China Food

Crazy inside! How should new tea brands break through?


“  
new tea drinks are crazy, and the new tea industry will be very lively in 2021.
 ”

“High speed railway milk tea is online, with an average daily sales of 3000 cups, and it is often out of stock!”

“Xi tea held the investment for the first time, and made the investment for the fifth time in five months”

“Tea Yan Yue color centralized closed 70 or 80 stores”

“Naixue’s tea shares hit a record low due to food safety”
……
 
This month’s news about the tea circle is obviously a few joys and several sorrows. However, behind these news, it reflects an undeniable fact that the new tea circuit is still hot. 2021, which is about to end, is another year of rapid development of new tea.
 
According to the data of mob Research Institute, the Cr5 of high-end tea brands has exceeded 50%, and the Matthew effect is beginning to show. The high-end market has formed a duopoly competition pattern of “like tea PK Naixue’s tea”.
In the middle-end tea circuit, the brand card battle is also very fierce, and new brands emerge one after another. The book also burns fairy grass, ancient tea and coco can temporarily lead. In the low-end market, the honey snow ice city is unique, and many other tea brands in the sinking market also perform well, such as yihetang and tianlala, which are constantly innovating and have been courageously catching up.
 
At the same time, the tea capital market is looking for new investment targets. According to the statistics of red meal brand research institute, as of November 25, 2021, there were 32 financing cases in the new tea industry in 2021, with a total disclosed amount of more than 14 billion yuan. The number of financing events and the disclosed financing amount have been higher than that in 2020, reaching the peak in recent 10 years.
 
However, the high bankruptcy rate is also widespread in the tea industry, and the internal volume is extremely serious.
 
Looking back on 2021, the new tea industry generally presents the following characteristics, and let’s observe it carefully.
The new tea has entered the “oligarchic era”
 
In just a few years, “new tea” has become a popular category concerned by the whole people. The market scale and the number of stores have soared all the way. A number of tea brands have come to the fore, and many capital are scrambling to bet. However, after the rapid development, the new tea market has also exposed many problems, and the overall development trend and market pattern show the following trends.
 
1. The growth rate of new tea drinks has slowed down
 
According to the data of China catering category and brand development report 2021, the scale of the current tea market in 2020 is 113.6 billion yuan, which is expected to reach 340 billion yuan by 2025, with a compound annual growth rate of 24.5%.
 
However, industry insiders predict that considering the superposition of intensified competition, rising rent, limited talent reserve, food safety management to be further strengthened, high proportion of takeout and low profits, the rapid growth will lead to management risks, and the growth of new tea may slow down periodically.
 
2. The high-end and low-end market has entered the “oligarchy era”
 
Generally speaking, according to the per capita consumption price, the new tea market can be roughly divided into three levels: high, middle and low. The per capita consumption in the high-end market is more than 20 yuan, represented by Xi tea, Naixue tea and LeLe tea; the middle end is 10 ~ 20 yuan per capita, accounting for the largest market share and the largest number of representative brands, such as 1 Dian Dian, coco can be, book can also burn fairy grass, ancient tea, etc.; the low end is less than 10 yuan , honey Snow Ice City, yihetang, etc.
 
(1) Like tea and Naixue’s tea, “duopoly” strategic distinction
 
At present, the high-end market of new tea has formed a duopoly pattern of “happy Tea & Naixue’s tea”.
 
In June this year, Naixue’s tea, which created “tea + soft European bag” and focused on female customers, was listed in Hong Kong stocks. Although “tea of inspiration” Hi tea was not listed, there were continuous financing news. In July, after a new round of huge financing, the valuation was as high as 60 billion. Both of them were direct business models, and the number of stores was the same. As of November, Naixue’s stores had reached 710 + and hi tea had reached 850 +.
However, the development models of the two countries are slowly showing differences. After Naixue became the “first share of new tea” in Hong Kong stock market, she continued to implement the “encryption” strategy, focusing on increasing the density of stores in the first tier, new first tier and some second tier cities, especially the “Pro tea stores” with smaller key overweight stores In 2021, about 350 new stores are expected to be opened, most of which are pro tea stores.
 
Although its performance in the capital market in the past half a year was not as expected. Not long ago, “Naixue’s tea” also issued a “profit warning”, Naixue’s tea said that with the expansion of store scale and the improvement of operation ability, its store operation efficiency and profitability are expected to be further improved.
△ Naixue’s tea pro shop, photo source: Naixue’s tea supply map.
 
