Premium Monthly: April Content Focus on Market Outlook, Sales Optimization - Modern Distribution Management

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Premium Monthly: April Content Focus on Market Outlook, Sales Optimization

First-quarter 2023 Baird-MDM Survey results highlight Premium content for the month of April. Download and read the new report.
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I distinctly remember April 2022 as when I first started seeing economic forecasts for a considerable economic and industrial slowdown that would take hold late this past year.

A year later, that hasn’t happened. At least not in-full. Yes, certain industrial individual product markets have seen reduced demand, and the numerous leading economic indicators showing contraction or slowing activity shouldn’t be ignored. But overall, sentiment in the industrial supply realm remained positive entering May 2023. (Read more in the April edition of Premium Monthly.)

I witnessed this first-hand at the 2023 NAHAD Convention — which was a destination event at the Atlantis Paradise Resort in the Bahamas. (Rough life, I know). It wasn’t just the plentiful white sand beaches, resort scenery and tropical weather that had the hose distributor and manufacturer attendees in a good mood. 

I asked company leaders and NAHAD Board members about the product demand temperature, and they voiced a similar message I’ve heard all of 2023: backlogs remain near record highs, and their year-over-year and month-over-month sales numbers are holding strong. The same sentiment was heard repeatedly at ISA23 in mid-April in Phoenix. These executives aren’t ignoring the economic warning signs. They’re trusting their data and what they’re seeing and hearing from their customers and sales reps, and it’s still predominantly positive.

MDM’s Premium content in April reflected recent market data, including our 1Q MarketPulse Report that shared a wealth of data from the 1Q23 Baird-MDM Industrial Distribution Survey of 500+ respondents, along with plenty of colorful commentary from those respondents about what they’re seeing out there. Additionally, our 1Q M&A Report provided a new snapshot of dealmaking activity.

We likewise shared industry sentiment in a trio of Premium articles in April. An April 26 piece focused on 1Q Baird-MDM Survey results to our question of how respondents’ labor situation is now compared to a year ago; an April 18 piece distilled the latest wholesale sector data from the U.S. Census Bureau; and an April 17 piece shared 1Q Baird-MDM Survey results to our question that asked respondents to what extent that pricing actions impacted their 2022 revenue figures. April also featured a two-part Premium series from Redwood Advisors’ John Nantz and Sabrina Franco about how to optimize an expansive sales force — diving into developing a detailed customer segmentation methodology, and mapping your accounts to the right sales channel and rep.

Elsewhere in April Premium content, I examined what distributors stand to gain from the U.S. ongoing manufacturing construction boom; and a thorough breakdown of Distribution Solutions Group’s pending acquisition of fellow large distributor Hisco.

Click here to download and read MDM’s April edition of Premium Monthly.

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