Client Spotlight: Julie Stange, CMO and Strategy Leader for Pentair Water Solutions
How Did You Get Connected With Miller Wittman?
We met through a mutual contact: one of my managers had worked with Paige previously, so he connected me with her.
We started our relationship with Miller Wittman a few years ago working on a very specific project. But from there I could see their capabilities ran beyond the project itself. When other opportunities came up I was happy to call them again because I had confidence the end product would not only be quality, but also bring considerable value to my team and the business.
I see them as a critical vendor for us—especially as we move forward and are more focused on B2B marketing and creating experiences for our dealers and sellers.
We’re evolving our channel strategy and expect there will be opportunities to reconnect with Miller Wittman in the future, as we absolutely see them as a key partner.
What Has Made You So Confident in Miller Wittman as a Partner?
As a marketer, you’re working to solve problems on a day-to-day basis. You’re trying to champion and partner with your business to drive growth. And to do this, you often need to bring in third parties to help bring these plans to life.
As a marketing leader, when I have a third party I can work with who goes above and beyond, I’m always happy to provide a recommendation. I’m very much a fan of Miller Wittman and their agility.
There’s high quality there in terms of both the insights and the output they provide—always with a sense of urgency, which is key as we try to create momentum and growth.
Tell Us About Some of the Work Miller Wittman Has Done for You
There are three major projects that come to mind:
Building a distributor and dealer program around a new product offering for the residential water treatment category.
A lead generation program specifically geared toward dealers and installers within the residential water treatment industry.
Helping us research and think through a professional in-home selling approach
With each of these projects, we started with nothing. Miller Wittman has a unique ability to envision what can be and to provide a framework for how to think about what can be.
What Have You Most Enjoyed About Working With Miller Wittman?
What I like about Miller Wittman is the depth of their understanding of how to create channel equity, from the distributor principal, to the pro installer, to the intending consumer. They have helped us think through each stakeholders’ unique needs. Soup to nuts, Miller Wittman understands the steps within those various models, and therein lies their advantage.
In particular, Paige (who has experience with dealers, distributors, sales, marketing, and more) understands, and is passionate about, the experience. She brings all those sensibilities together to create common-sense programming.
She understands the ins and outs of demand marketing and lead generation. And she has the ability to translate those ins and outs into effective messaging. It’s pretty quick and easy for her to pick up brand standards and translate them.
Plus, she’s got a great Rolodex of high quality vendors we can call on who can help us bring some of these pieces to life. For example, for one of the programs we put together, we offered a toolkit the pros could touch and feel—that first unboxing experience we had created for pro dealers.
Paige helped us pull that toolkit together, along with social media programs and training—and, quite frankly, a plug-and-play social media opportunity for our local dealers—with relative ease. This was a learning curve for our team, but was quite simple and easy for Miller Wittman.
A lot of great education and insights have come from Miller Wittman.
You mentioned Miller Wittman’s ability to look at things from many perspectives (the customer, the dealership, and the brand). Say more about that.
Yes, 100%. That’s one of the big things that sets Miller Wittman apart—their ability to communicate well with each of those groups. They make sure you have something that best represents the brand, yet is also a great experience for the customer and something the dealers can deliver on.
Miller Wittman has a lot of curiosity around a brand and wants to understand what the brand can be…then staunchly support it.
Paige is a brand purist and believes in the power of a brand. Without compromising that, she finds ways to unlock new conversations and change the behavior of your customer and distributor in support of your brand.
A lot of the time, in your channel, you think it has to be either/or, and it doesn’t. Paige helps you think through how you can get a win-win in those scenarios.
I imagine it’s not always easy when you’re delivering on a new program you want to launch. Getting buy-in is extremely important
100%. Buy-in not only from the customer, but from our sales team as well.
Paige spent time helping us get buy-in from our leadership, talking about how to build equity in a channel, how to approach channel strategy, and what is most important when you’re managing and building a channel.
That education also helps build trust and credibility with our internal stakeholders.
There’s a strong experience and competency in go-to-market strategy with and through a channel with Miller Wittman. They talk about the fact that they do retail design—and a lot of their work is in that area—but we’ve leveraged them for so much more. Strategy as well as execution.
On a separate note, Paige and her team care very much about quality, getting it right, getting results, getting things done…and that certainly comes across.
But it also motivates.
Our internal teams are knee deep in the business operation, and it can be difficult for them to find the quality time they need to think deeply, or to bring in benchmarking. They know they need to do it, and they are passionate about this need, but it can be all too easy to set aside for later. Paige and her team make it easy to add that part to your repertoire, which is so necessary.
Everything’s pretty streamlined with this group from concept to launch. We appreciate Miller Wittman and wish them all the success in the world.
Lean on Miller Wittman To Develop Your Go-to-Market Strategy
Thank you, Julie, for sharing your experience!
If your business could use a fresh perspective to confront challenges with effective solutions, Miller Wittman can help. We’ll work with you to develop a strong go-to-market strategy with unique programs specific to you and your industry.
To learn more and discuss what Miller Wittman can do for your business, reach out to schedule a meeting.