Pet product manufacturers and retailers have a special relationship with each other. Whether they sell directly or through a distributor, the bond between the two parties must stay strong in order to ensure pet products are sold to the consumer in the most efficient way possible. Whether this includes partnering on promotions throughout the year, providing the retailers with valuable employee training, or offering merchandising assistance, there is much to be said about the value that is to be had when vendors and retailers work together.
However, with so many forms of communication now possible thanks to the digital age, it can be difficult to know the best ways to keep in touch. In order to simplify this process as much as possible, we took a look at how we are currently talking with our retailers, and noting the ways that we find are most efficient. Based on our findings, these are some of the easiest methods we found to communicate with vendors.
1. Personal Email with Phone Follow-up
One of the most tried-and-true methods of communicating between vendors and retailers is sending an email to the person you are specifically trying to reach, and then following up with a phone call. The reason why this works better than just simply an email is because the phone call will act as a double-alert to make sure they received the email. Plus, if your matter is urgent, you'll likely be able to speak to your contact directly within a matter of minutes to get it resolved.
However, we all know that phone calls don't always work. Your contact may be in a meeting or working on project that takes all of his or her attention, or they simply just don't recognize the number and let it go to voicemail. This is where the email comes in handy, because if it's something simple they may find it easier to reply to the email rather than attempt to play phone tag with you.
We understand that we are probably preaching to the choir at this point. It's likely that if you're reading this, you've been in the business for enough time to understand simple business communication techniques. However, it's always a good refresher to understand ways in which your vendor will appreciate you reaching out, and vice-versa.
2. Subscribing to Email Updates/Newsletter
Another good way of keeping in touch with your vendor, without much effort on your end, is by subscribing to their email updates and/or newsletter. Some pet manufacturers, or their sales rep groups, will often have a way for you to add your email to a list to receive updates on new products, pet industry trends, and notices for promotions. By subscribing to these email updates, you'll receive the valuable information you need without having to ask your vendor to send it to you on a weekly or monthly basis.
Of course, the one downside to subscribing to email updates is that it can often fill up your inbox quickly, and you don't want to accidentally miss your other emails which are vital to do your job. One way you can get around this is by creating a second email account, that you check semi-regularly, to use for all of your automated emails. This way, when you are ready and in the mood to browse some content from pet industry professionals, you'll have an entire email dedicated to it. Just make sure you set aside time on a regular basis (we suggest weekly, but it depends on what's best for you) to check these emails, otherwise they may pile up and you'll miss all of this valuable content
All Points Marketing's newsletter for pet retailers and other pet professionals, All Points Cares, is specifically designed to give readers top pet industry trends for the month and important updates on what our brands are up to. This newsletter is great for pet industry professionals who are interested in keeping up with top pet trends and learning more about our brands.
3. Download The App
One of the more unique ways of keeping in touch with vendors is by downloading their app. While this may be very limited to a select few, those who have an app will be very easy to get a hold of. The benefits of downloading your vendors' app include:
- Quickly call, text, or email them directly from the app
- Request service feature (samples, promotions, etc.)
- Direct access to a list of their brands (if they are a sales rep group)
- Quick access to promotions, product information, and other useful documents
This is a much newer and more exciting way to keep in touch with vendors. All Points Marketing offers an app that is very easy to download and doesn't take up much space. Plus, it offers all of the benefits as listed above and more. Click below to learn more about the All Points Marketing app and how it can help you.
What other ways do you find useful and efficient when communicating with vendors as a pet retailer, or visa versa? We'd love to hear what you think! Feel free to comment below and start a discussion with us.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ashley Hoffman – E-Commerce & Digital Marketing Manager joined the All Points family in April of 2015. Ashley brings a fresh outlook to the marketing industry as well as a constant desire for learning something new. She is dedicated to consistently improving her skills and efficiency in the marketing industry and using those skills to promote APM and all brands we represent. Ashley has grown up with many animals throughout her life and is currently the loving owner of two cats.
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