A Grain-Handling Systems Company Finds a Marketing Partner
When Lawrence Martin first considered the Marketing Guide Path™ at Rosewood, he was hesitant. “I wasn’t sure how much time it would take or whether there would be enough value,” says Lawrence.
Lawrence and his wife, Rebecca, own Exemplar (formerly LnR Feed & Grain-Handling Systems), a contractor company that designs, builds, and repairs custom grain-handling systems for farmers and mill owners in Greencastle, PA.
Lawrence thrives in troubleshooting grain dryer breakdowns, scaling grain bins, or helping a farmer plan his grain-handing system. But his work also keeps him busy, making it hard for him to put enough time into marketing.
“Keeping all my marketing consistent across different channels–print ads, postcards, emails–is a challenge,” Lawrence says. “Also, keeping it up to date. I needed reminders to update my postcards and ads instead of running the same ad for six months.”
Lawrence had used Rosewood’s design services for many years. He later joined Rosewood’s experimental group marketing guide program. When that was discontinued, he switched to the Marketing Guide Path.
Lawrence says, “When I started with Rosewood, I worked with Roy (Rosewood’s founder). And now, I haven’t talked to Roy for I don’t know how long. But all the rest of you put out the same high-quality work that I’ve come to expect out of Rosewood. I appreciate the consistency. It’s never, ‘Oh no, I’ve got this person to deal with.’ You’re all on the same team.”
Painting the Bull’s Eye–The Start of a Marketing Year
Planning Session #1
The Marketing Guide year begins with two planning sessions. The first one is devoted to reviewing the past year. This is called Strategy Research. “We discuss what worked and what didn’t work in the past year,” says Marvin Martin, Exemplar’s Marketing Guide™. “Usually this begins a discussion about the whole business.”
For example, say Exemplar lacked employees in the past year. Aggressive marketing to gain new clients will only exacerbate the problem. This information is then factored into the marketing plan for the next year.
Another question that Marvin asks is, “What do you want the year of 2023 to be?” Lawrence may say, “I want 2023 to be the year I focus on this customer group,” or “I want 2023 to be the year I increase my revenue by x%.”
In the Meantime
Before the second planning session, Marvin plans projects and prepares a budget for the following year based on discussions in the Strategy Research session. He also brainstorms and researches new ideas to try. Projects that worked well the previous year are added to the budget. Projects that faltered are adapted or dropped.
Marvin also develops KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) for Exemplar. For example, if one of Lawrence’s goals is to win over more customers in a certain category, one KPI might be “Visit 5 [target customers] a month.”
Planning Session #2
In the second planning session, Marvin presents the KPIs, budget, and proposed projects to Lawrence. Lawrence may also bring some new ideas he thought of. Together they mold the budget and KPIs to fit Lawrence’s goals and price range.
Keeping the Arrows Flying Straight–Monthly Action Sessions
Lawrence and Marvin meet each month. They review the goals and report on progress. They discuss current projects. Lawrence says, “I like the regular session. Sometimes I write down questions to check with Marvin because I know there’s a specific time scheduled for both of us to talk.”
Sometimes designers and copywriters join the meeting to discuss projects they’re working on for Exemplar. “This coordination of all the people on different projects has been very helpful,” Lawrence says. “With a larger firm, different people are working on different parts of my marketing. Some people work on a print ad. Some people work on emails. With a marketing guide, I have one person I can refer to if I have questions. I like that.”
Hitting the Target–What’s Been Working
Marvin says, “Over the years, we’ve seen Exemplar grow. It’s becoming known as a company that can both design and build a whole grain setup.” Messaging and branding that targets Exemplar’s ideal customers is helping to strengthen Exemplar.
Highlights of the past year include:
- Professional photography that captured boots-on-the-ground and high-in-the-sky shots of Exemplar’s work
- The renaming and rebranding that materialized after four years of dreaming of it
- The creative 2-section calendar that hinted at and then announced the new brand
Lawrence says, “I would recommend Rosewood to others. It’s like having my own in-house marketing person. I can give Marvin a concept and then Rosewood takes it and develops it. They get all the information that’s needed and then they produce it. I don’t have to worry about it. They consistently produce high-quality work.”
Marvin also enjoys working with Lawrence. “It’s gone from a business associate acquaintance to a friend relationship,” he says.
Is the Marketing Guide Path™ for You?
Does a Marketing Guide partnership for your business pique your interest?
- Explore our website to learn more. Schedule a call, and we’ll discern together if Rosewood is right for you.
- Get onboard and start your journey. Your Marketing Guide™ and Strategy Coach work with you to create a marketing strategy, set goals, and plan your projects for the year.
- Watch your business grow with purposeful marketing as your marketing plan comes to life through creative messaging and design, both print and digital.