Tuesday, July 01, 2014

July/August 2014 Clene-Times

The July/August 2014 Clene-Times issue is available on-line. Just click on the link.
Due to increased postal regulations regarding bulk mail and a looming
postage increase, future issues of the Clene-Times will be available
in digital format only at www.baneclene.com/clenetimes.html.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


The Mini-Mount® carpet cleaning equipment is the first truck-mounted system designed especially for fuel-efficient mini-vans, which will fit into almost any garage or tight area. This carpet cleaning system is ideal for areas where extreme distance between jobs is a concern. It has the storage capacity, in many instances, to perform a full day's work. The Base Unit can be portable in less than one minute.

Triple heating system: Wasted engine heat automatically heats your cleaning solution to the right temperature and an auxiliary electric heater is used for water temperature control. The large insulated tanks enable you to clean all day without having to refill or dump water. The system is totally electric, with no dangerous or expensive fuels required. It is not  necessary to operate truck engine while cleaning.

Showroom 3D
Accessories including hoses and cleaning heads as shown in the catalog.
Does not include loading ramp. FULL FIVE-YEAR WARRANTY
Regular Price: $13,995.00
Special Price: $12,900.00

Customer Service

A quick and effective resolution of any conflict with a customer can actually increase their loyalty to your company.  A majority of customers will continue doing business with you if they feel you have corrected the problem that instigated the complaint.
Here are some suggestions:
Empathize with their emotions. Listen carefully and let them blow off some anger or frustration. Get as many "specifics" as possible and then clearly restate the problem. Confirm that both parties agree on the details.  Offer as many alternatives as possible and then allow the customer to decide on which alternative to use.
The most important part of creating a customer advocate for your company is after agreeing on a solution and solving the problem, be sure you do more than you promised.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Showroom 3-D Base Units Available at a special price

Now is a good time to upgrade to a Bane-Clene® 3-D base unit. Three showroom models available at a reduced price. The dual electric motor direct drive promotes 30% more vacuum. Plus an inline 1500 watt heater keeps your solution at a constant temperature at 180 degrees while you're in operation. Regular price 7495. Special price 6950 + s & h. Call your sales rep for complete details. Units will carry a five-year conditional warranty as always.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

William Francis Bane

It is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we at Bane-Clene® Corp. regret to inform you that our Chairman, Wm. F. Bane, has passed away after a brief but courageous battle with cancer. Please read a brief synopsis of his life below. Thank you.

William Francis Bane passed away February 20th, 2014 at 9:40 PM
surrounded by his devoted family. A lifelong resident of Indianapolis, Bill led a noteworthy and successful life both privately and publicly. He was a loving
and devoted husband to his wife, a caring and nurturing father to his sons and Pawpaw to his grandchildren and great grandchildren. Bill was also an admired community leader and entrepreneur who led a successful business for over half his life, and who rose to a position of prominence within his industry.

Born June 25, 1927 and orphaned as a child, he was raised by his maternal grandparents Erven and Frances Ryle. Growing up in the Depression, he learned the value of hard work and the importance of self-reliance, innovation and motivation. His many positive qualities were further enhanced by his Catholic upbringing and education at Holy Cross Grade School and Cathedral High School. After graduation, Bill bravely embraced his love of country and enlisted in the Marine Corps to help defend his nation during World War II.

A true member of the ‘Greatest Generation’, he also volunteered and participated in the Korean conflict. While stationed in Philadelphia, PA after World War II, he met his bride to be Elizabeth Ann on a blind date. They were married on April 26th 1947 and the couple would have celebrated a happy and blessed 67th year of marriage.

In 1950, Bill and wife Elizabeth returned to Indianapolis as proud parents of their first son, Bill, Jr. Their second son Donald was born shortly thereafter, and the family has continued to call Indianapolis home since that time.

Following the return to Indianapolis, Bill helped to care for his ailing grandmother and began a career as a tanker truck driver for Gaseteria, a petroleum company. He later worked for Brink’s armored car service where he rose in ranks to the management level at the Indianapolis branch. With heavy heart, he resigned from Brink’s in late 1961 as further advancement meant moving his family to another part of the country and away from the city that his family called home.

Shortly after leaving Brink’s, Bill explored business opportunities that would allow him to create his own success and that might allow his family to become part of his endeavors. Seeing a need for janitorial services, he started The Wm. F. Bane Company on February 4th, 1962. The company grew and in 1967 added a commercial and residential carpet cleaning division. Recognizing the success of this aspect of his business, he divested the janitorial service division and focused the fledgling firm entirely on carpet cleaning.
While operating the carpet cleaning service, Bill recognized that improvements to the efficiency and quality of the cleaning process could propel the industry forward. His entrepreneurial spirit and innovation led him to produce the first “Truck Mounted” carpet cleaning machine in 1970, for which he later received a patent for the unique design and application.

