Larry shares a story about Vending Sales Large Accounts
Vending Sales Large Accounts or taking it to the next level involves persistence because big accounts get called on by most sales people.usually once or twice a month. Vending Sales Large Accounts is just as easy as small accounts just take longer to get usually. Persistence Persistence is the only way. Vending Sales large accounts – make sure they remember you. Drop off a few boxes of donuts every time you go by. Who doesn’t like free donuts Once they know you and like you they will contact you first to be their next vendor. Vending Sales Large Accounts – Make sure you have great references that can back up your great service. Vending Sales Large Accounts – See if there are some employees in the account you service now that know someone in the large account you want. Have them give you a good word. Friends buy from friends.
Sometimes big accounts get frustrated with their current vending operator over something small, that’s when they look for a replacement. So, stay in front of them consistently and call on them. Do you like to work with people who want your business? Most people do, so prove it to them. Big vending operators get big because they take care of their accounts. but sometimes they are too big and can’t take care of their accounts
TOM: Hi, I’m Tom, with the vending business show, and I’m here with Larry Towner, a vending business consultant. He’s been in the vending business for a few decades and has sold his own business. We’re just talking about how to talk about Vending Sales Large Accounts.
TOM: So, can you help us with that Larry?
Larry Towner: Well, I might be able to. We were discussing earlier about just telling some stories about how you go and get new vending businesses. So I was just going to tell some stories about a phone call that I received one day, and here is the phone call. A guys says, he picks up the phone and he says, “Is this Larry Towner?” I said, “Yeah, it’s Larry Towner. How can I be of assistance?” And he goes, “Well.” He says, “You know I got a folder here. In this folder is, oh I don’t know, there’s gotta be 40 cards and brochures from your company here in this business. I’ve decided I guess I want to talk to you and see what you have to offer.”
Larry Towner: So I kind of said to him, I said, “Well, what company is it?” And he told me what company it was, I said “Oh, yeah, I come by your place all the time.” And he goes, “Yeah, I’m aware of that. Like I said, I’ve got about 40 of your cards here.” Blah, blah, blah. We went on, we set an appointment, we came down and we looked at his facility, and we closed an account, right. You know, a nice big sized account. One of those good things.
Larry Towner: So, you and I were talking earlier, it’s just kind of one of those things that we were talking about persistence, we’re talking about taking it to the next level. So I was going to ask you Tomas, on your big accounts, do your big accounts just call you up and they say, “Hi, this is IBM, Tom, we’ve heard you do good things, we want to talk to you.” No, has that deal ever worked for you? Has that ever happened to you?
TOM: No that doesn’t come very easily, or very often, either.
Larry Towner: Yeah, and it rarely comes to you in the vending business, too. Just because you’ve got your vending business, and you’re driving around in your truck, generally people in big accounts don’t come seek you out, and there’s a reason for that.
Larry Towner: Largely it’s because they get called on by people over and over and over again. People like me, you know, pesky salesmen like me, that are stopping in and saying, “Hey, you know, we’d like to earn your business, here’s my card.” And they figure after all, if we put this guy off, and we just take his card, eventually he’ll go away, or he’ll go out of business, or whatever, right. And largely that’s what happened to most of my competitors, it still happens even today.
Larry Towner: But eventually, something will change in their organization, and the guy will open up his file, and there’s, of course in my case, there’s a large number of brochures, cards, whatever. And he gets an email from me once a month, and he’s like, I wish this guy would go away. One of the great ways they they’ll make me go away, is “I’ll put him to work, prove him that he can’t do the job, then I’ll be able to get rid of him.”
Larry Towner: Right? That’s what happens, you know. So the next thing you know, they’re going like, “Yeah, my guy, he just doesn’t. I was wanting a Snickers the other day, and there wasn’t one in the machine. I’m just pissed, so I’m getting rid of him.” You know, out he goes. “I’m calling this guy that calls me every day, because I know he’s going to -” Not every day, but, “Calls me on an regular basis, because I know he wants my business.”
