Second Generation Dealer Provides Services and Answers to Livestock Challenges
Providing a quality product to customers while delivering top-notch services are traits that come naturally for second-generation BioZyme dealer Jeff Cluxton, at Ripley, Ohio. Jeff’s dad, Tom, started using VitaFerm® products in 1974 and became a dealer. The family has appreciated the impact that the BioZyme products have had on their 175 head cow herd and have shared that with their peers.
“VitaFerm’s been good to us. It’s a product that we strongly believe in as users of it, so it helps us be able to sell it to people. We’ve always used the product here on the farm, so we know what works best for people.
If they are in the embryo world, we try to direct people to Concept•Aid® products. Even our commercial cattle producers, will use the Concept•Aid 8/S or the Concept•Aid tub,” Jeff said.
Perhaps the thing that differentiates Jeff and assists him in helping others is the relationship that his family has had with local veterinarian Brian Cowdrey. According to Jeff, Dr. Cowdrey’s parents used the VitaFerm products and now he uses them too. And when a client has a challenge that can be fixed with the help of a nutrition product, the vet sends his client Jeff’s way, which Jeff says makes for a unique situation.
“If the customer will be obedient and do what the veterinarian recommends, we get a lot of business from Dr. Cowdrey. Word of mouth from the vet drives a lot of my business. About four to five years ago we had an outbreak of anaplasmosis here in the county, and word of mouth and VitaFerm offering CTC and IGR became a very popular product around here,” he said.
But that isn’t the only relationship that has helped Jeff grow his business. He said he’s been able to market the VitaFerm Gain Smart® Stocker and Vita Charge® Stress Tubs to the Buckeye Valley Beef Cooperative. The group of local, younger beef producing families are working to raise beef for the consumer to buy from the farm or through local retail outlets, with the knowledge that this beef is locally sourced and has never been treated for sickness. This group of progressive cattle producers has used the Gain Smart Stocker to help ensure the cattle they are feeding for their ultimate customers put on healthy, efficient pounds and meet their strict criteria. He said they use the Stress Tubs at weaning.
As an on-farm dealer, Jeff says he is always available to help his customers. He does chuckle that his wife suggests he set some office hours, but he says he’s here to help. For instance, he has an old truck that he’ll leave a bag or two of mineral in if someone is in the area at a kid or grandkid’s ball game and wants to pick it up. He even tells about a customer who drove out of his way to get 20 bags because Jeff had the product he wanted on hand.
“I won’t turn down a customer. I will help someone out. People are busy, but you can gain a lot of business by being flexible,” Jeff said.
He shares a story from last Christmas. Since he’s also an Umbarger dealer, he has the chance to sell Weaver show supplies. Somebody had ordered a show box for Christmas gift. He offered to wrap and deliver to the customer’s front porch on Christmas Eve when that family was at another Christmas celebration. The customer was overjoyed by the service Jeff provided. He said by providing that type of service, he sees the potential of a return customer for show feed or breeding mineral in the long-term.
One of the most valuable lessons Jeff learned from his dad, and one he shares is to always be willing to find out the answer to a question when you don’t know the answer.
“Always be truthful and honest to your customer, and they will always come back to you. If you don’t know the answer, be willing to say you don’t know but you will find out. That goes a long way for you.”
Jeff Cluxton & Sons is a dealer that shows care that comes full circle while differentiating his business through long-time user experience and outstanding customer service. He’s sharing the knowledge from his dad with his customers in Western Ohio. Thanks for being a great dealer, Jeff!