Dealernews Blogs

Wednesday, February 25 2015

LAST SATURDAY I found myself in a second-row seat for the first of Atlanta’s two Supercross rounds this season. I was sitting in the industry section, which is, just like it sounds—reserved for those of us who work in the powersports industry.Usually, my husband and I (and our motley gang of ex-roadracer friends) have seats out in the crowd, so this was a bit different for us. (Many thanks to Ted at The Privateer Journey for Saturday’s seating arrangements.)

Monday, February 23 2015

Dear Grandma and Grandpa,

I hope y'all are doing good up there in Heaven. We are fine down here in Dallas. Ya know, Grandpa, it’s no secret that the motorcycle business has not been great for the last seven years because of the crummy economy, but every year it seems to get a little better, and 2015 has started off really good.

Wednesday, February 18 2015


There are moments of opportunity in customer interactions. One is when the buyer says, “No.” Another is when he or she says, “Thank you.” And yet another is when a customer says exactly what you want to hear: “Yes.”

We plan for objections and we plan for resistance, but we often don’t plan for success. That’s a big mistake.

What follows are five do’s and five don’ts regarding how to respond in significant moments of ‘yes.’ Let’s start with what not to do.  

Don’t do this...

Wednesday, February 18 2015

WE TALK A LOT about how we’re going to attract new, younger buyers into the lifestyle/sport. Changes in marketing, advertising, even new vehicle and product development are underway to get the attention and eventual loyalty of the 18-34 customer.

Wednesday, February 18 2015

We spend a lot of time talking with dealers about their buying base—a two-part data strategy that’s made up from 1) your past customers and 2) your conquest prospects.

Wednesday, February 18 2015

Jan. 15 was National Mentor Day in National Mentoring Month, according to a recent proclamation by President Barack Obama. The importance of recognizing, rewarding and cultivating mentors for entry-level parts and service personnel cannot be overstated. My mentors were largely responsible for the personal character and business skills I exhibit today.

Tuesday, February 17 2015

THROWING SPAGHETTI AGAINST A WALL and seeing what sticks. So go many an advertising campaign, especially for those who have launched social media sites in the last few years. Your Facebook page probably has a sizeable percentage of “likes” from people who have no intention of ever doing business with you—c’mon, did you actually think that young gal in Korea striking that pouty pose was actually going to make a purchase someday?

Monday, February 09 2015

There’s a lot of buzz about the Polaris Slingshot – but several states have refused to license it. In Texas, it’s not a motorcycle because it doesn’t have a “saddle” type of seat, one of several nits picked with it.

Tuesday, February 03 2015

Dear Grandma and Grandpa,

I hope y’all are well up there in Heaven. We are doing fine down here in Big D. The New Year is here and I couldn’t be happier about it. I don’t want to say that 2014 sucked, but I’ll just gladly bid "AMF" to it. So how does it work in Heaven, do y’all have a calendar as we know it here on Earth? What about weather? Does the weather change up there, or is every day nice just like San Diego and Fort Worth? Well I guess I’ll find out some day for myself…I hope, but not too soon.

Friday, January 30 2015

JUST A FEW MONTHS AGO I was reading and hearing about research which indicated that the millennial generation (those between the ages of 18-34) had much less interest in getting a driver’s license, driving or car ownership than previous generations. This was based presumably on the fact that something like 28 percent of millennials hadn’t bothered to get a license to drive. It was conceded that by their early 30s, millennials had caught up with previous generations.

Wednesday, January 28 2015

LET'S TAKE A TRIP back in time to the days when I was a fresh-faced, wide-eyed journalist. I was on my first assignment for Roadracing World magazine, and I was covering an AMA Pro Racing test session at Road Atlanta.

I was working for a new employer, but I was no novice to the motorcycle industry or racing. I’d been riding since I was 12 years old, I grew up around motorsports and I’d been on the racetrack myself.

Friday, January 23 2015

GETTING FIT IS A PROCESS, not an event. Doesn’t it sound ridiculous to say, I went to the gym and worked out once, so now I’m in shape?”

Yet all too often I see dealers making this same mistake with their training and marketing. Having a one-and-done sales meeting or a single marketing event and expecting continuous improvement is just as silly as eating fruits and vegetables one day and expecting to lose 15 pounds.

Friday, January 23 2015

AS THE LATE INDUSTRY GURU, Don Brown, used to point out, the key to forecasting a growing motorcycle industry can be predicted by the number of new housing starts in a given year.

The numbers for 2014 are in, and they show the strongest growth in single family housing since 2008, climaxing in December at 4.4 percent growth over November’s figures and 5.3 percent over December 2013, according to figures released by the U.S. Census Bureau on Wednesday.

Thursday, January 22 2015

EMAIL MESSAGES don’t sell motorcycles. Neither do phone calls. Face-to-face interactions sell motorcycles.

Oh sure, we all know one guy who one time sold one customer with just one email message. But you can’t build a career on exceptions. What you can do is accsellerate your sales by using a concept I call the Principle of Nudge--gently but confidently moving customers through a series of small agreements.

Thursday, January 22 2015

There’s a saying I created a while back that relates to how we communicate with our customers, prioritize their needs and use their feedback to improve our business: “Treat all customers well --treat your best customers the best.” In your shop I’ll bet you can name the best and worst customers you’ve done business with over the last couple of years. Chances are good that you’ve bent over backwards to appease the “squeaky wheels” who criticize and complain about every little issue.