16 HA NDBOO
What are consumers looking for
from electronic cigarettes?
WAYNE JONES: The most important thing
to understand about our consumers is that
they are constantly searching for new innovation, so long as it delivers the experience
they seek. Not only do they need a simple
and efficient e-vapor device that offers a
strong performance without any complicated bells and whistles, they also want it
to nail the draw and flavor features they are
looking for that other products on the market today have simply been lacking.
In a crowded category, how has
blu stayed in business for as long
as it has?
Since the beginning, blu has always listened to one particular audience when
creating its products—blu customers.
They are the loudest voice behind the evo-
lution of our products and one of the main
reasons for our longevity in the industry.
We listen to what our customers prefer
and what they would like see done differently, then adapt to create the ultimate
vaping experience that fits their unique
needs. We stand out because we do not
innovate for innovation’s sake—we innovate to create a more positive experience
for our consumers.
What is the best way for retailers
to merchandise the category and
In the “sea of similarity” that exists behind
the retail counter, less than 50 e-cigarette
SKUs make up 80 percent of the volume.
When partnering with retailers, we work
to optimize their working capital while
delivering optimal margins, without trying to commoditize the category. It is also
important to note that all of blu’s products
are designed for smokers, by smokers—
from the product to the packaging. We see
this world through the same lens, which
adds a unique edge to our partnership.
What new products will blu be
During the first quarter of 2017, we are
launching blu MAX. For the first time,
blu MAX will bring Responsive Draw
technology to blu’s acclaimed product
portfolio—equipping smokers with the
brand’s best vaping experience to date.
How? This feature has been designed to
adapt and respond to the intensity of adult
consumers’ inhalation and produces more
or less vapor in response. It is undoubtedly
the next evolution of e-vapor devices that
more closely imitates the experience adult
smokers and vapers are looking for.
In addition, blu MAX also offers an
ergonomic mouthpiece to further enhance
vapor delivery with completely intuitive
features such as a new connector for quick
and easy refill changes and a new “smart”
juice level indicator that tells consumers
when juice is low. With blu MAX, no two
breaths are the same—and no other vape
product will compare. It will be available
for purchase in five unique flavors with
two pre-filled refills per pack for a suggested retail price of $12.99.
What does the future hold for
blu and the category in the years
In a word—innovation. Here at blu, we
pride ourselves on being one of the only
leaders in this industry that truly listens.
We are on a quest to deliver the level of
satisfaction adult smokers seek from their
e-vapor products and we are not done
with this journey just yet. Innovation
and improvement, driven primarily by
customer feedback, remains our constant
goal. As long as our customers keep talking, we will keep listening. ■
The desire to innovate is centered around creating a more positive experience for its
customers, says WAYNE JONES, senior vice president sales operations at BLU.