of similar products.

Not only his own pricing is high, Tang Binsen has repeatedly persuaded Challenger capital invested enterprises to increase the price of their products. Tang Bingsen firmly believes and is willing to share this judgment with the founders around him: compared with the concept of “cheap domestic products” of Amoy brand before and after 2015, the biggest era bonus of current consumer brands is not the traffic bonus, but the user is willing to pay higher prices for better products.

Therefore, NPs (net user recommendation value) is a very important indicator of Tang Binsen. NPs essentially refers to the accurate transmission of brand information through high-quality products, key Kocs and social relations, and the consumer decision-making mechanism has been reconstructed in the fully developed social media era. From the spontaneous spread of users’ word-of-mouth to the centralized launch on content platforms such as xiaohongshu, Yuanqi forest’s online strategy forms the basis of brand from 0 to 1, and then extends to offline channels.

The profit space brought by high pricing will also be fed back to Yuanqi forest to support its large-scale marketing activities, better meet the needs of consumers, and set aside more profits for the dealer system.

On the consumer side, understanding and making good use of human nature is an important foundation for Tang Bingsen to cross the border from games to the food and beverage industry. In Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory, physiological needs are at the first level, and self realization needs are at the fifth level. The game is an industry that makes profits completely in the fifth layer, and now we use the thinking of the fifth layer to transform the first layer, which is also called dimension reduction.

Among them, 0 sugar, 0 fat and 0 card is an adaptation to human nature. Japanese style, high price, and making consumers think that drinking Yuanqi forest is a kind of capital worth showing off, “face”, is also a confirmation of self demand. In the member operation of Yuanqi forest, taking Haidilao as a model, there are often activities of giving and testing new products for free to make consumers get the psychological satisfaction of “taking advantage”.

When building the offline dealer system, the higher margin space gives the dealers greater enthusiasm for distribution, and helps Yuanqi forest rapidly improve the offline penetration by taking advantage of the development of domestic convenience stores. Now the proportion of offline sales has exceeded 70%. At the same time, dealers are also willing to act as agents for brands that can make large-scale advertising, which can reduce the pressure of their own sales.

Jean Lee is no stranger to Tang Bingsen. When exploring the overseas game market, in order to avoid unnecessary human and material investment when entering the strange market, Tang Binsen early chose the strategy of developing the local market through agents. And in order to encourage the enthusiasm of the agent, willing to work with the agent fifty-five.

Perhaps influenced by this, Tang Bingsen highly respects the establishment of the dealer system in the consumer goods world, and regards “the dealer as his own person” as one of his basic concepts. The internal sales team of Yuanqi forest is not the shopkeeper who forces the dealers to press the goods, but often cooperates with them to complete specific matters such as promotion landing.

A family doesn’t do two things, and they don’t talk to each other. At the dealers’ meeting of Yuanqi forest, the activity Department treated the sales staff differently from the dealers, and differentiated the roles with different colors of T-shirts, which angered Tang Binsen. His first sentence was, “I want to curse people when I come here today.”.  

Dare to spend money: traffic will always be more and more expensive

Dare to throw money, will throw money, is another prominent feature of Tang Binsen. Normal investors mostly pay attention to whether their invested enterprises will make money and how much money they earn, but Tang Binsen often urges the founders around him to spend money early and spend a lot of money.

The game is a big battle that needs to spend a lot of money to buy. After the launch of the row of kings, Tang Binsen said publicly that, as the most successful export game in Chinese history, their secret comes from “daring to spend 1.8 billion on advertising when they create 2 billion revenue”, and they are all “in New York, London, London, Japan and Japan” Moscow and other central cities to do “brand exposure” high play low style.

Another benefit of daring to spend money is that it can easily be transformed into a moat as long as the investment is appropriate. Tang Bingsen himself has experienced various stages of entrepreneurship and invested in many projects. He knows very well that the strength of the founder is not necessarily proportional to the resources he can mobilize. When talking about the logic of entrepreneurs investing in entrepreneurs in the media many years ago, he once called “the possibility of things depends on the confidence and courage of the people who do things” the “best and only logic”.

