Specialist adhesives manufacturer ITAC Limited recently celebrated 100 years in business. A 4th generation family owned company, ITAC specialises in the manufacture of adhesive and non-adhesive coatings for a wide range of industries including textiles, graphics and construction.
Recipe for Business Growth – Be Solution Focused
ITAC has set out as specialist formulator and manufacturer of adhesive compounds. ITAC is focused on taking the complexity, hassle, risk and cost associated with using adhesives away from their customers. The solution approach is key when interacting with existing customers and new prospects. One introduction letter starts: “How We Make Your Business Simpler and Cleaner”
Getting the Right People and Systems in Place
To help ITAC evolve and grow, Managing Director Paul Armitt has seen the benefits of experienced staff working alongside new people who can add complimentary skills. A key a member of Paul’s team is Tony Cross. Tony has brought a wealth of experience to ITAC gained from working in larger corporate organisation. Tony’s focus on systems and operational controls has enabled ITAC to create robust forecasts and manufacturing reports. This helps everyone identify any issues and take action quickly.
Bringing in Specialists Skills – B2B Marketing Review
Having established a solid foundation for operational performance, ITAC realised that long term success required further sales growth. With our support they went through a Strategy Workshop, followed by a Marketing Review. By using ‘Test and Learn’ B2B marketing techniques to test and improve their value proposition, they came up with clear and relevant messages. This was followed by engaging with existing customers and new prospects and carefully evaluated the response. Each learning and insight was brought back to drive refinements in the approach.
Maintaining Focus – Develop a Sales Pipeline
One key learning for ITAC is that their sales cycle is extremely long. To keep track of the many contacts, leads and enquiries required to grow the business became challenging. A Process Review addressed this challenge The solution was to improve the use of their ACT CRM system so contacts and opportunities were pro actively managed. Following training and adjustments to the ACT CRM platform, ITAC were able to track their leads. Developing a structured sales pipeline with all activity being tracked, clarity of ownership of actions and the ability to learn from the activity history was a major win.
Product Formulations to Suit the Customers Needs
ITAC identifies their customers challenges and propose solutions to positively impact their customers bottom line. This often means formulating products matched to their customers process and equipment. The process of formulation, compounding and trialling can be time-consuming, but ultimately benefits both the customer and ITAC by creating formulations that meet critical to function (CTF) parametersand work consistently for the customer, making ITAC a valuable partner.
Pursuing new Applications through Innovation
ITAC also develops novel solutions that can be used for completely new applications. Examples are switch-able adhesives that can benefit recycling applications and colour betrayal compounds that provide immediate detection of chemicals and can benefit PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) Applications.
Adding Value Every Day
ITAC seek to add value in every step of the process. Paul Armitt explains: By constantly asking ourselves – “How can we deliver better value” – we have created new services and improved existing ones as well. Examples include: Reverse logistics to manage our customers solvent disposal and On-line sharing of our SPC quality data with our customers.
Continuing the Journey – Long Term Customer Relationships
Now that ITAC have confirmed that their business model is working, they are looking forward. Their key focus is to develop long term relationships. They accept it can take years from first contact until they have a regular repeat customer. The long sales cycle makes it critical to have efficient ways to stay in touch with a large contact base so ITAC is now investing in long term relationship marketing such as email marketing and technical blogs to enhance visibility and profile in their target market.
For an informal chat about support for your business, call us on 01625 329 319 or contact us to arrange for us to call you.
From our base in Macclesfield, we provide Business Advice, Mentoring, Coaching and Training to businesses across Cheshire,Derbyshire and the North West including Macclesfield, Wilmslow,Stockport, Buxton and Manchester.