HARDI master distributor member Packard has been working hard to evolve its brand and identity by placing a stronger emphasis on marketing and expanding the company. These efforts are an example of the necessary changes businesses must make to survive in a growing HVACR industry.

“We are seeing a great reaction to Packard's rebranding efforts from customers, partners and vendors.  We are striving to build brand awareness and consistency, and we are also taking a bolder approach to marketing ourselves and our products -- maybe a bit differently than the industry is used to. It's getting us noticed and we are receiving very positive reactions from our customers and partners,” said Dan Lauterhahn, the company's vice president of sales.

As for expansion, earlier this year the company opened a warehouse in Las Vegas in response to increasing demand from West Coast wholesale customers. This inventory expansion now allows for fast compressor delivery turnaround for customers located in the western portion of the country.

Lauterhahn acknowledges the importance of social media and staying ahead of the curve when it comes to brand communication. New technology and social media are among the two modern avenues in which businesses struggle to gain a foothold.

“We are testing the waters with social media and recently launched a YouTube channel where we are posting 'Packard Academy' training tip videos. Packard Academy is our in-person, NATE (North American Technician Excellence)-approved, complete HVACR training.  The videos give people a taste of what contractors would be taught during a full training session.  Social media is a constant discussion, and our participation in this realm is definitely part of our upcoming marketing plans,” Lauterhahn said.

It can be difficult for companies to keep up with the fast pace of an industry that is being shaped by new technology, but Packard is embracing the challenge head-on. “Packard has been taking a hard look at eCommerce realizing the great opportunity that lies with giving wholesalers the ease and convenience of being able to make their purchases online. We are putting forth efforts to constantly improve the online experience for our customers.  We expect to have a newly redesigned Packard website launch sometime in the second quarter,” said Lauterhahn.

Packard has been a member of the Heating, Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International and its forerunners for 35 years and knows firsthand the evolution of the association and the amount of change it had to go through to get to where it is today.

“HARDI has taken a leadership role in our industry to build a successful brand and identity, and we applaud the efforts of everyone associated with HARDI,” Lauterhahn said. “HARDI has worked hard over the years to bring value to all its members.  Hopefully every member uses the valuable benchmarking tools HARDI provides, and finds them as helpful as we do.”

As the Packard brand continues to evolve, they continue to keep HARDI as a top priority.

“HARDI has provided us with the opportunity to build relationships in the business that may have been more difficult outside of the national and regional meetings. We are working hard to get more exposure, and we are focused on fellow HARDI members,” Lauterhahn said.

(This article was supplied by the Heating, Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International.)