  Screenshot of new year’s Eve party at station B  

But daring to spend money doesn’t mean spending money. Spending money can be divided into knowing how to spend it (investment strategy), when to spend it (investment time), and where to spend it (investment method).

As far as the launch strategy is concerned, the focus strategy of single point breakthrough is most respected by Tang Binsen. The rule mapped into the game world is that a good operation of a game in depth often benefits more than the development of four or five tepid games.

Although the first mock exam is basically established after the launch, the advertising mode can still be followed. For example, although Yuanqi forest has various product lines such as burning tea, bubble water, fruit juice and yoghurt, its initial investment is focused on bubble water, creating the brand spirit of “bubble water is Yuanqi forest”.

Because the flow will always be more and more expensive, so the sooner the grass flow is put in, the better; Flow advertising focuses on transformation, while brand advertising focuses on consumers’ mind. It needs the brand potential energy to accumulate to a certain stage and seize the time window that may be fleeting.

For example, in May 2020, when other brands cut their advertising budgets due to the uncertainty of the epidemic situation, Yuanqi forest launched a large number of elevator ads and street ads, which showed the trend of dominating the screen for a long time, directly leading to the outbreak of sales in the following months.

The naming of the 2020 New Year Party of station B is another marketing event that Tang Binsen thinks is “very valuable”. For Yuanqi forest, this evening party, which caused a continuous sensation in the whole station of station B, actually pried 200 million active users of station B with a cost of 80 million, and these 200 million young users had a high degree of coincidence with the original target consumer group of Yuanqi forest.

Compared with other new consumer brands that launch KOL one by one and eventually turn into tens of yuan or even hundreds of yuan of single customer cost, the CPM (thousand person cost) of station B is actually very low. The two modes can be considered as the gap between “retail price and wholesale price”. At the same time, the essence of this launch is still the role of brand advertising, that is, although it can not directly quantify the formation of transformation data, it precipitates part of consumers’ mind. In the future, when consumers go into convenience stores and see vitality forest, the sense of familiarity and intimacy may be transformed into specific purchasing behavior.

Another marketing weakness of ordinary new consumer brands is the lack of mastery of offline delivery methods. These new brands usually start online and are proficient in the traffic operation strategies of major platforms, but when they reach a certain volume and move from online to offline, they don’t know how to start.

Yuanqi forest’s team gene does not have such concerns, and attaches great importance to the role of offline advertising. It’s not only the TV posters of the elevator, but also the advertisements on the street and on the external walls of buildings in some places where people gather, such as Gongti North Road across Sanlitun, Beijing. Within the company, pure internet marketing is compared to “online love with consumers”, and the brand needs to build a connection and communication relationship with consumers in the physical space, which is also a process to help the brand get rid of the virtual to the real.

But in the process of rapid development, Yuanqi forest still paid a lot of tuition fees for marketing events. The fuzzy concepts of shell company registered in Japan, Zero sugar and zero substitute sugar make Yuanqi forest suffer a lot of controversy. Not long ago, Yuanqi forest was forced to apologize directly. Because there is no difference between “Zero sugar” and “Zero sugar” in milk tea products, the “Zero sugar” on the package will be changed to “low sugar” in the future.

Data driven: “Yuanqi forest is a technology company”

Companies that can’t make money are not good companies. The most clear indicator of whether users love your product is whether they are willing to pay for it. Brand barriers are not blown out, but appear when there are many competitors. Competition can’t bring down your gross profit. With such a concise and direct view, data performance has almost become Tang Binsen’s only yardstick for judging the company’s development, team and product performance.

Among them, data-driven can be divided into three levels: a comprehensive and quantifiable data statistics system; Data oriented management system; The fast iteration based on data-driven gives the executor more opportunities to try, and each attempt should have exact feedback.

