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Ace Marketers Reveal Their Methods

Security dealers/integrators from across North America entered the 15th Annual SAMMY Awards to match their sales, marketing and installation prowess against industry peers. Who won and why, plus what can you learn from their successes is explained within.

Johnson Controls
Best Web Site Design
Sponsored by Campus Safety Magazine

JCI Web Site Aims to Raise Systems Integration Profile

Johnson Controls Inc. (JCI) may be synonymous with systems integration among electronic security professionals, but outside the industry the company’s life-safety services apparently do not enjoy anywhere near the same degree of recognition as its building automation business.

Thus it was when JCI undertook a redesign of Web site pages dedicated to its security and fire/life-safety portfolio that Denise Gadowski set course on a mission to raise awareness about the company as a physical security systems contractor.

“We needed to bring awareness that we actually are in this space. Johnson Controls is most well-known in the building automation industry, so it is really hard to educate the public that there is more to us than the piece for building efficiency,” says Gadowski, a senior marketing communications representative.

Prior to redesign efforts that began last October, JCI’s electronic security-related Web pages consisted primarily of product offerings only. Internal brainstorming sessions were scheduled with executives to come up with content ideas that would catch and hold the attention of site visitors, which mainly include building owners, architects and engineers.

Throughout the brainstorm sessions, content categories would be divined, nixed, revised, and massaged some more before the newly overhauled Web pages were officially launched more than four months later. Among its many improvements, the www.jci.comsite now features informational sections that address fundamental user concerns, such as “Ripping and Replacing Is Not Always Required.” There are also numerous case studies, a resources section, customer testimonials and more.

With a SAMMY Award to show for her success in leading the Web pages redesign, Gadowski has some fundamental advice for others who may be undertaking similar duty. “Keep text to a minimum and use more pictures to demonstrate what you are trying to convey. You can run the risk of being too graphic intensive and increasing the download times of your pages, so it is a very fine line,” she says. “But by far the No. 1 thing is to know your audience.”

The Protection Bureau
Best Promotional Giveaway Item
Sponsored by Altronix

Practical Gifts Keep Clients Happy

When thinking about the perfect giveaway items to give out to clients, Exton, Pa.-based The Protection Bureau President Matthew Ladd strives to give the people what they want, and more importantly, what will be useful to them. So far, this tactic has worked, especially since this is the second year the company has earned the Best Promotional Giveaway Item SAMMY.

The Protection Bureau’s customers are provided with several nifty items, including a foldable chair, umbrella, bag, coffee mug, baseball cap, gloves and golf balls — all adorned in the company’s silver-star logo.

“The idea [we were going for] is providing something that could be used by people during off-work hours,” says Ladd. “And of course, the main aspect is to get that name and logo recognition.”

The thank you gifts to customers have proven to be successful, too. After each installation, the customer service care department contacts clients to get feedback not only on the service, but the gift as well. And the feedback has been favorable. “You can tell that the people received something they will remember, use and appreciate just by their responses,” Ladd says.

It is also important to provide the proper gift to the proper audience by making sure what your target is and the best way to target them, notes Ladd.

Ladd notes that the company’s marketing budget was downsized last year as it tried to feel the market out. This year, however, is a different story.

“We’re actually growing our marketing rather than diminishing it because we want to keep our names out there so clients think of us first,” he explains. “When sales are down because of the economy, you need to be more aggressive and ingenious with your programs in some ways.”

One unique tactic the company does is host a “lunch and learn” training class every three months to provide clients and prospects with the necessary tools for a specific subject, such as access control, IP cameras or mass notification.

Additionally, The Protection Bureau is focusing on direct mailings as a way to get the word out, which is proving to be successful for the company, says Ladd.

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Article Topics
Business Management · Atronic Alarms · Best Defense Security & Fire Protection · Cover Story · Industry Awards · Johnson Controls · SAMMY Awards · All Topics

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Atronic Alarms, Best Defense Security & Fire Protection, Cover Story, Industry Awards, Johnson Controls, SAMMY Awards, SecurTek

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