Retail

Dealers See the Importance of Digital Marketing at the SEMA Show

Posted on November 1, 2017

The "Tires at 2: Successful Tire Dealers Share Their Secrets" seminar at the 2017 Global Tire Expo lived up to its name on Oct. 31. Before a big crowd, the two tire dealers on stage were open about how they run their businesses.

Mark Rhodes, president of Plaza Tire Service Inc. in Cape Girardeau, Mo., and Craig Wortham, general manager of Alyeska Tire in Anchorage, Alaska, were on the hot seat. The moderator was Kevin Rohlwing, senior vice president of training for the Tire Industry Association.

One of the topics of interest was the importance of collecting e-mails and phone numbers from your customers. Rhodes said his 62-store operation has close to 150,000 emails, which is a cost-effective way to keep in touch with his customers. The result? Thanks to emails and text reminders, Plaza Tire stores see each customer "at least one more time a year."

Rhodes said he also gets "massive" results from direct mail.

Wortham's eight stores have collected more than 10,000 emails with a smaller customer base, but that doesn't lessen their importance. That kind of communication, along with texting, "is the wave of the future," he said. "If you are not doing it, you are opening yourself up to your competition."

When questioned about how much price competition he can have in Alaska, Wortham said "I have to be competitive, especially against online sales." 

Both independent dealerships also believe in online ratings and reviews. Rhodes said speed of service is what customers mention and rate the company on most often. "You can do something really fast and charge more for it."

The Global Tire Expo, part of the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) Show, will run through Friday, Nov. 3, at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Related Topics: 2017 Global Tire Expo, 2017 SEMA Show, Alyeska Tire, Craig Wortham, Kevin Rohlwing, Mark Rhodes, Plaza Tire Service, TIA

Comments ( 1 )
  • Mark Anderson

     | about 4 months ago

    Great article. I agree so much that marketing is such an important strategy to ensure the growth of your businesses. While our current customers should always be your main priority, even small marketing efforts can help you expand your base. Little efforts like social media posts and post card mail campaigns can not only engage existing consumers but spread the word to new potential customers. The challenge we have struggled with is the ongoing transition from mail campaigns to email\texting with a new generation of customers. Again, great topic. -Mark Anderson, Team Torque

More Stories
News Goodyear Will Report Fourth Quarter Results on Feb. 8

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. will report fourth quarter 2017 financial results on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018. An investor conference call will be held at 8:30 a.m.

News Former Ford CEO Mark Fields Has Joined ATD's Board of Directors

American Tire Distributors Inc. (ATD) has named former Ford Motor Co. CEO Mark Fields to its board of directors.

More than 100 international companies have signed on to exhibit at Tyrexpo Africa in April.
News Plan Now to Attend Tyrexpo Africa 2018

Tyrexpo Africa will take place April 10-12, 2018, at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa.

News Monro Has Bought 35 Tire Stores in the Last 10 Months

The strategy at Monro Inc. is to keep the foot on the gas when it comes to acquisitions. And that's evident already in 2018, with the purchase of three retail stores from Valley Tire Co. Inc. in Pennsylvania, plus an agreement to complete another deal with seven stores before the end of March.  

News Monro Records Drops in Both Net Sales and Income

Net sales dropped 0.9% and net income fell 34% at Monro Inc. for the three-month period ending Dec. 23, 2017. Lower same-store sales were to blame for the decreases.  

News Hankook Names Jim Sicking to Lead Replacement Tire Sales in the U.S.

Hankook Tire America Corp. has named Jim Sicking senior director of PCLT (passenger car light truck) sales. In his new role, Sicking will oversee all replacement tire sales at the company.

Hankook Kinergy GT tires are OE on the 2018 Toyota Camry.
News OE Partnerships Will Help Hankook 'Become a Top-Tier Brand'

Hankook Tire Co. Ltd. plans to continue expanding its original equipment relationships to include some of the nation’s leading automotive brands.

News Brake Parts Expands Coverage of Rotors and Calipers With ‘Rust Prevention Technology’

Brake Parts Inc. has added 67 rotor part numbers and 72 caliper part numbers to Raybestos RPT Rust Prevention Technology product lines.

Members of the ZC Rubber team are pictured at the company's 2018 dealer conference.
News ZC Rubber Hosts Dealers in Bangkok

Zhongce Rubber Group Co Ltd. (ZC Rubber) discussed plans to improve market share with dealers attending its 2018 distributor conference in Bangkok on Jan. 28.

Tom Eisenberg says he thinks his grandfather would shed a tear or two if he saw the mural, and "say it's great and keep moving. He was not that sentimental about things. He was a U.S. Marine."
News West Coast Tire Pays Tribute to Its Founder Bob Mirman

After Bob Mirman, the founder of West Coast Tire and Service Inc., died in October, his grandson wanted to find a way to honor the man who led him into the tire business. So he put a customer — an artist — to work on a 30-foot mural.  

Tomoshige "Tomo" Mizutani took over as CEO and president of Toyo Tire North America OE Sales LLC on Jan. 1.
News Toyo Announces More Organizational and Assignment Changes

Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. has made changes to its corporate structure, continuing its goal of revising its organizational structure by operational function "with the intention of reinforcing managment through coordination among each headquarter," and the corporate functions associated with them.

News PitStop's 318 Stores Join Point S Germany

PitStop, a chain of 318 tire and auto service stores in Germany, has joined Point S Germany. The merger gives Point S 870 retail locations throughout Germany.  

Goodyear says the Eagle Enforcer All Weather tire will be available in sizes 265/60R17, 225/60R18 and 245/55R18.
News Goodyear Designs New Pursuit Tire for Year-Round Use

The new Eagle Enforcer All Weather police tire from Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. is designed to provide year-round performance for law enforcement fleets.

News Former MTD Editor Steve LaFerre Dies at 77

Stephen Douglas LaFerre, one of only nine editors in the 99-year history of Modern Tire Dealer, has died. He was 77.

Mike Thomas (center) and Cole Fraser (right) from Black's Tire Service Inc. look over medium truck tires with Goodyear's Steve Boone, regional manager-fleet sales. Mike is manager of the Black's Tire store in Raleigh, N.C., and Cole is manager of the store in Fayetteville, N.C. 
Photo Photos: People and Products at the 2018 Goodyear Dealer Meeting

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. discussed industry trends, corporate strategy and new products with dealers at its 2018 Customer Conference. See who we saw and the products on display in Nashville, Tenn., Jan. 25 through 28.

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from MTD delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the tire industry and don't miss a thing!