Increased customer insight and instant business reports are key to preserving core values and professional customer service at Copdock Mill.
Copdock Mill is a company abundant with history, heritage and tradition. A fourth generation family run business and the leading manufacturer, wholesaler and distributor of animal feed in the South East of England, the company is proud to have reached its 102nd year in business.
Selling everything from pet food and birdseed through to fishing bait and horse food, Copdock Mill has become a respected supplier to many throughout the South East of England. With a number of retail stores across the region, a trade account base of over 1,200 customers and in excess of 6,000 product lines, the company prides itself on their unique positioning in the market as a complete manufacturer, wholesaler and distributor.
"We are now much more proactive than we were which is really helping us to stay on top of business. It isn’t cheap to have reps out on the road so I need to ensure that the time they do spend with our customers and prospects is quality time, not just a tick on a call sheet."
Copdock Mill is the supplier of choice for pet specialists, high street pet shops and garden centers. Managing Director Simon Gladwell says, “We weren’t able to know each and every one of our customers inside out and we have lots of independent accounts, each spending a different amount with us. It wasn’t always the most efficient to spend time preparing individual reports for each of them.”
Business was only set to get bigger and bigger, yet the company was determined to stay true to their three core values of service, availability and price. Despite using a basic reporting system within their incumbent back office system, it was becoming increasingly challenging to present sales and transactional data in an actionable format. “Reports were taking us a good half day to produce, we’d be trawling back through invoices, credits, returns and deliveries. It simply wasn’t feasible for us.”
After seeing sales-i in action during a meeting with equine feed supplier and fellow sales-i user Dodson and Horrell, the Copdock Mill team was sold: “Their sales rep pulled up snapshot reports on the fly in front of us, something we only did for our top spending customers. To be able to produce such a detailed report in seconds in front of someone is very impressive!”
Following a couple of online demonstrations, Simon was hooked: “It did everything we needed it to do.”
Making sure customers are fully satisfied with a top quality product and service is one the of the biggest drivers at Copdock Mill and sales-i is helping to ensure each and every customer, regardless of size or spend, is valued. “We can now make sure each of our customers feels important. The snapshot is particularly powerful for us as a company to present with. Customers love it when you can show them a document with their name on it and some graphs detailing their spend,” adds Simon.
Changes within the industry, coupled with a number of businesses leaving the traditional wholesale model posed a valuable opportunity for Copdock Mill to secure new business. “It made us look at our brands, what we were doing and where we were going as a business. sales-i has been a huge help for us in doing this.”
Campaign Manager has too been a powerful feature for the team at Copdock Mill. Simon has really taken ownership of building bespoke sales campaigns to replace lost sales and identify customers that were buying one product and offering them an alternative as suppliers went out of business. “I can generate Campaigns easily and notify my team every morning to follow up with customers that have been highlighted. We are now much more proactive than we were which is really helping us to stay on top of business,” he says.
The Copdock Mill ‘road warriors’ are equally as effusive about the new system. “The team instantly saw the benefits and value of sales-i so they’ve taken to it really well. We were already using iPads and iPhones for our meetings so we didn’t have to introduce a whole new range of technology to them. It isn’t cheap to have reps out on the road so I need to ensure that the time they do spend with our customers and prospects is quality time, not just a tick on a call sheet.”
Despite being a traditional business, Simon and the team at Copdock Mill have welcomed sales-i with open arms: “We will continue to champion sales-i for the foreseeable future and use the system in its entirety. We now supply top drawer service to everyone we work with.” The core values are being preserved for future generations and the level of professional customer service they can now provide is second-to-none.