Strategic Pricing Events Digest | September 2014

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Our Events Digests are a compilation of info about upcoming events hosted by SPA, 3rd party events where we will participate, and highlights from recent ones. Learn how leading manufacturing and distribution executives have unlocked the keys to faster growth, stronger customer relationships, and market-leading profitability with SPA’s proven strategic pricing processes and technology.

Upcoming Events

September 21-23

SPA will be participating in the Prophet 21 User Group Connect 2014 Conference in Dallas, TX.

 

October 8

Strategic Pricing Executive Overview | Houston, TX

Equal parts strategy and practical tactics, this complimentary half-day Strategic Pricing Executive Overview event at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport Marriott in Houston, TX will address key topics that are particularly relevant in a recovering economy. The seminar offers strategies on driving shareholder value with a focus on strategic pricing.

This big-picture seminar is focused on strategic topics of importance to the owners, CEOs, CFOs, and general managers of distribution and manufacturing companies. Experts will address the topics essential to accelerating the customer value proposition, competitive positioning and market value of any distribution or manufacturing business. The seminar addresses the strategic, analytical, process and cultural issues that are fundamental to maximizing shareholder value. The seminar will focus on the high-level, strategic and structural issues that are easily neglected in the hustle and bustle of daily business demands. It will help you to re-focus your organization on the drivers of economic value.

David Bauders, President and Dolores Bauders, COO of SPA will lead presentations and best-practices discussions and will discuss SPA’s integrated, actionable program that drives sustainable improvements in pricing effectiveness. Space is extremely limited for this no-cost event so register soon to save your spot.

Presentation Topics

  • Driving Change That Matters in a Rebound Economy
  • Strategic Pricing in a Rebound Economy: Best Practices
  • The SPA Pricing Cube™ Reporting Tool
  • Change Management and Sales Culture: Execution on the Drivers That Matter
  • Conclusion: Execution Excellence in a Rebound Economy

Click here for complete agenda

Click here to register

 

October 14 

Learn How IPS Corporation Uses Strategic Pricing Tools to Track Sales Force Accountability | Webcast

Register to attend our webcast that starts at 2:00 PM EST where Nick Cassella, President of IPS Corporation’s Plumbing Group will share their journey to pricing excellence and how they are leveraging strategic pricing tools to track sales force accountability.

To implement a solution that enhanced profitability, developed pricing discipline, and removed emotion from the pricing function, they turned to SPA to implement a proven strategic pricing initiative founded on SPA’s powerful pricing analytics tools. During this 60-minute webcast, they will share their experiences and advice that will provide you with a wealth of practical knowledge including their fast ROI and lessons learned!

Click here to read SPA Client Testimonials

SPA’s Dave Lienert will also discuss how our solutions, which leverage experience from working with hundreds of companies to drive 2-4 margin point gains on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback, can help your company.

Attendees will learn how to address the following all too common issues and opportunities for increasing profitability:

  • Customer relationships focused on product/service value, not price
  • Identifying and capturing available margin premiums
  • Identifying price-sensitive products and services
  • Improving sales reps’ confidence in prices
  • Stopping undisciplined discounting
  • Tracking metrics for sales force accountability
  • Improving pricing consistency and fairness
  • This webcast draws on SPA’s experience working with hundreds of companies to drive pricing gains of 2-4 margin points on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback.

Click here to register

 

November 7

SPA Strategic Pricing Seminar | Chicago, IL

Equal parts strategy and practical tactics, this full-day complimentary Strategic Pricing Seminar at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare in Chicago, IL will address key topics that are particularly relevant in a recovering economy. This year’s seminar brings together an outstanding group of industry experts to offer strategies on driving shareholder value.

This big-picture seminar is focused on strategic topics of importance to the owners, CEOs, CFOs, and general managers of distribution and manufacturing companies. Experts will address the topics essential to accelerating the customer value proposition, competitive positioning and market value of any distribution or manufacturing business. The seminar addresses the strategic, analytical, process and cultural issues that are fundamental to maximizing shareholder value. The seminar will focus on the high-level, strategic and structural issues that are easily neglected in the hustle and bustle of daily business demands. It will help you to re-focus your organization on the drivers of economic value.

