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The Secret To Perfecting Sales Territory Mapping

The Secret To Perfecting Sales Territory Mapping

Wed Apr 29 2020
By: Mike P

Ask any small business owner what the most trying part of managing a company is, and they’ll likely tell you the same story: it doesn’t take a genius to scale a business to the point where it warrants existing, but generating enough growth to ensure that the company remains stable and profitable for years to come is an obstacle few overcome.

It’s estimated that somewhere around 65% of all small businesses in the U.S. close within their first ten years of operation. Of course, there are thousands of companies across the county that remain stable and profitable well beyond the ten-year mark. So what’s the secret that’s kept the remaining 45% afloat? “We focus on feedback,” says Jen Moon, Marketing Manager at Kaput Products. Kaput recently celebrated their 20th year in the pest control industry and continue to show signs of growth after two decades of operation.

The company’s business model runs through a diverse network of distributors and dealers that serve a specific territory. Customers looking to take care of a pest infestation must go directly through their local dealer to acquire any of Kaput’s products. If there’s no local dealer available, aspiring pest-exterminators in the making are encouraged to reach out to the company directly, highlighting potential gaps in the company’s distribution model. New territories are added to their distribution map regularly thanks to contributions from their traveling sales team and user feedback loop.

Part of Jen’s responsibilities at Kaput involve tracking, managing, and updating the company’s regional map as it evolves throughout the business year. Up until a few months ago, the entirety of the company’s distribution and travel data was only logged online, which was fine. Kaput’s database was still regularly updated, sales team members were still visiting new prospects, and the company was still discovering new territorial expansion opportunities; the only issue was that the software wasn’t easily accessible for quick reference points. “If I want to look something up as a quick reference, I want it to be easy to access,” Jen explained.

A few months ago, Jen reached out to the team at Magnatag Visible Systems to find an easy to access tool for managing Kaput’s territorial map. The solution: a large format, full color, magnetic dry-erase map of the United States. Standing eight feet wide and over five feet tall, the map is designed to outline individual cities and their corresponding counties, making it the perfect tool for identifying gaps in Kaput’s distribution strategy.

“We ordered our map alongside some of the colored magnets to use for marking territories for our dealers and distributors. We use one color to mark the distributors that currently carry our baits and another color to represent potential dealers… We also use a separate color to identify pests that are commonly associated with a specific location. Using this as a big picture, I can fill in the gaps in our marketing program as needed.”

Today, Jen and the rest of the Kaput team use the digital software and physical dry-erase map in tandem, with each tool serving its own purpose; the software logs and archives their regional dealer information while the map visualizes opportunities in their distribution network at a glance.

For over fifty years, Magnatag Visible Systems has developed high-quality printed magnetic dry-erase boards. If you’re looking to bring a personal and motivational approach to your project management strategy, contact us at sales@magnatag.com or give us a call at (800) 624-4154.
Creating a Dedicated Space For Project Management

Creating a Dedicated Space For Project Management

Mon Apr 20 2020
By: Mike P

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a city in the US with a deeper connection to its historical roots than St. Augustine, Florida. The city holds the honor of being the oldest continuously occupied settlement of European origin in the United States, and it shows: just taking a stroll down one of the city’s many cobblestone streets invokes the type of old town, coastal-colonial that feels as if you just stepped off a time machine.

Preserving this moment in time would be impossible if not for the help of the city’s extensive zoning regulations and efforts. The plans are designed to preserve the historic character of many buildings in the area through a series of compliance checks that are regulated via the city’s historic preservation board. Due to the intricate nature of many of the board’s regulations, the city regularly pulls from a select pool of contractors that are familiar with Architectural Guidelines for Historic Preservation (AGHP) when undertaking new restoration projects.

