Success Story





LOCATION: Clifton, Ga



Located in Marietta, GA, J.R. Electrical is a premier contractor for residential and commercial electrical services in the Atlanta Metro area. Ownership desired to move away from general contractor work with its competitive bid structure and lower margins.

J.R. Electrical approached Ascent Consulting and outlined their goals. Work that would result in:

  • Higher profit margins
  • Quicker payment
  • Less complexity with a lower cost to execute
  • Working directly for owners and end users


After analyzing and researching the situation, Ascent Consulting recommended that J.R. Electrical enter an entirely new market sector for the company – the LED Retrofit market. Benefits included:

  • Working directly with owners, not general contractors
  • Offering something new and of great value to customers
  • Reduced materials cost (replacement fixtures only)
  • Reduced cost of installation labor (less complex work)
  • Offering ROI to customers:

Ascent identified local LED fixture suppliers, introduced J.R. to several vendors, and set them up with a company that had developed a widely-used LED Retrofit estimating software.


A massive and complex task now awaited J.R. Electrical and Ascent Consulting: building a completely new business sector for the company.


STEP 1: Revise Website

Ascent revised the company website, adding a new LED Retrofit section with its own calls to action, value propositions, contact points and dramatic before-and-after photos.

STEP 2: Set up a toll-free virtual number to JR’s office

This number was only used on LED campaign marketing materials to gauge response to these materials.

STEP 3: Identify Customer Channels

Ascent identified three types of businesses in the Metro Atlanta area where LED Retrofit lighting would be attractive to owners/customers.

Multi-Family Properties – apartments and condos with parking structures and parking lots
Commercial Properties – office buildings, medical offices and office parks
Automobile Dealerships – parking lots, showrooms and offices

STEP 4: Listening to His Team

Reach out to Customer Channels via email, direct mail and association memberships.

Multi-Family Properties

  • Ascent identified the top 500 properties in Metro Atlanta, used data mining resources to acquire contact information for every property and developed digital email and direct mail campaigns
  • Designed a digital email campaign emphasizing the value propositions and benefits of LED lighting
  • Designed three rounds of direct mail focused on LED value, Georgia Power Co. rebates and projected energy savings
  • Digital email and direct mail programs were designed to be cost-effective, identify interested parties, produce leads and lead to new opportunities

Commercial Properties

  • Ascent signed up JR Electrical with three associations – Building Owners and Operators Association (BOMA), Property Managers Association (PMA) and the Atlanta Apartments Association (AAA). This produced a list of 1,000+ local contacts.
  • Digital email and direct mail campaigns focused on parking garages and commercial office properties, which emphasized LED value propositions and provided cost saving analyses.

Automobile Dealerships:

  • Ascent assembled a list of all auto dealerships in Metro Atlanta and used data mining resources to acquire the names and contact information for the General Managers.
  • Designed digital email and direct mail campaigns emphasizing LED value propositions for dealerships.

STEP 5: Analytics

Ascent compiled analytics from all campaigns to report who was opening, reading and interacting with the emails and online content. These registered as “warm leads,” which were passed on to J.R. for sales calls and follow-up. By adding website analytics tracking to the LED section of the website, Ascent and JR Electrical could see who was visiting the website, where they were coming from (referral source) and how long they were on the site. These also registered as “warm leads,” for JR Electrical.

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Ascent Consulting has created an entirely new market sector for us, which has led to new opportunities and sales. This new division is creating revenue that did not previously exist for J.R. Electrical. Ascent is an exceptionally creative and accommodating partner, and it is a pleasure to work with them.


Ascent Consulting developed a complete marketing strategy and multi-faceted campaign to move a client with an existing brand into a new market sector. We identified a new opportunity, developed the strategy, researched target markets, assembled potential client lists, created online, digital and print marketing materials, and executed and actively managed the campaigns.

Jack Austin

Marketing Coordinator

Jack is a marketing and communications professional who joins Ascent following a three-year stint in the healthcare staffing industry. 


Working as a member of the Ascent marketing team, Jack performs internal marketing automation tasks, analyzes web and marketing metrics, and creates multimedia content to highlight recent success stories with Ascent clients.


Born and raised in the Metro Atlanta area, Jack graduated from the University of Georgia in 2019 with a B.A. in Journalism and a certificate in Sports Media. He then went on to earn an M.B.A. from Georgia State University in December 2022, concentrating in the areas of marketing and business analytics.

Rhonda Hudson

Construction Accountant

Rhonda has three decades of diverse Controller experience that spans various aspects of construction, including manufacturing, mechanical, electrical, flooring, and residential building contracting. Rhonda has an Associate’s Degree in Accounting and has consistently demonstrated expertise in optimizing operational efficiencies, tracking financial performance, conducting annual audits, and building a process around the monthly close process.

In addition to her accounting work, Rhonda has a broad proficiency in a wide range of accounting software platforms and has a knack for adapting to new technologies swiftly. She has facilitated smooth transitions during software migrations and provided system training to numerous companies.

