October 23, 2018 - Episode 11

Family Owned Businesses with Dale Baker

A lot of small businesses are also family owned businesses. One of Mirela’s very first bosses discusses the pros and cons of being part of a family owned business. Dale Baker is the Vice President of Sales at JT Eaton. He is a dynamic professional with lots of experience in professional selling and business in general. Dale tells us about experience at JT Eaton and some of their marketing efforts. He also turns the tables on Jake and Mirela, and asks them a few marketing questions that touch on a number of timely marketing topics.

Episode Transcript

Jake Braun:
Hello everyone. Welcome to Kickin' it with Kapok. A podcast about business owners' marketing struggles and solutions, and other business-related topics. This is episode 11, "Family-owned Businesses with Dale Baker." Today, we'll be joined by Dale Baker, who currently is the vice president of sales at JT Eaton. JT Eaton is a family-run business that's been providing pest control products since 1932. Dale also serves as the president of Pi Chi Omega, a national fraternity for pest control professionals. He previously worked in sales at EMI Music and was the vice president of sales at Scent-Off Corporation. Dale also owned his own talent management company for musicians and is the inventor of the patented rock Jimmy guitar accessory. How would you like that, Mirela?
Mirela Setkic:
Oh man, I don't know where to start. I think Dale and I go way back to the good old days of Scent-Off. That's where we met, and I think it was 2005, and Dale's grandfather, Stanley Baker, actually I think he owned Scent-Off, and I was hired by him I think right out of college. Dale moved down from Ohio and I think it was 2005. We worked together for a couple of years, and I kind of learned a lot of good stuff from Dale. He's a communications extraordinaire, I think. I learned from him, and I don't know if I've ever shared this from Dale, but I used to listen to him talk on the phone and I really liked how he just carried on the conversation as if the other person is in the room with him. He would call the place out-of-the-blue and pretend that he knows the person casually. He'd be like, “Is Bob around there? I'm sure he's busy.” It would have a natural feel. I'm like, “Man, you know one day, when I grow up, I want to do stuff like that.” Every now and then, I sprinkle in some of Dale's stuff into my conversations today.
Let me see if I have anything else. Mostly, we had lots of fun and I learned a lot from Dale. Is there anything you would like to add, Dale? Do you like to talk about yourself?
Dale Baker:
I just want to say thanks for having me. This is a real pleasure. Congratulations, I am a fan of the podcast. I do listen to it frequently. I think there's a lot of really good information on there. As far as the history of working with Mirela, I can tell you that she's always been super-creative and amazing at problem solving. It's always been an interesting opportunity, and I think I've learned just as much as you've learned from me. By the way, when I was being super-friendly to most of those people on the phone, it's probably because I forgot most of their names, and information, where we met and things like this. I always just become extremely with almost anybody I can in terms of phone conversations and even face-to-face stuff. It's one of the tricks of the trade, especially when you have a bad memory.
Mirela Setkic:
I definitely remember that a lot. I also remember that you always had a bunch of bananas on your desk and a huge jar of peanut butter, so maybe those were secret ingredients to your good phone conversations too, I don't know.
Dale Baker:
That's right. Protein and potassium, you know? It's a killer combination. It actually killed Elvis, I think, but we used to fry it up, so it's a different story.
Mirela Setkic:
He's not alive?
Dale Baker:
I'm sorry. Did I let the cat out of the bag? Spoiler alert.
Mirela Setkic:
Elvis is still alive. I'm just kidding. I don't know anything about Elvis, actually.
Jake Braun:
Maybe we could get into what exactly JT Eaton is, and how it got started, and where the company is now?
Dale Baker:
Yeah, interestingly enough, JT Eaton was started in 1932. My grandfather purchased the company in 1949. He never changed the name. My grandfather's name was Stanley Baker. He never changed it to Baker Enterprises, or anything like that, because when he started out, he started out as ... This was a mail-order company and he was peddling products and selling out of the trunk of his car. Actually, he started off as a mail-order company. He really expanded it from there, but the reason he never changed the name is, he always wanted to make a sales call and of course, if somebody knows you're the owner of a company, what's the first thing they ask you for? A discount, you know what I'm saying? "Oh gee, I'd love to give you a discount, but old man Eaton, he's a real son-of-a-gun. I don't want to get my pay docked. I can't do it, so here's your price. Thanks a lot. Have a great day."
