Cake and a Trip
I really like the honeycomb shades,” says Si Pollack, The Blind Man, Albuquerque, NM. Of course, in that part of the country, the energy efficiency and insulation provided by these multi-layered shades are greatly appreciated. So last fall when Hunter Douglas introduced the Duette® Architella™ Collection—which features the unique, patented construction of a honeycomb nestled within a honeycomb — you can guess why Pollack and the sales staff at The Blind Man were really excited about it. That excitement led to The Blind Man being singled out as the product’s top sales leader during a three-month promotion.
Readers will remember Pollack, his family and The Blind Man as the cover story of D&WC’s February issue. A few days after wrapping up the interview, Pollack called with the news: The Blind Man had won a Hunter Douglas Windows to the World trip for two, leading all other Hunter Douglas Gallery dealers in sales of the Architella. “I know we do a good job,” Pollack said, “but No. 1 out of 350 Gallery dealers?” He was almost speechless.
Tim Murphy is Pollack’s sales rep for Gulf Coast Window Covering, a full-line Hunter Douglas fabricator, based in Houston, TX. He first met Pollack about eight years ago when The Blind Man was still a one-person operation.
“There definitely was a lot of interest in bringing his family into the business,” Murphy recalls. About a year later, The Blind Man became a Gallery dealer and “the rest is history,” Murphy says.
“We did present the Architella pretty strongly to his whole store. The president of Gulf Coast, Bill Gaul, and I did a pretty extensive presentation when it had first come out. It was really a matter of all the members of his store getting excited about it. You sell what you’re really excited about and that’s what happened there.”
Excitement over new products seems to be contagious. The Blind Man has seen customers willing to spend more for quality window coverings. “Definitely, the higher-end products are continuing to be very strong,” Pollack says. “There’s just such a variety of things that are offered today. More and more new products are coming out all the time.”
Murphy presented The Blind Man with a congratulatory cake and later brought lunch into the showroom for all the employees.
The Windows to the World program, now in its 14th year, has become a cornerstone Hunter Douglas marketing program.
Qualifications are based on incremental sales growth over the prior year with trips to exciting locales offered to winners.
Incentive programs have proved very successful in increasing sales and developing dealer loyalty to a brand in a competitive marketplace. Pollack finds them equally successful in-house, often offering them to salespeople. This time his daughter and partner, Joy, and one of his employees will be going on the trip. “We believe in sharing the trips with our employees,” Pollack says. “I think that’s why we’re the company that we are.”