Wholesale & Distribution International - Fall 2017 - 32
R.C. BREMER MARKETING
www.rcbremer.com / Headquarters: Kenosha, Wis. / Employees: 13 / Specialty: Manufacturer's representative
/ Joe Falk, president: "If you don't have time to work on new opportunities or new markets, you're going to be stagnant."
R.C. Bremer's focus on staying current makes it a leader. BY ALAN DORICH
R.C. Bremer Marketing Associates focuses on the sales
and marketing of industrial safety and fire products.
or 35 years, R.C. Bremer
Marketing Associates Inc. has kept
its employees focused on working
hard. "Everyone asks, 'What do you expect out of your employees?'" President
Joe Falk says.
"My answer to that is to get out of bed
and go to work every day," he explains. "If
you can get your employees to abide by
that simple rule, [your sales will grow]."
Based in Kenosha, Wis., the manufacturer's representative firm specializes
in the sales and marketing of industrial,
safety and fire products, including flashlights, glasses, gloves and ventilation
equipment. Founder Robert Charles
Bremer founded the company in 1982.
Today, R.C. Bremer represents multiple manufacturers, including Streamlight
Inc., Allegro Industries and Gateway Safety Inc. "We consider ourselves top notch
32 www.wdimagazine.com Fall 2017
compared to what some of the other agencies are doing around us," Falk says.
Falk joined R.C. Bremer in 1997 after
graduating from college. "I was brought
in to do end-user work and do training on
fall protection," he recalls, adding that he
later took on a sales role.
In 2007, Robert Bremer approached
Falk about buying the company. "He was
ready to retire, and he came to me with
an opportunity I couldn't refuse," he says,
noting that he has made many changes.
"I've flipped the entire agency," he
says, explaining that he added a new staff,
expanded R.C. Bremer's markets and implemented a customer relationship management system. He also launched the
company's marketing program, which includes e-blasts and video training for its
customers, along with other new product
and promotion processes.
Staying current, he notes, is essential
to R.C. Bremer's leadership in the market.
"If you don't have time to work on new
opportunities or new markets, you're going to be stagnant," he adds. "You need to
stay ahead of it and be proactive," he continues. "You can't assume the business is
going to take care of itself."
Technology has impacted R.C.
Bremer's industry in recent years, Falk
says. Although it was once easy to schedule meetings with distributors to show
off new products, "These guys aren't getting together," he admits.
Thanks to the Internet and the use of
GoToMeeting, "There's no reason to go
to the boardroom anymore," he says. "It's
becoming difficult to communicate to
these sales reps and distributors."
The company's expansion into video
training and e-blast programs has helped
it "get in front of the distributors and
sales reps," Falk says.
These have boosted business for the
company's inside sales representatives, as
opposed to its outside sales staff. "We're
able to touch many more of our customers
from our inside than our outside is able to
do," he says. "We can hit 50 to 100 a day."
R.C. Bremer also has focused more on
its relationships with end-users. "At the
end-user level, we get more control over
the final sale," Falk says. "We are building
relationships directly with the end-user
and pulling the orders through the distributor. By having the relationship at the
end-user, you are able to keep your prod-