Anyway, JT Eaton really expanded from the days of the trunk and the mail-order company. Stanley invented bait blocks, as they're known today, which is a poisonous cake that rodents feed on and die. Obviously, now it's a staple in any in any kind of pest control program. He also invented the modern glue traps. Before Stan invented these glue traps as they're known today and Peta hates them obviously, but before that, pest control operators would just put hunks of resin on their radiator, melt the glue down and that would turn into a trap or spread that they would put on a board or something. He invented a way to actually package that and since then, JT Eaton's kind of went on to do a lot of different, creative, innovative things for the pest control industry. We branched off there into retail, and then of course janitorial supply, and then it goes on to farm and so on, and so on. That's a little bit about us.
Jake Braun:
All right. I assume there are still different family members in the business. Do you think that makes it easier or harder when you're planning and flushing out ideas?
Dale Baker:
Well, that is a really good question because anybody who's dealt with family-owned and operated businesses like JT Eaton, be they smaller or bigger, would absolutely recognize that it is a very challenging proposition. You have the family dynamic, you have the aggressive members, you have everything you have in the regular business, but at the end of the day, you're related to these people. You're going to see them at that holiday dinner or you're going to talk to them in the morning, outside the company, sort of parameters. Let me say this: I've worked with a lot of different companies and the family-owned company, whether it's JT Eaton or anybody else, has always got a strained dynamic. It can get pretty loud I think. Not only for JT Eaton within those walls when the family's around but I think, as I said, any company. I'm sure 99.999% of any family-owned-operated company would certainly say the same thing. It's got a lot of challenges, but it's got so many tremendous benefits as well.
Mirela Setkic:
That's true. I guess we should switch it over a little bit and talk about marketing and talk about what you guys do to market your company, and I guess if you have any success stories. Also, if you have any failures you want to share and kind of tell us what you learned from those. I guess, just talk about your secret sauce to marketing at JT Eaton.
Dale Baker:
Right on. It's all about the secret sauce, isn't it, Mirela?
Mirela Setkic:
That's right. What is that movie? No, that movie says there is no secret ingredient, but I don't know. We'll digress and get back.
Dale Baker:
What is that movie, Mirela?
Mirela Setkic:
I don't know. I can't remember.
Jake Braun:
Ratatouille?
Mirela Setkic:
That's the movie. It says there is no secret ingredient, but I don't know.
Jake Braun:
Not to further digress, but you don't even like sauces, Mirela.
Mirela Setkic:
That's true. I hate sauces.
Dale Baker:
You don't like the gravy?
Mirela Setkic:
Oh my god. They all know. There's the brown one, and then the white one, I don't know which one is worse.
Dale Baker:
What about pasta sauce? That's red.
Mirela Setkic:
I'm okay with it. It's basic, so I can do it, but anyway, what is the pasta sauce or the gravy of JT Eaton's marketing?
Dale Baker:
That is an amazing question. Mirela, let me tell you this: Some of the things that we've learned about marketing is number one, conceptually, we know we're not great at marketing, and we rely on firms like yourselves to create and help us understand things like this. One of the things that I think everyone sort of believes, including myself when I first started, was I'm good at marketing. It's just the process of trying to figure out how to sell things, right? No. We sort of learned the hard way that either you have the opportunity to invest into a marketing program, where you create conceptual pieces and do things that build your program, right? Or the perception of your program, or you could just launch your program and you usually wind up trying to just undercut people, or you pay for it in the end because you're just going to have a lower price-point to begin with. Marketing gives you the opportunity, or marketing correctly, gives you the opportunity to sell things at a higher price point. I think that's probably the most important thing for most businesses is margin. Would you guys agree to that so far?