Larry Towner: That’s how you get big accounts. Big accounts rarely are out going, “Well, we’re going through the yellow pages looking for..” You know, yellow pages, going on the internet, whatever. “Oh, I think we’ll take, oh, this company.” It just doesn’t happen that way. And that spans all industries, and all sales prospects. The really good accounts, you have to go get them. They’re not going to come to you.
Larry Towner: Occasionally, once in a blue moon, you’ll get a phone call from one of those accounts. That’s usually because of some other marketing method that you’ve done, and somebody’s referred you to them. They’re buddies with somebody at church or whatever and they say. “You know, this guy takes really good care of us, give him a call.” That kind of thing, but that’s the only way you get those big account references. They just don’t … You have to go call on them because it’s just like that.
Larry Towner: Tom, let me ask you a question. Do you like to do business with people that want your business?
TOM: Absolutely, I know they … If I check them out and they’re good, usually that’s a sign that they’re good.
Larry Towner: Yeah, how do they prove to you that they want your business?
TOM: They don’t give up, they keep after me.
Larry Towner: Stay in contact with you, they’re not too obnoxious. Sometimes. They say sales guys are obnoxious, it’s not really that way. They’re just forever just looking for that chance that maybe we can give you a better opportunity than what you have with your current provider. Everybody’s got somebody, right? For something.
Larry Towner: If you look the big three phone providers, you’ve got At&t, you’ve got Verizon, you’ve got Sprint, all those guys are doing is trading back and forth. There’s no new business, they’re 100% saturated in the business. It’s not like I … If I go after dogs and cats now, I’m going to get more business. There’s no more dogs and cats to get really.
Larry Towner: And it’s the same thing in vending. There are thousands and thousands of vending providers. Right? We all know this, and how to the big guys get big? They take care of their customers and they sell. You’ve got to sell.
Larry Towner: What questions do you have for me, Tom?
TOM: That’s good stuff, we’ll be continuing the series on taking it to the next level, and what topic do you think we should tackle next, Larry?
Larry Towner: Well, we need to get back and kind of round up the circle and say once you get a bigger account, what do you really need to do? What do you determine your … The situation is not as it was when you get the larger accounts, so you have to look at some of the logistical concerns, and how do you serve those customers, and what are their expectations. We’ll talk about that in the next show.
Vending Business December Slow Season The problem with December is cash flow. During the holidays people are getting ready for Christmas and are a little tighter with their money. Another problem is competition with food in the break room. Here are two saving strategies and one income strategy:
Saving strategy 1
Vending Business December Slow Season You know your sales are going to be off in December so save some money up over the year.
Saving strategy 2
Vending Business December Slow season If you have a slow account consider waiting until December to pick up the money from that account.
Go after accounts that are very busy during the holiday season like the travel industry and retail. If you land a good size department store account, you will likely find that December will really pick up in a magnitude of one to two times as much business as normal. You don’t need a lot of those kinds of accounts to get you through the holiday season. Retail accounts typically don’t do much during the rest of the year, but can be nice for 6-8 weeks of the year. This just happens to be the opposite of how most of the traditional and industrial accounts perform during the year.
So get yourself some retail or travel industry accounts. Share any tips or ideas you have discovered in the comments below.
Tom Shivers: Hi. I’m Tom with the Vending Business Show, here again with Larry Towner, Vending Business consultant. Today, we’re talking about Vending Business December Slow Season vending opportunities, especially in a slow season like December. Thanks for being here, Larry.
Larry Towner,: It’s good to be here, Tom. We decided we would do this show because, for lack of a better word, the problems with December have to do with cash flow, right? In your world, Tom, do you have cash flow problems in December?
Tom Shivers: Sometimes.
Larry Towner,: Yeah, usually it’s an excess of cash going out and no cash coming in.
Tom Shivers: Yeah.
Larry Towner,: Essentially, in the vending business, that’s really where the problem comes from. The problem in the vending business is that during the holidays, there’s a couple of things at play. One of them is that people’s money is tight. They’re getting ready for Christmas and they’ve got the families coming in. They’re planning a big meal and all this kind of stuff, so people are a little tighter with their money. Most vending is considered disposable income. It’s kind of excess money, so money gets tight that way.
