Guest Editorial -For Plateworld.com                                                 

 Don Baudrand, Don Baudrand Consulting,   e-mail:donwb@tscnet.com

Editorial

PTFE/ EN AND NI PLATING

The reason I have titled this paper “Editorial” is because this one is really the first editorial I have supplied to Plateworld. The previous papers were designed to supply useful (I hope) technical and practical information. The topic of this paper is Marketing.

I have observed over the many years that I have been associated with (actually dedicated to) the plating and finishing industry that there has been very little marketing of plating and finishing processes by job shops. I have a great deal of personal experience with new developments for the Industry as an independent laboratory owner, plating shop experience and as a supplier of process chemicals.

I have observed that many, if not most, rely on chemical suppliers to market plating and finishing to their potential customers. Note that I think that the suppliers have not done a very good job of it, partly because they are preoccupied with marketing to platers and finishers. I have also observed that the target of the little marketing by job shop has targeted taking away business form a near by competitive job shop, often by lowering the price. Real marketing involves presenting the benefits of finishing processes to a wide audience of companies that could benefit from using the processes that you have to offer and be introduced to new innovative processes that could benefit them.
I think that Job shops, captive shops and chemical suppliers would benefit by cooperative marketing to potential users.

An example is the use of plating solutions that contain additives that enhance specific properties of the deposit such as co-depositing PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethane). The development of PTFE was done by Dupont and called “Teflon”, a registered trade name. Many other chemical companies now produce PTFE.
Electroless nickel or electroplated nickel wear characteristics of their deposits are greatly enhanced by co-depositing PTFE. Surface Technology, Inc. holds the patents and licenses to plating chemical suppliers. The processes were introduced many years ago, but have had little use, partly (or mostly) because the benefits have not been marketed to potential end users. Suppliers tried to promote it to platers, with little success. Platers did not take it to their customers or to potential users of the deposits that were not their customers.

Now is a good time to start to market plating and finishing to altogether previously ignored industries that could benefit from the low friction process. Or can benefit from other services you provide. Competition for plating and finishing process continues to go over seas. And marketing should follow to potential manufacturers everywhere. Oh yes, it does cost money to advertise and promote any product or service. Yes, it takes ingenuity to come up with the best methods to promote your business.

I use PTFE only as an example. There have been many improvements in plated materials, and many new products for job shops to access. I suggest that looking for them, contacting them will have positive economic results.

Please don’t be angry with me for expressing my views. I have made the same mistakes in my career.

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