Mirela Setkic:
Yes. We would definitely co-sign to that idea.
Jake Braun:
Yeah, you don't want to be in a situation where you're just battling with lower prices, because then your competition does the same thing and all of a sudden, everyone's selling one penny above cost then everyone goes out of business.
Mirela Setkic:
It's essentially race to the bottom. One of the companies that's kind of made a good money doing that is Wal-Mart, but most people are not Wal-Mart and they can't afford to just sell things for pennies.
Jake Braun:
I shouldn't say everyone goes bankrupt. Amazon and Wal-Mart survived and everyone else goes bankrupt.
Mirela Setkic:
Yeah, but there can only be one Wal-Mart and one Amazon. Usually, it doesn't work out if you're just racing to the bottom based on who can sell items for the cheapest price.
Jake Braun:
What do you guys do to avoid that and not be in that situation?
Dale Baker:
That is another good question, but before we get to that question, I want to ask you guys a question.
Mirela Setkic:
All right, hit us.
Dale Baker:
This is a really good marketing question. What is the difference between Wal-Mart and Target?
Mirela Setkic:
Perception.
Dale Baker:
Right. The prices are pretty darn close, aren't they?
Mirela Setkic:
Pretty darn close. I think that Target has done a way better job crafting the marketing story, or telling the story how you have a more enjoyable, exceptional shopping experience at their store and how they treat their employees better. I think that there are some factual pieces to that story. I do believe that they treat their employees slightly better based on stuff that's out there. That's just second-hand information that I have read, but really, everyone knows their spot, their marketing dog, who has the bullseye on its face. They've also done a really good job with just creating the enjoyable ambiance in their store. When you go in, it's red. You feel happy. You feel like, “Oh my god. This is amazing.” Wal-Mart hasn't done a lot of that stuff. Wal-Mart hasn't told their story as well as Target has.
Jake Braun:
Yeah, I'm not an expert in these retailers either, but I definitely think everything Mirela's saying is true. Target might just be a little bit more, have a little bit more prestige to it. You get checked out a little bit quicker, people seem a little bit more interested in you. It's not like you're shopping at the absolute bottom-dollar retailer.
Dale Baker:
That's cool. I think a lot about this sort of thing, but let me give you another really good example of this. Watch this Jake and Mirela. Ask me where I got this pair of pants.
Mirela Setkic:
Where'd you get your pants?
Dale Baker:
I got it at Wal-Mart.
Mirela Setkic:
Oh man.
Dale Baker:
Okay, now ask me again.
Mirela Setkic:
Where'd you get your pants, Dale?
Dale Baker:
Oh, I got them at Target, or Target.
Jake Braun:
I was waiting to see a thing on it.
Dale Baker:
Yeah, but that's what I'm saying. The perception is so much different. Again, obviously, the product. I don't know how much of the product is pretty much the same. I think Target may have some more brand names or at least higher brand names. Especially for clothing and stuff like that, but I mean for the most part, in terms of goods, it seems like it's the same stuff. One of them's cool and one of them's definitely not cool to shop at.
Mirela Setkic:
Yes, and Target, in terms of clothing and apparel, they almost kind of have many boutiques within some of the Target stores, so they have seasonal designers who showcase specific lines they've created for Target. It's definitely a shopping destination. Whereas, Wal-Mart's like, “I need some toilet paper. I'm just going to go to Wal-Mart.” When I go to Target, I'm actually enjoying that shopping.
Jake Braun:
Isn't Target the retailer that did the Lily Pulitzer thing where they partnered with some ... I think she's a well-known designer?
Mirela Setkic:
Yeah. That's an example of one of the limited-time boutique setups within the store where a high-end designer creates a specific line that's limited to Target, and it costs less, and then people just go there and wait in line for hours. I was one of those people once and it was intense. You're right, Dale, that the two perceptions are completely different and that's all a result of marketing.
Dale Baker:
Right on. Let me ask you this, Mirela. I'm not picking on you, but let me ask you a question. Have you ever gone to Target to get one thing, and have you ever left with just one thing?
