You’re the marketing manager for Stanton, one of the premier supplier of DJ equipment (turntables, amplifiers, speakers, mixers, and related accessories). Your company’s latest creation, the FinalScratch system, has been flying off retailers’ shelves. Both professional and amateur DJs love the way that FinalScratch gives them the feel of working with vinyl records by letting them control digital music files from any analog turntable or CD player while giving them access to the endless possibilities of digital music technology. (see www.stantondj.com) The only place where sales are not strong is Music99, a chain of retail stores in the Mid-Atlantic region. You suspect the cause: the management of this chain refused to send their salespeople to the free product training you offered when FinalScratch was introduced, claiming its people were smart enough to train themselves.
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To investigate this, you head out from Stanton headquarters in Hollywood, Florida, on an undercover shopping mission. After visiting several Music99 locations, you’re appalled by what you see. The salespeople clearly don’t understand the FinalScratch concept, so they either give potential customers bad product information or steer them to competitors’ products—there’s an old adage that sales people push the products they know. No wonder Music 99’s FinalScratch sales are poor. This situation cannot go on; you’re losing thousands of dollars of potential business every week. You’re tempted to pull your products out of this chain immediately. On the other hand, you know how difficult and expensive it is to recruit new retailers in this market. Plus, Music99 does a good job selling other Stanton products, and you’d rather not terminate your relationship with the chain.
Your task: Write a letter to Jackson Fletcher, the CEO of Music99 (14014 Preston Lane Pike, Dover, DE 19901), expressing your disappointment in what you observed. Explain that the Music99 sales staff must attend product training or else you will consider terminating the business relationship. Having met Mr. Fletcher in person once and talked with him on the phone once or twice, you know that he will not be pleased to learn you have been snooping around his stores; therefore, you must be tactful.
- Tell the FinalScratch story
- Explain the basis for your conclusion about Music99’s weak sales
- Begin and end on positive note
- Indirect approach
- Facsimile of real Letter (block format, rag right)
- Create a graphic Stanton letterhead
- Length: 300 words
- Average sentence length: 14-18 words
- Average paragraph length: 3-5 sentences