Getting to $100M

The management of Service Performance Corporation (SPC) came to us with a question. They had grown from the founder’s garage to a $20M facilities management company. Their question was: “We have a plan to be a $100M company in five years—is “Service Performance” the company that is going to get us there?”

A really good question.

Starting out life with a small number janitors and the founder, offering janitorial to local businesses. They had grown over the subsequent 18 years to a full services facilities management company, managing millions of square feet across the Western U.S.

Part of their problem was that, while Service Performance worked as a name in the 80s, it was not so much in the 2010s, and all of their materials still looked and sounded like a janitorial company. They had very little to say on the full facility services they offered, so the response they were getting from sales calls and marketing campaigns was to get pigeonholed into a janitorial role.

Once they asked that question, we immediately dove into research mode. We look at the market space, the competition, did a complete brand review, and talked to their clients—new, old, and lost – to see what they had to say. The lost clients were a particularly rich source of information.

The results were astounding. Their customers loved them, more than just about any other survey we had done in 20 years of surveying customers. But…they didn’t relate to the brand/name. The general sense of the survey was “we love the company, but the name sounds like an unfinished sentence.”

Naming is one of the hardest parts of marketing. The general rule is “the fewer the words the harder the job.” Names are harder than headlines, which are harder than subheads, which are harder than articles or whitepapers. Which is why companies spend millions of dollars for names.

We gave them three choices; stay with “SPC” and we’ll make it as strong as possible, make up a word that sounds like what you do, or pick a name out of the English language that resonates the way we want it to. And we ran through options for the last two.

Thus was born…

Flagship Facility Services, Inc., We make your facility a flagship.


Their name became their three-second elevator pitch and from the name we derived their entire marketing platform and all customer facing materials, in addition to some training materials on what Flagship meant, and what it meant to be part of this company.

The Results?

The first feedback we got was from salespeople coming back raving about their meetings. They were thrilled to no longer be pigeonholed into the janitorial space. Flagship’s outreach campaigns started getting good response rates, and customers were reporting a much better reception of the new brand.

And 24 months later—and in the midst of the recession—Flagship had doubled their revenues and were on track to meet their $100M dream.