Friday, October 01, 2010
Bradley's Military Enterprises was established by Bill McKinney in September of 1992. Mr. McKinney had extensive military experience and had always dreamed of owning a business of his own, so this military retail store seemed like a perfect combination. By starting up this business, he was able to combine his dreams, values, and military experience.|
It was not all a dream come true, however. According to Bill, the toughest obstacle was working with the little resources he had. It was hard for Mr. McKinney to find the talented people with strong computer science skills that he needed to better endorse his business. “Because Northern New York is very rural,” he said, “We don’t have a large pool of talented people who are familiar with web pages, pay per click campaigns, search engine optimization, or other forms of e-commerce marketing. These micro barriers also create problems on a macro scale.”
Despite facing such overwhelming obstacles, Bradley’s has made respectable progress with their new web page, E-Bay Store, and other mail order operations. They are also now connected to Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, MySpace, and LinkedIn. In 2011, they will create new business operations on Amazon. They believe their persistence has led to their success on a rather windy road.
Bradley’s does also take pride in their strong management staff, and always look to surround themselves with talented employees. Though they have problems attracting talent in the IT field, they do well in the rest of their departments. Bradley’s leadership has excelled at finding new opportunities, diversifying, and creating new streams of income. At the same time, they have done a good job at staffing their departments with the right people. Currently their workforce possesses 2 master’s degrees, 7 bachelor’s degrees, and 4 employees with 20 years of military experience or more. Despite all of the challenges, Bradley’s excels at recruiting, training, and retaining talented people, something that we at Rothco are very impressed with.
Recently, great opportunities have been created for Bradley’s Military Enterprises due to the expansion of the base at Ft. Drum, New York. Bradley’s has strong name recognition that has been established by consistently taking care of soldiers for a long time. While their competition offers 3-day service, most of Bradley’s services are “on-the-spot” or same day. Likewise, their competition hires employees with little or no military experience. As a result, Bradley’s has formed a reputation for being knowledgeable and for providing superior service. Because Bradley’s is well established, possess strong name recognition, and faces little competition, this environment has allowed Bradley’s to thrive.
The one stop shopping, customer service, product knowledge, and short deadlines provided by Bradley's Military Enterprises encourage soldiers to do business at Bradley’s store. Bradley’s is not a low cost leader. Instead, their competitive advantage lies with differentiation, service, and providing more perceived value.. Nationally, they advertise using PPC campaigns, SEO, exchanging links, banner ads, catalogs, and advertising in nationwide periodicals.
On a national level, bradleyssurplus.com shows off one of the widest selections of military products and services around, proven by their impressive E-Bay and BBB ratings. Bradley’s makes it easy to do business with their company, and they even strive to make shopping at Bradley’s entertaining. In order for that to occur Bradley’s offers many social computing features, post interesting articles about various products or the military community on their blog, and offer an extensive amount of information about their organization. But entertainment is certainly not where they draw the line – they also offer transparency, security, and peace of mind, making them a “people oriented business” that offers service and more perceived value to their customers. Bradley’s proudly supports the Association of the United States Army, better known as AUSA, which they have been a member of for over 15 years.
Bradley’s mainly serves soldiers, but has found that hunters, outdoorsmen, survivalists, law enforcement officers, and paintball/airsoft players have become increasingly interested in their products. Rothco looks forward to our continued and valued partnership.
Ed Feliciano, Rothco’s Sales Manager who manages the Bradley’s account says, “Over the past 15 years Bradley’s has been a great partner with Rothco. Everyone at Bradley’s is friendly, dependable, highly professional and consistent. Bradley’s has an excellent understanding of today’s marketplace.”
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