The window and home products market has been a longstanding segment of the franchise marketplace. Product and supply manufacturers have used the franchise distribution model for years and large, established brands such as Window World, Sears and others have been consistent franchise brands for many years. The Ecoview business model was a new concept created by a family member of the Window World franchise group who had seen the franchise distribution model work first hand as Window World took over the market for window distribution and retail through several hundred locations developed throughout the 80’s and 90’s.
Ecoview was as the brand presented, a line of windows that leveraged eco-friendly technology and products to help customers save money on their utilities and really provide great value to their home. Although the product line was higher priced than most alternatives, with a solid presentation and a good explanation of what the product offered, customers could easily see the value. Ecoview was simply put, a traditional, direct sales territory model that relied on strong sales professionals and a marketing model that got the sales person into the home and able to present the customer in person what Ecoview products could do for them.
The Ecoview model had started several years earlier and in 2012, approached Franchise Marketing Systems looking for support in building the network and finding qualified distributors to market and sell the Ecoview window line. The current distribution was focused almost entirely in Southern Alabama, but a consistent performance track record, strong sales model and a product line that truly offered a competitive differentiator made it obvious that Ecoview had much more potential for growth. Franchise Marketing Systems developed the distributor training manuals, marketing platform, sales model and strategic plan for growth. Although the distribution model was not a franchise, similar platforms and practices were used to qualify, screen and locate solid distributor partners to take the Ecoview line to market.
A series of franchise tradeshows, online lead development, Franchise SEO and lead generation portals were implemented to manage the recruitment process. Franchise Marketing Systems provided the sales personnel to manage recruitment and screening and the development model took to market in 2012. With a monthly budget of $500-$700, the dollars spent needed to be carefully allocated and managed to get the most production out of the development platform. A carefully planned lead presentation model was created to screen leads while keeping people excited, informed and moving through the process efficiently. In 2012 and 2013, 31 new markets were opened across the United States using the development platform and effectively creating the distribution network.
After a short time, it became evident that good distributors were people who had sales ability and were not uncomfortable getting in front of the customer quick and early. These types of candidates answered questions in a certain way and DISC profile was used to manage the qualification of dealership candidates. After initial calls and an application was completed by the candidate, calls were scheduled for the founder of Ecoview to discuss the business in more depth and detail, primarily to explain the value of the products and show candidates how leads were developed and ultimately business was closed.
Distributor partners were then invited to Daphne, Alabama to meet the team and experience the company firsthand. A large majority of the “discovery days” ended up moving forward after being given a chance to see the model in action and the credibility of the organization in person. With this, the dealership sales process pushed quickly to get candidates into the corporate location for a face to face meeting as early in the sales process as possible.
All together, a solid product line, good branding and a strong CEO who was able to convey value to potential dealers made the Ecoview brand successful and allowed the business to scale quickly with Franchise Marketing Systems.
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