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Eighty-five percent of automotive aftermarket purchases begin with consumers doing research online.
April 15, 2014

Bring your ‘AA’ game: UHP buyers walk in more than ready for you  

I conducted a survey this week, a 1-to-10 marketing survey, to better understand the ultra-high performance tire and wheel buyer. I spoke with management and frontline sales staff at one of Southern California’s leading UHP retailers.

Tags: 2014 Performance Handbook, Counter intelligence, Custom wheels, Sales, UHP tires, Wayne Williams

About 40% of business at Alpio Barbara’s California dealership is UHP. He advises getting the
April 15, 2014

Shopping for UHP service equipment? Three dealers share some tips  

Driver expectations for a firmer, sportier and more responsive feel are helping to boost sales of ultra-high performance tires. But maximizing opportunities to profit from consumer demand for shorter sidewalls requires investments in equipment for servicing UHP tire and wheel assemblies.

Tags: 2014 Performance Handbook, Alpio Barbara, Jim Enger, Tripp Lee, UHP tire service

Defining touring tires
April 15, 2014

Defining touring tires  

When it comes to designing touring tires, auto manufacturers drive the trends. But what is a touring tire, exactly? Tire manufacturers have differing points of view on categorizing this evolving tire segment.

Tags: 2014 Performance Handbook, Performance Touring Tires, Touring tires

The evolution of performance
April 15, 2014

The evolution of performance  Cover Story

The first performance tire, circa 3500 B.C, was a 185/75G14. The “G” stood for granite. Since then, it has gone through a seemingly endless number of design changes to make it perform better. Stone became wood. Spokes lightened the load and allowed the Romans to not only drive their chariots faster, but also meet CAFE regulations.

Tags: 2014 Performance Handbook, Performance tires, UHP tires, Ultra-high performance tires

At your tire dealership, the hardest thing to change is your mind
March 28, 2014

At your tire dealership, the hardest thing to change is your mind  

We all know there is a difference between changing your mind and making a change. Usually it’s easy to change your mind after you discover new or additional information about a subject or matter.

Tags: Counter intelligence, Sales training, Wayne Williams

Potholes annually cause an estimated $4.8 billion of damage to U.S. vehicles.
March 28, 2014

Are you offering a ‘pothole special’?  

Ah, the lowly pothole. There are millions of them, many more this year due to the harsh winter in many parts of the United States.

Tags: AAA, American Automobile Association, Car Care Council, Lori L. Mavrigian, Pothole special

The newest addition to the Bridgestone Blizzak line is the WS80.
March 27, 2014

Will chart-topping snowfalls mean record winter tire sales?  Cover Story

Winter tire shipments fell from 5.3 million units in 2012 to 4.6 million units in 2013, a 13.2% drop, according to Modern Tire Dealer statistics. The decline was sharper the prior year when winter tire shipments fell 14.5% from 2011’s 6.2 million units. But several tire manufacturers and marketers believe this year’s relentless, often record-breaking winter storms will help push winter tire sales upward in the coming season.

Tags: Ann Neal, Apollo Vredestein, Bridgestone Americas, Continental Tire the Americas LLC, Federal Corp., Giti Tire (USA) Ltd., Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., Hercules Tire & Rubber Co., Michelin North America Inc., Nexen Tire America Inc., Nokian Tyres Inc., Pirelli Tire, Snow tires, Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp., Winter Tires, Yokohama Tire Corp.

Avoiding certain sales attitudes
February 11, 2014

Avoiding certain sales attitudes  

One of my biggest sales challenges is overcoming my impatience. I have a naturally busy mind, and doing two things at once generates enthusiasm and energy for me. As a result, I easily fall into the trap of poor listening and over-anticipating people’s needs or questions, and also filling in the blanks for people.

Tags: Counter intelligence, Wayne Williams

Comments(1)

Are you breaking the law?
February 11, 2014

Are you breaking the law?  

It would be so simple to do business without all of the rules, regulations and general interference from the government. Every day, you face problems in your business — increase sales, decrease expenses, manage employees, etc. — so how can anyone keep up with the ever-changing regulations? And, even more important, how do know that you comply?

