Bob Tullio’s Product Perspective: Translucent Emerges as a Key Partner for Operators

Oct. 27, 2020
A Closer Look At Products, Equipment And Services That Will Impact An Operator’s Business

The service:  A proven approach to micro market success and profitability

After 30 years as a food service operator, Steve and Patty Closser decided that consulting, helping operators achieve maximum performance and profitability, was the right move for them as they transitioned to the next chapter of their professional journey.

As expected, when they started Translucent in 2017, they almost exclusively served inexperienced operators and newcomers to the booming micro market space.

“With our experience in all facets of convenience services, Translucent was a perfect fit for operators who were struggling with best practices and we were especially helpful to operators who wanted to desperately enter the micro market space, but did not know where to begin,” said Steve Closser, who co-founded the company with his wife, Patty.

“Many of the small operators we worked with early on aren’t so small anymore,” said Patty Closser. “It is gratifying to see the growth that our clients are enjoying with our support.”

Translucent offers a wide array of services including:

·Business coaching

·Technology training

·Product merchandising


·Business development

·Customer service training 

·Micro market design support

“We help operators perform more efficiently, make good equipment choices, streamline operational procedures and choose the right technology – all of which leads to the ultimate goals – success and profitability,” said Steve Closser.

Much has changed in the micro market industry over the last three years. Today, Translucent has become a preferred choice for some of the industry’s largest and most established operators.

Steve Orlando, an experienced operator of ten years who co-founded Fixturelite, the leading supplier of micro market retail displays, equipment and design tools, said that increasingly, his company is collaborating on projects with Translucent, serving some very experienced operators who are simply looking to optimize performance.

“Steve and Patty have become best practice experts on every aspect of the micro market business,” said Orlando. “We have seen them in action on some very demanding projects. When an operator wants to ensure a successful installation and launch, Translucent is the right choice. The most successful operators now fully understand that.”

“Translucent not only makes installations easier for operators of all sizes, they understand every aspect of the industry – including technology,” said Ed Chapel, Chief Revenue Officer at 365 Retail Markets. “They help operators make decisions from actionable data. Most importantly, they follow through to evaluate performance and that effects operator ROI.”

Mike Kelner of VBB Advisors, the industry’s leading business broker, often refers Translucent to private equity groups who are hungry to enter the micro market space. “There is going to be a big move from private equity into the micro market space once the dust clears,” said Kelner. “There is money on the sidelines right now and as these investors jump in, Translucent is positioned to help them understand how to realize the full potential of their investment.”

“Steve and Patty are the perfect choice – experts in their field,” he added.

Translucent makes sense for operators

Experience - In the new office environment, clients want micro market installations to be done quickly and efficiently because they want to limit the amount of outside traffic in their facility. There is no room for do-overs. In the course of installing over 200 micro markets for over 75 operators, Translucent has seen just about everything that can possibly go wrong and knows how to get an installation back on track.

Savings – The internal cost of installing a micro market is quite high. Think of the staff required. Installers, product merchandisers, client services people, a sales rep and a technician or two – all trying to work in sync (hopefully) despite the normal workday distractions that are tugging at their cellphones.  The turn-key package offered by Translucent simplifies the process, centralizes the effort and ultimately, will result in an installation done right, the first time – for a lower overall cost.

A level playing field – For a newcomer to the micro market world, using Translucent makes incredible sense. Imagine the power of introducing the idea of using Translucent in the sales process.

You: “To ensure a perfect installation, we will bring in Translucent, the industry’s leading micro market specialist. Of course, we will oversee the process, but why not utilize the industry expert for support? It is just our way of investing in the success of your micro market.”

Suddenly, the small operator with very few micro markets, enjoys a competitive advantage. If you think in those terms, you won’t be small for long.

For a bigger operator, improved efficiency – There is a reason why an operator gets big in the micro market business. Service is the key component. That means keeping the existing locations running smoothly. New installations, especially larger projects can be very disruptive, putting a strain on the entire operation.

Translucent has been serving more well-established operators than ever before. “We bring something to the table that experienced operators truly appreciate – an outstanding result, guaranteed,” said Steve Closser. “They sleep better at night when Translucent is on their team.”

Reputation – In the course of writing about the convenience services industry, I have spoken to many operators who have used Translucent and I have heard nothing but rave reviews.

As I reflect on my days as a micro market operator, considering the cost and challenges associated with every installation, from technology, to service, to merchandising – even security camera issues, if Translucent had been around five years ago, my company, always on a fast growth track, would have certainly turned to Steve and Patty Closser.

For operators of any size, Translucent makes sense.

How to connect with Translucent:


Email: [email protected] and Patty Closser [email protected]

Phone: 816-708-5043

Industry consultant Bob Tullio ( is a content specialist who advises operators in the convenience services industry on how to build a successful business from the ground up. Tullio just launched a You Tube Channel, b2b Perspective, designed to “elevate your business in 2 minutes” and is currently developing an online course, “Leverage the power of LinkedIn to grow your business.”

As he is a recognized industry expert in business development and sales, NAMA hired him to write and narrate the new online course, “Selling Convenience Services,” which is now available. Use discount code B2B10 for an instant discount and for free access to upcoming Q & A Webinars from Tullio in the coming months. Here is a free sample of the course.


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