The year so far has been a challenge. The downturn in the natural gas market in particular has many companies wondering how they are going to make up a 30-40% sales loss in the first half of the year. It is a big number. And unfortunately, it is a number that is commonly spoken in all industry segments, not just for those companies that have natural gas as their primary sales focus. Customers simply aren’t spending money on large dollar capital equipment. This is a tough reality when your business is based on equipment sales.
When talking to distributors daily about this challenge, a common phrase I hear is *market focus shift.” For those companies having natural gas as their primary sales focus, this may mean a shift from drilling to infield development gas gathering. And for those companies having compressor sales as their focus, it may mean a shift from manufacturing plants to more niche users of compressors such as cement plants or even car washes. Companies are definitely searching for new markets to expand their sales base. And at Van Air Systems, it is a daily exercise to talk about how our Blast Pak Deliquescent System, PLD Gas Dryer, and Prep 40 Regenerative Systems can be applied in niche markets such as power generation, sandblasting and painting, or rental.
This type of market repositioning though is usually a long term proposition, perhaps taking six months or longer to market, advertise, make customer contacts and getting sales. Is it of value to undertake this effort? Certainly. Is there perhaps an easier path to quicker sales results? Certainly.
One possible solution to getting a shorter term, sales result is talking to existing customers about what improvements they are doing to their air or gas systems now. When customers aren’t spending money on big dollar capital equipment, they often implement maintenance programs to address issues with existing equipment or look for temporary solutions to problems in their air or gas system. During economic downturns, Van Air Systems has always seen increased sales for replacement products, such as desiccant, filters and elements, along with small, point of use type dryers. You can capitalize on these sales as well, especially during the summer months when plant maintenance is at its peak.
Throughout the summer, Van Air Systems plans to run a number of sales promotions that will give you a competitive advantage. These promotions will include special pricing on adsorbent and absorbent desiccants, in–line desiccant dryers, and filters and elements to name a few. We recognize that the market today is tough. We are responding by offering you pricing and sales promotions that will result in your getting the sale. We ask that you simply give us a call. Van Air Systems has years of industry and application experience along with a reputation for giving outstanding customer service. We will do what we can to help you grow your sales in this very challenging market.
Yes, the year has been a challenge. But sales opportunities do exist. Take a look at our application spotlights to find new markets for your company. And don’t forget that the deliquescent dryer is still a viable, inexpensive technology that is attractive to customers.