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Who are your customers?

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David N Foster

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Post Tue Jan 20, 2015 4:23 pm

Who are your customers?

Hi Everyone, just throwing this out there to see who everyones best customers are? Are they graphic designers, architects, local businesses, government or contract/tender work? Do you all have customers who buy off you constantly or are your customers one off types who come in and get a fascia or a van done once and then you never hear from them again? Just thought this would be an interesting thread as maybe there is potential customer types out there some of us have never heard of or would even think of as being sign customers.
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Phill Fenton

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Post Wed Jan 21, 2015 10:32 am

Re: Who are your customers?

Good question.

It's often surprising who you come across that can provide many years of repeat business. e.g we have one customer that manufactures machinery that have a need for bespoke safety signs on an ongoing basis.
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David Hammond

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Post Wed Jan 21, 2015 2:36 pm

Re: Who are your customers?

We've a wide portfolio:

Some Large international companies who we supply repeat work for, long payment terms, but they pay, and it's reasonable work.

A Call Centre that has put many £1000's through the door since using us, as the repeatedly rebrand for each new project

A commercial vehicles dealership.

Trouble is we have a few large customers, and there's always the worry that if they go elsewhere we're left with huge hole to fill with other work. So we also quite like our small one off jobs for a bit of stability.
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Lawrence Day

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Post Wed Jan 21, 2015 10:56 pm

Re: Who are your customers?

we mainly service estate agents and there clients, get a good variety of work from certain agents.
however alot also go down the route of ive been quoted x amount a board else where (for the cheapest, ugliest sign which are boarder line dangerous when you see the fix), an still get really high rate when i wont match it. :evil:

our newest market is advertising agencies, these are great as we've found them alot more open to letting you recommend
which product where, which make my fitters happy and gives them a much better finish.

we also do local night clubs this is really regular, high volume but cheap throw away signs but really helps during the slow months.
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Alan Drury

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Post Thu Jan 22, 2015 10:53 am

Re: Who are your customers?

I only have one or two 'big' customers, my business is primarily sole traders and very small companies. They tend to be more reliable, easier to service and pay more promptly. Maybe not the bigger bucks but they have given me a living for the last 40 years
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Post Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:07 am

Re: Who are your customers?

We've been getting a lot of repeat business from local businesses not too many one offs. we started just over a year ago and have been doing a LOT of foot work going into shops and speaking to the managers.
Does any one use tendering websites? do they work? are they only for big fishes?
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David Hammond

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Post Thu Jan 22, 2015 11:14 am

Re: Who are your customers?

Trouble we found with tenders is the pre-requisites to tender, sometimes you can only tender for contracts up to x% of your annual turnover, £5m liability insurance etc, etc, etc. If you're doing loads of tender work it's probably worth while.
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David N Foster

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Post Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:10 am

Re: Who are your customers?

Yeah we have a dedicated tender website over here in NI but as you say David the problem is all the stipulations they put on the tenders and also how complicated they can make them to fill out. As NI is quite small any large tenders i see usually go to one of three large companies over here. Again i suppose its like anything else, the more you do something the better and faster you become at it.

Most of our client base are graphic designers and a few large companies but when their business is slow it slows us down as well. We used to have alot of small businesses coming through the door but in the last year or so that has decreased significantly and most of our clients are larger firms which as was said earlier can take a bit of chasing to get the money in. One of the best things we ever did was get a credit card machine installed and it has speeded up customer payments by a huge amount. Its also great to take 50% deposits over the phone as soon as the client orders.

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