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Achieving Successful Business-to-Business Relationships between Forest Products Suppliers and Distributors
Authors: Dorothy A. Paun & Wendy Sammarco
Smart marketers build long-term, trusting, “win-win” relationships with valued customers, distributors, dealers, and suppliers. This research effort explores the specific factors, conditions, and activities that contribute to building successful supplier-distributor relationships in the forest products industry. We sought to answer the question, “What spells success in business-to-business relationships between forest products suppliers and distributors?”
Utilizing comparative analyses of best business-to-business relationships, in-depth interviews were conducted with executives at five forest products firms. The structured interviews profiled business dimensions consistently present in outstanding business-to-business relationships. The results reveal that successful relationships involve: frequent communication; extensive joint marketing planning and performance reviews; the exchange of customized products; promotional efforts that are a joint activity; delivery systems that are reliable and dependable; and pricing practices that foster few problems and quick resolutions, to name a few. In an effort to make the research findings more practical and useful, a worksheet exercise that incorporates these principles has been designed to help you analy