Business leaders run across new opportunities daily, but the most successful decision-makers know how to recognize one when they see it.
In the late 1990s, the management team at Norton-based Fomo Products Inc., a manufacturer of spray foams, sealants and adhesives, realized that its one-component foams (OCF) had reached the end of its product lifecycle and had become overly commoditized.
Two-component foams, or spray foams especially those in disposable packaging were still relatively new to the U.S. residential and commercial markets. Fomo’s Handi-Foam Spray Foam presented opportunities for both new market growth as well as margin increases.
By 2003, European OCF manufacturers had become more prevalent in the U.S. marketplace, offering lesser-quality and lower-priced products, so Fomo took on the challenge to protect its customer base without sacrificing price or quality.
The Fomo team and its president, Stefan Gantenbein, developed the Partners Program, which offers services and resources to its top customers. The program allowed customers to build a strong partnership with Fomo, including marketing assistance and training tools, which ultimately led to increased sales and margins for Fomo and its partners.
Another benefit of the Partners Program was a specific contact matrix that allowed customers companywide access to get their questions answered efficiently and effectively. Marketing support was offered on three levels: educational, customized pieces and merchandising. Smart executives also realize that when an obstacle blocks their way, they have to overcome it to survive. The Fomo team learned that customizing marketing support was expensive, so they redirected funds from previous marketing ventures. The outcome was larger margins and more sales without increased investment within this group of customers.
The Partners Program has helped Fomo increase customer accounts with significant growth in product mix and margins. In addition to enhancing customer loyalty, brand awareness and end-user education, the program taught Fomo’s management team that enhanced education and support of distributors were more effective than directly targeting contractors.
HOW TO REACH: Fomo Products Inc., (330) 753-4585 or www.fomo.com