Filtered by category: Leadership Clear Filter

Do COVID-Savvy Customers Want More Than Online Shopping?

From the NAW Blog

It has become a universally accepted truth that the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated customer expectations for buying online. Many distributors report a dramatic shift toward customer orders placed on e-commerce platforms. This trend has confirmed what many have said for several years: distributors must invest in modern e-commerce platforms to remain a viable source for meeting customer expectations. But is doing so enough? Is there a more vital lesson that many distributors are missing? Will distribution miss a critical opportunity for locking in unbreakable customer loyalty if they remain blind to the bigger picture? 

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Sales Acceleration: Rethinking Seller Roles

From the NAW Blog

2020 has been a tough year for most distribution sales teams. In certain markets — such as janitorial and sanitation, HVAC, home improvement and landscaping — shifting consumption patterns have spurred rapid growth. Customers increasingly engage with suppliers through e-commerce, market platforms such as Amazon and Alibaba, and virtual meeting platforms. These new, emerging buyer and seller engagement models present compelling value and efficiencies that are certain to endure beyond the pandemic.

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5 Benefits that Prove Customer Stratification Is More than a Sales Tool

From the NAW Blog

In our playbook for distributors to SURGE ahead using customer stratification, we outlined ways distributors could segment customers to boost profitability — particularly to mitigate the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. We believe it is a foundational analytics practice for any distributor. And its applications in the pursuit of profitable growth are almost endless.

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Why Distributors Can Make Millions with Messy Data

From the NAW Blog

One of the most valuable resources distributors have is their data. Data can reveal what your customers are likely to buy, what growth opportunities you’re missing out on and where you can cut costs. Distributors with the right data can meet customer needs and dominate competitors. But acquiring and handling data properly is no easy task.

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Holiday Classic: An Open Letter to the Sons and Daughters of Distribution

From the NAW Blog

Last year, I suggested a holiday conversation about the future of distribution as distributor families gather for Thanksgiving. Our idea was that distributors’ sons and daughters, whether they work in distribution or elsewhere, can share vital insights. With the ongoing pandemic, this year’s conversations are even more critical. 

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Ensure Your Contracts Are Profitable in the New Year

From the NAW Blog

It’s no secret that contracts are a great way to secure valuable business for distributors. For many companies, they account for a significant portion of annual revenue and are critical in bringing in key customers. Unfortunately, if they are not managed carefully, contracts can become an area of business where profit leaks or slips through the cracks.

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3 Analytics Myths Holding Distributors Back

From the NAW Blog

If you’re considering analytics as a means to drive profitable growth in 2021, you’re on the right track. The distribution industry is facing an uncertain market, digital acceleration and a changed landscape. Analytics can help distributors make data-driven decisions to stay on course and be successful.

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4 Foundations of a Successful Sales Transformation

From the NAW Blog

When was the last time you saw an ad for FedEx? Yet their brand remains synonymous with fast shipping. As Peter Drucker says, “The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well that the product or service fits him and sells itself.”

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How have your customers' behaviors changed since COVID-19?

From NAW

The COVID Effect on Purchasing

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Is Storytelling the Missing Link for Leveraging Distributor Data?

From NAW

Virtually every distributor I encounter understands that mastering data, analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) is essential if distributors are to survive and thrive in the digital age. However, very few leaders have a comprehensive game plan for turning their company into a data-driven business.

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The 3 Things an Effective Board of Directors Should Never Do

From NAW

In my last post for the NAW Blog Distributing Ideas, I talked about the importance of having an effective board structure as a foundational element of a sustainable competitive advantage, whether your business is public or private. It’s a rare thing, however, and a great one in a distribution company is an exception.

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3 Reasons to Invest in AI Now

There are a lot of reasons for distributors to adopt AI. As I explain in previous posts, the technology can help inside and outside sales reps sell more, transform customer service branches into revenue drivers and boost e-commerce performance by double-digit percentage points. At this point, the real question for distributors is not if they should adopt AI, but when. In this post, I’ll answer that question.  READ MORE

What is your strategy in this era of technology disruption and transformation?

There are a lot of reasons for distributors to adopt AI. As I explain in previous posts, the technology can help inside and outside sales reps sell more, transform customer service branches into revenue drivers and boost e-commerce performance by double-digit percentage points. At this point, the real question for distributors is not if they should adopt AI, but when. In this post, I’ll answer that question.  READ MORE

What is your strategy in this era of technology disruption and transformation?

From NAW

Leading technology companies are offering customers new ways of ordering — by voice or product image. In addition, leading distributors and retailers are using AI-enabled business intelligence to understand their customer needs better, and they are applying autonomous vehicles, including drones, for deliveries. How important is all of this technology capability to your customers?

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NAW Supports the INFORM Consumers Act

NAW Press Release:

Washington, DC (September 1, 2020) … Today the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors (NAW) announces its support of the INFORM Consumers Act, legislation introduced by Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) which will require common-sense disclosures from third-party marketplace sellers who use online platforms like Amazon to sell products to American consumers. A companion bill has also been introduced in the House by Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky (D-IL).

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Are Your Managers Managing Your Culture?

A new article by Mark Dancer, NAW Institute for Distribution Excellence Fellow, is live in the NAW Blog: Distributing Ideas

Here is a preview.

I’ve learned from many distributor leaders that a company’s culture is determined not only by its values, but by the particular employee behaviors that are most aligned with achieving its ideals. A positive, well-managed culture will drive productivity, reinforce customer experiences and enable innovations. A negative culture, however, can kill strategic initiatives and demolish returns on investment. How your employees behave determines whether your business culture is a creative or destructive force for innovation.





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What is Innovate to Dominate

From NAW:

What is Innovate to Dominate? 

In these uncertain times when you are looking to strengthen your business in the second half of 2020 and beyond, we hope you’ll use these timely educational resources as your roadmap to create B2B innovation. NAW and PROS are partnering to provide these essential tools to help you on your digital transformation journey so you can get ahead of the increasingly disruptive and transformational forces around your business. Our goal with these resources is for you to not only see into the future of distribution, but to step into it with world-class, scalable solutions.

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CDP: The Three Letters You Need to Know

A new article by Benj Cohen, Entrepreneur of Artificial Intelligence Technology and Third-generation Distributor, is live in the NAW Blog: Distributing Ideas

Here is a preview.

As distributors look for new ways to connect with customers and boost profitability, they must consider all sorts of three-letter tools: ERPs (enterprise resource planning), CRMs (customer relationship management), MDMs (master data management), MRMs (marketing resource management), and so on. Unfortunately, many of these “solutions” end up causing more problems than they solve.

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3 Steps to Managing Market Shifts with Inventory Analytics

From NAW Blog:

A new article by Senthil Gunasekaran, Co-author of Seven Enduring NAW Institute Best Sellers, is live in the NAW Blog: Distributing Ideas

Here is a preview.

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The New Financial Normal May Well Be the Old Normal

The New Financial Normal May Well Be the Old Normal

NFDA Profit Improvement Report
Volume 29, No. 3

By Dr. Albert D. Bates

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