Shred Nations is dedicated to the success of our partners. We are always looking for ways we can help our partners boost their business. In your account portal, there are three key ways in which you can boost your business.
Review your account settings and update any information that may have changed. This can include your service area, your customer settings, your company logo, your business website or adding photos. When your account is up to date this helps your business stand out, increase sales, and make customers more familiar with your business.
Shred Nations allows you to sell us customers.
Have you ever received customers from your own marketing efforts that you cannot serve? Are they outside of your service area? Too large of a job? Need shredding, scanning, or storage services that your company does not provide? We will buy them! Your account allows you to see how much we will buy them for based on the project. This is a great opportunity to make some extra money off costumers that you may typically turn away.
Whether you want to expand your service area or add different services, we are here to help. Your account allows you to boost your business in several different ways. Consider exploring the variety of customers that you can receive to increase your revenue.
Shred Nations’ focus is on the financial success of our Partners. By looking at factors such as creating route density, making multiple stops in an office building, and driving only to remote areas when the job is guaranteed to be profitable – we strive to think outside the shredding box. One aspect of the business which is becoming increasingly popular is to host Shred Events in the evenings and on weekends when your trucks are idle.
Each year, the number of requests to hold a shred event increase exponentially. However, all Shred Events are not created equal. Before committing to hosting a Shred Event, you must consider these five questions:
Who Sponsors Shred Events and Why?
For instance, there is a big difference between an event sponsored by a downtown bank/financial institution as opposed to an event put on by a local Little League baseball team for fundraising. The bank most likely already has media partners in place who will reach out to the public and drive up the number of boxes to be destroyed. The baseball team may need new uniforms and expect a portion of the proceeds to go directly to them. They probably don’t have an advertising budget and expect you to get the word out.
Should You Host a Free Event or Collect Fees?
How are you being compensated for your presence at the Shred Event? Do you charge by the hour, by the box, or simply a flat fee for the event? Is the potential exposure worth doing it for free? Can you offer your services to a non-profit organization and write it off as a way to give back to the community? You could decide based on a gut feeling, but we recommend you do a cost/benefit analysis before signing on the dotted line.
Where is the Event Located and When Will it Take Place?
What is the date? Since you have a limited opportunity to do a Shred Event (limited by the number of trucks you own and the availability of drivers) you need to consider where and when the event is going to take place. It’s much easier to make money someplace close to your plant and visible, then driving to a remote location. Do you have the manpower to spare?
How Long Should the Event Last?
Since the event is about generating revenue/buzz for your company, it’s important to understand how long the organization expects your shredding truck to be at the event. Does the customer have clear cut expectations of what is involved? After all, time is money.
How Should I Manage Expectations?
It’s important for you to emphasize to your client how long it takes to shred a box of paper and for them to understand your expectations. Will you issue a certificate of destruction to each individual customer? Will you tip the bin between each client? These are important points of fact to share prior to the Shred Event. No one wants to go away from the event feeling unsatisfied.
Start Hosting Your Shred Event Now
At Shred Nations, our focus is to provide you with as many opportunities as we can to generate revenue for your business. Shredding Events should be profitable, but they are also a chance for your company to spread knowledge of identity theft and convey the importance of secure destruction.
They are also a chance for you to create brand awareness by being in front of new customers and communities who may be connected to businesses that will have a need in the future. You must have well defined goals to make the most of these opportunities.
Is the immediate revenue more important or is the low-cost advertising what drives your decision? Either way you go, the opportunities are REAL and the advantages are plentiful. We can help you. SHRED ON!
Hundreds of salespeople and leading independently-owned shredding companies in the shredding industry make a habit of sales success using sales-ready referrals from Shred Nations.
How Sales-Ready Referrals Enable Success
The habit-forming effect of sales-ready referrals is directly attributed to the sweet taste of success from an overwhelming competitive advantage provided by referrals, the low cost of referrals, and their enormous positive impact on sales and profitability.
Starting in 1999 Shred Nations designed sales-ready referrals to create sales success in response to a sales manager’s request – “Just give me one customer at-a-time that needs a shredding service – right now. I’ll handle the rest.” Today, Shred Nations’ referrals originate from customers that are searching the internet for a shredding service. An experienced marketing group distills each referral from a continuous information flow from more than 1,500 inquiries per day. These inquiries originate from clicks, conversions, phone calls, form-fills, and customer interviews.
Why Sales-Ready Referrals?
In their final form referrals represent exceptionally accurate information. The sales efficiency attributable to accurate information is augmented by the awesome persuasive effect from extreme speed in responding to every customer request. Salespeople from local shredding companies are frequently in touch with customers who are looking at a computer monitor that displays the inquiry they sent just a few moments earlier. Routinely Shred Nations responds within seconds after a referral is completed to both inquiring customers and local shredding companies.
A momentous breakthrough occurred when Shred Nations combined accurate information with extreme responsiveness. Perhaps a newly perceived readiness of customers to act is attributed to the digital-age orientation of Gen X and Millennial generations who are growing beyond today’s 68% of the U.S. workforce. Perhaps the internet’s ability to generate instant information put self-directed customers in a frame of mind that they are prepared to act when their needs are met. Perhaps it is simply salespeople that are trained to listen and deliver the right message. Regardless the decision-making process of customers changed over the past decade.
