With under two weeks remaining on Paligap’s industry saddle programme, where those in the trade can try out the brand at a substantially lower cost, BikeBiz talks to brand manager Blair Morgan about moving forward with the label in 2015…
What incentives are there for retailers to choose Selle San Marco for their shops?
For 2015 we have offered a full set of Racing model test saddles (eight in total), which come in a special satchel and a manual version of the new DiMA selector. This itself has a retail value of £960. This is given free of charge to dealers who take one each of the new models. They can mix and match any of the styles (Racing (Ti/Carbon Xslite rails), Carbon –FX (Carbon rails) models. This then puts the dealer on a preferential rate for the rest of the season. Minimum trade value works out to be only £540.
There’s a selection of women’s specific saddles being offered too – are you covering sport and leisure cycling?
Yes. This season sees the addition of a higher spec version in the Era Racing Model. San Marco refer to their ladies versions as Glamour. This new version sees some upgrades to the Xsilite rails (as seen on the Racing level), a little less Biofoam for a nice weight saving of 50 gram. The Era Glamour standard model is only £48. That said, many female racers do often use a normal saddle and with the DiMA, again we’re seeing that the availability of a wider fit option is generating some interest for that customer.
What marketing support is behind the label this year?
We have a solid print media campaign built around the DiMA Selector and in February we will be attending the London bike show.
There’s also an industry saddle programme where we are offering anyone in the trade chance to buy and try and Selle San Marco saddles with 75 per cent off RRP. This will be running for the month of February and again September.
Vintage styles are making a comeback too?
The UK market has always been appreciative of the classic lines of a vintage saddle. Visit a velodrome these days and you’ll see guys with a new Rolls fitted to their carbon track bike. For riders who still want a vintage look, but with some modern components, we have the Urban performance line, which mixes the best of both worlds. Models here include the Zoncolon, and Regale (the one with the rivets). Overall though, sales in the Vintage category make up around 32 per cent of our total sales.
To what extent are SSM looking into the science around sitting in the saddle?
DiMA Stands for Dimensional Mesh Analysis and it’s a system that has been around for a few years now. There are no expensive tools or specialist training required and the system takes only a few minutes. In-store we have a manual tool, and Apps for Apple or Android, or a PC tool.
The five simple steps are:
Age: We consider the age as one of the factors in determining the choice of the type of saddle.
Sensitivity to Pressure: The perineum is an area rich in nerve endings between the ischial bones whose exposure differs depending on the subjects. High exposure results in greater compression with a consequent reduced blood flow and soreness.
Body Type: Determine your body type using the three-macro categories of the classification known as ‘somatotype’. Each one features specific physical characteristics through which every person can easily be identified.
Delta Saddle to Handlebar: Your riding position on the bike is a consequence of the difference between the height of the saddle and the one of the handlebar. This value is the handlebar-to-saddle delta and, according to the difference (Delta), it is matched to one of three proposed categories.
Ride Style: Choose a Waved saddle if you normally sit against the back and pedal from a fixed position. This profile supports you if pedalling uphill thanks to the rear part slightly raised. Select a flat saddle if you prefer to make a greater use of the entire surface of the saddle, with frequent movements back and forth.
What packages are currently available to stockists?
We have several packages on offer to cater for all sizes of dealer and their customer base.
Any mix of eight Saddles will get the dealer the Free Test Saddle Kit & Satchel and a discount that’s on- going for the season. Add another eight saddles and a 2.5 per cent discount is applied on the order, or take 24 or more and get a ten per cent discount on the whole order. Point of sale items are also available upon request, depending on the store’s requirements.