Yuanqi forest is also working in this direction. Comprehensive and quantifiable data are shown in all aspects. The data system of online sales has been provided by major platforms, but Yuanqi forest will still pay attention to data indicators that other brands may not pay much attention to, such as the time when consumers choose to buy, the interval between two consumption, and so on, and include them in the interpretation system.

The collection and processing of offline data has always been a big problem. Due to the backwardness and closure of SaaS process of offline retail stores, and the conflict of retailers’ owners with data sharing, massive data streams fail to be mined and utilized every day. To this end, Challenger capital has invested in an offline store big data operator named win now to relieve this dilemma.

By the end of 2020, instant win has access to the data of 20000 FMCG stores nationwide, and launched the concept of “coke index” under the guidance of Yuanqi forest. Taking 500ml Coca Cola with classic taste as the benchmark and reference, it can quickly evaluate the selling power of other bottled drinks through the floating comparison between other drinks and cola sales.

In this way, the beverage sales volume, which fluctuates greatly with the change of season and temperature, has established a new comparable coordinate system to measure the transformation effect of centralized advertising in a certain period of time and to find the new trend of user taste change, which also has a stable data reference.

In addition to winning immediately, the laying of intelligent freezers is also a powerful way to sink into the husband and wife shop. It is expected to launch 80000 units in the first batch this year. These freezers are independently developed by Yuanqi forest, and all of them are connected to the network. They have the functions of positioning, uploading temperature, remote temperature control, asset management, remote switch on and off, and all of them will be connected to the network. For each bottle of beverage sold, the sales data will be returned to Yuanqi forest in real time. Here, the freezer is the channel, the data.

At the internal management level, the concept of “Yuanqi forest is a technology company” is often mentioned by Tang Binsen, and the position of chief information officer is set up.

For example, Yuanqi forest has adopted a complete self-developed ERP system for a long time. How to connect the system with the dealer system, automatically monitor the sales volume and inventory of dealers, and automatically detect serial goods through commodity barcode are also realized by the underlying technical architecture. The construction of one-stop Bi platform works closely with Guanyuan data, and the relevant authority is released to all employees, enabling fine operation with visual operation and sales data.

Fast iteration and feedback based on data-driven is the result of the synergy of front-end data collection and processing, middle platform data analysis and application, and back-end research, production and marketing. The most ideal process is that market changes and consumer demand changes are detected and captured by terminal data, and Yuanqi forest immediately develops products that adapt to changes. After testing, the products are quickly put to the market, and iterate and optimize according to market feedback.

Tang Binsen once hoped that all the steps before being put into the market could be completed within 48 hours, but he still faced many difficulties in actual operation, such as the response speed of the foundry is an uncontrollable factor. Also affected by other risk factors such as leaked formula and being controlled by competitors in OEM mode, Yuanqi forest has now embarked on the road of self built capacity.

A consumer goods Empire:

Vitality forest + Challenger capital A631

To build its own empire of consumer goods, Yuanqi forest should be an elite first.

In terms of team and organization building, Tang Bingsen pursues the pragmatic approach from Huawei. For example, when assigning tasks, do not make complex statements and speak in colloquial, so that employees can understand and take action immediately; Establish a strong sense of goal of the staff, do not give any other reasons in the assessment, and speak with achievements and achievements; Create a high income, high efficiency, high pressure team atmosphere, do things vigorously, have executive power, and so on.

Don’t focus on specific business, Tang Binsen also put most of his energy on talent recruitment. In his opinion, recruitment is 100 times more important than training, because people’s personality and basic qualities have been basically shaped in the past 20 or 30 years. The first indicator of recruitment is values. The second is whether we can grasp the key points, be logical, master the basic rules and make extended deduction. On this basis, we should also be down-to-earth and practical.

We should not only select people, but also eliminate them. For the employees who are misplaced, timely cleaning is responsible for the development of the company and employees. Eliminators also test the coyotism and courage of the founders. For example, Huawei’s senior employees are forced to retire in their 40s. A founder who has had many related exchanges with Tang Binsen takes this as an example, “I can’t do it now, but I think he can do it.”.