On the other hand, Xi tea has opened the “investment” mode, constantly investing in new tea and supply chain brands by means of equity and holding, and constantly expanding its business boundary. The most recent is this month, holding and investing in the new tea brand “yecui mountain” for the first time, which is the fifth publicly available foreign investment event since July this year.
 
Prior to this, it also invested in the new Guochao pre mixed liquor brand “wat cocktail”, the tea brand focusing on peach flavor tea “Hetao peach”, the plant-based brand “wild plant” and the chain coffee brand “seesaw”.
 
From this rhythm, it is not difficult to see that investment is the key action of Xi tea at present. Coffee, wine, oat milk and other categories also show a clear industrial investment direction. Moreover, these brands belong to the dark horse rookies in their respective fields and enjoy certain advantages in the supply chain of their respective tracks. Therefore, the development model of “cross-border +” of Xi tea is becoming clearer and clearer.
 
△ happy tea, picture source: brand official website.
 
(2) Fierce brand card competition in the middle market
 
The mid-range tea market has the largest scale, the largest number of players, fierce brand cards and endless new brands. After reviewing the mid-range new tea brands with more than 1000 stores, you found that the number of stores that can burn Xiancao, Guming and coco ranked among the top three. Then there are tea Baidao, 1 Dian Dian, aunt Hushang, etc.
Shuyi shaoxiancao was born in 2007 and focuses on shaoxiancao products. At present, there are 7000 + stores, second only to honey snow ice city with the largest number of stores. It can be said that it is a typical representative of expanding and strengthening from subdivided categories. Thanks to the unique differentiated positioning, shuyishaoxiancao has developed rapidly in the past two years, and its stores are almost opened in the last three years. According to the data of red meal brand research institute, shuyishaoxiancao added 3000 + stores in 2020, and 1500 + stores have been opened so far this year.
 
△ book also burns fairy grass. Picture source: brand official micro.
 
Guming is a brand that focuses on the low-line market and focuses on cost-effective fruit tea. At present, there are 5500 + stores, more than 1300 stores were added in 2020 and more than 1300 stores have been opened so far this year. In fact, it only had 600 + stores in 2017, and the number of stores has fully doubled 10 times in four years.
 
Even in 2020 and 2021, when the epidemic is serious, the opening speed of Guming still does not slow down. It can be seen that the brand strength of Guming can not be underestimated.
 
Xiao Ma song, a famous marketing expert, believes that Gu Ming’s success is because it has formed a unique strategic positioning. For example, if the interests of franchisees are given priority and franchisees make money, naturally more franchisees take the initiative to join at home; Moreover, it has unique selection criteria and regional store opening principles for franchisees; Participate in the construction of warehousing, logistics and distribution system
 
△ Gu Ming, photo source: brand official website
 
Of course, there are some middle-end tea brand stores that have not exceeded 1000, but have great brand influence. For example, tea is beautiful and goes through the direct marketing mode. At present, the vast majority of stores are opened in Changsha, and their stores have become a necessary clock in landmark for many tourists to Changsha. Now they are gradually expanding to Wuhan and other cities.
 
The rise of tea Yan Yuese has a lot to do with its sufficiently differentiated “Chinese style” positioning. At the same time, it has deeply cultivated Changsha and intensively opened stores to form a scale effect. The store opening strategy without going out of Changsha has virtually contributed to the scarcity of the brand and rapidly improved the brand voice.
 
When we have long been used to the hot search of chayan Yuese because of various long queues, the news that chayan Yuese had previously announced the temporary closure of 87 stores with “too dense layout” seemed quite unexpected, but it was really a helpless move under the epidemic situation. According to Lv Liang, the founder of chayan Yuese, the reason why the measure of temporary store closure under the epidemic has attracted widespread attention is that “chayan people are used to it, but we are not used to it.”
 
In addition, there are brands such as tea Baidao, Xinshi brew and happy lemon, which are also eye-catching in the middle-end consumer market.
 
Other rookie brands are also fierce. For example, Bawang tea lady, who also positioned as “new national style”, originated in Yunnan, focuses on the southwest tea market with the characteristics of original leaf fresh milk tea. This year, it has obtained two rounds of financing in three months, with a total financing amount of more than 300 million yuan. At present, the store has reached 380 +.
 
