Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.
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March 2017 | HARDWARE RETAILING 77 W hen consumers are searching for sealants and caulking items, it's often for specific projects. To help independent retailers establish their businesses as problem-solving destinations for their customers, Sashco Sealants produces high-quality sealants that deliver top-notch performance, along with in-store POP and marketing support to drive customers into stores. Manufacturing its entire line of products from its headquarters in Brighton, Colorado, Sashco is entering its 81st year of business. The company's 110 employees have helped develop some of the most recognized names in caulking, including Big Stretch ® and Lexel ® brands. Hardware Retailing caught up with Sashco's Brand Manager Darci Kunard to discuss the company and its place in the industry as a leading manufacturer of sealants. In this Q&A, she shares why Sashco leads the industry in quality, as well as why retailers gain a strong partner when they carry Sashco products. What makes Sashco caulking and sealants stand out for independent retailers? Darci Kunard (DK): Our goal is to teach people about caulking and make it easy to shop for caulking. There really is a difference in caulking, and our mantra is "Products that work." What that means is that Sashco cares about the ingredients we put into our caulking products. We are very intentional about how we formulate our products to ensure they work right the first time, every time. Another advantage of our products is that they provide great adhesion to a wide variety of substrates. The products are all paintable, stick to themselves and are freeze-thaw stable, and we have a unique stop-flow plunger in our cartridges as well. We want to simplify retailers' sets. We want them to have products that add value for their customers, which is part of our teaching endeavor. There's a lot of caulking products out there. We want to eliminate the confusion by teaching people how to organize a caulking aisle. We've learned people shop by type or by performance characteristics, then they look to match a color or for caulk that's paintable. Our goal is to teach people that quality, high-performance products exist, and our color-branding solution does just that. It communicates the project type and associates a brand color to that project type. That color can be seen on packages, ship cases and our demonstration blocks. What are the most popular Sashco products that retailers carry? DK: Big Stretch and Lexel have become our ubiquitous brands in the industry. Big Stretch is water-based, and it's great for windows, doors and siding. We have a large following for its use in crown molding and interior trim. It's elastic, which means it allows movement to happen while still sticking to substrates. It provides great adhesion without cracking. Lexel was the first clear caulking in a clear cartridge and continues to lead the pack in clarity and performance. It's a synthetic rubber caulk, is not made of silicone and was one of the first products Sashco launched into the independent hardware channel because it was so unique and its properties were so vastly different. It can stick to almost any surface, wet or dry. It doesn't matter if there's standing water or freezing temperatures. How does Sashco assist retailers in merchandising its products? DK: Our merchandising system is heavily color-branded to help customers shop by project type. Plus, all of our products are color-branded, so customers correlate the color with the project. We send out bin liners, channel strips and demonstration blocks, among other merchandising solutions, all at no charge to retailers. Colors on the products are matched with merchandising options, so when an employee greets a customer who is looking for help with windows, that employee can easily point to an aisle and color for a customer. With the Sashco Fully Loaded Retail Partner (FLRP) program, we provide retailers everything they need to make shopping for caulking simple. This continues our dedication to high-performance products—even with our merchandising, we want to make sure it's a product that works. Does the wide range of Sashco products help retailers when assisting customers? DK: We want there to be a high-performance sealant destination in a retailer's aisle. Sashco products provide customers with peace of mind, knowing they won't have to redo the job in a few months, because they used the right product. Retailers have fewer headaches from complaints and are the heroes for their customers. And selling high-performance sealants results in higher profits for retailers! For more information on Sashco, call 800-767-5656 or visit www.sashco.com. Sashco Opens Up About Caulking Confusion Sponsored by Sashco | www.sashco.com Category Q&A