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.

SecurTek Monitoring Solutions
Best Sales Brochure
Sponsored by Visonic

Targeted Marketing Is About Solving Customers’ Needs

“We try to emphasize the value of the service we are providing to customers, rather than focusing on the equipment itself,” says Leanne Woodhouse, general manager of Marketing and Dealer Relations for SecurTek, a Yorkton, Saskatchewan, Canada-based provider of monitoring services for more than 70,000 customers. “We try to make sure that we identify who our target market is, what issues or concerns they are facing and then try to make sure that our marketing initiatives address that.”

According to SAMMY judges, that philosophy has served the company well as it scored high enough marks to earn it a 2010 trophy in the Best Sales Brochure category. The 12-page, full-color pocket guide-style piece is split into four sections that describe the company’s attributes, products beyond just security, value-added services and customer testimonials. The entry scored well in the areas of appearance, thanks to its clean and vivid design, and company representation and appeal.

“We combined a few pieces we had to make one simple, versatile piece, which made it more cost-effective,” says Woodhouse. “We use the piece for trade shows and for direct-mail campaigns. What gives it its versatility is the pocket we have on the back cover. It allows us to put campaign or show-specific material in it, making a nice package for customers.”

While SecurTek has not allowed a tough economy to hamper its marketing spending, the firm is allocating those funds more carefully than ever before. “It’s becoming more and more important to make sure that what you are doing is returning a benefit to your company. We’re being more focused in what we’re doing to ensure better results,” says Woodhouse.

Frugality and changing communications and customer habits have led the company to look beyond traditional marketing avenues. “We’re going to do more social media marketing and inbound marketing this year and beyond,” Woodhouse says. “It will allow us to connect with existing and potential customers in a more targeted way and it’s fairly cost-effective. We’re redeveloping our Web site to be able to provide more services and information, and we’ve started a Facebook fan page.”

Best Defense Security and Fire Protection
Best Company Logo Design
Sponsored by ISC Expo

The Gallant Knight Protects the Masses

When he started the company 16 years ago, Carter Rierson, president of Waunakee, Wis.-based Best Defense Security and Fire Protection, was fully aware that name recognition is a big part of growing a business. Thus, he wanted to create a logo that not only caught the eye of his community, but one that represented the company well.

What he developed was a SAMMY award-winning logo (created in-house) featuring a knight riding on horseback, which has become a major icon in his community. “People remember the horseman,” explains the first-time SAMMY winner. “It associates chivalry, gallantr
y and, most importantly, protection.”

Of course, when young ones recognize the symbol, it proves to be a good sign. Such was the case when Rierson’s one-year-old pointed at a local restaurant’s door decal of the logo and said, “Da Da,” instantly recognizing the horseman as the logo of the family business.

“Strong recognizable branding helps us develop sales by adding credibility to our name,” he says. “Customers are more likely to buy from us if they’ve seen our decals and trucks prior to the sales appointments.”

Though the company’s logo is seen on a great number of things, such as vehicles (Rierson provides the vinyl himself), business cards, yard signs and the company’s Web site, Rierson admits that with today’s economy, the marketing budget has gone down. Because of the reduced budget, Best Defense had to evaluate what techniques brought in the most sales. Upon realizing that very few customers were brought in through ads posted in the Yellow Pages, the company withdrew its ads and noticed a savings of a few thousand dollars a month.

Additionally, Best Defense installers must wear the company shirt that features the logo. And with access control being one of the markets the company caters to, Rierson has placed his company logo, name and phone number on physical access cards for name recognition.

Rierson couldn’t be more thrilled with his first SAMMY win adding, “[Receiving national recognition] shows that we’re doing something right. People want to choose a winner, and now, with this award Best Defense is a winner. It builds confidence, which is what sales are all about.”

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