Nathan Pullen has no problem getting accounts. As Director of the Business Enterprise Program (BEP) for the State of Arizona, he facilitates a program that trains blind vendors, preparing them to operate government locations under a state contract.
Like all operators, blind vendors are rapidly converting their vending to micro markets in many locations. Until recently, third party operators had been used to handle the government micro market locations. Pullen was confident that blind vendors could ultimately take over those micro market locations if BEP could find the right vendor support.
The right vendor support
Pullen turned to Fixturelite for everything — design, fixtures, advice and support.
“We are converting every location over to Fixturelite design and products,” said Pullen, who has a current list of over 30 locations scheduled for installation. “Steve and his team have been so helpful every step of the way.”
Setting up a unified brand
Pullen said he saw the wisdom of setting up a unified branding program as BEP began rolling out micro markets — a program that was implemented with complete support from Fixturelite. “Working with Fixturelite, we are able to have a consistent market from one location to the next. We have consistent logos, signage, colors, pricing, design, refrigeration equipment and kiosks,” he said.
Translucent, LLC, a company Fixturelite works closely with, stepped in to assist with guidance around installation best practices, merchandising and plan-o-grams. They were also a valuable resource when it came to initial training on the 365 Retail Markets' point of sale technology. Pullen added that end users appreciate experiencing the same high level of quality in each location.
Orlando designed the new brand with the customer journey in mind. “The journey takes place in the market, and in this case, that journey could also be across multiple locations within a building or across town. We recommended 365 Retail Markets as a best-fit point of sale solution, whether that sale took place at a kiosk, on their phone, or as part of their Connected Campus solution.”
As for retail displays and equipment, Orlando wanted to create a consistent and repeatable solution. “When a customer walks into the newly designed AZBEP market, the lighting under every product shelf, the graphics and lettering, and Minus Forty Technologies refrigeration equipment grab the customers’ attention and make the products stand out. Nathan also wanted to dedicate a space in the market that told the operator story, which was easily and tastefully achieved by our graphics design team, either as the customer enters the market or at the kiosk location,” said Orlando.
“This branding program has elevated the loyalty level of our customers because it tells the story that when you buy something from this market, you are supporting a blind entrepreneur, doing something good and giving them an opportunity to be independent, support their family and live a good life,” said Pullen.
BEP and Fixturelite – Improving people’s lives
For the team at Fixturelite, the relationship with BEP and the blind vendors is a special one. “It’s great to know that our work with BEP is having a positive impact on people’s lives,” said Steve Orlando, an experienced operator of 10 years who co-founded Fixturelite, the leading supplier of micro market retail displays, seating and design features. “The BEP program is doing exactly what it was designed to do — and everyone here is happy to be a part of that. We are proud to contribute to their success.”
Conversations due to branding
Pullen is confident that the unified brand image has resulted in stronger sales and increased interest in the BEP micro markets. “The branding results in on-site conversations, so that market customers get an understanding of how beneficial this program is for blind people — keeping them off public assistance and allowing them to make a better life for themselves.”
“We have received a tremendous amount of support from Steve and his team — helping us unify our brand image. It helps to have the best quality design, market fixtures and refrigeration in your micro markets. That is exactly what Fixturelite provides,” said Pullen.
Learn more about branding your micro markets www.fixturelite.com