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Table of Contents

Lead Story

Security and the changing face of the POS

News

Industry Update

PayPal introduces dongle for smart phone payments

Good works make for good TV

Square deals

Retailers looking for larger role in POS mobile

TradeHill takes Dwolla to court

Features

Court affirms viability of merchant's direct claim against Visa

Eugene Rome and Liz Wang
Rome & Associates A.P.C.

Research Rundown

Mobile Payments Conference raises EMV questions

Meet The Expert: Justin Milmeister

ISOMetrics:
Payments industry 2012 salary guide

Selling Prepaid

Prepaid in brief

APPPA to tackle calling card complexities

Big challenge to comply with AML's 'Big Seven'

Views

Micropayments are no small matter

Patti Murphy
ProScribes Inc.

New developments in payments (and winemaking)

Brandes Elitch
CrossCheck Inc.

Education

Street SmartsSM:
A year of learning, writing, sharing

Bill Pirtle
C3ET Credit Card Consortia for Education & Training Inc.

Mining the digital gold rush

Dale S. Laszig
Castles Technology Co. Ltd.

Enhance your security protocols

Nicholas Cucci
Network Merchants Inc.

Pricing surprises: Don't let processors eat your lunch

Adam Atlas
Attorney at Law

Company Profile

2000Charge Inc.

New Products

An EMV/NFC ready POS terminal

Xion 2.5
First American Payment Systems L.P.

Mobilizing agents

CB Mobile Office
Merchant Warehouse

Inspiration

Big results from small talk

Miscellaneous

2012 events Calendar

Departments

Forum

Resource Guide

Datebook

A Bigger Thing

The Green Sheet Online Edition

March 26, 2012  •  Issue 12:03:02

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Meet The Expert: Justin Milmeister

Talk to enough payment professionals and a common thread emerges. As often as not, people happen upon the industry by chance, not design. That goes for Justin Milmeister, founder and President of Southern California-based Elite Merchant Solutions.

Milmeister was a real estate agent for shopping centers when he walked into a business at one of the centers and found the merchant using a knucklebuster. When Milmeister asked the whereabouts of the card reader, the merchant launched into an all-too-common story.

"I'll never forget, he rolled his eyes with tremendous frustration and he proceeded to tell me the machine has not worked for two days and a sales rep has not returned his call," Milmeister said.

From that encounter was borne EMS, an ISO focused above all on customer service. In the early days, some 10 years ago, it was just Milmeister "dialin' and smilin'" in a 200-foot office space rented from his father. With no training in the specialized payments sphere, Milmeister learned everything the hard way, through trial and error, from keying in apps to downloading terminals. It is not a route he recommends.

If he had to do it all over again, Milmeister would have started as a merchant level salesperson for another ISO to learn the ins and outs of the business before opening his own ISO.

But his hands-on, trial-by-fire approach served him well in the long run, as he could now walk a merchant through any problem over the phone, without consulting manuals or seeking help from others, since he's had every possible scenario already imprinted on his brain.

Service is superior

The early struggles paid off for Milmeister. He hired the right people, such as Gloria Soble, to run sales so he could focus on business development. EMS now operates three sales offices in Southern California, ones in Michigan and Kansas, and one soon to open in Florida.

As an ISO, Milmeister enjoys a professional autonomy he believes he would have never realized otherwise.

Integral to Milmeister's success is his dedication. "If you're a nine-to-fiver, it cannot work," he said. The secret to EMS' growth and merchant retention is equally basic but often overlooked - developing relationships.

Milmeister said, "A lot of salespeople call merchants - there's no small talk. They get right down to business. They're just like everybody else. My approach is when I call, I don't go right into the sales.

"I say, 'How was your son's soccer game? How did everything go? Did you have a good time?' That's what you have to do. You create relationships."

After only 18 months of this approach, EMS was inundated with referrals. "I wasn't even having to do much of the calling anymore," Milmeister said. "And that's where it becomes fantastic."

Notice to readers: These are archived articles. Contact names or information may be out of date. We regret any inconvenience.

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Spotlight Innovators:

North American Bancard | USAePay | Super G Capital LLC | Humboldt Merchant Services | Impact Paysystems | Electronic Merchant Systems