Mirela Setkic:
Okay, so yeah. No. I recently had an experience. I went in to get a bottle of shampoo. I came out with $150 worth of clothes, tablecloths, weird stuff that I bought, but I don't know why I did it. I guess it felt good.
Dale Baker:
I don't know what they do. I think they're pumping that oxygen into those stores like they do in casinos or something. It's amazing. Jake, I don't know if you've had the same experience, but I've never been to a Target to get one thing and left with one thing, and I don't know anybody else who has. The response is pretty much the same thing. We don't know why we did it, but we ended up with $150 bucks worth of stuff. That's amazing. That's marketing.
Mirela Setkic:
Yeah. It's just creating a perception and enticing people to engage and take action and purchase from you.
Dale Baker:
Do you want your product to be the Wal-Mart of the industry, or the Target of the industry?
Mirela Setkic:
That is the question, and is that the question that you ask in your marketing meetings when you meet with your team? How do you get your money people at your company to give you more money to spend on marketing?
Dale Baker:
There's the, literally, for JT Eaton, that's the $10,000 question.
Mirela Setkic:
How do you make that happen?
Dale Baker:
Again, it's all about this budget. My CFO's very conservative, and rightfully so. He has a formula in his mind in terms of margin dollars that we like to do for marketing dollars. For something where it's a current item, or existing business, or an existing customer, it's sort of easy to come up with those formulas and say, "Well, we can come up with a 3% from sale of the goods, gross number to give." 3% of the gross to figure out what we want to do for this particular customer. Again, we do like to sort of do that rifle approach verus the shotgun approach. Again, we have a lot of distributors that we work with. We figured those guys are probably better at connecting with their customers who eventually end-customers. We figured those guys are better at doing that, so we're happy to do a percentage marketing programs where we're setting those up with those guys.
That being said, again, we work with some really talented guys. We've been really fortunate to work with some talented guys. One of these gentleman's name was Howard Task. Another organization that we work with is called: The Creative Spot. Again, what we figured out was, working with a marketing firm is better than us trying to figure it out because obviously, we're not good at marketing. We're good at making products and trying to sell them, but without the marketing component, it always turns it into a price war and as you said, nobody wants to do the race for the bottom. A long story short for your answer is number one, if it's an existing product, we come up with a percentage based on the margin of the product. If it's a new product like the ZendoZone that we just launched, that's pure Gonzo Guerrilla marketing where we came up with this new product called ZendoZone. It's like a ceramic or terracotta Tahitian character. Inside of that goes a citronella candle.
At night, the eyes glow and stuff, and it's really cool. We've sold zero so far, so getting my CFO to give me $1000 or $10,000 is very challenging. We talked to the marketing guys, and they agreed. They helped us with some collateral material. They helped us with imagery, they helped us with figuring out what this thing's going to look like. That's all based on product development. When you get to: What are we going to do to promote it at the shows? What are we going to do to explain to people that it's here? What are we going to do about a launch? Again, if you have no background sales or historical sales to base that off of, you've kind of got to wing it and take a guess. As I said, my CFO's extremely conservative. What we ended up doing was going out and buying grass skirts, we did the hula skirts, we did flower leis. We turned our trade show booth sort of like a Tiki party. For a low amount of money, we were able to do a big launch and make a big impact.
Now, that doesn't work with every sales guy because if somebody's uncomfortable with doing things like that, not only is it good for your sales person, but it doesn't translate to the customer either. At the end of the day, if it doesn't translate to the customer and the person's not passionate and they're bummed out that they're wearing a hula skirt, then you had a bad situation.
Mirela Setkic:
That's very true. Looking back over the last 12 months, or even 24 months, do you have any success stories of your own line marketing that you guys have done? Anything offline? Which has given you the most bang for your buck? Online and offline.
