Retail Buyers Guide: Technical Snow Backpacks FW19/20
Interviewee: Jan Sallawitz – Head of Marketing
What are the major trends in the snow backpack market next Fall/Winter?
Ambitious touring and split boarding is a big topic in the next season.
What do customers expect from their technical snow backpacks?
For sure maximum functionality combined with solid protection and a perfect fit. Ideally people can use their e.g. avalanche safety backpack all year around, as we feel the times where people were willing to buy multiple backpacks for a different use are over. At the same time the customers are getting more demanding regarding the features such a technical snow backpack should offer. In the end, we should not forget the style of the pack, as this might be decisive, when it comes to purchase decisions between products with similar features.
How are you segmenting your technical backpack collection and what are the main price points in each segment?
At EVOC we offer protector backpacks, which made the brand famous, as well as avalanche packs and touring packs. When it comes to tech packs, it’s protector backpacks for freeriding and avalanche packs. The freeride protection packs sell for an average of 185 Euro, the new avalanche pack LINE R.A.S. that fits the MAMMUT R.A.S. 3.0 unit sells for 240 Euro with a 30l volume (ex. unit).
What are the main marketing stories and inspirations behind your FW 19/20 collection?
As the EVOC LINE R.A.S. was such a huge step forward in terms of functionality and the other SNOW products were ahead of the state of the art when launched, we decided to not add any family members to the SNOW collection next season. We produced a lot of great material and footage with our athletes last spring, which we are more than proud to show and at the same time it’s the most credible one – what can be more convincing than an athlete doing a backflip with an avalanche pack that stays rock solid where it’s supposed to.
How are you helping retailers sell the backpacks and educate customers (POS displays, etc.)?
Ideally with our EVOC Program Store that consists of custom walls and touchpoints and offers the customer a holistic impression what EVOC stands for, plus enables the retailer to show a wider variety of products even with limited space. Those come with specially designed displays, graphics and information. We introduced the so-called EPS not too long ago and sales figures already prove that the impact on the customer is as expected. Of course, we are also providing our retailers that can’t install the EPS with our sales materials.
What are the most important technologies/features in your technical backpack collection? Do you offer anything new and outstanding next season?
Changing our partner in terms of avalanche safety for the 18/19 season was a big and important step for us. In that way, our product designers for the first time could create the entire avalanche backpack construction from scratch and realize all ideas and standards regarding ergonomic aspects, features and details that are very progressive – e.g. adding bionic hip wings to the pack that offer fantastic weight distribution and a body hugging fit. Before, we were always dependent on the preconditions of our system partner. With the LINE R.A.S. we are finally able to present a product that resembles our full competence and knowledge in that category. As EVOC turns 10 this year, we have developed a whole new protection technology, the so called AIRSHIELD, which is very temperature resistant and for now used with our new high-end bike pack the NEO 16l. We’ll see if and how this finds its way into the SNOW segment in the future.
What color palettes, prints or patterns are you working with?
After our 10thanniversary, the EVOC star which is also part of our logo will appear in the patterns in a very stylish and mature way. Color wise, we still go for bright, what EVOC is known for, but less flashy with a touch of earthy and natural. The EVOC logo also appears a little subtler than in the past. Gold for sure is a relatively new EVOC color, that will accompany us a little longer.
Which materials are you using?
High-end anti-abrasive and water-resistant Nylons, partly PU coated are our main materials.
Please name and describe 3 highlight items from your FW 19/20 collection.
EVOC LINE R.A.S. Avalanche Safety Backpack – 20l or 30l
FR PRO 20l Protector Backpack with LITESHIELD protector
MISSION PRO 28l – which is not only SNOW but an essential travel companion for all digital nomads and sports travelers that need to carry their office with them.