The reason why Bawang chaji is concerned by capital is that it seizes the opportunity of upgrading milk tea, deeply upgrades milk tea, creates original leaf fresh milk tea and breaks through the inherent flavor of milk tea; At the same time, it adopts the strategy of large single product to quickly seize the consumption cognition.
 
(3) In the low-end market, honey snow ice city is unique
 
Honey snow ice city first started in Zhengzhou, focusing on the sinking market, and achieved a sales performance of 6.5 billion yuan in 2020. This year, through a theme song created by Shouhua and Huawei, honey snow ice city successfully triggered a large-scale and high-intensity communication, which greatly improved the brand awareness.
 
Honey Snow Ice City, which already has a solid foundation in the third, fourth and fifth tier cities, has also taken advantage of the situation to quickly enter the first and second tier cities, and the store expansion speed is very fast. As early as October this year, honey snow ice city announced that its stores exceeded 20000, becoming the first national tea brand with 20000 stores in the tea industry.
 
In addition to tea, honey Snow Ice City store also sells ice cream cones and other products, with a price of less than 10 yuan. It is the lowest price among the mainstream tea brands in China, and has a great price competitive advantage.
 
Not long ago, it was reported that honey Snow Ice City Co., Ltd. plans to make an initial public offering and listing in the A-share market and is being coached by GF Securities. If the listing is successful, honey snow ice city will become the “second share of new tea”.
 
At present, honey snow ice city takes the lead in the low-end tea market, followed by yihetang and tianlala, with 5200 + and 3300 + stores respectively. More than 60% of their stores are distributed in the third, fourth and fifth tier cities, but they focus on different regions. Yihetang is mainly concentrated in Southern markets such as Guangdong, Guangxi, Hunan and Fujian, while tianlala is firmly located in central markets such as Anhui and Henan.
Fruit tea is still the mainstream, and the more fruits are used, the less popular
 
According to the data of red meal brand research institute, among the products of 1000 new tea brands sampled, the proportion of fruit tea products is very high, reaching 39.4%, significantly higher than that of milk tea 31.6%. It can be seen that fruit tea is still the mainstay of tea stores and an important factor in improving store sales.
Based on this, yihetang, Guming, aunt Hushang and other brands are making fruit tea this year. As Hu Jihong, founder of yihetang, said, “the consumer market cannot avoid fruit tea now. There is a great demand for fruit tea. It is impossible to ignore such demand.”
 
Compared with previous years, this year’s fruit tea has shown the following obvious trends.
 
1. Fruit tea is upgraded to fresh fruit tea
  
Subject to various factors such as price, the fruits used in many fruit tea in the sinking market were not necessarily all fresh fruits, but now this phenomenon has been greatly improved, and many tea brands have begun to upgrade fruits to fresh fruits.
 
In the summer of tea season, fruit tea with high appearance and refreshing taste can stimulate people’s desire to buy, and it’s also good to take photos and punch in; Secondly, fresh fruit is easy to make a sense of value and can improve the customer unit price.
 
Especially in the sinking market, fruit tea has ushered in a round of “upgrading tide”. For example, yihetang, whose per capita is less than 10 yuan, also began to bet on the “fresh fruit tea track” this year, which changed the situation that roasted milk tea ranked C in the past and replaced it with new fruit tea. There are more than 30 SKUs in the new menu, and 16 products using fresh fruit account for more than 50%.
 
According to the clerk of a store, the sales volume of fresh fruit tea accounts for nearly 50%, and the customer unit price has increased from 8 yuan to 11 yuan.
 
In your opinion, fruit tea tests the brand’s standardized production ability and supply chain management ability. If the brand has insufficient ability at these levels and blindly follow the trend to make fruit tea, it may not be a good thing.
 
2. A small number of fruits began to come out of the circle
 
This year, the “inner roll” of fruit tea is serious, and its fierce competition can be seen from the accidental popularity of oil Citrus and yellow skin. Because almost all the usable fruits have been used by various tea brands, in order to pursue differentiated innovation, brands have to aim at a small number of fruits.
 
In March this year, Naixue’s tea launched the domineering jade oil Citrus product. Only last week, the sales volume of this product accounted for more than 20%, and even exceeded the domineering cheese strawberry, which ranked first in the annual sales volume of Naixue. The response was so good that Naixue continued to pursue while it was hot.
 
△ domineering jade oil Mandarin, photo source: Red meal network photo.
 
Then in May, Xicha also launched a series of oil citrus products, combining oil Citrus with carambola, olive and other fruits. Subsequently, it attracted the attention and follow-up of many tea and coffee brands.
 