Forming a Habit of Success from Sales-Ready Referrals
Customers are now buying shredding services with the first phone call (about 60%). Closing deals based on referrals is an easy and simple process for companies in the Shred Nations network. While it isn’t quite like shooting fish in a barrel, success is routine. As a by-product of sales success, shredding companies that are outside of the Shred Nations network rarely receive opportunities to earn referral business because 80% of referrals are quickly closed within the network. Another happy consequence for the Shred Nations network is that companies with established business relationships are losing customers before they can react. With about 2/3rds of the industry dominated by Shred-it and Iron Mountain, a major redistribution of shredding business is taking place and contributing significant growth for independently-owned shredding companies.
Individual and organizational success habits develop in this setting. A new sales-ready referral is the cue. It stimulates an immediate phone call to a welcoming customer and an automatic sales routine that starts with listening to the customer’s needs and confirming the ability to deliver. This behavior is rewarded with a positive reaction. It is followed by negotiating price and concluding the negotiation. This entire process creates a sense of personal satisfaction and achievement. People crave this feeling and desire to repeat it. Organizations create routines in support because referrals provide marketing cost leadership and a sustainable source of new profit. Leading organizations go one step further.
Referrals are not only a source of transactional profit – most can be turned into long-term business relationships because every company needs a shredding solution for their daily flow of confidential information. Also, every new customer invites converting their neighbors to additional new customers and possibly a customer gain from referrals.
Keep an eye out for part two of this series: Why Successful Habits Are So Powerful.
More information on sales-ready referrals is available from our partner team at (800) 747-3365
We have found that our partners are most successful in closing “Direct Connect” referrals when we are able to quickly transfer the customer directly to an agent who can go over pricing and scheduling. Our customers are typically looking to get information quickly and will not hold for long. To show the customer we value their time and to help our partners close more sales, we have three tips to help improve the “Direct Connect” process.
If possible, have a sales representative answer the phone directly to avoid transferring the call. Our customers will not stay on hold for long. If they hang up, we are unable to “Direct Connect” them with you.
Have your sales representative answer the phone, state their name in a friendly greeting and be prepared to take down customer information. Our agent will include the customer’s first name, whether it is business or residential, the presold quoted amount, volume or frequency, and their zip code.
If you are unable to have a sales representative answer the phone, it is best to have us provide one person with the customer information rather than give it to the person answering the phone as well as the sales representative. This will avoid hold time for the customer.
Having a smooth transfer to our valued partners helps keep the customer happy and on the line, to win their business. We are here to answer any questions you may have. Give us a call at (800) 747-3365 or click here to fill out our form.
This article explains some of the challenges that are being presented to independent shredding companies, and some opportunities on how to come out on top.
Reduced Paper Usage: Moody’s 2016 Paper Industry Outlook indicted “paper demand in mature North American markets is expected to continue to fall by approximately 5% per year for the next several years. This decline is driven by individuals and businesses increasingly turning to digital alternatives, such as tablets and e-readers.”
If correct, five consecutive years of 5 percent decreases is a one-third reduction in paper demand. This will negatively impact long term purge business and the daily accumulation of paper in offices.
Consolidation of the Shredding Industry:
Market Analysis (includes estimates)
Sales ($ millions)
Iron Mountain (IM)
Recall (to be acquired by IM)
Up to 1,500 Shredders
The market size of vended shredding companies is not authoritatively known. The table assumes 1,500 smaller shredding companies average $400,000 in annual sales. Most local shredding companies operate only 1 to 2 trucks.
It’s very unusual for the top two companies of an industry to have a 65% market share- especially in a low capital-entry business. The reason for this is grounded in economics. As market dominant firms add their last groups of customers, operating costs grow exponentially. For this reason and to satisfy their Wall Street and investor stakeholders, prices must be high.
This is precisely where local shredders make inroads and an equilibrium point is established – often this equilibrium is at 50% market share. If smaller companies keep their operating costs down and their prices for shredding services low, it may become economically impractical for the top companies to maintain their current market share.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR INDEPENDENT SHREDDING COMPANIES
Nationwide there are more than 5 million companies with fewer than 100 employees that employ over 40 million people – about 40% of the total U.S. work force. There are also more than 9 million home businesses.
None of these markets are in the direct path of the two dominant companies. It will require highly efficient routes to earn profits in this growing segment of the market. In this setting the term “local service area” has real economic importance for the smaller operator.
Competing with Dominant Shredding Companies
It seems that the bigger a company gets, the less trust it places on its sales people. Almost no one in a dominant company will be given authority to deviate from a price list. Also, it becomes harder to get special services for a good customer.
When a small company empowers its salespeople to be flexible and make decisions, it’s easy to out-perform a dominant company in both price and service.
Why Disneyland is known as “the magic kingdom” is that it’s a big company that actually delivers great personalized service. Most big companies lose their magic in a bureaucracy of operating procedures and rules. The “magic trick” is make sure your company never stops enthusiastically delighting its customers.
A Zero-Sum Contest
A Zero-sum contest is a situation in game theory in which one person’s gain is equivalent to another’s loss, so the net change in wealth or benefit is zero. For example, if one company wins a customer, the second company loses the opportunity to service that same customer. No increased benefit results – it simply changes hands.
In practice neither a small or dominant company can afford losses, but a small company can achieve lower operating costs and in many cases “win” business with a bid that is lower than a big company is willing to go.
People do business with people, and business also can be won or lost based on personalities and sales skills. Following-up and being “local” often counts but often not as much as a “competitive price.”
In summary the big opportunities are:
New Markets – focusing on businesses with fewer than 100 employees.
Focusing on route efficiency
Preparing for rapid growth
Offering competitive pricing and service where it makes sense.