NEMRA Positioning Reps for Success


NEMRA 2018With the NEMRA Annual Meeting beginning next week, more will go on than just manufacturers meeting with their reps.  This week NEMRA announced a number of initiatives designed to position reps who are focused on “tomorrow” for success.

Key announcements included:

  • NEMRA announcing that NEMRA Technology Services which managed the NEMRA Network (CRM tool), IRIS (warehouse management software) and DMS (data management services) to TradeTech Solutions which is managed by industry veteran Matt Scarborough.  TradeTech also offers its OnlyOneQuote system.

According to Ken Hooper, “Following a strategic business review of the NSC business and consultations with current subscribers, it was clear that our members could be better served by an established technology firm with a singular focus on technology solutions for our members.  With today’s pace of technological advancement and the complex needs of our members ever increasing, the NEMRA Board determined it was the right time to initiate this change. Matt Scarborough, the founder of TradeTech Solutions, Inc. is a highly regarded technology solution provider with his OnlyOneQuote™ system. The combination of Matt’s software development skills and thirty years of industry experience, both as a NEMRA Rep and Manufacturer, will be of great benefit to our membership and the future vision of TradeTech Solutions, Inc.”

NEMRA saw an opportunity to help members upgrade their technological game and is identified a strategic relationship to help members improve.

  • As a continuation of its Power Pact initiative, NEMRA announced NEMRA Conceptual Selling, an online training strategy that recognizes that selling dynamics has changed.  The initiative is powered by Miller Heiman Group which is the preeminent sales training organization that understands, at its core, strategic selling and conceptual selling in complex decision-making environments (which means more people involved in the decision-making process.) And, as an aside, if you haven’t read their books Strategic Selling and Conceptual Selling, a) you should and b) it should be required for your salespeople … be you a manufacturer, a distributor or a rep – based upon personal experience.

The NEMRA Conceptual Selling program was developed specifically for NEMRA and integrates input from NEMRA members.  Click here to see a video on the program.

  • NEMRA’s POS initiative now has the endorsement of almost 40 manufacturers and has added support from key distributors who will be announced at the meeting. This strategy is designed to streamline processes, encourage more non-customer specific data submission and appropriately compensate agencies and individual salespeople so that they will support electrical distributors in the field.
  • The core of the NEMRA Annual Meeting, just like other industry meetings, is the one-on-one meetings between reps and their manufacturers.  While a number of reps have taken it upon themselves to develop a strategy for their meeting with their manufacturers, just as manufacturers have for their sales meetings / group meetings at NEMRA, NEMRA also shares tips on how manufacturers can ensure a successful meeting … recognizing that NEMRA has received feedback from its members that manufacturer sales meetings can be improved (or, in other words, what reps want to hear to support their manufacturers.)    Elements of the message include:
    • Have a senior leader in your company open the sales meeting.
      • Have the CEO or president kick off the session with a brief statement of the company’s strategy, how that strategy is being supported, and how the strategy will directly impact the channel partners and end-user customers.
    • Tell your go-to-market plan.
      • State company value proposition and go-to-market plan for the year. Make sure reps leave the meeting with the sales objectives and expectations clearly framed in their minds. Be specific.
    • Highlight sales and marketing support tools.
      • Talk about the sales support tools the reps have at their disposal.Do not spend too much time on any one tool (but be prepared to discuss at one-on-ones). Suggested sales-enablement tools to highlight include:
        • New products
        • New processes
        • New policies
        • New services
        • New training
        • New marketing outreach
        • New audiences

Oh, and by the way there will be thousands of one-on-one meetings between NEMRA members and manufacturers.

If you’re attending the meeting, you should make sure to gather information on improving your agency / sales skills as well as expecting to walk away informed about your manufacturer.  If you’re a manufacturer, with the marketplace being more competitive than ever, this is the opportunity to arm your reps with the tools to differentiate yourself, conduct your sales meeting and invest in your sales network by helping them become better trained, better informed while committing to ensure that they are appropriately compensated.

We’ll be there also (booth 16) so stop by … and take advantage of NEMRA’s efforts to position reps (or your rep network) for success in an ever-changing market.


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Supporting manufacturers, distributors and others in the electrical channel with accelerating growth through business / channel strategy, marketing development and customer-focused market research. We generate "ideas that deliver results."

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