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Picking your plow and spreader Vendor

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by behindmydesk, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. behindmydesk

    behindmydesk Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    I'm hoping this is ok to post here.

    We have been in the snow and salt spreader industry for about 10 years. I have always advertised on radio and news paper ad's. We are not in a major city and more between different cities. I have struggled getting contractors as customers. Mostly we are getting end users, and companies that provide their own plowing. So i'm looking for help on how I can market to area snow removal contractors. I know some of my competition sells landscaping equipment which I do not do, so they are getting the dual landscape/snow removal customers by already having those relationships. Any idea would be great help. I'm wondering if I should be approaching these customers in March and April instead of October and November. Thanks in advance. Hopefully the moderators are fine with this here if I did something wrong please let me know. Thanks
     
  2. mud

    mud Senior Member
    Messages: 125

    Competitive prices and top notch service. I use a diesel repair shop for my stuff. The staff is friendly and the owner knows me by name and makes it a point to come say hi. Their work is fast, reasonable and absolutely perfect and in the grand scheme of things I am one of their smaller customers. The deal with alot of heavy truck fleets that spend more in one repair than I spend in a year but still treat me like I am their best customer.
     
  3. behindmydesk

    behindmydesk Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Thanks that's actually what we are a heavy duty equipment and diesel repair and sales shop. So we do the same thing. Repeat business we never have had a problem with it's the initial one. Thanks for the reply.
     
  4. mud

    mud Senior Member
    Messages: 125

    As a side note. Its a 15 minute or so drive to the dealer that I use. I have a boss dealer less than a mile from me that I drive right past to get there. High prices, and mostly poor service are why I choose to make the to the other dealer.
     
  5. BossPlowMaster

    BossPlowMaster Senior Member
    Messages: 203

    Are you currently listed online as a plow dealer? Are you listed on your companies website as a dealer? Are you listed on the plow manufactures "Find a dealer" page? also i know this is super tough but we have a single guy that has a little so called "Auto" shop in one of the smallest cities in our state..however his pricing is the best known... infact there are people that order from other states just to get his pricing. If you have a good name behind you and you do quality installations and keep the costs low on both markup and installation you will eventually have business.
     
  6. behindmydesk

    behindmydesk Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Yes I am. Interesting on your example calling from states over. Thanks
     
  7. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,216

    Not trying to tell you how to spend your money, but this website would be a great place to advertise. I have done business with several of the sponsors.
     
  8. behindmydesk

    behindmydesk Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Thanks, I just got the quote. I originally just wanted to post 2 things I had trouble selling but I think overall it's probably a good investment. Thanks for your recommendation, that does help my decision.
     
  9. behindmydesk

    behindmydesk Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Does no one have actual sales people that call on them? I have 7 segments of my company, snow plows and salt spreaders are one. I have outside sales people who rep for me. I have never had them call on contractors, but was weighing my options. Does anyone have that? If so does it help?
     
  10. Meezer

    Meezer Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 291

    Many of us contractors that happen to be in your neck of the woods are already here @ PS.

    Like many people, we are not into newspapers & would not have seen your ads. As far as radio, there are quite a few stations in the Michiana area. Without knowing the name of your company, hard to say if I/we have heard it on the radio.


    There are quite a few snow removal contractors that work in the construction industry & would have no need for landscaping equipment.


    Yes, all the time. Can't stand it:mad:
     
  11. behindmydesk

    behindmydesk Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Thanks Meezer, I'm going to find out more info on advertising on here. I have the basics sounds like a great way.

    Yea i'm in newspapers a small bit, but mostly do not do it, because who reads the paper (A few of the small town ones I do, mostly just to support them)
    Yea a few radio stations but honestly I've been thinking with Sirius with CD's and what not who's listening to commercials.

    Thanks for the feedback on the contstruction industry and sales people! Helps me out a bunch


    One last question, what about working with truck dealerships. When you go to buy a new truck does it help if they already have a truck with my plow on it, or capabilities. I've done in the past and now have a few opportunities and could have more I would think if I planned it right and pushed it (if it's worth my while of course) to put plows on consignment or have them in their showroom. Anyone buy plows that way? Is that something that would be beneficial for all of you?

    Thanks so much for the feedback. I purposely didn't put my company name as my username because I didn't know the rules. I think if I advertise i'll talk to the mods about deleting this username and starting a new account or do a simple name change to my company name going forward. Thanks again everyone, and stay safe out there.
     
  12. Meezer

    Meezer Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 291



    I don't buy plows that way nor do I think it is beneficial to all.

    Potential buyers are from different demographic groups & there is no "one size fits all"

    All the dealers that I've purchased stuff from rep multiple plow brands, etc.,

    I'm in the over 40 group. Like many, I have developed a brand loyalty to particular plows (& other things.) Getting me to switch would require some really big "discounts"
     
  13. BossPlowMaster

    BossPlowMaster Senior Member
    Messages: 203

    Most of the plowing industry listens to the radio... sure knows that my truck doesnt have sirius radio and i hate having to change out CDs.



    I know that alot of places do offer the plows with trucks... and it is a great idea, how ever alot of the time the the second you hang a plow off the front of a new truck it voids the warranty on the truck in which the dealership might not like that... however it really is something I would go for if i were you. Also advertise on craigslist and if you have any local "buy, sell or trade" type organizations around you.
     
  14. TKLAWN

    TKLAWN PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,580

    Agree with all. But number one for me would be selling a good reputable product. Ie name brand Western, Boss, along with salt spreaders like snow ex and skid steer plows like kage or snow wolf. The biggest of course is stocking products or willingness to get them quick. Issues we have had at our dealer that make me angry. Just trying to help you out.
     
  15. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,216

    I bought my truck new with a plow installed. The dealer works closely with an "equipment up fitter". They trust each other so I know my plow was not installed by a "hack". My truck was delivered with a full factory warranty from Western and Ford. No problems 31/2 years later. This would be a good source of business for you.
     
  16. Italiano67

    Italiano67 Senior Member
    Messages: 640

    My local Western Star dealer sells Snoway and Blizzard plows as a sideline. The problem is that the parts guys know nothing and there is never any parts on the shelf. I can go online and buy parts. The only thing I am looking for is convenience and parts ASAP. If you want business start advertising plow and spreader service 24-7 if needed. You will get loyal customers if you are there when they need you, not the day after. I dont think they sell very many plows because around here Boss and Western are kings. Sticking with a popular brand in your area is key. Also selling a unique high end product such as Kage and Arctic that competitors arent will get you noticed even if you dont do alot of sales. Not much better advertising than a few blue snow pushers on stands by road frontage. Along with a nice sign stating SERVICE Day or Night. You wont lose money on the service deal because guys will pay in the heat of the moment and be thankful. Pick a couple of your better mechanics and train them on your brands and stagger their hours to be on call. My. 02 cents.
     
  17. joeyg999

    joeyg999 Member
    from Kansas
    Messages: 79

    Offer 24/7 roadside too I know I needed it a few times.