Larry Towner,: The other problem with December is that we have a lot of competition from Grandma’s cakes and pies, and everything gets put out on the break-room tables. We’re just gonna present a couple of strategies, I guess, on how to deal with the cash flow issues that come in the vending business during December.
Larry Towner,: One of them is … and the simplest one to do is just basically set some money aside for December. It’s a strategy. It’s kind of a savings strategy. I’m gonna present two saving strategies and one income strategy. The one way to do it is just set some money back. You know your sales are gonna be off because for most vendors, your sales are gonna be off. We just don’t have the kinds of accounts that do well in December, from traditional vending standpoint. Save some money. Put it away.
Larry Towner,: I came up with a savings strategy. I did it by accident, actually. I had a very, very slow account. I just never picked the money up in that account. It was so slow that I … It was a single-drink machine. I would go to the account and I’d put a case of drinks in about once a month, so I just never really picked up the money. One day, I went to pick the money up and it happened to be towards the end of November. I took just a big old wad of bills out of that machine and I said to myself, “Huh. You know, I think next year we’re just not gonna pick up the money until December, when we actually need it.” Sure enough, it really carried us over through the next year because what happened was, you’re putting the drinks in and they would come out of inventory, but they came out of inventory kind of slow through the whole year. Then you ended up with this big chunk of change that you had at the end of the year. It worked out really well and you didn’t really miss it from the standpoint of your accounts. Your inventory was a little screwed-up, but not really all that much. It’s just another savings strategy.
Larry Towner,: One other thing that we used to do a lot of is we would actually go after accounts that were very busy during the holiday season. You might ask, “What are those accounts?” Tom, ask me what are those accounts?
Tom Shivers: Hey, Larry.
Larry Towner,: Yes?
Tom Shivers: What are those accounts?
Larry Towner,: There you go. There’s two things that come to mind here, too, as well. One is, we were doing a show with the Association for the Blind … a show very much like this. We had a round table discussion that we were doing with them. The blind guys all do vending, also. We were doing these things with one of the State Associations for the Blind. They told me, they go, “We’re talking about how December’s so slow.” They’re all like, “Hey, wait a minute. December’s our busiest month of the year.” I’m going, like, “Really?” They go, “Yeah.” I go, “So what gives? Tell me what makes December so busy for you?” They all go, “We have rest areas. We have all the rest areas on the highways.” I thought that was really, really interesting because, of course, during the holiday season, people are traveling. They stop at the rest areas. They get drinks, snacks, sodas, coffee, all that stuff. Those guys are just jamming during the holidays.
Larry Towner,: Even before that … and I thought that was interesting. Maybe something in the travel industry is a potential account that gets busy during the holidays. The other thing that traditionally always gets busy during the holidays is retail. The regular retail shops are drawing in tons and tons of people. If you get a good stand-alone retail shop, say, a good-sized department store or something like that, December can really pick up. I’m talking about in a magnitude of one to two times as much business as they do normally. You don’t need a lot of those accounts to carry you through the time, ’cause your vending doesn’t stop, of course. It just slows down, so go out and get yourself some retail stuff.
Larry Towner,: I will say this on the retail stuff. It doesn’t do very much for the rest of the year in general. You’ve got about a six to eight week period where it really does something, but it happens to be exactly opposite of what all your traditional industrial accounts do.
Larry Towner,: Those are a couple of strategies that we had discussed about working during the December doldrums. If you guys have any ideas, please don’t hesitate to send us some emails, because we love to learn this kind of stuff and we’ll do whatever we need to … We’ll add that into these shows coming up in the future or something. Tom, what else do we have?
Tom Shivers: Yeah, absolutely. Just right below there, put a comment about what your experience is for December and any questions, and be glad to respond to those. We’ll be continuing on with these vending opportunities, vending business opportunities, in future shows, so subscribe.