David Bauders of SPA, Dolores Bauders of SPA, Jonathan Bein of Real Result Marketing and Frank Hurtte of River Heights Consulting will lead presentations and best-practices panels with executives of leading manufacturing and distribution businesses. In addition, there will be a presentation by capital markets expert, David Hallett, of Lazard Middle Market LLC. Space is extremely limited for this no-cost event so register soon to save your spot.

Presentation Topics

  • Driving Change That Matters in a Rebound Economy
  • Presentation on Capital Markets: How to Maximize Enterprise Value
  • Best Practices Panel Discussion: Strategic Pricing in a Rebound Economy
  • The SPA Pricing Cube™ Reporting Tool
  • Best Practices Panel Discussion: Change Management and Sales Culture – Execution on the Drivers That Matter
  • Sharpening Your Value Proposition for a Global Economy
  • Conclusion: Execution Excellence in a Rebound Economy

Click here for complete agenda

Click here to register

 

November 13-14

SPA Strategic Pricing Conference | Las Vegas, NV

Equal parts strategy and practical tactics, this full-day complimentary Strategic Pricing Conference and half-day client training session in Las Vegas, NV will address key topics that are particularly relevant in a recovering economy. This fall’s seminar brings together an outstanding group of industry experts to offer strategies on driving shareholder value.

This big-picture seminar is focused on strategic topics of importance to the owners, CEOs, CFOs, and general managers of distribution and manufacturing companies. Experts will address the topics essential to accelerating the customer value proposition, competitive positioning and market value of any distribution or manufacturing business. The seminar addresses the strategic, analytical, process and cultural issues that are fundamental to maximizing shareholder value. The seminar will focus on the high-level, strategic and structural issues that are easily neglected in the hustle and bustle of daily business demands. It will help you to re-focus your organization on the drivers of economic value.

David Bauders of SPA, Dolores Bauders of SPA, Jonathan Bein of Real Result Marketing and Frank Hurtte of River Heights Consulting will lead presentations and best-practices panels with executives of leading manufacturing and distribution businesses. Space is extremely limited for this no-cost event so register soon to save your spot.

Presentation Topics

  • Driving Change That Matters in a Rebound Economy
  • Best Practices Panel Discussion: Strategic Pricing in a Rebound Economy
  • The SPA Pricing Cube™ Reporting Tool
  • Best Practices Panel Discussion: Change Management and Sales Culture – Execution on the Drivers That Matter
  • Sharpening Your Value Proposition for a Global Economy
  • Conclusion: Execution Excellence in a Rebound Economy

Click here to register

 

November 18 

Learn How Crawford Supply Uses Strategic Pricing Tools to Identify and Capture Available Margin Premiums | Webcast

Register to attend our webcast that starts at 2:00 PM EST where Jeff Heksh, Sales Director of Crawford Supply will share their journey to pricing excellence and how they are leveraging science-based strategic pricing tools to identify and capture available margin premiums.
To implement a solution that enhanced profitability, developed pricing discipline, and removed emotion from the pricing function, they turned to SPA to implement a proven strategic pricing initiative founded on SPA’s powerful pricing analytics tools. During this 60-minute webcast, they will share their experiences and advice that will provide you with a wealth of practical knowledge including their fast ROI and lessons learned!

Click here to read SPA Client Testimonials

SPA’s Dave Lienert will also discuss how our solutions, which leverage experience from working with hundreds of companies to drive 2-4 margin point gains on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback, can help your company.

Attendees will learn how to address the following all too common issues and opportunities for increasing profitability:

  • Customer relationships focused on product/service value, not price
  • Identifying and capturing available margin premiums
  • Identifying price-sensitive products and services
  • Improving sales reps’ confidence in prices
  • Stopping undisciplined discounting
  • Tracking metrics for sales force accountability
  • Improving pricing consistency and fairness
  • This webcast draws on SPA’s experience working with hundreds of companies to drive pricing gains of 2-4 margin points on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback.

Click here to register

 

December 9 

Learn How B&B Trade Distribution Centre Uses Strategic Pricing Tools to Identify Price-sensitive Products and Services | Webcast

Register to attend our webcast that starts at 2:00 PM EST where Robb Howe, General Manager for B&B Trade will share their journey to pricing excellence and how they are leveraging science-based strategic pricing tools to identify price-sensitive products and services.
To implement a solution that enhanced profitability, developed pricing discipline, and removed emotion from the pricing function, they turned to SPA to implement a proven strategic pricing initiative founded on SPA’s powerful pricing analytics tools. During this 60-minute webcast, they will share their experiences and advice that will provide you with a wealth of practical knowledge including their fast ROI and lessons learned!