Oil Citrus, a local fruit mainly produced in Chaoshan, was rarely known before. Driven by the head chain brand, this niche fruit immediately detonated in the country. The price rose from 8 yuan / kg in the conventional period last year to 40 yuan / kg at the highest level this year. “Out of stock and rising prices of oil oranges” even once attracted a lot of attention from social news.
 
The one that takes over the Mandarin and turns red is yellow. This kind of fruit is rich in Guangdong and Guangdong regions of China. It looks like longan. It has both the sour taste of apple and the aroma of lemon. It is one of the famous “Lingnan good fruits”. However, because the skin is thin and fragile, it is not easy to transport, so few northerners know that it is a minority fruit.
 
Or inspired by oil Citrus, brands want to grab the bonus of “starting”, and launch new yellow skin related products one after another almost within a week. First, yihetang launched a new product of sea salt honey yellow skin; Then, Xi tea was put on the shelf with more meat and yellow skin fairy dew; Naixue’s tea flag stepped down and covered with a new full of small yellow skin; Lele tea launches hand pounded meat yellow skin
 
As expected, the record of this round of yellow leather is also good, and everyone generally reflects that the sales volume is considerable. Xi tea has been online for only 5 days, and the national sales of three yellow skin drinks have exceeded 300000 cups.
 
According to your summary, there are several main reasons for the fire of two small fruits, oil Mandarin and yellow peel:
 
First, this kind of fruit itself has differentiated memory points. For example, the taste of oil Mandarin is sour and astringent, but it returns to sweet obviously. Naixue describes it as “slightly astringent in 3 seconds and sweet in 5 seconds”, which gives consumers a sense of freshness and surprise, breaking through the inherent taste cognition of fruit tea in tea shops.
 
Secondly, there is a degree of topic. Oil Citrus and yellow peel have some “digestive” effects. Some consumers have diarrhea after drinking, which is interpreted by netizens as “detoxification and weight loss”, which has triggered the spread of the topic.
 
The popularity of these two fruits also made the trend of using a small number of fruits in the beverage circle popular. For example, bergamot, fig, longan, apricot and persimmon began to appear in tea drinking. Recently, Naixue also launched a drinkable “ice sugar gourd” – domineering hawthorn and strawberry.
 
3. Southeast Asian wind blowing from food materials
 
In addition to a small number of fruits, more and more brands take advantage of the “Southeast Asian style”.
 
This can be seen from the popularity of “Thai green lemon tea” at the beginning of the year. At first, after a handmade lemon tea shop in Beijing launched the product, it soon ranked No. 1 in the popular list of beverage stores in Beijing. Then this Thai lemon tea was popular all over the country from Beijing.
 
Lemon tea itself is in the high heat stage, and the bright color “Thai green” (Thai green tea) just enriches the visual and flavor presentation of lemon tea, especially when bound with “forgive green”, a cup of “little green water” immediately has communication value and increases the marketing space.
 
Observer Jun believes that the “Southeast Asian Wind” in the tea circle is also assisted by the tide of Thai food culture. Influenced by geographical location and other factors, Thailand’s food culture has a mass base in China. Now Southeast Asian ingredients have become the inspiration library for tea innovation, and finding inspiration from Southeast Asian ingredients has also become the only magic weapon for tea brand innovation this year.
 
For example, in June, Naixue launched a series of “raw coconut and beautiful” products, which is known as “taking you on vacation to Southeast Asia in one second”, and the product idea of “raw coconut + beautiful + glutinous rice” stems from the flavor of Southeast Asian cuisine. Colorful leaf is a very typical Southeast Asian characteristic food material with unique waxy aroma, which is widely used in the local area.
 
In addition, Southeast Asian specialties “coconut milk mango glutinous rice” and dessert “paoluda” are also perfectly reproduced in the beverage circle. For example, tea loving “mangye glutinous rice”, yihetang’s “yangzhixue rice”, honey sweet “Thai glutinous rice mangye coconut”, Guming’s “Mango glutinous rice”, etc.
 
Paoluda is a dessert in Myanmar and Thailand, which has long been popular in Yunnan. This year, aunt Hushang and Guming also launched relevant products, retained the existing ingredients such as coconut milk, mango and bread jerky, and added small ingredients with brand characteristics. This micro innovation makes consumers refreshing.
 