Tom Shivers: You’re been watching Vending Business December Slow season at the Vending Business Show, a publication of A & M Equipment SalesOther Vending Blogs at the Vending Business Show Vending Business Opportunities: Buyer Beware
Basic Vending Sales Presentation number one don’t be late and if you are call and apologize. Basic Vending Sales Presentation number two Get there in plenty of time to ride around in the parking lot in order the count the cars for population and to see how many deliver vehicles and other walk in traffic is there. Basic Vending Sales Presentation number three meet your contact and ask him questions about his current vending service and how he thinks it could be run better. Basic Vending Sales Presentation number four Ask to go see the current vending machines. Most times you can show the contact machines that are dirty or with stale product. Basic Vending Sales Presentation Number Five Point out everything that is wrong with the service he now has but be careful not to look like you are bad mouthing too much. Fine Line. Tell him how your service would be better. Listen to him and tell him how you could improve what he has. .
Basic Vending Sales Presentation Have a plan and practice it. Always ask positive leading questions like:
What do you like about the vending service that you have right now?
If you had a choice is there anything you would change about your vending company right now?
Listen to these answers and with that you have enough info to make a very professional sales presentation in vending. You’ll want to cater your presentation.
Most of the time you already have the products they want, so by asking questions you will learn what all you need to do there.
Next, you’ll explain how your system works and incorporate in it the things they like right now and that you will fix the things they don’t like right now.
The majority of the complaints about vending is not product but service related, so ask plenty of questions to understand how to cater to that prospect.
Tom: Hi I’m Tom with the Vending Business Show and today we’re talking about basic vending sales presentation. So, Larry Towner’s here with us, so what is a basic sales presentation look like?
Larry Towner: Well, so we wanted to just go over some of the basic things cause I … let me tell you the genesis of this story. I was sitting in my new job, as it were, and we had a coffee man come in and he was gonna do a sales presentation to us at the shop that I work at. I was like, “Okay. This sounds like fun. I’ve been selling coffee for a little while, selling vending and coffee and doing all of this stuff for a little while.”
Larry Towner: It spurred this idea to come up with how to do the basics of a sales presentation. This guy come in and he had set up an appointment. He had done a cold call and he had set an appointment to come in and talk to us at eight o’clock in the morning.
Larry Towner: Let’s talk about the first thing. Tom, when should you show up at for an eight o’clock appointment? A: at 5:00, B: 8:00, C: 8:05, D: Next week.
Tom: Well I would say B, but …
Larry Towner: I would say that’s A or B. By the time 8:00 rolls around, you better be there and ready to go. Don’t show up late. If you are gonna be late, even if it’s a few minutes, make sure you call and talk to the man or woman or whomever you’re talking to and who you’re presenting to. In this case, we had eight people standing there waiting for this to happen and he was late. It started him off on the wrong foot straight away, so be on time. Number one.
Larry Towner: So number two. Have a plan. Understand what you’re trying to do. Come up and practice this once in a while. When you go in to do a vending presentation, always ask lots of questions, right? So one of the first questions is, and stay positive, what do you like about the vending service that you have right now. Listen, right? Pay attention to what they say, then cater your presentation to what he said right after that. So what do you like, so if there was anything and also again staying positive, ask another question.
Larry Towner: If you had a choice is there anything you would change about your vending company right now, and listen to what he says. Then you can go in and you can say okay, with that, those two questions right there give you enough information to make a very professional sales presentation in vending, because what you’re going to do is cater your thing. If the fella says, you know, we just don’t have the products that we want here. Fella or woman I should say, because many times you’ll make a call to a woman. But, if the person says to you, “You know, we just don’t have the products that we want here”. “Well what kind of products would you like?” Another question right? But again, you want to listen and half the time those products are going to be on your truck anyway, so all you’re really doing is finding out what you’re going to need to do there.
Larry Towner: You’re just asking a series of questions and then you go, “Well here’s how our system works” and you have a pre-prepared statement of how your system works. Now, you’re going to modify that a little bit and incorporate, of course, all the things that they said that they liked about what they have now and you’re going to fix all the problems for the things they don’t like right now. So, if the guy comes in and he says, “Well you know the product, you know if I had to change anything, I’d make sure that the products are in date”. So, when your going down your presentation and you say “Well here’s how our system works”. We come in every two weeks. Well the first thing we do is we open the machine and we check all the dates, and we’ll remove any of the product out of there, that’s out of date or close to date.
