July/August 2003

Brian WelshPublisher's Notes
    An Opening View

Second Chance

In my column in the April 2003 issue of SHELTER, I had presented an opportunity to “test” you and/or your sales staff. If you recall, at the time my wife and I were looking for our dream house, and I decided to have a friendly competition to see what companies were doing to get their products noticed by the end buyer. This was open to all involved in the supply chain.

As you can imagine once that issue hit the streets, my phone started ringing. I listened to many company histories, sales pitches on products and received tons of literature in the mail. (I very much enjoyed speaking with all of you and especially enjoyed the jokes and laughs.)
As mentioned in the April issue, this was not about the product but about your sales strategy—what is your company doing differently to give you the upper edge on your competition, or what is your company doing to get the sale? A couple companies stood out over the rest by doing the little things—an introductory phone call, a follow up letter, a presentation piece and a follow-up “closing” call. 

Call it Marketing 101. Those who called knew ahead of time that I was not buying anything, but they saw it as an opportunity to enhance their businesses. If you don’t make the call or don’t take advantage of an opportunity, how are you going to get ahead? The days when orders automatically come through the fax machine no longer exist. Yes, you might get lucky once in a while, but with all the competition in the marketplace, you may need to get back to the basics and be creative with your marketing.

Throughout the year, there are many opportunities to get out and do some networking with your business associates, or even make some new business partnerships. In August, the Wood Moulding & Millwork Producers Association will conduct its summer meeting 
in Victoria, British Columbia. 

For details, visit In October, the 40th NSDJA Annual Convention will take place in Orlando, Fla. For details, look to the September and October issues of SHELTER or visit

As always, if you are looking for something in particular, please feel free to contact me. Also, if you are one of those companies who did not call about the April opportunity for presenting your product, I’d be glad to give you a second chance. 

I can be reached at 215/822-7600, ext. 102, or e-mail me at 

Make it a great day!

Brian Welsh, 


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