Dale Baker:
Our online program, basically consists, and this is again based on JT Eaton pest control. We sell to professionals as well as to retailers. We know that we are not this Proctor & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson guy. We're not going to do the shotgun blast and hit any percentage of the population to make the juice worth the squeeze, right? What we do is we rely on our distributors and our retail partners to help us convey messages. For our digital program, specifically to your question, again, we do sell through Amazon and Wal-Mart.coms and all these others. We have done some of the pay-per-clicks and things like that, but at the end of the day, I think the things that were most successful for JT Eaton was to listen to what they're offering in terms of their full programs. You could get lost in the minutia of how many things they have. Thinking about really what your end-goal is, what you're willing to invest, and then turning that into some sort of best-guess marketing plan, we've had good success with some of that click-through. Some of the stuff we're tying it into videos.
Videos was obviously a smash for us when you start talking about new items. It wasn't even really hard or expensive to get into that. When we started doing some short videos where there's basically narration on top of slides, it was the fastest way to make well-produced videos. Of course, we went through our marketing firm for this. It was a huge success for us.
Mirela Setkic:
Jake and I recently went to a digital marketing conference, and everyone there was talking about audio and video, and I think one of the speakers said that in two years, I think half of the online searches are going to be voice searches. People asking Alexa and other devices, and if you don't have audio and video content out there, then you're going to be missing out on a huge chunk of people who are looking for things that you might offer, but they just might not find you if you don't have the content that they're looking for.
Dale Baker:
For sure. Social media, literally. How big of a percentage is that for the programs that you guys talk about with your clients?
Huge. Social media is extremely important and a huge part of someone's online presence, because some social media platforms, for example, like YouTube, people are kind of treating that as a search engine. They have a problem, they go to YouTube and they ask a question. Well, if you have a video that answers their question or solves their problem, you've gotten their attention. Also, people really rely heavily on online reviews. Just trying to find out what your personality is and what you're like. Facebook and Instagram are great for that. We always tell people that if you're not online and you don't have a solid social media presence that matches your brand and your message, some people will think that you're not actually real.
Jake Braun:
It's really only second to having a website. I would say that's the first thing. If someone comes to us and they don't even have a website, or their website's really old and outdated, I think they should update their website first. If they're willing to do social media, they should do social media, because if you're not willing to do it and do it right, you can sometimes do more harm than good on there.
Dale Baker:
Jake, let me ask you this. Do you believe that the current status of a website is like your business card, or the old-school business card? Obviously, business cards aren't as important as they used to be. Now, it's the website. When you used to get a really nice business card, you'd be like, “Wow, this guy's powerful, or amazing, or creative.” Or something. Now, let me check their website. I'll give you my vibe on what's happening after that.
Jake Braun:
It is. I actually would put it as a combination of that and your online store front. It's like if you're a retail business and someone walks in your store, it's the same thing going to the website. Even if you don't sell the products on the website, because even word-of-mouth. If I tell someone, “You should go check out this retailer.” The first thing that person's going to do is Google that company either to get driving directions or to learn what their hours are. They're going to see that website and the website is going to change their opinion. It's either going to reinforce that recommendation, or it's going to take away from it if the website's really outdated, or if it doesn't exist, the person might think: "Has this business gone out of business? My friend recommended it, but maybe I should check with him and see if they're even still around."
Dale Baker:
That is amazing now. Okay, Jake, so let me follow up with that one. What about Yelp? Again, now you're talking about it's 100% customer feedback, reviewing someone for good or ill. What's your take on that?
Jake Braun:
Yes. Now we get into reputation management, which is another huge thing that's going on now. People look at those reviews and really, that's more of a thing. You don't even get to choose the platforms. If someone leaves a review, a good or bad for you on Yelp or Google, or Facebook, wherever it is, as a business owner, it's really the onus is on you to go find that review and respond to that person. Especially if it's a negative review, because if there's no counterpoint to what that person said, someone might just believe what the person says in the review. Whereas, if I'm the business owner and I go respond and try and take that offline and also provide a little bit of an explanation about why maybe this person's experience isn't typical, I think that's super-important to prevent things like that from happening. Or someone goes there and sees that bad review and then doesn't visit your business, or doesn't shop with you.
