UltraFit Exhaust Systems & UltraFit Manufacturing
What we did: Marketing Research, Sales, New Business Development, Customer Service, Tradeshow, Website, Product Catalogues, Press Releases, Branding
UltraFit is a manufacturer of automotive direct fit and universal fit exhaust pipes, mufflers, catalytic converters and performance products who sells products in Canada and the US through undercar distributors and jobbers, as well as some direct business to specialty shops.
The company, which had been purchased by a family-trust saw an opportunity to build the business in a very competitive and major “full line” manufacturer dominated industry by staking out a position as a short line, low cost supplier, with small order quantity capabilities and quick turnaround. The goal was to aggressively promote their high quality products and capabilities to the undercar industry.
To achieve that, a new Vice President was hired and he undertook a number of proactive marketing, sales and communications initiatives that positioned the firm as an alternative to the full line majors, by being more responsive with the introduction of new part numbers, more open to the industry’s needs and more willing to work with the undercar industry to achieve those goals.
Whiting & Holmes were retained to help achieve these goals by developing and implementing marketing and sales activities, as well as becoming an integral part of the small organization.
W&H prepared a number of marketing and communication plans during our 12 year association with UltraFIt Exhaust focusing on activities that included:
- marketing research (for both Exhaust & Manufacturing)
- sales tours of the automotive aftermarket trade
- “plan C” sales activity (+telemarketing to smaller high margin accounts to develop repeat business )
- tradeshow material development and show-participation
- product catalogue development and updates
- press release programs
- corporate branding
- website design and development
- participation in automotive industry associations
While our 12 year involvement with this company covered all traditional forms of marketing and sales support and collateral materials, one of the activities we undertook was the development of a series of UltraFit Exhaust websites and ongoing updates, which resulted in W&H winning a silver in the Global Design Awards in the website category.
As the Canadian dollar grew in value, UltraFit Exhaust lost a competitive advantage, which was further exacerbated by the introduction of longer lasting stainless steel (non-rusting) exhaust systems and a major exhaust manufacturer introducing an economy line in response to the gains that UltraFit had made.
To help offset that, Ultra Fit established a new company - UltraFit Manufacturing. This sister company was created to focus on developing new business by bending tube or wire on a long-term contractual basis for non-automotive markets (like office furniture and medical devices). We were asked to become involved with this company as well and we performed targeted market activities in this unique market segment.
When a new Vice President of Marketing & Sales was hired we continued that relationship through the development of a new and updated website, a press release program and product development activities. The company is now actively involved as a Tier 1 supplier to major automotive manufacturing suppliers.