Tag Archives: master tool repair

The new Coke formula mistake you may be making!

Diversification is good, but don’t diversify due to boredom.

Do you remember New Coke? It was created in 1985, a new formula of Coke. What a marketing blunder. You’ve heard the adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Coke along with many other companies have messed up a very successful business model by getting bored with what is working, thinking that others are getting bored as well, so what do they do? They mess with a very successful product that has performed very well. I’m sure it wasn’t just boredom, but wanting a larger slice of the market or copying what similar companies were doing.
old coke and new coke. Coca Cola is a successful company.

It’s easy to point the finger at other’s blunders. Being successful is difficult

Being a copy cat is easy. We see what someone else is doing and figure that we can do the same thing or we “should” do the same thing. One of my favorite sayings is “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.” I will have to admit that I have fallen prey to this tactic. If you have a successful business, idea, family, blog or product, don’t change it to change it. If it is successful and you are bored, then let someone else run it and start something else. Don’t change it because you are bored and then lose business or interest from others because you have left your core values. Do what you do best.

5 Guys Burgers and Fries. A Successful Company.

Whenever I go into a 5 Guys Burgers and Fries restaurant, I am amazed at how simple their menu is. They don’t offer Fried Chicken, BBQ and corned beef sandwiches, they offer great burgers and fries. They also provide hot dogs, but that is not why I go there. I go there to five guys store front. Five Guys is a successful company.get a great burger and fresh Idaho fries. If they ever change their fries to some skinny fries, I will stop going there. They have a simple success story. I’m not trying to promote their restaurant, I am just amazed at their simple menu and hope they don’t start offering Gyros and Pizza. Stick to your core values. Know why your customers and audience love what you do and stick to it!

I am as guilty as the next guy

Yep, I’m as guilty as the next guy, but not the next Five Guys! I started my business online as an air compressor parts supplier. After repairing power tools for a good amount of time, I realized there wasn’t a whole lot of money to be made on small power tool repair, so I started repairing air compressors, the bigger ones that construction companies use. I began to make a profit and didn’t have to work so hard fixing small power tools. I started offering air compressor parts online, and the business started to grow. My mistake was that other companies were providing all kinds of power tool parts, drill parts, saw parts, leaf blower parts, you name the power tool, and they were offering parts. What did I do? I became a copy cat and started doing the same thing. After about ten years, I realized that I had left my core values. I could not concentrate on what had made me successful, and I didn’t have the time to focus on my core business. Instead of going deep I was going wide and shallow, and my margins began to slip.

Ripping off the band-aid is hard

I wrote several blog posts about ripping off the band-aid.  I wrote it because the band-aid I needed to rip off was 1,000’s of products that I had put on my website that were not air compressors. This was going to mean a loss of sales, but I had to do it. I had to get back to selling just burgers and fries, what I knew best. On January 24, 2019, I did just this, and it hurt. All of the thousands of hours I paid people to add all of this product would now be removed, but once I did it and accepted the results, I have found that by focusing on the core business that I know, I have seen my margins increase. I have fewer suppliers now, but I have more time to spend time with them coming up with creative ways to market their products and even coming up with our solutions when companies stop making a specific part so that we can help our customers continue to use their existing equipment.

It’s hard to go back to something when you think you were moving in the right direction, but continuing to walk away from what I know was keeping me up at night. I’m glad about the decision that I made to return to what made me successful. Maybe you will too, that is if you have gotten bored and changed the formula for your own Coke.

Update on ripping off the band-aid

I ripped off the band-aid and the hardest thing was the unknown results. Sure, it was tough to do, but after 6 weeks since ripping it off, our sales have not fallen one bit. As a matter of fact, our sales are up a bit compared to last year. My focus has returned to what got us here in the first place. Our margins are better and we have reduced a lot of wasted energy on products that we just needed to let go.

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Designer power tools for discriminating tastes!

This is the most ridiculous request we have EVER received here at Master Tool Repair.
It all began when a customer called in to order a 250 lb. pump for his air compressor. His air compressor looks something like this below.

He wanted to know if the pump that goes on his old unit would be the color gray. We told him rather curiously that it should be. We had never really been asked before. This is a picture of what it typically looks like below. He said he did not want the blue color that we had listed. The blue color was what we had our units painted when we ordered them. We were just out of stock and had to have another vendor ship it to him.
I mean, it’s an air compressor pump. These air compressors are typically found in body shops or some sort of commercial garage. Homeowners typically don’t have these behemoths in their home. They are just too big and overkill for Joe Homeowner or Sally Sawzall.
Well, we drop shipped this pump from the factory. It was shipped by truck and delivered to his commercial location. It cost $250 to deliver it to him.
Today our customer service department received a phone call from the customer. This is how the call went, “Hello, I just received the pump that you shipped to my business. You told me that it would be gray, well it’s green. I find it unappealing. I either want to return it or I want to be reimbursed for the cost of having it professionally repainted.” My customer service agent just sat there staring into the phone with a blank expression on her face. “Sir, you don’t like the color of the pump?” she asked. “No, I don’t want it in green.” he replied.

You have got to be kidding. In all of the years that I have been in business and the thousands of pumps that I have sold, I have NEVER had someone complain that their equipment didn’t come in designer colors. I mean seriously, we should have offered it in Practical Beige. With online companies now having to bend over backwards to please customers, we are bending over so much, we are kissing our own behinds!

I feel that much of this is due to Amazon who says, “Hey, if you don’t like it, you can return it for whatever reason. We will pay the shipping, we will give you a discount on the next purchase and we will send you a free puppy!”

The expectations that we as Americans are starting to expect are getting to the point of absurdity. I do believe in customer service. We do try and do what is best for our customers, but having to offer a drop down on our website for color choices for our tool parts is getting crazy! 

Oh well, a new project for my purchasing department, only sell parts that come in designer colors. “Would you like that in pumpkin orange,
cool cucumber or celery green sir?”