According to Guan Jun, the inspiration brought by the popularity of Southeast Asian customs is that regional food + drinks may also become popular, such as sweet fermented grains milk tea in Northwest China, haishihua milk tea in Fujian, etc.
 
4. More and more small materials
 
There is a joke in the tea industry this year, that is, milk tea is more and more like “eight treasure porridge”. In a cup of drink, pearls, taro balls, taro mud, oats, red beans, peanuts, roasted fairy grass, tea jelly and so on can be added. Without matching, without martial ethics, eight treasure porridge is ashamed of itself. If a cup is not full, it will be lost. “
 
In fact, the brand of new tea drinks is new, and there is indeed a trend of “adding”, which not only increases the variety, but also expands the scope of use, and does not let go from head to toe. For example, cream top, originally only white cream, with some Bigan fruit chips or caramel sauce, but now macaroni chips, biscuits, fruits, chocolate powder, Oreo chips, soybean milk powder, milk puff The egg cone… Will appear on the top of the cream. Recently, Naixue has attacked Melissa again.
 
The more small materials, the richer the taste, which has become the product strategy of many brands under homogeneous competition. Small materials should be combined to innovate, upgrade and create a sense of value. Some brands even play the slogan of “half a cup is made of material”.
 
However, good charging is a new spark between various raw materials to achieve the effect of 1 + 1 > 2. However, if it is simply added roughly, it will be greasy for enrichment.
 
At the same time, we also found that cereals with milk tea are more common. In addition to the classic ingredients such as taro paste and purple potato, pumpkin, buckwheat, highland barley and wheat kernel have begun to be used. Recently, Naixue launched the world’s first oat snow top. Xi tea launched a series of taro mud products, using purple rice and sweet potato for the first time.
 
As the status of small materials becomes more and more important, new small materials are constantly being excavated.
 
This year, a small material called “explosive beads” (also called explosive bombs and snow elves) has quietly become popular. There are nearly 100000 likes and more than 2000 inquiries and comments on a single note in Xiaohong book.
 
The most recommended one is to wrap red beans, highland barley, black rice, oats and other grains in a transparent skin, which looks crystal clear and tastes crisp outside and waxy inside. Many tea shops have put this stuff on the shelves, such as aunt Gu’s Popcorn beads in Shanghai and Jacques IELTS dragon beads. Gu Ming, coco and other brands have also upgraded them.
 
5. Packaging creativity is becoming bolder and bolder
 
How can we let go of the packaging when the product is rolled inside? Since this year, the brand has also made frequent innovations in design concepts and packaging forms.
 
For example, the “1 barrel of fruit tea” launched by tianlala this summer sold 400000 cups on the day of listing, with a cumulative sales of 2.8 million cups a week, and almost every store was out of stock and restricted. Wang Wei, the founder of the brand, said that the new product sold well mainly because of the “barrel” packaging.
△ 1 barrel of fruit tea, picture source: Sweet Lala for picture.
 
Change the common cup into a bucket with a capacity of 1000ml, match it with a “handle”, and carry it directly without packing bag. It’s very interesting in the street. In addition, the new product is sold for only 10 yuan, and one for one, which has attracted a lot of attention.
 
Barreled fruit tea was followed up by many brands. In autumn and winter, the form of “big barrel” has spread to milk tea. Because of its large volume, more small materials can be added. Rich varieties and high cost performance are still the main selling points of “big barrel”.
 
Another manifestation of bold packaging is “selling a whole fruit directly”, which may be inspired by the “American style of raw coconut”. Some cafes pour coffee into a complete coconut and insert a straw to drink. Xi tea launched the “whole coconut” in October, upgraded the play to “whole pineapple”, hollowed out the whole pineapple to hold drinks, and then made some external decoration.
 
It has to be said that the social attribute of tea is relatively strong. Even a creative packaging can sometimes become a popular product.
 
Wang Jun believes that in addition to the above obvious points, the overall direction of this year’s new tea product innovation is more and more towards health and health preservation. For example, fruit tea accounts for half of the country, and the consumer psychology behind it is that drinking fruit tea is more healthy (not as high as milk tea); For example, the popularity of oil Mandarin and yellow peel is essentially the effect of Amway’s “clearing intestines, defecating and removing fire” in the publicity copy, which makes young people excited.
Lemon tea into a subdivided tuyere
 
1. Key words of financing and out of stock lemon tea
 
Lemon tea is the biggest winner in this year’s subdivided tea circuit. The most intuitive performance is that “financing, out of stock” has become the keyword of this category. According to the statistics of red meal brand research institute, four financing events emerged in the lemon tea track in 2021, as shown in the figure below.
 
