Easy as Pie: Security for New Businesses

Mark WoodSince becoming a security consultant for Sonitrol Pacific in Portland a couple months ago, I’ve learned a lot about verified security and how to help small businesses improve their security. I recently brought a small pie shop into the Sonitrol Pacific family after learning that they were about to begin selling liquor. When I went to meet with the business owners, I learned about their passion for their business. They started as a food cart business attending weekend markets and special events.  This allowed them to keep their jobs as bartenders and grow their new business at the same time.  Eventually they were able to quit their bartending jobs and focus all of their attention on their pie business.  As a result, they grew out of the food cart and into their own retail space in  Portland, which is right next door to another very happy Sonitrol Pacific client.

I had seen the pie shop before when I was on a client visit next door. At that time I stopped in, but the owners were not available.  However, on my second trip by the restaurant they had the bright neon green Liquor License Application plastered to the window, and the owners were sitting out front at a picnic table having a business meeting.  I walked up to them and noticed they were planning schedules for their employees. I said “You two look like you may be the owners of this shop.” They nodded with strange looks on their faces and said “yes.”  I said “well I noticed you have applied for a liquor license,” and I pointed at the glowing application in the window. Then I said, “since you will be selling liquor you will probably have more cash laying around and possibly staying open later.”  They nodded and I said “I am on my way to another meeting, but can we set up time where I can come back and discuss a security solution to protect you, your business, and your employees?”  At that time we set up a meeting for me to come back in one month.

During an initial meeting with my sales manager along, only one of the owners was available and she was rolling dough and baking pies at the same time.  What little information I was able to gather from her allowed me to know they were a new business, with no current security system in place, in a transitional neighborhood.  I mapped out a system design to give them 100% security coverage for the space.


Once I explained how our system was different, the decision was easy as pie!

A week later I went back for our second meeting. We sat down at a table in the dining area with the owners.  At that time, one of them began to open up about some problems they had been having.  For example, someone had tried to pry open their back door with a crowbar, and someone else had walked in and asked the cashier “Do you have cameras in here?” They had also noticed illegal activities taking place nearby.  I went through the presentation focusing heavily on our response time verses a conventional alarm company. I also played real audio clips from break-ins at businesses here in Portland, and showed them our 2013 Apprehension Report, which seemed to cement with them that our system actually works.  They understood our concept and were impressed by our Commitment to Service.

They admitted that they have been putting off getting a security system and that it was something they needed to do.  Based on the fact that we cost less than conventional alarm systems, our false alarm guarantee, our Commitment to Service, and our apprehension rate they decided to move forward with the installation. This new business is now much more secure and less vulnerable to loss.