James E. Guyette Monday, October 19, 2015 as published on www.searchautoparts.com
Based in Vancouver, B.C., Canada, in September Paintshield Technology Corp. released its Paintshield Pattern Program Web Edition. The offering is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) endeavor that provides installers, paint protection film manufacturers and distributors access to priority and in-demand precision patterns created by designers at the company’s facilities in North America and Europe
With more than 18,000 patterns covering 30-plus makes of vehicles to support the PPF industry around the world, “Paintshield Technology’s design methodology has a reputation for producing the best patterns in the industry, which are known for precision fit, ease-of-installation and consistency across all vehicle types and kit parts,” says CEO Steven McAuley.
“Significant human and financial capital have been in action for almost 12 months to make this launch possible,” he reports, answering a series of questions posed by Aftermarket Business World:
Q: What does Paintshield entail?
A: Paintshield Technology Corp. is a software development and services company and the creator of the Paintshield Pattern Program (P3) operating with research, development and design facilities in North America and Europe. Our extensive library of precise and in-demand automotive paint protection film patterns are delivered through a web-based platform providing ease of access for users and allows rapid deployment of new patterns as they become available.
We help our partners take their business to the next level with partner packages including hosted mobile optimized websites, social media setup and management, marketing support, brand management and much more to come.
Q: What is the extent of your distributor/installer network?
A: We break the automotive aftermarket industry and particularly the window film industry into tiers.
Tier 1: Window film manufacturers such as 3M, Eastman, CCL, Sharpline, etc.
Tier 2: Authorized distributors of the Tier 1 OEMs
Tier 3: The installers – owner/operators around the world
Q: How can distributors benefit by carrying this system?
A: Distributors have significant opportunities to partner, support and promote Paintshield Technology and our products and services. We believe we will help distributors sell more film.
First, we don’t compete with distributors or OEMs on film sales and distribution. We want to work together to put the Paintshield Pattern Program in place with their installer network plus provide the installers our full range of services which we believe we will help drive more business to the doorstep of the installer.
The services we are offering supports installers and their business operations in the areas that are generally the most neglected and potentially most uncomfortable for them to deal with. However, everyone wants to generate more business, they want to look more professional, they want to reach more customers in their local market and they want to save money.
Paintshield Technology is setup to provide all of this and more to the installer network which in turn supports and grows the efforts of distributors.
We also have already started supporting distributors with their brand, marketing and PR efforts as well. The distributor segment of the industry has an opportunity for improvement in these key areas also.
Q: How can installers benefit by carrying this system? What are the qualifications, what training is necessary, and how can it be obtained?
A: For our aspect of the industry using the Paintshield Pattern Program is simple and intuitive. The software is delivered through a web-based download making it simple to launch and quick to commence cutting kits from the platform. We have technical support phone lines, a download guide and user guide to assist new users in navigating the software.
A: No, it’s intended for the window film professional and the industry that supports them.
Q: What demographics of end-user vehicle owners are you trying to reach?
A: The product of paint protection film can be applied to many vehicle types and surfaces to provide required protection. We are an advocate of the industry at-large and plan on driving greater awareness at the consumer level to facilitate growth. We believe we will help the installer grow their local business and do more installations plus in turn create more film sales for the industry.
Q: Does this sell better in particular climate regions?
A: There certainly are regions of the world that seem to have higher sales rates of paint protection film than others, but some of that success comes down to the local industry professionals who drive greater awareness in their market. Climates that have excessive or concentrated road debris, salt, etc. potentially have greater built-in demand for the product. However, a PPF installation has proven to provide protection for all vehicles, improves future resale value and keeps the owner’s vehicle looking better.
Q: What types of installers are you seeking?
A: Our direct customer will be any owner/operator or business who is involved in the PPF and window film industry. Our platform and services will be valuable to any of these types of businesses.
Q: Which segments are the most common among your installer customers?
A: The most common installer is typically a dedicated PPF installer and/or window tint installer. Many are owner/operators serving their local market and some are part of an automotive aftermarket company in various segments such as a glass shop, accessories shop, etc.
Q: What are the challenges/solutions for marketing paint protection films?
A: Some of the challenges to marketing paint protection film are about awareness of the product. The product is clear and generally cannot be seen when installed on a vehicle. The owner of the vehicle knows the product is there but no else does. We believe Paintshield Technology will play an important role in bringing awareness of the value of the product by helping the industry with online presence, social media awareness, improved campaigns and marketing strategies, create higher quality more point of sale material, etc.
Q: About how much can an installer expect a customer to pay to have this installed?
A: The price range of a retail installation can vary greatly depending on the amount of coverage that is installed. In addition, certain markets and time-of-year can influence the market price for a quality PPF installation.
Q: What other services and products do you offer to the aftermarket?
A: At this point in time we have launched the Paintshield Pattern Program providing access to over 18,000 precision and in-demand PPF patterns. We will be adding a window tint library in the near future to extend our reach into the industry. We build and host mobile optimized websites, and we build and manage social media channels for our customers.
We have a full range of a la carte services including marketing and branding consultation, email marketing, advertising support, graphic design, content writing, point-of-sale material design and fulfillment and generally any graphic design requirement our customer might have.
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