Learning from the Pandemic: Diversifying your target market

For the first time in many generations, the manufacturing industry found itself in a position to shift its resources for collective needs when particular goods and resources demand exploded, entering the pandemic. Of course, stories of distilleries shifting their formulas for the production of hand sanitizers were front of mind, but the entirety of the market saw a need to reimagine how their products could shift to help fight the virus and alleviate the pains of distance. The Resource Group | Midwest experienced these innovative thoughts by their manufacturers first hand; both radical reinventions of technologies to help alleviate challenges of the pandemic environment and new applications of existing products. The creative thinking of the pandemic is a skill critical for us to take away from the pandemic.

Gratnells provides a great example of creating a new channel for uniquely well-suited products for a missed market. The need for anti-microbial trays in multiple new markets made for excellent solutions for Gratnells in schools and offices distributing PPE. The thinking applied during this process expanded in critical ways. Trolleys and accessories designed for the office have developed self-evident purposes in educational spaces, just as educational products have found homes in industrial spaces. Assuring that the versatility of products is capitalized upon is a crucial skill for growth. 

Another critically important practice about entering new spaces is relationship building and the discovery that comes with it. 

Deflecto reinvented its acrylic dividers to assist in the transition to contained space. A significant market for these dividers was schools, an area which Deflecto has struggled to break into. The relationships that were quickly developed with Deflecto products have now proliferated into a multi-dimensional and critical channel.

The Pandemic provided us time to reevaluate. Many people discovered their products could become so much more than they have been used for. Today, we are trying to reinforce these reevaluation and reinvention practices to be as crucial as they are. Make crisis an opportunity. 

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