Dedicated to his vision, in 1974 Bill launched Bane-Clene® Systems, focused on the production and sale of Carpet Cleaning Equipment, Chemicals and Supplies. The service and supply divisions were incorporated into one entity, Bane-Clene® Corporation in 1980. The successful firm that Bill began in 1962 celebrated its 52nd anniversary this year, with Bill still active as Board Chairman.
Under his guidance and charismatic leadership, the growing business attained worldwide recognition in the Carpet Cleaning Industry and Bill was an active speaker and evangelist for the cleaning methods he developed. His leadership and business acumen helped launch thousands of independent networked affiliates worldwide, and true to his original vision his wife and sons have remained active participants in the company, still managing its day-to-day operation.

In addition to his business success, Bill was an active civic leader, serving as President of the Meadows/Fall Creek Civic League. He worked tirelessly to promote the area and later achieved an Enterprise Zone designation which opened up business opportunities for others in the area. He was also an active member of American Legion Post #3 where he served as Commander.

Outside his professional and civic endeavors, Bill loved the game of baseball. As a noteworthy young ballplayer, he had been scouted by several major league teams. As a father, he coached his sons in Little League® baseball, where he taught them the attributes of sportsmanship and teamwork. Organizationally, Bill developed and managed multiple Championship teams in American Legion Baseball, Connie Mack and Junior Baseball.

Later in life, his competitive nature turned to golf. He enjoyed his time on the links with family, friends and associates at Hillcrest Country Club. His golfing buddies at Hillcrest were affectionately known as the R.O.B.’s and they enjoyed many great times together. Bill won more than one Club Tournament and realized the dream of every golfer, a “hole in one”.

Later in life, Bill and Elizabeth enjoyed wintering at their second home in St. Pete, FL. From there, they loved to visit nearby Disney World in Orlando, a special place where they enjoyed spending time with family and friends.

Their love for the ‘Fort Wilderness’ area of the resort inspired Bill to develop and personally execute a grand vision of his own nature park at their home in Indianapolis. Now successfully transformed into a beautiful five-acre nature sanctuary, this park, complete with paths, bridges, lakes and landscaping is a beautiful reminder of the man who created it. Even in late 2013 and toward the end of his life, Bill could be found creating pathways and clearing land on his trusty tractor, his vision always expanding. Over the years, they cared for dozens of pets on the property and loved observing the wildlife attracted to the beautiful grounds.

Bill left an amazing legacy for those that follow him. Whether in private, professional, or civic endeavors, he
was a successful leader with vision and motivation to follow through on his dreams. He will be greatly missed by the thousands of friends, associates and acquaintances he leaves behind, but most of all by his dedicated family who has remained with him throughout his prominent life.

He is survived by his spouse of 67 years (Elizabeth), sons Wm. F. Bane, Jr. (significant other Denise Pettigrew), Donald Allen (Linda Faye) several grandchildren and great grandchildren. Special mention is made for loyal caregiver and family friend, retired RN Lynn Kinz who was able to manage in-home hospice care at the end of his life.

In accordance with his final wishes, a private service is planned with interment in the family mausoleum at Crown Hill Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the St. Augustine’s Little Sisters of the Poor.Contact them at (2345 West 86th Street Indpls., IN 46260, Phone 317-415-5767, www.littlesistersofthepoorindianapolis.org) which was the favorite charity of his and his grandmother.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Stainmaster® one more time

Ads about Invista's new Stainmaster "PetProtect" were out as early as last November. The new product is durable, easy-to-clean and resists most pet stains according to the publicity releases. They claim pet hair lets go easier when vacuumed. That reminded me that it's time to do my annual puff-piece on the Stainmaster we bought for our family room in January of 1987. Actually it's the truth, but it sounds like a PR rep has played spin doctor on it.

DuPont spent $50,000,000.00, a lot of money in 1986, introducing Stainmaster with little Ricky throwing his food on the carpet. The commercials said it was easy to clean, but apparently they couldn't afford maintenance literature and wouldn't answer my inquiries about cleaning the new product. As cleaning professionals we needed to know if there were special requirements, so I started a testing program to see for myself how to clean it and how it would perform.

L. S. Ayres & Co., installed a champaign-colored cut-pile, by WestPoint Pepperell in our family room which is adjacent to a blacktop driveway and garage. Foot traffic funnels through the center of the room, so it was a poor choice of color and pile texture. The salesman never questioned my selection and when I asked about cleaning he said, "Don't worry about it, it hardly ever needs cleaning." No cleaning or warranty information was delivered by the installers.

