CHICAGO, IL (BRAIN)—SRAM is harnessing Zipp’s outside rep force to increase aftermarket sales of its entire family of brands.
Zipp’s 32 sales reps will now act as full-line reps for its sister brands, including SRAM, RockShox, Avid and Truvativ. While adding outside sales support, SRAM will maintain its distributor relationships and continue to fulfill orders through its network of 14 U.S. distributors and two Canadian distributors.
“When we looked at the new structure we didn’t want to disrupt those relationships. They will partner so the rep is influencing the sale but it is going through a distributor,” said Brian Gavette, director of North American aftermarket sales and marketing for SRAM.
Zipp will continue to sell its wheels direct to dealers through its warehouse in Indianapolis and through its three distribution partners: Quality Bicycle Products, The Hawley Company and Security Bicycle Accessories. It also will retain its inside sales team but shift warranty and technical service to the SRAM dealer service team in Chicago.
Gavette said SRAM had to work through some brand conflicts before bringing the reps into the fold, but it managed to retain the entire Zipp rep force.
Gavette said most of its reps have longstanding relationships with Zipp, averaging more than six years. But they had to learn about the SRAM product line, the broad scope of which required a substantial time investment. And for many reps who were road and triathlon focused, adding the SRAM brands to their product portfolios meant developing deeper knowledge of the mountain bike market.
SRAM utilized its SRAM Technical University (STU) in Colorado Springs, bringing the entire sales force there for product and technical training. It also mobilized its STU instructors to provide regional training to reps in the field.
Reps are in stores now running clinics on SRAM’s XX mountain group and promoting an employee purchase program to get key influencers on product. Other initiatives include promoting its new Apex road group and SRAM aluminum wheels.
Gavette said SRAM’s goal is to increase awareness and educate dealers on all of its brands. “We’re now using reps as the voice of that message,” Gavette said.