When you think of Nationwide Marketing Group’s middle name – Marketing – the first things that likely come to mind are promotions, AdRocket campaigns and special Wells Fargo and Synchrony financing codes. These have all been significant areas of focus for us over the last several years. We have more recently moved into data and analytics to support the marketing and merchandising business functions.
We are now widening the scope of “Marketing” once more to include Delivery and Installation (D&I). Since D&I is usually the last face-to-face touchpoint with a customer, it is a critical one. It is also one where a lot of things can go wrong through no fault of the retailer.
This area of the business is one where the Independent retailer can differentiate themselves from others, but it takes constant work and sometimes new strategies and ideas. Any thoughts on where the best place is to get those ideas? You guessed it – from other Members. Imagine the number of years of combined experience our Members have in D&I.
We are harnessing those many years of experience through a newly formed Discussion Group that was born out of a Nationwide Learning Academy session at our Spring 2022 PrimeTime in Phoenix. Since then, we have had three Discussion Group Zoom calls with tremendous participation and interaction. The goal of this initiative is to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the D&I process across the Nationwide Marketing Group membership.
The D&I Discussion Group calls are monthly and last about 60 minutes. During the calls, we drill down on one specific topic per month. The attendees consist of both large and small dealers. They also span all product categories, including appliances, furniture, mattresses and consumer electronics. During one recent call, it was great to hear a furniture dealer pick up some new ideas from an appliance dealer related to recognition for specific delivery people who get mentioned in a customer review.
In order to provide structure to the Zoom calls, the topics are planned in advance so dealers have an opportunity to pass on topics that may not be of high interest to them. Also, the sessions are recorded and distributed to just the Members that have elected to join the D&I group.
Here is a list of 14 topics that we have set as topics we will revisit as we cycle through the list:
- Compensation for delivery personnel, including incentive compensation
- Charges for delivery services
- How to handle damage – product damage and customer home damage
- New employee orientation
- Charges for installation services
- Commercial and builder deliveries and installations
- New approaches to generate increased revenue
- Employee retention ideas and programs
- Ways to measure and drive productivity
- Outsourced delivery solutions – successes and challenges
- Employee reviews and evaluations
- Software solutions and systems used
- Training programs used – new employee and refresher training
- Hiring practices, job requirements and job postings
The list of topics above gives you a sense for the areas of discussion we plan to cover. The order of the topics will surely change, and additional timely topics will be added.
If you are interested in joining the D&I discussion group because you have a passion for this area of the business, please let me know and I will have you added. What I ask is for people that are actively engaged and willing to share good ideas that have worked, as well as things that have not worked. The discussion group is included as part of your membership with Nationwide Marketing Group. Please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frank Sandtner is the director business services for Nationwide Marketing Group