Click here to read SPA Client Testimonials

SPA’s Dave Lienert will also discuss how our solutions, which leverage experience from working with hundreds of companies to drive 2-4 margin point gains on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback, can help your company.

Attendees will learn how to address the following all too common issues and opportunities for increasing profitability:

  • Customer relationships focused on product/service value, not price
  • Identifying and capturing available margin premiums
  • Identifying price-sensitive products and services
  • Improving sales reps’ confidence in prices
  • Stopping undisciplined discounting
  • Tracking metrics for sales force accountability
  • Improving pricing consistency and fairness
  • This webcast draws on SPA’s experience working with hundreds of companies to drive pricing gains of 2-4 margin points on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback.

Click here to register

 

January 15-16

SPA Strategic Pricing Conference | Ft. Lauderdale , FL

Equal parts strategy and practical tactics, this full-day complimentary Strategic Pricing Conference and half-day client training session in Las Vegas, NV will address key topics that are particularly relevant in a recovering economy. This fall’s seminar brings together an outstanding group of industry experts to offer strategies on driving shareholder value.

This big-picture seminar is focused on strategic topics of importance to the owners, CEOs, CFOs, and general managers of distribution and manufacturing companies. Experts will address the topics essential to accelerating the customer value proposition, competitive positioning and market value of any distribution or manufacturing business. The seminar addresses the strategic, analytical, process and cultural issues that are fundamental to maximizing shareholder value. The seminar will focus on the high-level, strategic and structural issues that are easily neglected in the hustle and bustle of daily business demands. It will help you to re-focus your organization on the drivers of economic value.

David Bauders, Dolores Bauders, Jonathan Bein and Frank Hurtte will lead presentations and best-practices panels with executives of leading manufacturing and distribution businesses; with a distinguished panel of capital markets experts, led by Jason Kliewer of Baird Securities and Jim Miller of Supply Chain Equity.

Presentation Topics

  • Driving Change That Matters in a Rebound Economy
  • Panel Discussion and Presentation on Capital Markets: How to Maximize Enterprise Value
  • Best Practices Panel Discussion: Strategic Pricing in a Rebound Economy
  • The SPA Pricing Cube™ Reporting Tool
  • Best Practices Panel Discussion: Change Management and Sales Culture – Execution on the Drivers That Matter
  • Sharpening Your Value Proposition for a Global Economy
  • Conclusion: Execution Excellence in a Rebound Economy

Click here for complete agenda

Click here to register

 

Past Events

May 1

SPA Strategic Pricing Conference in Las Vegas, NV | Event Recap

The following are highlights of an article authored by Frank E. Hurtte Jr. who has 28 years of distribution industry experience and a lifetime in sales. He led a panel discussion at the last SPA Strategy Seminar and he has compiled a few highlights, comments, and data points shared by distribution and manufacturing leaders as well as industry experts for those of you that were not able to attend this informative event.

Presentation: Market Trends in the Current Economic Environment

The following are some key insights for you to think about that were shared by Tom Gale, President of Gale Media and Publisher of Modern Distribution Management magazine, who shared data from the latest MDM/NetSuite Wholesale Distribution Outlook Report.

2014 appears to be shaping out as a pretty good year for distributors. According to the survey respondents nearly 66% of the Distributors surveyed are optimistic about the coming year. And, they are investing in technology. The investments will rev up your own thoughts on this whole growth thing.

Other data points from the report:
  • 40.7 % are investing in Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems
  • 40.1% are investing in E-Commerce
  • 29.7% are investing in Mobile Apps for Sales
  • 23.3% are investing in Pricing Process
  • 20.9% are investing in Cloud Computing (SaaS)
  • 15.7% are investing in EDI
  • 15.1% are investing in Demand Planning
  • 13.4% are investing in Warehouse Management Systems
  • 9.3% are investing in Finance/Accounting Software

Presentation: Driving Change that Matters in a Recovery Economy

David Bauders, President and Founder of Strategic Pricing Associates (SPA), made an offhand comment during his presentation that struck a chord with me.  As a matter of fact, it continued to resonate several days later as I was preparing this article and thought it was worthy of including.

