Dealernews Blogs

Wednesday, September 10 2014

SANTA FE SPRINGS, Calif. – During a recent trip to the Dealernews offices in Santa Monica, Calif., I stopped into Scorpion Sports headquarters in nearby Santa Fe Springs. National Sales Manager Jayson Wickenkamp gave me a tour of the place, and along the way I got to see some of the new products coming out in 2015.

Monday, September 08 2014

“I WANT YOU TO THINK of this department as your own business,” Tommy Hannum said, as he opened the door to the service department. A year or two older than me, he was a third-generation Harley-Davidson dealer, and I was just getting started in the business. “Do what you think is best,” he said. “We’re counting on you.”

Wednesday, September 03 2014

I recently had the opportunity to ride Suzuki’s new Burgman 200 scooter around the San Diego area, and I came away impressed. Not only did the machine easily do all the things you expect a scooter to do well — carry stuff, be light and easy to ride — it also shined when pushed outside of its comfort zone.

Tuesday, August 26 2014

All right, maybe not. But 1985 has definitely regurgitated its neon hues and funky color blocking all over the industry’s gear and apparel.

Neon never really went away in our world, thanks to products that promoted high visibility for riders. Not that long ago, though, those products were primarily limited to safety vests and small neon touches built into gear.

Thursday, August 21 2014

LET’S HOPE you’re not the average salesperson. Because, according to The Sales Board Inc.’s study of more than 16,000 customers and 300 salespeople in 25 industries, here are three things average salespeople do:

Thursday, August 21 2014

I feel rich.

Thursday, August 21 2014

I was recently attending a dealer 20 group meeting where the homework assignment had been to call the service and sales department for the dealer on the roster below them. Dealers came to the front of the room, hooked their cell phones to a speaker and played their mystery shops for the group in real time.

Thursday, August 21 2014

Dear Grandma and Grandpa,

Monday, August 04 2014

Former MotoGP racer Ben Spies was at a recent Helmet House event, representing long-time sponsor, HJC helmets. I was interested in asking him if he planned a return to racing, and his take on the current state and future of U.S. road racing.

Friday, August 01 2014

What a difference a year makes.

We knew last weekend would be an interesting one, as it was the first coming-out party for Tucker Rocky since it had merged with MAG and, separately (or not), initiated wholesale organizational changes, re-divvied its market segments, elevated veterans like Charlie Hadayia and bought on market experts like Phil Davy. Whether the dealers went to Texas or not in late July, there was going to be a guaranteed buzz on the show floor.

Thursday, July 17 2014

‘Tis the season for new motorcycle releases and the accessories that accompany them. In that regard it doesn’t hurt to ask ourselves, “What do my customers expect me to know about the new products we sell?” I bet your answer to that is a somewhat sarcastic “Every freakin’ thing!” That’s impossible, so what’s reasonable and how should we prepare for the work and questions ahead?

Thursday, July 17 2014

When we first started Dealership University in 2004, before the creation of Powersports Marketing, we focused exclusively on training dealers in all aspects of operations. One of the most popular areas dealers wanted to improve was the finance and insurance department, labeled “the most profitable square footage in the dealership.”

I worked with many dealers who averaged less than $100 per unit sold in backend profit. This was a sore spot for them, and it was also a passion for me. Dealers can’t afford to be indifferent about this profit center.

Thursday, July 17 2014

When I started riding 50 years ago I never thought much, if at all, about the gender of other motorcyclists. I just assumed they were men. In the 1980s, when I began my stint as Kawasaki’s director of marketing, I began to see more women riding and participating in events across the country. Still, marketing to women as a discrete segment had never occurred to me.

Monday, July 14 2014

Dear Grandma & Grandpa,

I hope y’all are good up there in Heaven. We are doing pretty dang good down here in Dallas. I have some exciting news to share with y’all! Susan and I bought an old, historic drug store/soda fountain in our hometown of Irving, Texas.

Monday, June 16 2014

With this month being the kickoff to the Dealernews 50th anniversary in 2015, I felt it fitting to interview Jack Stubbs, one of the owners at Buddy Stubbs Harley-Davidson in Arizona. After all, both Dealernews and Buddy Stubbs H-D share a 50th anniversary within months of each other.