Tags: 20 Groups, Dealer Strategic Planning Inc., Pat Brown, Twenty Group, Wages

High and UHP tire number crunching
February 10, 2014

High and UHP tire number crunching  Cover Story

You would be hard-pressed to find a segment of the automotive aftermarket that has had the dramatic, sustained growth of ultra-high performance tires. Would you believe a 947% increase in the United States over the last 20 years?

Tags: High Performance Tires, Market share, Ultra-high performance tires

Knowing what you want and need before you choose a new computer software system makes the buying
February 10, 2014

6 key considerations before switching software  

You most likely have some type of point-of-sale software system today, and it’s probably working OK for you. However, for a variety of reasons, you may be considering a chang

Tags: Computer software, Computers, Software, Wayne Croswell

KYB says its shocks and struts are engineered to work properly with ESC-equipped vehicles.
February 10, 2014

How electronic stability control can improve ride control sales  

Electronic stability control (ESC) is nothing new. Introduced as optional equipment on luxury cars in the mid-1990s, it’s been standard on light-duty truck and passenger vehicles since 2012. What may be new to tire dealers is a value proposition built around helping motorists understand that crash avoidance systems like ESC depend on ride control components to function effectively.

Tags: Electronic stability control, ESC, Monroe, Tenneco Inc.

‘We made drastic upgrades to our bead loosening system to ensure that we maintain the lifespan
February 10, 2014

UHP tires and your service bays:  

Up to 2009, drivers who wanted to dress up their rides often chose expensive tire fitments greater than 22 inches in size. When the economy slowed, the trend became more UHP fitments on smaller vehicles. “UHP fitments have continued to grow, but we’ve seen the predominant size range shift from 22-plus to the 16- to 20-inch range,” says Kevin Keefe, vice president of marketing for Hennessy Industries Inc.

Tags: Bosch Automotive Service Solutions, Cemb USA/BL Systems Inc., Hennessy Industries Inc., Hunter Engineering Co., Ravaglioli SpA, Tire service

Bosch says the TCE4435 THP Tire Changer, demonstrated here by Bosch product specialist Jim
February 4, 2014

AAPEX represents $477 billion  

What can repair shops expect consumers to spend on automotive products and services in 2014?

Tags: AAPEX, Bosch, Bosch Automotive Service Solutions, Epicor Software Corp., Ken-Tool, Launch Tech, Mageti Marelli, Mitchell 1, Mopar, Permatex, Search Automotive Technologies LLC

Tire industry analyst Nick Mitchell also authors our monthly Your Marketplace column.
February 4, 2014

Tire dealer watch list for 2014  

While tire prices remained calm, there were enough elements stirring the waters to keep the tire industry rocking in 2013.

Tags: Analysis, Auto service, Facts Issue, MTD Facts Issue, Nick Mitchell, Northcoast Research Holdings

The Maxxis Escapade CUV was designed for vehicles like the 2014 Acura MDX.
January 6, 2014

Global Tire Expo/SEMA Show  

It just keeps on growing. The number of exhibitors for the tire industry’s biggest event, the 2013 Global Tire Expo (GTE) — Powered by the Tire Industry Association (TIA), had already exceeded the 2012 total months before the event took place Nov. 5-8 in Las Vegas.

Tags: Bob Ulrich, Dan Hennelly, Diane Hennelly, Greg Smith, SEMA, SEMA Show, SEMA Show 2013

Outside cold calling
January 3, 2014

Outside cold calling  

I've been saving this article for the winter: COLD CALLING. Just trying to be seasonal. This month’s topic is making outside cold calls to businesses in your local surrounding marketing areas.

Tags: Cold Calling, Counter intelligence, Wayne Williams

Extending customer ‘life cycles’
November 4, 2013

Extending customer ‘life cycles’  

Retaining existing customers adds greater long-term profitability, but many tire and auto service firms pay too little attention to extending customer life cycles. Firms invest plenty of marketing dollars to gain new customers, yet ignore many of the little things that turn customers off once they come through the door.

Tags: Customer relations, customer service, Richard Morgan

Comments(1)

‘Just the facts, ma’am’
November 4, 2013

‘Just the facts, ma’am’  

Do you remember who made famous the saying, “Just the facts, ma’am”? It was Sgt. Joe Friday of the television show “Dragnet,” played by Jack Webb.

Tags: Auto service, CARFAX, Internet Marketing, Internet selling, Wayne Croswell

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