David went on to explain his comment:

“In pricing, you don’t have to be perfect to win…”

The SPA pricing process impact drives small slivers of gross margin improvement.  These come from products with less visibility in the market.  Sailing under the radar, obscure product categories sold to tiny and small customers can generate additional gross margin.  Many times the gross margin impact is upwards of 5, 6 or 7 points on affected revenues.  Because such products carry a true cost-to-serve that is relatively high (slower inventory turns, obscure vendors, less favorable terms, higher handling costs), it is not only feasible to price them at higher margins, it is necessary.

An effective pricing structure takes you away from the “cost plus” mentality.  Your company’s process begins to take things like hassles with an obscure supplier, time spent locating one time buys and non-stock/special order transaction costs into consideration.

Reports back from long-term SPA clients point to continued gains year over year as the management team continues to tweak and perfect their use of the pricing cube.  The leadership teams of the most successful SPA clients continue to define and reinforce the system year over year.  It’s a process and as the old saying goes, “Process is about progress not perfection.”

Panel Discussion: “Change Management and Sales Culture:  Execution on the Drivers that Matter”

Normally, the catch phrase is, “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.”  But this time, we thought we would share a few words of wisdom that were shared during one of the panel discussions at the event.  The panel consisted of executives from four high profile wholesalers representing the Electrical, HVAC, and Plumbing Supply industry.

SPA’s David Bauders posed a question to the group; here are comments in response to the following question:

What was pricing like in the days before SPA? 

“Conversations with a number of SPA clients in our industry completely dispelled nearly everything I believed about how pricing works.  One of the jokes in our market went like this:  If you need three quotes on a project, just call us three times.  Sadly, the joke was on us because it was mostly true.”

“During 2004 through 2006, pricing for us was just like the “wild west” with everybody doing their own thing and very little management involvement.  But, it was the good wild west because business was robust.  In 2008, we fell off a cliff and it really put the “hurt” on us.  When we started studying SPA it opened our eyes to what pricing could be.”

We left out the names of the companies in this article, but at the strategy seminar each of these panelists shared the wealth of their own experiences with the group as a whole and in a number of individual sidebars.  Once more going back to the panel discussion, here are comments in response to the following question:

How much real customer pushback did you encounter?

“We really can’t report any significant customer pushback, but we are constantly pushing our sales group.  We feel it is our job to support our sales effort.  The reasons we hear from our sales team comes from the heart and not from the head.  They have anecdotal what if stories, we provide them with real data and metrics.  They are coming along but the whole thing is a process with continual improvement from sales.”

“Our pushback was 100 to 1 from the internal folks…  The only times we have ever heard any issues from real customers was well into the system when managers became too aggressive in order to meet departmental goals.”

 Click here to read the full article

 

June 6

SPA Mastering Strategic Pricing in a New Economy Seminar in Chicago, IL | Event Recap

The following are highlights of an article we have compiled a few highlights and data points shared by distribution and manufacturing leaders as well as industry experts for those of you that were not able to attend this informative event.

The event focused on strategic topics of importance to the owners, CEOs, CFOs, and general managers of distribution and manufacturing companies. Experts addressed the topics essential to accelerating the customer value proposition, competitive positioning and market value of any distribution or manufacturing business. Their presentations addressed the strategic, analytical, process and cultural issues that are fundamental to maximizing shareholder value and on the high-level, strategic and structural issues that are easily neglected in the hustle and bustle of daily business demands.

Attendees learned best-practice strategies and tactics to:

  • Achieve faster growth and market-leading profitability
  • Develop stronger customer relationships
  • Maximize your company’s valuation
  • Drive real change in sales force culture
  • Break the cycle of undisciplined pricing
  • Build a sales process based on customer value
  • Quantify and Communicate Customer Value
  • Achieve pricing flexibility with discipline
  • Improve operational efficiency with reporting and analytics

Major themes covered at the event included:

  • Now is the time to focus on strategic fundamentals to set the stage for outperformance in the rebound
  • Inflation and pricing challenges are looming; those who don’t master pricing will experience a margin squeeze
  • There are significant capital markets opportunities to increase shareholder value today
  • Pricing excellence is a key wealth-maximizing capability
  • Analytics and the information system are key
  • Training drives execution
  • Sales culture and change management are the challenge
  • Prioritization, long-term commitment, and focus are the keys

One of the benefits of attending an SPA Seminar comes via expert analysis of the distribution business. The Chicago event featured an in depth presentation by Jason Kliewer, Managing Director of Robert W. Baird and Company. Each year Baird co-sponsors a series of distribution oriented surveys which provide a candid snapshot of the pulse of our industry. During his presentation Jason provided an overview of the results of the latest polling.

