Last month in Chicago, Illinois, AIA Corporation (PPAI 101364) hosted the first of an ongoing series of sales training events the Neenah, Wisconsin, distributor is providing its owners and new sales associates. The sessions are designed to provide new sales associates with the tools and knowledge needed to succeed in the promotional products industry.

At the two-day training session, new hires from various distributors within the AIA community joined AIA leadership and facilitator Mindy Moss, owner of Moss Marketing. Moss says, “Achieving success in the promotional products industry requires a deep understanding of the logistics and details needed to truly provide added value to clients. However, as a business owner, I understand how challenging it can be to dedicate the time needed to provide quality training to new sales team members. AIA’s sales training program solves this task for us.”

Kimberly Fulford, senior vice president of owner success at AIA, said the purpose of the training is two-fold. She says, “AIA’s robust sales training program takes the burden of training off business owners, giving them more time back in their day to focus on their business. At the same time, we’re ensuring new sales associates are equipped with the resources they need to successfully sell and be profitable in this industry.”

The training tackled three key areas. First, a review of the tools AIA offers to support sales associates in their prospecting and selling efforts. Second, hands-on pricing and sales planning exercises, such as understanding end quantity pricing (EQP), educating associates on industry costs to help ensure targeted gross margin and overall goal setting. And third, a dedicated session on apparel-selling best practices hosted by Fred Hickman from AIA supplier partner SanMar.