The financing times of lemon tea alone account for 12.5% of the financing transactions of the whole tea category, of which there is a huge amount of “more than 100 million”. It is not difficult to see the preference of capital for lemon tea.
 
On the other hand, in May, Xi tea launched four lemon tea products at one go, selling nearly 400000 cups on the first day of listing, completely pushing the heat of lemon tea to the peak.
 
At the same time, other tea brands followed up one after another, and lemon tea products of multiple brands burst in stores. The tea shops that originally focused on lemon tea struck while the iron was hot, the expansion of stores accelerated, and a number of new lemon tea brands were born in the market.
 
According to the data of red meal brand research institute, there are 9 lemon tea brands with more than 100 stores, nearly 1000 happy lemon with the largest number of stores, more than 300 stores in guiyuanpu and more than 500 stores in linlee, a rising star.
 
The cutting-edge brand lemon season from Changsha is trying to beat lemon tea by hand and tell a new story of tea drinking. The first store was opened in February this year, and more than 150 stores were opened in just four months. Now there are nearly 200 stores. In July, it got tens of millions of yuan of financing, which was no different for a while. It is understood that the strategy of intensively opening stores on the street in the lemon season is the same as the store expansion strategy adopted by chayan Yuese at the beginning. With the help of capital, it is believed that the store expansion speed in the lemon season will continue to accelerate.
 
It can be said that the outbreak of lemon tea is the result of the joint efforts of several factors: first, lemon tea itself has developed for several years. From tea restaurants in the 1970s and 1980s to franchise stores represented by happy lemon after 2017, consumer market education has been completed and the whole industrial chain is relatively mature; The second is the help of capital; Moreover, it is the blessing of the “explosive single effect” of the head brand. With the support of various factors, it finally detonated this sub category.
 
The red meal Brand Research Institute estimates that by the end of 2021, the number of lemon tea stores in China is expected to exceed 6000, while this number will only be more than 3000 in 2020. According to this trend, the market scale of lemon tea is expected to be less than 10 billion yuan in 2021.
 
But at the same time, operators also need to realize that how hot lemon tea is, how difficult it is to make a lemon tea brand.
 
Because the entry threshold is low, anyone can do it. On the contrary, it is not easy for the brand to make characteristics. Although “hand beating” has become a new selling point of lemon tea this year, it is not generally difficult to realize the standardization of stores. After all, “explosion hammer” and “hand-made” not only rely on labor, but also have high requirements for product standards.
 
And with the popularity of lemon tea, the supply of backend food is bound to become very tight. It is not easy to find a quality and stable source of lemons, which is the most commonly used lemon lemon shop. Therefore, to follow the trend of lemon tea, we must first think about how to solve the problems of homogenization, where creativity comes from and whether the supply chain is stable.
 
2. Yangzhi manna & shaoxiancao brand, with the rapid rise of subdivided categories
 
Having finished lemon tea, let’s talk about other sub categories. To a large extent, the category segmentation of the tea industry starts with the “eye red” 7 points sweet and the book also burns fairy grass.
 
7 points sweet, is a tea brand that originated in Suzhou and focuses on Mango drinks. At present, there are 1000 + stores, and there are less than 200 stores in 2019. It was observed that 7-fen sweet entered the fast lane after focusing on Mango sub categories. After the new image (the super symbol of yellow VI color + 7) was replaced, the turnover of the current month increased by 180% over the same period of the previous year, which also ignited the popular trend of Yangzhi manna.
 
△ Shanghai Huangpu Bohui Plaza store, photo source: brand official website.
 
Shaoxian grassland was originally a traditional specialty drink in Southern Fujian and Taiwan, and the brand of Shuyi Shaoxian grass was once called Shuyi · 85 degree tea. In 2007, founder Wang Bin opened his first store in Chengdu, selling products mainly Shaoxian grass.
 
Around 2015, Wang Bin considered the store transformation direction, and then decided to focus on the category of “burning fairy grass”. In 2017, he renamed it book also burning fairy grass, and proposed the slogan of “half a cup is made of material”. The daily turnover of the first renamed store increased sharply, reaching 5000, 6000 or even tens of thousands a day. Then the number of stores in that year reached 300, and then its opening speed increased rapidly.
 