Dale Baker:
Right on. Okay, Jake. Follow up to my follow up. My wife owns a spa in Cleveland. Her Yelp reviews are tremendous. She'll get a negative one and go through the roof, you know? Dealing with humans, you're going to get a negative because somebody's going to have a bad day, whatever's going to happen, blah, blah, blah. What is your recommendation in terms of how she should respond to those. I guess in a little more detail, because look, let's face it. There's always going to be something bad happening. I think people sometimes get concerned that you're going to reinforce a bad habit, give a guy a free ice cream cone or something after he leaves you a nasty note. Hopefully, he takes it away.
Jake Braun:
This is a super-important point. First, I would say the idea of I had a bad review and I have a bunch of five-star reviews, that's not a problem. You don't want all five-star reviews necessarily. If I go to a business, and they have 100 five-star reviews and no four-stars, no three-stars, no twos, no ones, I think that they just buy these reviews. I mean, no one gets all five-star reviews. There are people just don't like your stuff because it's not their style. To the second part of what you were saying, you definitely want to not give people more stuff on social media, or online than you would offline. If I call your business, you should offer me the same thing, whether it's a discount, or a refund, as you do online.
When you give someone more online, it does create this cycle. You're driving more and more people to complain online, because they know they can get more from your business if they just go complain on your social media channels. You end up giving away more stuff, and you end up having more people leaving bad reviews for you in hopes of getting some sort of free product or something else. Mirela might be able to talk more about what to actually write in terms of the words.
Mirela Setkic:
You obviously, want to acknowledge the person and apologize, and then try to take the conversation offline. I have seen quite a few businesses who actually argue back and forth with the person trying to dispute what they're claiming, and you never want to do that. Take it offline, and when you do take it offline, like Jake said, don't offer the person any extra stuff that you wouldn't offer to other people who call your business and complain. Then you create these online terrorists, customers who just think, "If I just threaten companies and leave them bad reviews online, they just give me free stuff." That becomes their hobby.
Jake Braun:
We saw one example of something else Mirela was saying. A restaurant in Chicago. I don't want to go into too many details, but a customer will write a review and say, “I don't like that the pizza you served was too cold.” The owner, manager will respond, “You bleeping moron. Cold pizza is better than warm pizza. If you don't like cold pizza, you shouldn't even come to my restaurant.” It's like, “Why do you say that online?”
Mirela Setkic:
Exactly.
Dale Baker:
That's amazing. Let me ask you this, guys. Where do you see Facebook going with this whole situation? I mean, you guys are a little bit younger than me and I think for me, even I could see Facebook is probably not as cool for the younger demo. Whereas, it just seems like Instagram is just chewing it up right now.
Jake Braun:
I think for Facebook, it might not matter who much who wins since Instagram is owned by Facebook. I think it's definitely true that Instagram is more trendy than Facebook, would you say, Mirela?
Mirela Setkic:
Yes, but just like you mentioned, Dale. I think Instagram is more of the younger demographic and Facebook is older, but the fact of the matter is that a huge chunk of the US population is of a more advanced age. You still need to reach those groups of people, and really, they also have the most buying power in this country as well. I think it's very important to speak to all demographics who are within your target audience and kind of have the conversations where they're having conversations. Just because Instagram is kind of the hot thing right now, that doesn't mean that Facebook is dead. I mean, I think most of us log into Facebook at least once a day.
Dale Baker:
Have you seen anybody successfully use Twitter for marketing?
Jake Braun:
Yes, in certain sense. If you think about who's on Twitter a lot, politicians, journalists, and journalists I think are where you can really capitalize on Twitter. If you get a relationship going with a journalist, they might be able to write a story about your company or use you as a source in their article. Let's say I'm a journalist, I'll try put JT Eaton into this. I'm a journalist and I'm writing an article about some infestation that caused a big, large building to get shut down and they need someone give them information on why that might have happened. They might quote someone from JT Eaton and say, “According to pest control experts at JT Eaton, they didn't have enough traps in their building so a rat infestation got out of hand.” It might not be a reasonable example, but that's the kind of thing that you can get out of Twitter.
