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Wednesday, February 4, 2009

656,976 is the Lonliest Number

2-04-09 Apex, NC... Two words, consumer spending... In January, the automakers industry-wide sold 656,976 cars and light trucks (WSJ). That is less than eight million when you multiply by 12. I still think the 12 million total this year will happen... But that is five million less than what we really want as an industry. it is not the business plans or the restructuring. If you breathe and are a GM employee you are being offered a buyout as I write, so that is not it. Getting consumers to start buying big ticket again is challenging and difficult. Making the most of every customer who walks into the store is the easiest part. GETTING THEM TO WALK IN IS THE MISSION. We need buyers. Even with the Senate's help to give tax breaks on loans is not enough.

Spring fleet sales will help, so will a President's sale, but when Toyota is down 34%that tells you no one is out there buying. The imports are my key indicator.

Here is also a big problem. I lease. I have for 15 years. I cannot get a good lease out there. That's a factor. People who are credit challenged (sub prime) simply are not getting bought like in the past. That is a another factor.

The sharp salespeople are busy, but many average players are not that sharp. Here is a fact. People will buy again when money is not so tight. If you are a customer, I have never seen better opportunities. If you are a salesperson be as ethical as you are sharp. Training helps... If you need me I am there to help you get better.

Happy selling!

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