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RoofersCoffeeShop - Where The Industry Meets!

How Listening to Contractors’ Concerns Helped This Manufacturing Company Grow

WRE Marco Live
December 11, 2022 at 6:00 a.m.

Marco Industries’ Jim McGaha says that they’ve found great success by listening and adapting to the needs of their contractor customers. 

Editors note: The following is a conversation between RoofersCoffeeShop® COO Karen Edwards, and Marco Industries’ National Sales Manager, Jim McGaha. You can watch the interview or read the transcript below.


Karen Edwards: Welcome back to the Roofer's Coffee Shop Sound Stage at the Western Roofing Expo 2022. I am Karen Edwards and I am so excited to have my friends from Marco Industries here. Jim, welcome. Introduce yourself please. 

Jim McGaha: Hi, I'm Jim McGaha, National Sales Manager for Marco Industries. 

Karen Edwards: Excellent. How long have you been with Marco? 

Jim McGaha: I have been there for just right at a year. 

Karen Edwards: Okay, so it's a new venture for you? 

Jim McGaha: New venture. I've been in the building products and ventilation and steep slope industry for a very long time, but new to Marco Industries. 

Karen Edwards: And tell our viewers a little bit about Marco Industries and what you guys do. 

Jim McGaha: Marco Industries is a manufacturer of ventilation products. They've been around for over 30 years. They started in the metal building industry and a couple years ago they said, "You know what? Let's see what we can do on the residential side. And here we have a complete line of vents for various types of residential roofing." 

Karen Edwards: Excellent. I love it when there's a solution that works, then you can take it and adapt it for other situations like residential. 

Jim McGaha: And it's interesting that I have a background in shingles and what I've learned so far is that ventilation is the same throughout the country, but the products that are used are much different. So something that's used in the Northeast would be something that's different in the Southwest and it's just interesting. You have to be flexible and adapt to contractors' needs and wants, and that's what we're here for. 

Karen Edwards: So let's talk about contractor needs and wants because we are at the Western Roofing Expo. You've been talking to a lot of contractors. 

Jim McGaha: Lot of contractors. 

Karen Edwards: What kind of conversations have you been having? What are they looking for? 

Jim McGaha: Well really, contractors are looking for something that's easy. And it's not always about price. Price is a concern, but contractors want something that's going to make their job easier, whether that's a product that's easier to install or solves a problem in the industry. And we have products that fit both of those needs. 

Karen Edwards: That's excellent. And talk to me a little bit about, when you're ventilating a roof, there's always, you're letting air in or letting air out. So there's openings and we're always concerned about water intrusion. 

Jim McGaha: Yes. 

Karen Edwards: How do you address that with your solutions? 

Jim McGaha: Well, you are correct. Air in and air out. And that's a big thing. And a lot of people don't really understand ventilation. Ventilation is one of those things that when you look at the components of a roof, it's probably the least expensive component, but if not done properly, it can end up costing a lot of money and you may end up having to completely redo the roof.  

So we have easy to install products, that the way that they're installed with flashing, the way that they're engineered and developed, prevent water penetration in the roof, which, water moisture, that all just causes problems down the road for the homeowner with condensation, with mold and mildew and all kinds of different things. So we're very proud of our products. And it's solving those types of problems that contractors and homeowners have. 

Karen Edwards: Are you seeing people that come by, "Oh, we love you guys, we'll use your products"? 

Jim McGaha: Well, we have a brand new product line just for clay tile, and that's what we're highlighting at the show today. And so there's been a tremendous amount of positive comments and feedback that we've got from the contractors at the show. And people are looking for our products and where can they buy. So we're very, very proud to be displaying and it's nice to have that good feedback. 

Karen Edwards: That's excellent, definitely. Well, so the Marco booth is right across from ours. So in this last hour of the show that we have going on here, if you're thinking about stopping by, be sure to stop by their booth because you've got everything on display. 

Jim McGaha: We have more than we could possibly display, but we're highlighting certain products and what we don't have on display, we have brochures and literature for. 

Karen Edwards: That's true. A 10 foot booth can only hold so much. So if you want to learn more, you can also go to the rooferscoffeeshop.com and look at Marco's directory because we have a lot of the product information on there. We have links to the website, we have videos, everything, how to get in touch with them. So all the information that you could possibly want is there. And then with training, support, with a contractor that maybe hasn't used your products before, is there a learning curve and do you provide that support to help them understand the best practices for installation. 

Jim McGaha: Absolutely. Ventilation. There is a science to it, and it's something that I have developed a seminar, it's a training for contractors. It's about our products, but it's really about ventilation practices. It's the good and the bad. It's what to do, what not to do, things to look for, safe practices. And it's a certification, that once you complete it, you do get a little certification. And I feel like it is my job to educate contractors on proper ventilation because we are a ventilation manufacturer, but then we also have the products to fit their needs. 

Karen Edwards: Excellent. Yeah, I love that you provide that support and education, because I know I'm not an expert in ventilation, but I've read a lot about it and it can be a little bit intimidating to calculate the right amount that you need in a roofing system. 

Jim McGaha: Well, it can be, and really that's what the contractor is for, to educate the homeowner. The homeowner shouldn't have to bury that burden, but the contractor working with a qualified contractor, someone that knows what they're doing and they can walk the homeowner through that. And ventilation, again is one of those that you might not see a problem today, but it could end up costing you. You may have to buy a new air conditioning unit or a new furnace or something like that because it's working over time to control the air, which is happening because you're not properly ventilating. And it's those types of things that it's, again, as a manufacturer, our responsibilities to educate contractors to make sure they're ventilating properly and using the right types of materials, the right types of vents on the particular roof that they're working with. 

Karen Edwards: Cause like you said, different parts of the country have different needs and different types of systems. 

Jim McGaha: Different needs and different climates. What's used in the Northeast is not what is used in the Southwest. What's used in the central part of the country is not what's used in Dallas, Texas. So different climates and different products that are used and again, we have all of that. 

Karen Edwards: So that's really cool because you're nationwide, so what's happening in these different areas of the country and you can provide the right solutions for contractors. 

Jim McGaha: Absolutely, yes. And US and Canada. And Canada is interesting to have a partner that adds another set of unique challenges because there's a lot more colder weather in Canada and we've used a lot of that technology as we brought that south. 

Karen Edwards: Yeah, okay. Good to know. So ventilation experts right here, right across from us too. So check them out, check out the directory in Roofers Coffee Shop, visit their website. Everything you need to know, they're going to help you answer your questions and help you have the right solutions for your customers homes. So thank you so much for being here today. 

Jim McGaha: Thank you so much for having me. 

Karen Edwards: It was great to talk to you. And guys, stay tuned because we're going to come at you with a couple more videos before the show ends. Subscribe to our YouTube channel, ring that bell. You'll get notified when we go live. 

Learn more about MARCO Industries in their RoofersCoffeeShop® Directory or visit www.marcoindustries.com.

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