Mirela Setkic:
Yes, definitely PR. Also, if someone is trying to become an influencer or a public speaker, and someone who is trying to build up a following, then Twitter is great for that. Just to put out your latest blog post, put out your opinions and just kind of create a group following on there. It's very powerful for that. You have to have something valuable to say. You shouldn't just go and tweet up a storm and have it be all fluff an annoying stuff. You have to have substance to be successful.
Jake Braun:
Pick your platforms wisely.
Dale Baker:
Right on. Jake, when you were talking about it, and Mirela your follow-up of course, too, was it just sounds like it's when you're marketing through Twitter, it's like this 300 or 400-level of marketing where it's this super-soft sell. There's no direct at all. You're just building the perception of things, you know? Letting people connect the dots, which obviously, is extremely powerful. We've seen a lot of that where when somebody makes the decision that Coke is better than Pepsi, that's it. You just know it. I definitely agree with what you're saying and I see that more of a conceptual tool or a tool of perception, I'd say.
Mirela Setkic:
It's a tool of conversations and storytelling. Soft-selling, so you want to be helpful, you want to be resourceful, and you want to be kind of the person that everyone goes to, to get information when they need a source for a story or when they have a problem. It's definitely like a slow-drip campaign instead of set and forget it, and not worry about it.
Jake Braun:
Yeah, you're trying to look like the expert, or hopefully, you actually are the expert and you're just putting that information out there.
Dale Baker:
That's huge, and that's been good for us too, obviously. One of the really cool things that we can say is we're one of the only pest control companies that sells to retailers. We could say, “Look, we sell to the professional market, but we also sell to retails.” We have the perception that we have more knowledge about pest control, which typically we do. Which is a cool thing, you know what I'm saying? Unfortunately, it works in the reverse-level, on the professional side, where if a pro thinks you're selling your stuff to a retailer, we would never do this. The same exact thing. You could become ostracized from the professional marketplace. If you opened the back of a pest control operator's truck, and you would never see a product, a De-con. You wouldn't see a De-con because pros would never use a traditionally retailed item like that. We sort of have to walk that tight rope a lot.
Jake Braun:
What's that like in the pest control industry? Is it mostly retail? Is it me going to buy the stuff at Home Depot for my home or my business? Or is it professionals applying it, or someone like me?
Dale Baker:
Like I said, we're fortunate enough to walk that tight rope and work with both of those industries in terms of retail. Our retail campaign really looks like Ace Hardware and coops like that. Your Mom-and-Pops who are able to buy retail products the same way that some of these big-boxed guys do, we sell to those guys or homeowners who want to do it themselves. On the flip side, we sell to professional distributors. Of course, these are different types of products and different lines so that these two paths could never cross, but we'll sell our professional program to a major distributor like Univar who then does resell onto people like Orkin and big names like this, Truly Nolens and all the other big guys that are out there in the field.
Again, we create these products, we sell them to distributors, distributors then resell those to either, on the retail side, to retailers, who then resell those to consumers. Or on the other side, it's distributor to a pest control operator who would then come to Jake's house and service it for whatever issue he may be having.
Mirela Setkic:
Maybe we should start to wrap this up.
Jake Braun:
If any listeners out there want to learn more about JT Eaton, do you guys have a website or any other way they can reach out or learn more about you guys?
Dale Baker:
Sure. It's www.JTEaton.com.
Jake Braun:
All right, simple enough. Well, thank you very much for joining us today.
Dale Baker:
Thanks guys. Have a tremendous day, and keep on marketing.
Jake Braun:
A great eleventh episode. If you're enjoying the podcast, please consider leaving a review, a rating on iTunes, Stitcher, or wherever you're listen to your podcast, it would really help us and we greatly appreciate it. We'd like to, again, thank Dale from JT Eaton for joining us today, and feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions or comments about anything we've talked about today, or marketing in general. You can visit us on our website, Kickin' it With Kapok or on social media. We're on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as Kapok Marketing. This has been a great Kickin' it With Kapok, brought to you by Kapok Marketing. Thanks for listening, we'll have something just as great for you next time.