Larry Towner: So immediately, you’re doing two things. You’re showing what you do and you’re also showing how you’re going to fix what they don’t like about their situation right now. That’s the basics of a sales presentation. Ask some good qualifying questions, and the two questions that I just asked out there, you want to stay positive. Don’t say what do you not like about your vending company right now?, you don’t want to say that. You want to say if there was anything you would change, what would you change? And, he’ll, he or she, will come out and tell you exactly what it is that they don’t like about the vending company and conversely, what do they like about what they have? Because, of course, to be successful you want to do what they want. We would hope anyway. Do you agree with that Tom?
Tom: That sounds like a great plan Larry.
Larry Towner: It’s really tough. Really tough.
Tom: I’m sure it is. It’s just a matter of getting some new habits going though.
Larry Towner: It is a question of habits, and it’s a little bit of a question of being, of just maintaining a positive spin on it and you don’t need to badger your competition, because they’ve already done that. If you have the opportunity to be in there, there’s something there that’s not right with the customer, and the customer will eventually tell you. You just have to keep asking those questions and if it gets down to it, says you know, because this is the question you’ll get. “His products are just too much money”. Your only answer to that, really is, “Well this is driven largely, you’re in business yourself, if you’re costs exceed your income, what’s that called? It’s called a loss and our company, we need to run at a profit, just like your company. Unfortunately, we don’t control the costs of our products and we don’t control the cost of gas and all of the expenses that go along with this business. The product costs what the product costs.”
Tom: Mm-hmm (affirmative)
Larry Towner: That’s the only answer to have in those kinds of situations, but other than that, most of the time if they’re looking to, if you’re there, there’s a reason that you’re there. It’s usually service related, so, anyway.
Tom: Thanks so much Larry. If you want to subscribe to get more vending business tips like this The Basic Vending Sales Presentation, you’ve been watching the Vending Business show a publication of A & M Equipment Sales.
Great Vending Machines that can go in any location is the Dixie Narco 501E and the Automatic Products 113 Snack Machine
Power of the Free Honeybun Use a food giveaway as an information gathering device to learn what’s happening in your accounts and the people you are working with that might impact your business:
Pulse of the management
Business expanding or contracting
Builds personal relationships
Makes you more valuable
Power of the Free Honeybun When you have a new product, introduce it with a giveaway to get feedback. It starts a conversation that can reveal important info to better understand their wants, needs and desires.
Tom Shivers: Hi I’m Tom with the Vending Business Show, and I’m her with Larry Towner of Service Group International, and we’re talking about a concept called the power of the free honeybun. You may have heard Larry talk about this before, but tell us more about that Larry.
Larry Towner: When we talk about the power of the free honeybun, first off we’re talking about just the caloric intake of a honeybun. A good honeybun is at least 600 calories. Don’t tell anybody that. You don’t want to know what the fat level is either. With that being put aside. When I talk about the power of the honeybun, what we’re talking about is using a giveaway, as it were, a food giveaway, as a marketing tool or as an information gathering device for a way for you to get good information on what’s happening in your accounts in getting people to work with you. Tom is it important to have people work with you when you’re running a small business?
Tom Shivers: Yes, and incentives can really do the trick sometimes.
Larry Towner: Yeah, and that’s kind of what it is. In vending you’re working within another company generally, and you just want to know what the pulse of the management, the pulse of what’s happening in the business, what’s going on that might affect your business. Are the expanding? Are they contracting? Is the manager mad at you? Does the manager like honeybuns? If he liked honeybuns, drop one on his desk every once in a while when he least expects it.
Larry Towner: Essentially what I’m talking about is, is that I used to do, not a huge amount of giveaways, but I would od a number of giveaways. I always had a few people in an account that I would try to use as a good sounding board for a lot of different issues. One, and I was telling you this earlier, one thing is, when you have a new product, I always would take one of my new products, if I had a brand new introduction, say something that was just brand new to the market, and we really didn’t know if it was good or bad. Whether it was, a new flavor of Doritos or something like that. And I’d take one, and I’d say, “Hey, if you would give this a try and tell me what you think and tell me if you like it or don’t like it. I’m going to put a few in the machine, and if you can, just listen to what people say about them, and see what they say. Is it good or is it bad?”