For local contractor Behst Builders Inc, historic preservation is embedded in the company’s DNA. Prior to opening Behst, Owner, Jon Benoit spent years working as a project manager for a non-profit housing development corporation that specialized in rehabilitating single-family homes within historic neighborhoods. Thanks to his expertise with historic renovations, the contractor is now recognized as one of the city’s go-to resources for historical projects. However, Jon can’t take all the credit for the company’s success: Carey Murphy keeps the business running by filling the vital role as the company’s Office Manager.

A few months ago, Carey reached out to the team at Magnatag Visible Systems® when Behst’s online project management software failed to meet their needs. After scouring the web for a project management system that could propitiate everyone on staff, Carey discovered Magnatag’s Project StepTracker® Magnetic Whiteboard System and quickly incorporated it into their internal communication strategy.

The whiteboard system is designed to list active projects vertically along the left side of the board, with individual project milestones adjacent to each project. Once a specific construction phase is complete, the designated Project Manager takes one of the system’s double-sided magnets and places it below the completed project milestone, communicating that the team is ready to move on to the next phase of construction. In addition, the company also uses the board’s notes section to highlight and sign off on any extra expenses that may arise during a project’s development. If an additional expense is needed, Project Managers are required to make a note of it on the board, which Jon approves in between shifts.

“We were looking for something that our team could use as a focal point for discussing projects; the StepTracker® whiteboard is the perfect tool for us. When you work in an office where people are constantly juggling their time between being on location and in the office, it’s essential to have a space in your building that’s strictly dedicated to discussing project developments. Having something that you can walk to and manually update should be a standard for anyone in the construction industry,” notes Carey.
If you’re looking to rethink how your company develops and tracks projects, please visit magnatag.com/project or give us a call at 800 624 4154.
Are All Whiteboards Magnetic?

Are All Whiteboards Magnetic?

Thu Aug 29 2019
By: Mike P

If you’ve spent a considerable amount of time interacting with whiteboards, you might have noticed that not every whiteboard is created equally. In fact, there are a few dry-erase surfaces that don’t possess any magnetic properties whatsoever. As bizarre as it may seem, non-magnetic whiteboards do exist for a reason, and that reason is to cut costs.

Non-magnetic whiteboards are typically manufactured using one of two primary materials: medium-density fiberboard (otherwise known as MDF), or particleboard. Both MDF and particleboard are both pressed wood products, with MDF comprising primarily of pressed wood fibers vs. particleboard’s sawdust composition. Chances are you’ve run into both materials when shopping for affordable cabinetry and out-of-the-box furniture. Neither material is going to break the bank for manufacturers, which in turn makes it the perfect solution for those that need a cost-effective dry-erase board.

The board’s actual dry-erase properties come from the melamine surface that lines the front of the pressed board. Melamine is an organic compound that, when combined with formaldehyde, forms a resin/plastic with dry-erase properties. Virtually all non-magnetic whiteboards rely on melamine for their dry-erase capabilities, and oftentimes this material is added after the wood board has already been pressed.

With that being said, there is a chance your whiteboard isn’t magnetic and also isn’t made with melamine. If that’s the case, then you’re most likely using a board made of paper and film laminate. A good indication of whether or not you have either a laminate or melamine board is whether or not your board has custom print. Melamine boards are always plain white, while paper and laminate boards can accept custom prints. Regardless of this distinction, paper and laminate boards are still assembled in a similar manner as melamine boards.

“Great to know, but that still doesn’t explain why some whiteboards aren’t magnetic!”

To explain why your whiteboard isn’t magnetic, we need to take a look at how magnetic dry-erase boards are made. Most traditional magnetic whiteboards are backed with a steel sheet to provide even magnetism across the surface of the whiteboard. Additionally, porcelain and painted-steel whiteboards have the added benefit of being fired directly onto a steel surface, making the surface itself both magnetic and erasable.

Since melamine/paper and laminate boards do not have any sort of steel backing or face, they consequently lack magnetism. So to put it simply: if your whiteboard isn’t made with a steel back or porcelain face, it’s not magnetic.

Need to find a magnetic whiteboard? Magnatag is home to the internet’s most extensive collection of dry-erase systems.