At the same time, the establishment of empire can not rely on only one elite“ No matter how big the air outlet is, even if you are strong, you can only do one thing well. ” On this point, Tang Bingsen is equally clear.

All consumer goods are worth redoing, which is the opportunity of the times seen by Tang Binsen. The reality is that the R & D personnel of Yuanqi forest can scan all the food and beverage categories to look for opportunities, but not every opportunity can be grasped. At this time, Tang Binsen’s Challenger capital, another important layout, will play its role.

For example, coffee beverage, the core product of nevercofee, is the product that Yuanqi forest has been laying out for several years, and even equipped with professional coffee R & D personnel. However, after many internal tests and discussions, this coffee product was not put on the market because it failed to find such a core tipping point as “0 sugar 0 fat 0 card”.

Since they have no results, they will accelerate the layout through the challenger’s capital leverage. The two key categories of coffee and Baijiu, NeverCoffee and Guan Baijiu, which also correspond to the investment targets, also show the path of Challenger capital stock and forest follow up. Currently, they have achieved 51% holdings of “Tang”.

Challenger capital has invested in more than 150 projects through its rapid coverage of new categories. In the field of food and beverage, Challenger capital has included composite condiments, convenience foods, alcoholic drinks and other sub categories representing the consumption trend of young people, as well as other consumption scenarios with rigid demand and high frequency characteristics, such as coffee chain, baby retail, discount retail, pet service and so on.

“If you just want to do a good thing, good service”, “if you really need a partner who can keep company, discuss and solve problems together, and bring money to join”, “if your start-up project is faced with a confrontation with the giant”, “if you want to do a good thing, good service”, “if you really need a partner who can keep company, discuss and solve problems together, and bring money to join”, “if your start-up project is faced with a confrontation with the giant”, and “if you want to do a good thing, good service”, it is written in the institutional autoB “If you are ready to challenge these industries that Chinese people have not yet set foot in and have no confidence in”, “please find a challenger.”.

The 16 character challenger’s capital investment philosophy of “promising China, challenging giants, investing in good products and trusting young people” can also be regarded as the epitome of Tang Binsen’s own entrepreneurial experience. His investment style of simple, pragmatic and efficient, quick decision-making, flat structure and equal communication also has its distinctive characteristics.

Based on the previous methodology, Tang Binsen has a high reputation among the founders of Challenger capital invested enterprises, even though they may be of the same age. More than one founder mentioned to us Tang Binsen’s intelligence, diligence, pattern, international vision, thorough problem-solving, unique views on organization, talent and brand management, and many pioneering explorations on traditional consumer goods supply chain.

Although some of Tang Binsen’s ways of behavior and thinking are not necessarily understood and recognized by them due to the industry division, they still think that there are many other places to learn and inspire from each other.

“You can’t guess a genius from the perspective of a mortal,” someone said to us. “At that time, I was sitting under the stage listening to him give a meeting to dealers, and I was thinking, isn’t this Ma Yun in the consumer goods industry?”

*References

Tang Binsen: chance and necessity in success, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics,

People square Tang Binsen: being a precise value investor

Several tuition fees in the process of entrepreneurship, open class of Innovation workshop Entrepreneurship (video)

Tang Binsen: is a share a casino, tiger securities (video)

Tang Binsen: when a person feels small, he becomes great, China Europe Business Camp (video)

Fortune meets me, happy farm founder don Bingsen, TNM

The old overlord is very anxious, they are being “killed” by the new brand, Diaoye

Yuanqi forest lost Yuanqi, box lunch finance and Economics

Read the original

Tang Binsen’s consumption philosophy

《老霸主焦虑万分,他们正在被新锐品牌“干掉”!》,雕爷

《元気森林丢掉元気》,盒饭财经


作者:肖超;来源:新商业情报NBT(ID:newbusinesstrend),转载已获得授权。
加入社群:Cherry(微信:15240428449);
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