Macnaughton Blair has unveiled a new look but the process has been about so much more than just new signage and uniforms – as customers to the successful builders’ merchants have been finding out.
The introduction of the striking new blue and yellow brand has been rolled out over a number of months across all the company’s branches in Northern Ireland alongside a new thumbs-up and ‘Here To Help’ message.
Peter Kearney, CEO of Macnaughton Blair, explained, “Our biggest challenge has always been communicating to our customers the extent of our branch network and the many benefits that this offers.
“We have grown through acquisition and had a policy of maintaining local goodwill by retaining the name of the acquired business. However, as we have grown, that has made the job of promoting the company as a whole a lot more complex.
“Unifying under the MacBlair name means we are now able to effectively communicate our many strengths and, ultimately, our customers will be the real beneficiaries.”
Just as MacBlair is more than just a builders’ merchant, so to was the rebranding process about more than just designing a new logo. The launch of the new branding is the final piece in a complex puzzle that has included an upgrade of all the company’s branches as well as an extensive programme of staff training.
Brian McAuley, Merchanting Director, said, “Once we decided to rebrand all our branches under one name, we undertook an assessment of the business to identify our strengths and weaknesses. The focus was on ‘What is MacBlair?’ and this journey helped highlight the many positives that we offer. These are now being communicated more effectively to our customers.”
While the changes have clearly made the company more DIY friendly, it has not been at the expense of trade customers. The opposite is, in fact, true.
Customers are now more aware that they have access to branches across Northern Ireland and of the specialist services MacBlair offers – including MacBlair Civils, MacBlair Hire, MacBlair Plumbing and the seven Watershed Bathrooms and Tiles showrooms. In addition, the company is showcasing its extensive doors and floors, landscaping, timber and paint offering.
Opening hours have also been adjusted to meet trade demand, with all branches opening from at least 7.30am, with three key branches (Antrim, Duncrue and Boucher) now opening from 7am. Extended Saturday opening hours have also been introduced. A new-look website will also showcase the company’s extensive product range and services.
Peter concluded, “Every member of staff took part in customer training under our ‘Here to Help’ programme where we set out the expectations of the service want to provide. What this process has showed us is the real passion, experience and knowledge that our staff show across all our branches and we have no doubt our customers will respond to this.”