By Gordon Weiler
A major topic at Daman these days is addressing how to assist out customers—who are distributors—with getting their solutions to market faster. After reading a brief Prisma paper, I was inspired by our common belief that a focus on speed to market can be a major competitive advantage. In fact, as the paper states, a lack of speed to market can actually hurt business in the following ways:
Decreased speed to market gives the competition the advantage when it comes to innovation, allowing them to reach consumers with new products, services or offers before you do.
Gives other businesses the opportunity to dominate the market—even with a substandard product—simply because they got there first.
Allows you to develop a reputation for being a follower rather than an industry leader.
Daman and our distributor customers do not want to be on the receiving end of these negative effects. That is to say, we simply cannot afford to lose to others having stronger speed to market than what we can collaboratively achieve together. While this can involve taking risks, it requires constant communication with end users about their needs and which ideas can help solve their problems.
For instance, our recent focus on integrated manifold solutions, such as valve and filter installations , isn't intended to compete with our valued distribution customers. Rather, we work alongside distributors and their other manufacturer suppliers to understand how we can proactively and preemptively be successful. We do this by introducing more collaborative and integrated solutions into the market, both better and faster than the competition.
Additionally, we’ve recently expanded Daman’s eCommerce data set to 400 top selling parts with photos so that distributor partners can easily populate their eCommerce sites and offer Daman standard products more quickly and efficiently. Web-based solutions are not going away, and they allow intermediaries to update, customize and deliver products worldwide faster than can otherwise be achieved.
Other web solutions include DamanWorks, which will be released soon to provide live inventory counts for all standard products, as well as the ability to download CAD files. Daman's new Quick Block solution is a quick quote process for receiving a three hour or less custom quote for header and junction manifolds.
For quite some time, Daman's distributors and their customers have benefitted from 24-hour delivery services for Standard and Custom products. This includes Daman's 24-hour Standard In-stock Manifolds and 24-hour Custom Manifolds from Daman's Trigger System. Neither solution requires the complexity of forecasting or stringent minimum annual inventory commitments. When those solutions aren't enough, Daman also provides fee-based expedited services to assure products are drop-shipped as needed.
Finally, Daman set out to create an extensive blog and video library that, three years in the making, provides and continues to provide our account managers and distributor sales teams with training and communications tools to more readily spread the word about Daman and our specialized products and services. Today, distributors are using these tools in their internal training webinars and external sales presentations to their customers.
Distribution is the secret ingredient to customer success, and speed to market is the key to distribution success. The distribution system of the fluid power industry is never static; new technologies are causing fundamental changes in how distribution works. On the surface, such changes might mean one thing, yet when the actual mechanics play out, the results can sometimes be unexpected. Exploring such options has been and will continue to be a journey of exploration and innovation at Daman.
Distribution at The Speed of Daman? Of course. As a means to continue this extension of partnerships that allows us to mutually do the right thing and achieve the ultimate success of our customers, we know that speed to market is key and hope you will join and challenge us on this quest for innovation.
If you have ideas about how Daman can help improve your speed to market, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 800.959.7841.