Conformance Coatings & Prototype (CCP)

A Business On The Brink Of Going Out Of Business Turns Around With Help From Thomas

Grow Your Business

Small Manufacturer Struggling To Connect With More Customers

Conformance Coatings & Prototype, a custom manufacturer of plastic parts, painting, hot stamping and pad printing, had recently lost a significant contract. The small, Michigan-based manufacturer was struggling to replace the lost revenues and connect with new buyers. 

Recent changes in the plastic industry caused CC&P’s local clients to look elsewhere, threatening the company’s bottom line and the business overall. Bruce Douglass, CCP Shop Manager recognized the need to change his game plan and expand into other markets, but he didn’t quite know how to execute it.

“We … found it very hard to open doors with the same methods that have kept our business alive for 30 years,” he said. “Everything that we tried was not bringing opportunities for us.”

Quickly losing customers and revenues, CC&P was on shaky ground. And then the bottom seemed to fall out when a longtime customer took their work in house, cutting off a key and lucrative contract. “We were in dire straits,” Bruce recalled.

Bruce and his team tried different ways to turn around the business, but nothing seemed to work. Potential clients, CC&P found, only wanted to be contacted on their terms. “We needed to have exposure to buyers, engineers, project managers, [but] we couldn’t reach those people, they only wanted to talk when there is a need,” Bruce realized. As a result, no matter how many calls they made, they couldn’t make a sale that would save the company.

Just months away from going out of business for good, the shop’s manager, Bruce Douglass, was searching for answers.

Thomas Helps Small Manufacturer, CCP

Robert Luther and Bruce Douglass CCP

“Our days were numbered, maybe into months, and we were going the wrong way,” Bruce said.

That’s when he received a call from Robert Luther at Thomas. “Robert Luther came to our door at the right moment,” Bruce said.

Robert worked with Bruce, explaining how Thomas' solutions could help.

Beyond conveying the benefits of building a presence on the Thomas Network at Thomasnet.com, Robert provided advice that would help CC&P drive traffic to its website and make the most of its online efforts. “He showed me what needed to be written for various areas and how the words that we were using would connect with searches,” Bruce said.

Learn more about the Thomas Network solutions.

Thomas has more than 120 years experience helping manufacturers grow. Immediately Bruce recognized that Thomas could play a critical role in opening up new opportunities for the company and change the way it had done business. Thomas would help get his small shop in front of the right buyers at the right time, without the need to make cold calls or chase leads. “I jumped in with both feet,” Bruce said.

Thomas took the time to build an advertising program that was custom fit to CC&P’s needs and goals, a hands-on, collaborative process that took about four months.

Immediately after Thomas' plan was implemented, CC&P saw real results. “We picked up some small jobs from New York right away,” Bruce said. Soon after that, the company began earning contracts with customers throughout the country. CC&P hadn’t expanded beyond its shop in Michigan, but its reach and reputation certainly did.

Six months after going live, Bruce received a call from a customer in Iowa who had a contract with a major automobile manufacturer. “Their parts were failing, and we were given the opportunity to correct the problem, took over the work, and basically we’re doing $130 - $140,000 a month now with that customer, and that has put us in a very profitable position.” 

“All in all, partnering with Thomasnet has been a tremendous success. We have enough new work that the cost of Thomas will be less than 5% of the new sales in the first year.

We are seeing 1-3 inquiries a week now and are working on expanding our supply base to support the new opportunities.”

1-2 leads a month

before Thomas

1-3 leads a week

after Thomas

Thomas is my sales rep. They’re our business. They’re our partner. They make things happen.

— Bruce Douglass, CCP Shop Manager

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