Now its stores have reached 7000 +, which has become the tea brand with the largest number of stores after honey snow ice city. It is moving rapidly towards the scale of ten thousand stores. At the same time, it also brings fire to the sub category of burning fairy grass.
 
These two successful cases focusing on subdivided categories give the industry a shot of stimulant and show latecomers an unwritten rule, that is, occupying a tea subdivided track and leading a trend can bring a wave of explosive growth. Many tea operators followed up immediately. Therefore, we can see that ancient tea and tea Baidao mainly focus on fresh fruit tea; Aunt Hushang put forward the concept of Wugu tea track. They are all trying to shape their own brand memory points in order to seize the top position of the subdivision track.
 
3. Which sub category will be popular next?
 
Which sub category is likely to be popular in the future? Since mango and lemon can fire, can we also focus on the well-selling fruits such as litchi, peach and strawberry?
 
You don’t think so. Look at the popular sub categories. The 7-point sweet main Yangzhi Manna is a traditional Hong Kong dessert with high recognition and acceptance. The beverage brand just presents it in a cup form.
 
Lemon tea and shaoxiancao also have a certain market popularity. Beverage brands have innovated their forms of expression. In addition, the development of chain stores makes it easier for consumers to reach them. Only with the joint force of these factors can they become popular.
 
Therefore, the premise of looking for subdivided categories as a breakthrough is to have a wide range of consumer awareness. Positioning the detailed rules will block most customers and is not conducive to communication. For example, if the brand positioning is subdivided into durian and other tracks, the audience will appear too small.
 
As Xiao Ma Song said, strategic choice must focus on your resource endowment (that is, what your enterprise is good at), so as to give full play to your strengths and form strategic advantages. For example, if your milk tea sales are huge, don’t focus on fruit tea. We also see that whether it is 7 cents sweet or book, it is logical based on the brand gene.
 
Therefore, observer Jun believes that the core of subdivision positioning is to tap its own unique value. In addition, market-based products should also conform to their own advantages and accumulation. Blindly following the trend can only die faster.
Create and invest,
New tea drinks open the cross category development of “tea + X”
This year, there is also a very significant phenomenon in the tea industry, that is, the head tea brands have started the “role transformation”, from the invested entrepreneurs to the investors who spend money. Tea loving is the most obvious.
 
It is reported that in November, Shenzhen Haolin catering Co., Ltd., an affiliated company of the new tea brand “yecuishan”, underwent industrial and commercial changes, adding hi tea (Shenzhen) Enterprise Management Co., Ltd. as the shareholder, holding 60% of the company’s largest shareholder, and Nie Yunchen, the founder of Hi tea, as the chairman.
 
△ yecui mountain, photo source: brand official wechat.
It is understood that yecuishan, founded in 2019, is a fruit juice beverage brand focusing on “molecular fruit juice” (which is a product of modern technology that can accurately control the standardization process with digital control and combine molecular cuisine). This is also Xi tea’s first foreign holding investment.
 
Only half a month ago, Xi tea, together with Bai capital and tomato capital, jointly led the a-round financing of xinguochao pre blending brand “wat”. Founded in 2019, wat is positioned as an innovative cocktail product of “good drinking, good-looking and fun”.
 
In the same month, Xi tea took a stake in the new tea brand and Tao Tao. Hetao Taotao was founded in 2019, focusing on Peach drinks and Hefeng snacks, and initiating Mashu milk tea. Previously, Hetao peach was popular on the Internet because of a fart peach tea that “frozen the whole peach milk on the peach smoothie”.
 
Further on, Xi tea took a stake in Anhui green tomato Biotechnology Co., Ltd., whose brand is wild plant yeplant, a plant-based brand founded in 2020, and its main product is oat milk. Less than a year after its establishment, it has become the second largest supplier of to B oat milk in China. In July, Xi tea also led and invested in the a + round of financing of seesaw, a boutique coffee brand.
 
In addition to liking tea, Naixue’s tea, tea Yan Yuese, honey snow ice city and other brands have changed their identity and made investment.
 

Recently, it was reported that Naixue’s tea took a stake in Tianye with 38.64 million yuan, which was the first foreign investment after Naixue’s tea was listed. Tianye Co., Ltd. is a listed company on the new third board, specializing in the processing of tropical fruits and vegetables. Its main products include tropical raw juice, quick-frozen tropical fruits and vegetables, etc.

