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Digital Directory
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JUNE 2013



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The Importance of a Dealer Network

by Brett Newman, Technical Director/Roland DG (UK) reprinted with permission from Graphic Display World www.graphicdisplayworld.com

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Deciding how best to sell products to the customer is an important decision for any manufacturer as Brett Newman, technical director at Roland DG (UK) explains.

The process must be beneficial to both the customer and the manufacturer - the manufacturer's brand needs to be reflected positively and the customer must feel confident they are purchasing the correct solution for their business. At Roland DG, (UK) we have experience of both selling direct to the customer and through a dealer network and there are a number of reasons why we believe selling through a dealer network is best.

Having worked in the dealer channel myself, I appreciate the importance of a good dealer/end user relationship and the positive impact a dealer can have on the end user's business. The relationship is one that can transcend that of just a supplier. When a dealer gets close to the customer and truly understands their business and output, they can take on the role of business consultant as well as supplier, advising the end user of the necessary solution and equipment that works with their business strategy as well as for their production requirements.

Selling through a dealer network gives a manufacturer confidence as you know your products are being sold by experts who are in a position to offer customers the very best advice. Our dealers are extremely knowledgeable of both the state of the market and developing trends and, as such, are able to advise customers how a machine can meet current needs as well as how the machine can be utilized to expand their range of applications at a later date when they want to expand their business.

A dealer network also enables a manufacturer to effectively reach and get closer to customers across a much wider geographical area. We appreciate that it is not always possible for all of our customers to visit our HQ and for this reason, the dealer network comes into its own. Our prospective clients throughout the country are able to visit one of our many authorized dealers within a 90 minute drive for a demonstration and to discuss their requirements. This is a major asset in the sales process.

Another benefit of a dealer network is access to complimentary equipment and consumables - whether it is trimmers and laminating machines or inks and media - for all the creative needs of the end user. Dealers are able to provide an integrated system to fulfil the end user's business demands, and also advise on suitable media for applications and application techniques. The dealer can act as a one-stop-shop for all printing needs and offer advice on the consumables that work best with the end user's machine. The relationship between the dealer and the end user is one of a true partnership where the support given to the customer is rewarded by loyalty to that particular dealership.

All in all, a dealer network provides personalized, on-going support and consultancy for customers. Dealers are an extra, and very important, link in the support chain. Through a dealer, end users can get local support should they have any queries, and also have easy access to the latest solutions via dealer open days and events which are often held at their showrooms.

{short description of image}Brett Newman, Technical director, Roland DG (UK), www.rolanddg.co.uk

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