Make a Big Deal Out of Combo Products
Providing value-added products like form/label combinations involves product knowledge and a greater time investment.
The '90s ushered in some amazing developments in affixing and integrating equipment along with ongoing advancements in materials and adhesives. The upshot is a dynamic crop of time-, efficiency- and accuracy-enhancing combination products such as form/label combinations.
Clearly today's sophisticated business operations are well served by such innovation. However, as Judy Miller, label project manager for Vandalia, Ohio-based PrintGraphics observed, these products are best marketed through solution-selling, which requires up-to-date product knowledge and additional sell time.
Offered Miller, "There are two types of salespeople: those who quote orders that essentially duplicate existing products, and those who start out with pre-existing products but eventually learn the operation from front to back in order to offer new ideas."
Miller noted that the current economy has many distributors thinking outside the purchasing department and increasing cold calls within companies they already sell to. For many, it meant reinventing the selling cycle.
"Ask Joe in purchasing for a walk through the facility," suggested Miller. "The distributor will soon discover that Joe is not the person making buying decisions in other areas." The purchasing person may buy the checks, she explained, but introducing a new lab form for drug testing might require seeing the clinical director.
While a form/label combination is going to be more expensive than a simple pressure-sensitive label, Miller said that customers are not opposed to spending money for solutions that work. To put it in perspective, she pointed out that orders for traditional forms may cost $600, while those for pressure-sensitive labels may average $1,200. On the other hand, affixed form/label combinations can cost about $2,300 and integrated products $6,000.
"It's not unusual to get orders for integrated products totaling $25,000 to $30,000," she said. "Adding combination products to the mix can be very lucrative."