For the next five years that Stainmaster was cleaned monthly and a variety of topical treatments (some later not recommended by DuPont) were applied to monitor the effects. In May of 1991, DuPont sent Cy Gantt to look at the carpet. The entry he made in our guest book reads, "The carpet is beautiful. It is difficult to put into words what it means to have Bane-Clene as a friend." Cy brought an artificial tree for our pool as a gift, which we cherish to this day.

In June of 1991, DuPont dispatched Caren McCabe to our home. Her entry in our guest book says, "Thanks for a wonderful two days. It was a pleasure meeting the folks at Bane-Clene and seeing the results of your testing program. It really looks great." Caren wasn't as kind to me as she was with her approval of our carpet tests. She beat me in golf at my club and again the next year when I was her guest at DuPont Country Club.

DuPont has sold the Stainmaster brand name, but twenty-seven years later, that carpet is still here. It has survived all of our early rigorous testing along with normal wear and tear like grandchildren, pizza, and pets. The traffic lane is not apparent, the tip definition is excellent and the fibers demonstrate remarkable resilience. If the new Invista product is half as good as our old Stainmaster it's a winner.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Missed 52nd Anniversary

On the 4th of February in 1962, my thirteen year old son, Bill Bane, Jr., cleaned the offices of Doctor James P. Leeds' in Indianapolis for the princely sum of $10. I usually mention the anniversary of our business on this BLOG site but medical problems got in the way this year.

The little weekly part-time venture was meant to supplement my income and help pay Bill's tuition to an expensive prep school he wanted to attend. Never in my wildest imagination could I have dreamed of the vast number of lives this little business would touch over the years.

Today, our service company has more than 60,000 central Indiana customers in its files and Bane-Clene ships merchandise to more than 9,000 professional carpet, upholstery and janitorial cleaners in 50 states and 15 foreign countries on 5 continents.

And it all began with that little $10 job ...... Is America great, or what!

Monday, January 20, 2014

"Yogi" logic

"This game is 90% mental. The other half is physical." Yogi Berra, the famous Yankee catcher, said that and was talking about baseball, but his famous quote can be used in almost any endeavor. The Mini-Clinic tours back in the '70s and '80s gave me the opportunity to talk with hundreds of people who were thinking about going into the carpet cleaning business.

These folks didn't have a clue about how to advertise to get the business. Worst of all, they had to commit to buying equipment and chemicals before they could even clean their first carpet. It was interesting to watch their faces as I talked about buying equipment, especially when Yogi's logic was applied to the difference between "buying" or being "sold."

To "buy" or to be "sold" may sound like the transaction has the same result but there is a huge difference. If a person is "sold," their chances of success are far less than those of a person who "buys" equipment. After being "sold" there is a period of doubt or buyer's remorse and that short hesitation may prevent the total commitment that it takes to succeed in a new business.

In a new business there is no room for error and just a short period of buyer's remorse may cause delaying an important decision. But someone who "sells" himself that he has made the right decision on equipment has a far greater chance to succeed because he is already committed and uses critical decision time with a clear head and to its fullest advantage.

Friday, January 17, 2014

More on bananas

The expression "Going bananas" is from the effects of bananas on the brain. Bananas contain three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber. A banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy and can help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent illnesses and conditions such as nerves. Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system.

A banana is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around. Bananas might be the reason monkeys are so happy all the time!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Astonishing comparison

During World War II, the U.S. built 22 aircraft carriers, 8 battleships, 48 cruisers, 349 destroyers, 420 destroyer escorts, 203 submarines, 34 million tons of merchant ships, 100,000 fighter planes, 98,000 bombers, 24,000 transport aircraft, 58,000 training aircraft, 93,000 tanks, 257,000 pieces of artillery, 105,000 mortars, 3,000,000 machine guns, and 2,500,000 trucks.

Nearly 20 million military were trained and uniformed, we invaded Africa, Sicily, Italy, won the battle for the Atlantic, planned and executed D-Day, took Europe, defeated Hitler and Mussolini, marched across the Pacific islands, won the Battle of Midway and built two atomic bombs and delivered them to Japan. All of this was accomplished in less than four years.

Obama took about the same amount of time to build a web site for Obamacare and it doesn't even work very well. The hundreds of millions of dollars in tax money that went to these "experts" is the epitome of "Crony Capitalism." Could it be true that the prime contract went to a foreign company owned by a college friend of Ms. O?

Monday, January 13, 2014

Low Fuel

When a car's low-fuel light comes on, there may be as little as one gallon of gasoline left, depending on the car model. Don't keep driving with the light on. In addition to running out of gas, driving with low fuel increases the risk of clogging fuel injectors with sediment that builds up in the bottom of the tank. That can reduce performance and fuel economy. The current cold weather compounds the problems.