Larry Towner: It’s that kind of thing. That allows you to start a conversation with somebody, and in that conversation you can find out all kinds of things about how your machines aren’t working right, the manager’s getting pissed off or, “Gosh you guys are doing a great job, did you know we’re opening another location in the next town over?” All of this information comes about from doing a free giveaway every once in a while, and just getting a personal relationship built with a couple of people that work within your accounts, because, gosh, it’s like any business, it’s understanding what their wants, needs and desires are, and then satisfying those wants, needs and desires, and doing a good job for them. It builds to business growth. It helps you grow your business. Is that how you built your business Tom, I bet it is?
Tom Shivers: Oh yeah. Yeah, there’s all kinds of ways to do incentives. I’m certainly involved in that one. I like it.
Larry Towner: So it works really good. We call it the power of the honeybun ’cause the honeybun of course is our most popular selling item as far as a pastry goes, and very few people turn them down unless they’re watching their weight. ‘Cause they’re a little caloric. It’s like eating a Big Mac if you really want to read the package, but that’s okay.
Tom Shivers: It can work with any kind of healthy item as well.
Larry Towner: Yeah, it works with anything. Whatever your particular contact likes. If they’re a granola bar person, give them a granola bar. Snickers bar, whatever. M&Ms are really good. They work really, really well because, the of course, they don’t melt and they stay for a while. Just depends on what the specific of the account are. We like to call that the power of the honeybun or the power of the free giveaway. It really, really can do wonders for your business. Like I say, it gets a little conversation going. Gets you in the loop. Gets you working with your people. Makes you more valuable, basically.
Tom Shivers: Awesome. Thanks Larry. Be sure to subscribe. You’ve been watching the power of the free honeybun by A&M Equipment Sales.
Vending Business Seasonal Sales Part One A business cycle reflects human nature because people tend to cycle…
Two different business cycles in the vending business: account sales and retail sales of product.
Spring is the time of growth and renewal – more sales and opportunities. Time to sell product sometimes due to the warmer weather. On the account sales side, refrigeration equipment tends to begin showing problems which is a customer service issue but also an account sales opportunity. Any time you have a lot of service calls it’s a good time for account sales.
Summer, retail sales shift from snacks to drinks. As the temperature increases people tend to buy non-carbonated beverages. Summer account sales are tough because people take vacations and their mind isn’t on vending typically.
Vending Business Seasonal Sales Part One Tom Shivers: I’m Tom with the Vending Business Show, here again with Larry Towner who is a vending business consultant and today we’re talking about vending business cycles in the average vending business over a year, annual basis.
Tom Shivers: So, thanks for being here Larry. How do we get started with this?
Larry Towner: Well, Tom. Vending Business Seasonal Sales Part One. One of the things that we deal with when we’re dealing with a business cycle is it has a little bit to do with human nature and what people’s cycles are throughout the year. So, I’m gonna ask you some questions too, because after all the last time I checked you were a human being.
Larry Towner: I always start with spring, because spring is the time of renewal and things like that. It’s when it’s exciting. For you, in the springtime are you … Do you look forward to spring? I mean, is spring a time that you enjoy as a general rule?
Tom Shivers: Absolutely. Oh, yeah. It’s a great time, because it’s right after a cold winter.
Larry Towner: A long, cold, and dismal winter. We’re gonna talk about wintertime last. Let’s start with spring. But, again it gets back to human nature.
Larry Towner: People tend to cycle. They go through yearly cycles, they go through monthly cycles. There’s a lot of things that affect how people do business, what they purchase, and when.
Larry Towner: It’s simple things like life events, job changes, things like the weather. The weather has a huge amount to do with the Vending business, whether you believe it or not. But, we’ll go into some of those specifics.
Larry Towner: One of the things that … I’m gonna break this out into two areas too, because Tom, do you agree with this? That there’s two different business cycles in the vending business?
Larry Towner: There is the account sales portion of the vending business, which is when you’re selling to actually go achieve accounts. And then, there’s the retail sales portion of it for the actual sales of product and service out there. Does that sound about right to you?
Tom Shivers: Yeah. I can see that.
