Last week we went “behind the brand” to give you a bit of a history lesson on CST Tires. Starting this week, we’ll be introducing some of the people involved with CST Tires.
Chris Meyer is the Moto/ATV Marketing Coordinator for Maxxis/CST USA. While he has only been with CST since December, he says he’s been an active participant in the sport since he was nine years old. “I’m a lifelong participant in the sport, definitely,” says Meyer. “I was doing a lot of the same things I’m doing now the year before I took this job, I just wasn’t getting paid to do it.”
Meyer said that before CST he was working in the adult beverage industry and he sees a lot of parallels with what he’s doing now.
“I spent the early part of my professional career in the adult beverage industry,” says Meyers. “Mostly on the beer side of things working for distributors or suppliers. The alcohol industry is very similar to this one and is set up in three tiers with a manufacturer, a distributor and a retailer.
“There’s a lot of the same challenges you face in communication and tracking conversions, and you know, proving that your marketing dollars are well spent are very similar. Similar to CST where we have a completely different industry, at the end of the day product that needs to somehow engage with a consumer, they need to be able to connect with it.”
Meyer lets us in on the secret behind brand marketing, and that is to make the product or brand more than the sum of its parts. We used the analogy of the craft beer market and the quality of beers improving and multiplying almost daily, but consumers are lost in the value of these brands unless they know what it is or have tried it before.
“Corona is an example where the value of their beer was the retail price and the perceived value of the beer was way above what the quality of that beer,” says Meyer. “They did it from a marketing perspective. Ballast Point, on the other hand, did it from a price point perspective; they price their beer so high that you would convince yourself it’s good or else you’d feel stupid for spending that much on beer!”
He says CST is in a unique spot where it has to be marketed very carefully because it is very aggressively priced. “Whether we like it or not, a lower price just kind of dictates a certain level of quality when you look at different price points,” says Meyer. “The reason we made an investment in professional racing was to expand the number of guys we have that can perform at the top level. I mean, we have more CST wins in GNCC than Maxxis does right now.”
Currently, Meyer says he is focusing on some of their brand ambassadors and the racing events for CST. There will also be some upcoming tests with their pro riders like Beau Baron and Adam McGill. Be sure to stop and say hello to Chris when you see him at the track or an event. Besides knowing a lot about tires, he knows a thing or two about adult beverages and can make some good recommendations for tires or beer – or both.