A variety of dealers had the opportunity to attend a number of business management seminars, as well as a trade show.
American Standard also took the time to tell its dealers where the company is going and how it is positioning itself. The company is also offering its dealers a variety of opportunities, which are expected to lead to success.
NEW THEME, STRATEGYThe manufacturer presented attendees with its new positioning strategy. The new theme line for the company is “New Standards for Living.”
“American Standard is positioning itself as a performance leader because our products are better by design,” said Paul Trotter, brand manager for the company.
He explained that the new theme will encompass the company’s hvac and plumbing divisions. American Standard plans to market these two divisions together for better brand recognition.
“The goal of the positioning is to increase consumer demand and awareness of the brand by providing the same brand promise for all American Standard products,” Trotter said. “Advertising synergy should elevate brand awareness for both heating and air conditioning products and plumbing products.”
This advertising will debut in the form of TV and print ads. Also, the company has made available signs and other promotional materials for its dealers.
BETTER OPPORTUNITIESAmerican Standard also showed its dealers how the manufacturer plans to help them be more successful in their businesses. This includes new programs intended to help dealers sell more, as well as new products the company will introduce.
These products, according to Trotter, will be beneficial to contractors and technicians by being more serviceable.
“American Standard’s new outdoor unit design features service access by simply removing two screws to the completely redesigned service compartment,” he said. “By eliminating 70% of the screws, access to the fan motor is much easier. Plus, the entire cabinet can be disassembled in less than five minutes for easier coil cleaning.”
Trotter said that the new design will include air conditioners and heat pumps with efficiencies from 10 to 18 SEER. An entry-level 10-SEER heat pump will also be introduced to the product line.
The company will also add a hinged blower door to many of its Freedom 90 furnace models. Design improvement will include quarter-turn, heavy-duty latches for easier entry into the blower and filter compartment. Trotter also said that there is a new, multi-position filter rack that should make changing the filter easier for either bottom or side return.
Finally, American Standard is broadening its line of R-410A air handlers and coils, and is adding electronic and programmable thermostats to the current line.
CUSTOMER SATISFACTIONThe company announced plans to help its dealers by offering better customer service to consumers. Exclusively for Customer Care Dealers, the company has introduced the Sales Leads and Rewards program.
Trotter said the program “is intended to help the Customer Care Dealer capitalize on providing customer satisfaction by seeking sales leads from satisfied consumers.”
Consumers who fill out a customer satisfaction survey and give the Customer Care Dealer a score of 95 or higher will receive an American Standard pen in a gift box with a thank you note. Consumers are then encouraged to provide the names of family or friends who would like the same type of service and installation.
“Those leads are sent to American Standard, who then forwards them on to the Customer Care Dealer. This is all at no cost to the Customer Care Dealer,” said Trotter.
American Standard also presented its ADTEK software. According to Trotter, ADTEK developed the software, such as “Electronic Salesman,” for American Standard dealers, and recently introduced “Virtual Showroom.” The software allows dealers to show customers the features and benefits of an American Standard product line by pointing and clicking on the computer screen.
“The Virtual Showroom even allows the dealer to demonstrate operating level comparisons between products,” said Trotter.
According to Trotter, the meeting and its message were a success.
“It was nice to hear [our] dealers tell us that they see we are not pulling in our horns when our competitors appear to be doing just that,” said Trotter. “They see American Standard as a rising star with a proud past and an even brighter future.”
Publication date: 05/13/2002