Friday, January 10, 2014

"Tell ya what I'm gonna' do!"

"You say you're not satisfied! You say you want more for your money! Tell you what I'm gonna' do!" When pitchmen first shouted that line on TV, a Madison Avenue advertising executive said, "Television will change the advertising business forever." He was right!

Are you ready for more radical change? A New York shopping "expert" on national TV recently suggested shopping at Macy's or Bloomingdale's where someone will courteously demonstrate a product. Then she advised, "Go on-line and find that product at the best price."

J. C. Penney was in the news last year for flubbing their marketing program. They quit offering sales and discounts and tried honest, "everyday low prices." The CEO, Ron Johnson, lost his job, their stock plummeted and they even ran "apology" commercials to shareholders.

FTC rules and standards are long gone. The advertising guy was right 60 years ago about TV. But I doubt he could have foreseen dealing with people where everything has to be virtually free or absurdly discounted. The internet has turned the merchandising world upside down.

Examples: Suits, "Buy one, get three free." Carpet, "70% off." Is the consumer really stupid enough to fall for the old "Mark 'em up so you can mark 'em down" game? The majority of retailers must think so. The sad tale of J. C. Penney more or less confirms it.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

One more comment on Christmas

Listening to a former editor of a big liberal magazine that folded recently describe the reasons for the event was interesting. In the interview he may have divulged the problem that really caused their demise without even knowing it. At one point he said, "The elite of the east and west coasts just weren't enough to keep it going."

That gives you some idea of what he thinks of the rest of us in fly-over country. Since the media in general has the "elite" mind-set it becomes obvious to connect that mentality to the effort to eliminate God from our country. Elitists in congress carry the water for the elite media (not the other way around) and are hard at work to make us a God-less nation.

Meanwhile archaeologists (remember most of them have been educated by an elite academia) are busy at work in the middle east trying to tear down the traditional views of Jesus and the origins of Christianity. Christians are being killed in the middle east just as they were 2,000 years ago. And every year we see the same effort to remove Christ from Christmas.

Monday, January 06, 2014

Measuring ad results

Most people who advertise, especially those who write the check, want measurable results from their advertising dollars and in the near-term. Experience shows that advertising generates some immediate business but most benefits are measured in long-term value. An increased customer base and better profit margins are benefits from a consistent advertising program.

Certain fundamentals determine the success of an ad program. Be sure to target the right market and make sure an ad reaches it. Don't use too many different ads or try to mimic the "clever" ads used by big companies. It takes a budget outside the realm of small business to make them work. Most important, keep an ad program consistent.

Friday, January 03, 2014

Good advice from Cleanfax

Cleanfax published an article recently that goes to the heart of the training program at Bane- Clene Institute. Following are excerpts from the well-written article:

"The U.S. Department of Commerce claims that only one in five businesses will survive to celebrate its fifth anniversary. What is your biggest challenge? Rarely does one hear about a company failing because equipment could not do a good cleaning job. The real challenge is finding customers. Thousands of well-trained companies with state-of-the-art equipment fail each year. The predominant reason for their failure is the inability to create an ongoing flow of profitable work. Being the best carpet cleaner has little value if no one knows you exist. Yet for most start-ups, marketing is only an afterthought.

"Acquiring customers should be important from the beginning, and it will continually demand your attention and resources. Your success depends on your ability to accomplish this through effective marketing. Who or what is your competition? Many excuses have been given for why companies struggle. Some blame “price-shoppers” for forcing down prices. Others point to bait-and-switch companies as the reason for their hard times. National franchises or cheap budget companies are also good scapegoats.

"And when all else fails, blame the economy. These excuses are not the true reasons for failure. To succeed in business, you must know your real competition. If you do not know who or what that is, it will clobber you hard before you know what hit you. Your true competition is time.
Each company starts with a limited amount of cash and credit. Every month you and your business require a certain amount of that money to pay the bills. Your company is successful when it can produce more revenue than these bills consume. Until then, you are using up the limited financial resources with which you started.

"New owners often look around to see what other companies are doing and use them as role models. Unfortunately, according to the statistics, four out of five of your competitors are going to fail. If you follow their lead, you will experience the same failure that awaits them. Be selective about whose advice and habits you follow. You want to imitate businesses that are succeeding. Choose companies that are profitable, growing, and healthy. Look for mentors and teachers who have a proven track record."

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Happy New Year

Best wishes for health, wealth and prosperity in 2014 from all of us at Bane-Clene.
May you be blessed with a Happy New Year.