2012 WOOD 100 Strategies for Success: Go-to-Market Strategies
By Karen Koenig | Posted: 09/07/2012 11:30AM
Sweepstakes and social media are among the methods used by today’s wood products manufacturers to engage consumers and grow brand recognition.
Wellborn Cabinet Inc., Ashland, AL
The kitchen and bath cabinet manufacturer uses a variety of ways to promote its brand, ranging from contests, apps and social media. Wellborn is entering its fifth consecutive year partnering with HGTV to provide cabinetry for Dream Homes, and continues to attract new and existing customers through the Dream Kitchen Makeover contest, featuring a prize worth $12,000 of Wellborn cabinetry.
There’s more. Last year Wellborn launched social media sites on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube and WordPress. Also making news was the release of Wellborn Mobile, which according to Brooke Herren, marketing events coordinator, features downloadable information on Wellborn’s lines of cabinetry and closets products. And finally, in 2011 Wellborn launched three additional brand-specific consumer sites, bringing the total number of websites to four
The company says it is “passionate” about its woodworking projects, and A Cut Above’s strategies in reaching out to customers, improving quality and productivity all combine to help the business grow. Yawney adds, “Pleasing our clients and exceeding their expectations is what is important to us.”
Valet Custom Cabinets & Closets Valet Custom Cabinets & Closets, Campbell, CA
President Larry Fox says the cabinet and home organization solutions company continues to capitalize on its core strengths of quality and service to grow its referral and repeat business. “We are specifically trying to build up our testimonials on key internet review sites that are bringing us quality leads at a relatively low cost,” Fox says.
New materials and hardware options also have helped spur growth, leading to a 17.5% sales increase for 2011. And Fox says he expects the growth trend to continue. “We are staying as lean as possible, but are nimble and ready to respond quickly,” he adds of his company’s manufacturing capabilities.
More Marketing Strategies
Drawer Connection, Mesa, AZ
Digital and print advertising helped the cabinet component maker expand its brand and grow sales 19.4%, says Steve Harmon, president. “We know that advertising is the key to any company’s growth. We have also expanded our product line to accommodate our customers changing needs with a less expensive alternative.” It also integrated new quoting and ordering software.
Closet & Cabinet Experts LLC, Savannah, GA
President Josh Klein cites market share increases from website and social media efforts plus “capitalizing on thousands of repeat customers and referrals,” for contributing to the closet and storage firm’s 11% sales growth. It also reduced costs with just-in-time ordering and improved production scheduling.
Crestview Doors Inc., Austin, TX
CEO Christiane Erwin says the door, divider, awning and paneling maker relies on social media, mainly Facebook, to reach niche customers. “We often get hundreds of comments when we post a photo or status update,” she says. “The growth and activity of our fan base over the last year has proven to us that there is a strong market for our products and services — it is just a matter of reaching them.” Sales grew 48.7% in 2011.
Centorbi, St. Charles, MO
Spurring the custom cabinetry firm to a whopping 56.1% growth was a marketing strategy to “spend more money and time in online marketing efforts to gain a larger market share,” says Owner Derek Centorbi. Investments in Cabinet Vision and Tractivity software also improve productivity and profitability.
Eastland Ind. Ltd., Minto, NB
Eric Dicarlo, vice president and general manager says the cabinet firm continues to look for new markets. Aiding its efforts is an interactive cabinet planning guide on its site.
General Hardwoods & Millwork, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
As the firm evolves to more custom millwork versus material sales, “we are also, putting ourselves out there more with new marketing initiatives such as Home Shows and social media (Facebook, Houzz, Twitter, etc.),” says Elizabeth Nixon, treasurer.
The Closet Guy Inc. Beverly Hills, CA
President Michael Mueller cites SEO efforts and a “push to cross reference the company on other web sites” for lead generation. Also helping spur business for the closet and home organization firm is “door knocking at construction sites.”
Taghkanic Woodworking, Pawling, NY
Diversification has helped this cabinet and CNC services firm grow business. “We now cut cabinet parts and other CNC work for companies other than ourselves,” says Owner Leland Thomasset. The hosting of open houses on Automation in the Small Cabinet Shop also “has allowed for additional networking opportunities.” New products have also helped the revenue stream.
Links to 2012 WOOD 100: Strategies for Success stories
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About the Author
Karen M. KoenigKaren M. Koenig has more than 25 years of experience in the woodworking industry, including visits to wood products manufacturing facilities throughout North America, Europe and Asia. As Editor-in-Chief of Woodworking Network magazine (formerly Wood & Wood Products), Karen’s primary responsibilities include spearheading the writing, editing and coordinating of the editorial content of the publication, along with the Red Book resource guide and the Red Book online source and supply directory (RedBookOnline.com). She is also a frequent contributor to other Woodworking Network online and print media. She can be reached at email@example.com or Google+.