You are receiving this communication in an effort to provide clarification to issue’s you may have presented regarding pricing. As evidenced by this being formulated as a document may reflect the frequency we encounter price as being an objection. I am pleased to enumerate the differences which culminate in the resultant observation and this will be completely addressed subject to your willingness to endure reading this document in its entirety.
Induction technology is not new to the market place and EverLast has achieved a leadership position in this space for quantifiably measurable reasons. Without me taking liberties of self promotion, reasonable due diligence on behalf of a client will reveal the host of limitations in the induction marketplace being exploited by the low cost providers.
While our country is visibly in economic turmoil many choose to complain about this on a macro-level and ignore personal and corporate culpability to this demise. Yes, I am taking a political position in stating that American Dollar’s being transacted for foreign product (and specifically China) is a significant contributing factor to our declining industrial base.
The creative exploitation of companies which are strictly brokering a Chinese product and placing American Flags on product and masking verbiage to connote some attachment to mainland USA is reprehensible. Certainly as a purchaser you can live under the illusion that whatever is printed on the internet is truthful and valid. Yet, any reasonable person with an awareness that the porn industry has brought the internet to where it is today can discern that truth is in the eye of the beholder.
Purveyors of induction solutions, pop-up on the internet at the rate of 3 per week (conservatively). Each one makes creative claims about manufacturing, patented technologies, warranty, operational characteristics regarding the technology. Some are as creative to capture screen images of other manufacturing facilities and photoshop logos onto a building. I can speak first hand of atleast 5 companies which have screen captured some of EverLast installations promoting them as their own customers. But I digress, as a certain audience is willing to accept this level of misinformation with the objective if realizing lowest cost.
Back to the more critical issues which embody a technically viable solution. I regress to the days of Benjamin Franklin and a gross recreation of the value pyramid. (Fast, Good, Cheap). I will accept that the majority of the recipients of this email understand this conceptually. As EverLast is not cheap, we are Fast and more than Good for a host of reasons. If you are not interested in the Good nor Fast I can still be responsive to your cheap requirements. That just requires me removing value from our existing offer. The first thing would be to substitute a known domestically produced solution with something which is drastically inferior.
How is it inferior? That will only be realized when you receive the product, the product is installed, and is in operation for 6-9 months. But who really cares in this scenario, all bills have been paid and you are moving on to the next job. If in the event you are concerned about the solution for the client, then maybe a bit more exploration is in order.
As products which are sourced directly from China, the rules of commerce are such that you get what you “pre-paid” for. Oh, and just a little hidden piece is that purchasers have no recourse after the transaction has been made.
Thus, the brokers which are sourcing products from China must purchase according to the terms as dictated by the Chinese provider. Without an investment of someone to verify things before they leave a manufacturer or the port, you will get what they ship you. Since it’s all about the Rimindi, the purchaser will receive whatever the Chinese ship without regard to the quality of the product. Really, what does that mean to you?
Have you ever opened an induction fixture box and noticed…
Very poor powder coating on the fixture.
Lamps not installed properly (high bay laps 20 degrees off).
Wrong lamp or ballast.
Significant quantity of DOA.
Welds on fixtures look like dog poop.
Lenses are crooked.
These are just a few of the visibly noticeable items to a client. What is more egregious is the issues regarding the implementation of the technology. It is commonly known that induction technology has certain challenges when deployed in applications where other electronic devices are operating through the same circuit breaker panel as an induction lighting solution.
What is this? Really? Yes, many of the manufacturers, and certainly those named by you in an email have had significant product failure directly liked to this particular issue. Your response, but they say they have a 10 year 100,000hr warranty.
This is where I need to be a bit more bold and say give me a break. As a seasoned professional how far have you peered under the hood to verify this warranty proposal? Have you investigated to see if the company has been in business as long as they are making representations to a warranty? Or, maybe you are confident in your legal representation to take over and seek a settlement on that said warranty claim.
I am willing to pledge my retirement account that not a single recipient of this email (if you made it this far) has investigated current and outstanding litigation against a particular vendor. Guessing it was a safe bet.
Well, I briefly touched on the quality issue and am very willing to write a separate document with references to clients, distributors, and contractors which can bring personal testimony to the discussion.
Now let’s take a look at the Fast part of the equation. I am willing again to stick my neck out and anticipate that regarding induction solutions that there is a certain level of time sensitivity. Meaning, that projects requiring an induction alternative mostly fall into the realm of short-term 2-3months start to finish.
The majority of the induction suppliers have very creative marketing to complement their low cost pricing strategy. Many have structured sample/evaluation units at no cost to assist in evaluation and expedite the decision making. This has wound up being a great asset for us in that a large percentage of users when viewing the free samples look for a quality solution and will not even install the sample product. For those with some emotional tug of obligation based the free offer which move forward. Hmm, what happens next. I have chosen to take a term from international terrorists and invoke the word hostage taking.
Yea, I know that if you are at this point you are calling me some form of expletive. But let me see if I can challenge your intellect for a moment. If you had received information that you would be able to meet your clients needs within 2-3 weeks. Sure as a proactive sales professional you would build in a weeks worth of protection and anticipate that your negotiation skills can mitigate your week extension and even possibly capture a week getting that coveted 2 week turn around.
Regardless of your extension or credit, or woe your prepayment requirement that 2 weeks slips right by like a greased pig. Rant rave, threaten contractor back charges the 2 becomes 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and yes I am ticking off weeks. But wait, a boat takes a couple of weeks to come from China, then make it through customs, 8,9,10. Yes these are still weeks. Now your Induction Manufacture needs to do their expediting. 11,12,13,14 uh huh, still weeks. I can only imagine the phone activity on your side, the contractor screaming the customer livid. Don’t forget you got the right price and it is all worth it.
Oops, now we enter the domain of the Induction Manufacture not to do their “manufacturing” cellulose packing peanuts from Texas (yea America), cardboard boxes from Louisiana (wishful thinking, China again). But they need to install that coveted label. And reship it to you, Mr. Patient Customer at week 15-16.
For many, this illustration is an almost verbatim of a practical experience for others then numbers may not have been as long but I would put my retirement on the line again that the majority are 6 weeks plus.
But here is where the insanity threshold has definitely been crossed. Many get the cheap price, wait for an unreasonable period of time all to receive an inferior product? What defies my understanding is what is the value proposition people are putting forward? What does this story tell?
Trust me, I will save you energy (for a little bit before you need to get into the warranty fight). Wait, I need to dove tail, if you sold on ROI/IRR and you experience product problems which need to be funded with labor do you re-look at the ROI or worse do you have an ROI? Sorry, back to my point. You saved initial energy, were taken “hostage” (my terrorist analogy) by the supplier relative to delivery. The product is sub-standard in that it looks like crap, the contractor had to spend more money to install and your call backs are unmanageable.
So, since you have made it to the end I will conclude with this parting pompus comment. Yep, my price was higher than my counterpart and I will not lower my price based upon your competitive feedback. But the real kick in the pants is we either can work together or not. If price is your objective you have chosen the latter. I will be rescinding my quote and revising my pricing validity for 10 days. Upon which the quote will expire.