Bridgit Lawhead

Marketing Project Manager

Bridgit is a Marketing Project Manager, bringing a proven track record of managing accounts and marketing for diverse industries. Prior to joining Ascent Consulting, she was a Marketing Strategist for a small marketing agency that focused on transforming financial advisors’ businesses. Working with Marketing, Sales, and Upper Management to ensure strategic performance and management of tasks to appropriate team members, Bridgit helps manage the planning, development, design, execution, monitoring, and completion of all of our client marketing projects. 
Bridgit holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Speech Communication, with an emphasis in Public Relations from Valdosta State University. 

Kellie Barber

Office Manager

With a career spanning over 25 years in both the public and private sectors, Kellie stands as a seasoned professional and a valuable asset to our Ascent team. A dedicated, results-driven individual, Kellie brings a wealth of experience to the organization.

She is no stranger to the world of construction and has a comprehensive understanding from both the project management and engineering perspective.  Kellie has a keen eye for detail and a commitment to delivering excellence.

Nazia Hasnain

Project Coordinator

Nazia joined Ascent in the role of a project coordinator. Before joining Ascent, she served as a Web Project Coordinator.

With a rich background of 5 years of experience in the digital realm, she has been at the forefront of coordinating and managing web projects from concept to launch. With a blend of technical expertise and project management skills, she is dedicated to contributing to the success of diverse projects to ensure that projects not only meet but exceed expectations.

Gary Johnson


Gary grew up working summers from 7th grade through graduating college for a large plumbing and process piping contractor in Mobile, AL. After graduating from Auburn University with a BS in Computer Engineering, Gary spent the next 16 years working in the industrial automation industry with The Foxboro Company and the ERP software solutions space with JD Edwards.  

The 7 years with JD Edwards were primarily focused on the construction business, providing ERP software solutions to both large general contractors and large homebuilders. In 2003 Gary acquired a small residential plumbing contracting business in Pace, FL.  Over the next 17 years, Gary grew this business to three physical locations and more than 130 employees, performing commercial and residential plumbing projects in Florida, Alabama and Mississippi. 

In 2020, Gary sold the business and continued to work for the company on a consulting basis for 2 more years. The unusual background, including providing construction industry ERP software solutions as well as nearly 20 years acquiring, growing, operating and ultimately selling a large subcontracting business, gives Gary a unique perspective on the operations of a construction company. Gary holds master plumbing and gas fitter licenses in Florida, Alabama and Mississippi.

Stephen Crawford

Junior Consultant

Stephen possesses nearly a decade of extensive financial, operational, and leadership expertise spanning diverse professional sectors, primarily centered on construction, development, and construction management. Before joining Ascent Consulting, he spent five years as a CPA at Ernst & Young. He then made significant contributions to an electrical construction company in an internal consulting capacity. Subsequently, he pursued multiple freelance roles, including a pivotal position as a Fractional Chief Transformation Officer (CTO).

Throughout his career, Stephen adeptly guided companies through various rapid growth phases, overseeing crucial financial matters, driving strategic growth initiatives, and managing back-office functions. He holds a BBA in Accounting and a Master of Accountancy from The University of Georgia.

Zachary Hickman

Project Coordinator

Zachary brings 10+ years of project management experience as an owners representative for clients and from the developer side of the business.

He began his career as an assistant project manager with a masonry subcontractor in Florida, before moving to Atlanta.

Daphene Koch


Daphene’s construction experience began working in her family’s mechanical construction company.

Next, she worked for a large EPC firm on projects in Texas and Malaysia. With over 15 years of construction industry experience on commercial and industrial projects. Her roles have included project manager, safety manager, construction services leader, and pipefitters helper.

While a professor at Purdue University in the School of Construction Management, she worked as a consultant to help construction companies improve processes, project management, workforce development to name a few. She has a BS, MS, and PhD from Purdue University and resides in Indiana.

Hakeem Slaughter

Marketing Coordinator

Hakeem is a brand designer with over 10 years of experience. He has been a freelancer for about 9 years working with many different clients and industries under the following subjects: brand design, graphic design, web design, and social media marketing.


During that time freelancing, he also worked at many companies as a graphic and web designer. As well as taught disciplines of Art and Design to students varying from middle school age to college. As mentioned, he has a “jack of all trades” range but is quite proficient at WordPress and uses that knowledge to design cutting edge websites!


Hakeem specializes in branding, design, and creativity and is bringing his talents, skills, and passion to take Ascent Consulting to a new level!

Aimee Collier

Project Coordinator

Aimee joins Ascent as a Project Coordinator supporting our Senior and Procore Consultants. With construction industry experience both in-field and back-of-house (ranging from project site coordination to contract management to software administration), she brings a holistic perspective of the day-to-day challenges faced by our clients. Her varied professional roles include software implementation and training, technical content creation and design, and coordinating across teams to bring projects to successful completion. She is excited to direct her passion for people and processes toward our customers.