Distributors are more optimistic than last year

  • Industry leaders forecast 5% growth through 2014
  • The same group was forecasting only 3 percent growth in 2013

Industrial Distribution is working to improve their business model

  • New emphasis has been placed on traditional topics like Integrated Supply and other supply contracts.
  • Identifying opportunities to build fee-based service offerings.
  • Improved data quality and flow within the organizations weighs heavily on many of these distributors’ minds. One area being explored is the use of mobile “apps” to enable real time flow of data from a number of applications.

Expansion is driving much of the growth

  • A large majority of the distributors surveyed see geographic and product portfolio expansion as key driver.
  • Since the last recession, distributors have banked on selling more product to the same customers as profitable model.

Consolidation marches forward

  • Many companies searching for acquisition and merger partners.
  • Mr. Kliewer made the comment that publically traded distributors in this sector are seeing numbers which rival blue chip stocks (for instance Fastenal is currently trading at over 20 times earnings).

Change Management in the Sales Culture

Frank E. Hurtte Jr., President of River Heights Consulting, who has 28 years of distribution industry experience and a lifetime in sales and is a senior advisor to over 50 distribution companies, spoke on the topic of “Change Management in the Sales Culture”. He discussed how distributors have done a good job of improving their business models and have implemented key new processes in many areas.

“As an Industry we have done a credible job of adapting to the environment around us.”

However, he pointed out that the sales department is still an area that is ripe for improvement.

“The Sales Department – The Last Frontier, or… The Wild West?”

Some of his observations and questions for consideration follow:

  • Fear of customer alienation is still prevalent
  • The Sales force still has very little day to day management
  • Old axioms die hard…
    • “Leave them alone and let them sell”
    • “Our guys have 15 years of experience”
  • Does it make sense for salespeople to set prices?
  • Does it make sense for salespeople to determine what lines are promoted?
  • Does it make sense for salespeople to make decisions on customer investment?

“We need to put process into Sales”

SPA’s Dolores Bauders provided an overview of The SPA Pricing Cube which offers executive dashboards with intuitive visual indicators of performance as well as drill downs to actionable detailed data. She discussed how implementing the SPA Pricing Cube can help manufacturers and distributors improve their sales process by helping them:

  • Uncover missed opportunities and lost pricing dollars
  • Rank pricing performance of Sales Reps, Order Writers, Branches, Vendors and Product Categories
  • Understand and manage Pricing Methods Mix
  • Highlight trends as well as monitor and manage performance over time

 Click here to read the full article

 

September 11

Learn How Harry Cooper Supply Uses Strategic Pricing Tools to Identify and Capture Available Margin Premiums | Webcast 

This webcast featured Larry McMullin, CFO at Harry Cooper Supply, who shared Cooper’s journey to pricing excellence and how they have implemented a science-based strategic pricing approach to increasing margins. Cooper’s experiences and advice provided attendees with a wealth of practical knowledge.

SPA’s Dave Lienert also discussed how our solutions, which leverage experience from working with hundreds of companies to drive 2-4 margin point gains on affected revenue with minimal customer pushback, can help your company.

 

September 17-19

Eclipse User Group Encounter 2014 Conference in Atlanta, GA

SPA was proud to conduct a client training workshop during the 2014 Eclipse User Group Conference in Atlanta, GA. Epicor and SPA have collaborated to develop an add-on Strategic Pricing Module and related data services.

Click here to learn more about the Epicor-SPA Program.

 

Follow SPA

To easily keep up with the latest SPA announcements, events and resources you can subscribe to our Strategic Pricing Pays blog or follow us on LinkedIn or on the following major social media channels and file sharing platforms: Twitter, Google+, Facebook, SlideShare, and YouTube.

We also encourage you to join the Strategic Pricing discussions in our LinkedIn group and to sign up to receive our Strategic Pricing Newsletter by clicking here.

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