“I’ve carried other brands in my stores, but customers always go to BIC lighters because it’s a tried, true, and trusted brand. You know when you buy a BIC lighter that it’s going to work,” says Jessica Friesen, VP of the Gales Gas Bars and Bob’s Fast & Fresh Convenience chain in St. Catharines, ON. Canadian consumers agree, making BIC the number one selling brand of lighters1.
Here’s how Friesen makes the most of BIC lighters sales in her four c-stores.
The front counter might be small, but it’s prime real estate in the c-store world. “Customers might not come in just for a lighter, but as soon as they see the display, they’ll think, ‘Oh right, I need to pick up a lighter or two,’” says Friesen. This is why it’s essential to ensure the BIC lighter display is front and centre at the cash.
“Counter space is always good for the little things people didn’t realize they either wanted or needed, and a lighter fits into that category perfectly,” she says, adding that it’s the ideal way to build incremental sales.
Keeping the BIC display front and centre and training staff members to upsell whenever possible, will keep the purchase top of mind.
Be in the know
Wrap lighters can generate interest and excitement amongst customers, but it’s up to retailers to understand the trends, store demographics and current events when ordering.
“I generally go for lighters that reflect what’s big in that moment in time,” says Friesen. If there’s a major sporting event or concert coming up, Friesen orders the wrap lighters that will be on trend or top of mind for her customers. Friesen isn’t alone. Maxi Flick Your BIC®, Maxi NHL®, Maxi Rock Bands, Maxi Beers, and Mini Limited Edition are the top selling wrap series2.
Striking a balance between wraps and solid colours is essential. “There are certain people who don’t care, but there are a lot of people who will choose one lighter over another. This is why having an assortment is huge and keeping the displays fully stocked is essential,” says Friesen.
With the right in-store placement, a balance of trendy wraps and solid colours, and a knowledgeable, friendly staff, you can spark a conversation with your customers and start building their baskets today!
In celebration of BIC Lighter’s 40th anniversary, consumers had the chance to show off their creativity with the Flicktacular online contest and sweepstakes. From December 6, 2013 until February 7, 2014, Canadian consumers visited flickyourbic.ca and used an online tool to design their own lighter wraps. More than 2,400 Canadians submitted more than 5,600 designs, and from February 19, 2014 until March 17, 2014, the public voted for their favourites. After 12,494 votes were cast online, the forty designs with the highest number of votes were chosen as the finalists. Nine designs were then chosen by a panel of judges as the contest winners. All the promotion winners were announced in April.
The winning contest designs have been put into production and will hit c-stores this September, so be sure to showcase Canadian consumers’ creativity. The designs will be an effective way to spark conversation with your customers about the unique lighters on your front counter!
1 Nielsen Market Track, FDM +GM +WC +C&G, Last 52 week period ending 11-Jan-2014
2 Nielsen Market Track, C&G, Last 52 week period ending 11-Jan-2014