Honey snow ice city just established Snow King Investment Co., Ltd. in September, and took a stake in Guangdong huicha a month later. Huicha brand was founded in early 2015 and headquartered in Dongguan, Guangdong. It is a tea brand focusing on pearl milk tea for seven consecutive years in the industry. Its branches are mainly distributed in Guangdong and Hainan. It is said that after getting the financing, it plans to open thousands of stores in the next three years.
 
Another brand of tea in Changsha, Yan Yuese, threw the olive branch to another local tea brand in Hunan, “Guo Yaya”, which is a sales service provider of fruit tea and dessert products, focusing on the field of catering and gourmet services, mainly providing users with dessert foods such as bread dessert and fruit tea.
 
Creating excellence and investing seems to have become the choice of many new tea brands, and this identity change is generally interpreted as a choice for tea brands to integrate resources under the trend of intensified competition and continuous differentiation in the new tea industry.
 
Observer Jun believes that resource integration is a necessary step for the development and growth of enterprises. It can also be seen that the new tea brand has begun to turn to the cross category development mode of “tea + X”.
 
With the increasing market competition, the head tea brand is also facing the challenge of how to maintain the brand heat and how to attract consumers for a long time. The cross category development model of “tea + Coffee / baking / dessert / X” has become their new growth strategy.
 
In fact, we also see that since last year, Xi tea has been increasing its bottled beverage business, and launched new categories and products of bottled beverages such as fruit juice tea, milk tea and lemon tea; In August this year, Xi tea launched a series of coffee products. As Zhu Yue, a partner of insight consulting, said, the essence of a series of actions of Xi tea is to seek the second growth curve of the business.
 
The new tea brands that layout the coffee track are not like tea. Naixue, yihetang, Yidian, Guming and Qifen sweet have all launched their own “creative coffee”. For example, Michelle ice city and coco have specially created sub brands (lucky coffee and coco caf é).
 
△ Naixue’s tea bar, photo source: brand official website.
Recently, observer Jun also noticed that the new trademark information of “lucky snack Department” in honey snow ice city is applied on November 8, which may indicate that honey snow ice city plans to make snacks across the border. Previously, honey snow ice city opened its first experience store in Zhengzhou, adding categories such as fried string.
 
In the context of such a serious internal volume, the head tea brands are looking for the second curve one after another, but the threshold of these cross-border attempts is very high, and small and medium-sized tea brands may not be able to do it. This also means that in the field of new tea, the Matthew effect of the strong and the weak will undoubtedly be more prominent in the future.
 
Summary
 
With the blessing of capital, the new tea track continues to be hot, and the tea brand expands wildly, but at the same time, many problems have been exposed, especially the frequent food safety problems, and the head brand can not be spared.
 
On September 3, a store of Xi tea in Shanghai was exposed that the clerk gave the wrong drink to the customer, resulting in the customer being hospitalized for gastric lavage after drinking, and the relevant topics rushed to the first place of hot search. Earlier this month, Naixue’s tea was exposed and a store in Shanghai was fined 50000 yuan for selling expired food. This accident directly affected the fluctuation of Naixue’s share price.
 
Such is the case for direct brands in the head. It is conceivable that a large number of small and medium-sized brands join in. When the cognitive battle enters the white hot new tea field, such food safety problems will have a significant impact on the brand.
 
Food safety can not be ignored. Therefore, it also sounds an alarm to operators again. They blindly pursue the number of stores and do not pay attention to food safety. After all, they can’t go far.
 
From the interpretation of the above trends, we can also get that the future competitive core of the new tea brand will focus on resource integration ability, service system and supply chain integrity. At the same time, it also means that it is not so easy to sit firmly on the throne of tea brand.

reference material:

[1] How many of the top ten popular drinks in 2021 did you bet on|   Carmen

[2] 2021 new tea report: 378000 stores, individual cities have “excessive competition”|   Carmen

[3] Who is in charge of the ups and downs of tea in the Jianghu|   Catering brand observation

[4] Heavy! Category and brand development report of Chinese lemon tea in 2021|   Catering brand observation

[5] The “top ten tea brands in China in 2021” was announced, and sinking the market is still the key to breakthrough | red meal.com

Author: Yanzi; Editor: Ao Qi; Design: Huang Lihui; Source: Food and beverage brand watch (ID: cyppgc88), reprint authorized. Reprint authorization and media business cooperation: Amy (wechat: 13701559246);
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