Larry Towner: Yep. So, I’m gonna address … When we address these issues we’ll address the retail side of it first, and then I’ll talk a little bit about the account sales side of it. Some of these things are cyclical or most of these things have a cycle anyway through them.
Larry Towner: So, let’s start off with spring. Springtime is generally the time of growth and renewal, I like to call it. It’s when your business starts to pick up and you start to start seeing more sales than you do in the wintertime … I’ll get to winter towards the end, but you start to see things picking up.
Larry Towner: It picks up in the vending business. Now, most of my operations I did in the south. Although, I did work in the greater Boston area for a number of years and these cycles work pretty much the same even north and south. They’re somewhat geared more towards the south, but they still work for the north.
Larry Towner: Springtime. Springtime is the time to sell product. In the springtime we tend to have an increase in product sales, largely because of the weather. It’s cold in the morning, it’s warm in the afternoon. That’s lends a great amount of credence to selling snacks in the morning and selling cold drinks in the afternoon.
Larry Towner: And then, of course coffee if you sell coffee. That sells always usually when it’s cold, but good coffee drinkers drink coffee all the time. So, we’ll leave that one out. But, that’s what springtime does for you.
Larry Towner: Spring is time to sell and people … Their money’s loosening up a little bit, and they’re looking forward to warm weather, and it tends to give them a very positive attitude, which in turn helps with your sales.
Larry Towner: It’s gonna help people feel better about themselves and that will lend to your sales on a retail basis. Now, on the account sales side springtime is kind of a tough time to sell. You need to be doing your calls in the spring, but the calls that you do in the spring are gonna be geared until a little later on in the year.
Larry Towner: One thing I always mention about sales calls in the spring is, spring is the time when you start to see some problems with machines. Particularly the refrigeration side of the business. Because, as the machines are coming out of winner they’re not … The machines aren’t cycling on and off a lot.
Larry Towner: And so, what happens is, is when the weather starts to warm up a little bit the refrigeration units start to kick on and off and that’s usually the time that you’ll start seeing some problems with refrigeration equipment. Largely drink machines start to have failures in the springtime, particularly as there’s big changes in humidity.
Larry Towner: What that spurs is that gives you an opportunity to go in and sell from an account standpoint, because if the existing vendor isn’t out there making his service calls and isn’t aware that the springtime is gonna create service problems he’s gonna have a bunch of service calls saying the drinks are hot, this and that.
Larry Towner: Anytime you have service calls it’s a good time to go with selling accounts. That’s the time when you want to sell accounts. Summer time. We’ll go into summertime. Retail sales in summertime your whole product line shifts from snacks over to drink, because as we like to say it’s 80 to 100 degrees out.
Larry Towner: People aren’t really hungry, they want cold drinks and you’d even be surprised they’re gonna drink more … As the temperature increases they drink more and more of the noncarbonated kind of drinks. They’re gonna drink sports drinks, water, things like that. Noncarbonated stuff.
Larry Towner: Nobody wants a lot of sugar when it’s really, really hot. There’s always exceptions to these rules, but as a general rule this is what you’re gonna see from a realistic standpoint. Fall time … Oh. Account sales. Summertime account sale’s really tough and this goes for the retail side too.
Larry Towner: People take a lot of vacations in the summertime, so what you see is your workforce gets diluted a little bit. If you’re in the traditional vending account where you’re within somebody’s business, a lot of people on vacation means your numbers are down, so your sales fall a little bit.
Larry Towner: But, getting to account managers in the summertime is difficult. They’re on vacation, they’re not really … Their mind isn’t really on vending per se, it’s more on production and on getting their business up and running than it is on changing out the vending company.
Larry Towner: Again, service calls. If they have service calls it’s a perfect time to go sell. If they have any issues or they have recurring issues in particular, good time to go sell.
Larry Towner: You got to make your calls, but your chances of success are less so than they are at other times of the year. Fall time. From a retail-
Tom Shivers: Hey, Larry. Can I interrupt right here? I think that’s about all the time we have for this show, can we pick up with fall and go into winter in the next one?
Larry Towner: We certainly can.
Tom Shivers: Okay. Great. You’ve been watching Vending Business Seasonal Sales Part One at the Vending Business Show, a production of A&M Equipment Sales.