It’s said that a referral is the highest compliment you can receive in the business world. Kelly Stone, owner of The Idea Box Powered by Proforma, a Ft. Lauderdale, Florida-based distributorship, is proof that a positive referral, backed by unmatched resources, can have a great impact on your business. In her case, it was the leverage she needed to help her company soar into a multi-million dollar, three-year contract with Spirit Airlines.
After 13 years working as a Sales Representative within the industry, Stone began feeling the constraints of working as just another piece of the puzzle in corporate America. “I started interviewing with other companies, but ultimately I knew that it was time to take control of my professional life – it was time that I became my own boss,” said Stone. “I wanted the flexibility that owning your own company offers. I can make my own hours and set my own goals. There are no restrictions.” Stone discovered an option that would give the busy mother of three the flexibility and resources she needed to build her own distributorship. Stone joined Proforma in 2013 and The Idea Box Powered by Proforma in Ft. Lauderdale, FL quickly grew to a $1 million company in less than one year.
With the help of Proforma’s Major Accounts Team, a group dedicated to helping Proforma owners win enterprise level accounts, Stone was able to land a contract with a Fortune 500 Transportation/Logistics company. Stone won the proposal to provide the company with their print and promotional products, as well as an incentive and recognition eCommerce platform for their employees. “Proforma’s Strategic Advisors play a powerful role in providing us business owners with the support and confidence we need to secure million dollar opportunities,” said Stone. “We can also lean heavily on our preferred vendor network. There was one particular supplier partner whose services aligned perfectly with this account, so they hopped on a plane to be there by my side while we pitched our offer. Having these experts in the room, makes me look like the expert.” Stone proved her success with launching their online store in a matter of six short weeks. Their Chief Marketing Officer was so impressed by Stone’s exceptional customer service combined with Proforma’s support that her name was given as a referral to a major airline.
When Spirit Airlines was in search of a new promotional product distributor to help run their consumer and employee eCommerce stores, it was no surprise they selected Stone. She was up against multiple contenders throughout the RFP process, but because of Proforma’s financial backing, her unique and innovative creativity and one powerful referral, The Idea Box Powered by Proforma secured the three-year, multi-million dollar contract. “Companies of this size are looking for stability. That is what Proforma brings to the table – buying clout, reliability and resources unlike any other organization in our industry. Going in with the power of a $500 million company behind me speaks volumes for my business,” Stone explained.
Partnering with Proforma gave Stone the competitive advantage she needed to prove that she was the right person for the job. “The referral from Ryder wouldn’t have been possible without the help of the Proforma Family. My next goal is to reach the $5 million mark within three years and because of Proforma’s support, I know that it’s more than possible.” Visit OnlyProforma.com to find out how you can connect to the power of Proforma.