Tommy Gibbs
Tommy Gibbs - Leadership and Training
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Tires for Life

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Tires for life:  It’s a terrific program they will give a Dealer an edge over the competition and generate excellent service work. You should check with your attorney and your CPA prior to implementing the “Tires for Life” program to make sure there are no legal or accounting issues you would need to consider. This program will make you a lot more money than programs like “free oil changes.” 

Here are some key points to remember:

  • Make sure that every new car customer signs the form regardless if they intend to take advantage of the program or not.
  • All customers must understand that the “Tires for Life” program is null and void if they do not have ALL their maintenance done at your dealership.
  • We recommend that you add $50.00 to the cost of each new car sold, and set up in an account to cover those customers that you will need to purchase tires for. (CPA should advise you on any tax issues).
  • Replacement tires will be of the same brand or of equal value. Customers can upgrade if they want to pay the difference.
  • When you design your form, if you sell “Road Hazard” coverage, make sure they sign off on it, on your “Tires for Life” form if they turn the coverage down. If you do not make “Road Hazard” coverage available then still have them sign off that “Road Hazard” coverage is not included.
  • From time to time, you might even give a good customer a tire, if they say they did not understand the program. In any of those judgment calls make sure they sign the amendment form.
  • In all cases, only the Dealer Operator should be allowed to approve a “Tires for Life” claim. We would suggest that you keep a claim’s register with some sort of claim number. Require your ASM’s to come to you prior to confirming to the customer that it’s a valid claim. Ask about miles, and if all maintenance work has been done, etc., prior to approving the claim.
  • Always remember to remind your sales department and your customers that this program does not cost the customer anything. It’s a benefit of doing business with your Dealership.

FAQ

 What’s the benefit to the Dealer?

1. Unique position in the marketplace by Advertising Tires for Life
2. A great closing tool for the sales people.  It cost the customer nothing.  Even if they don’t take advantage of the program it’s not an issue.
3. Parts and Service business with increase by about 20% within 6 to 12 months.

What about issues with the customer?

1. Sometimes a customer will come back and say they did not understand the program and that the sales person said such and such.  Not a problem.  At the Dealer or GM’s discretion, depending on how far out they missed their required service, then we would give them the tire or tires and reinstate them using a special form that requires them to sign saying they now understand the program and if they miss another service they are out of the program.
2. When you first kick off the program, you may want to create some exceptions for those people that had purchased a vehicle within the last 90 days.  You can allow them to buy into the program for $100 or free if you choose.  This is at the Dealer or GM’s discretion.  It’s not a big issue as the money will build up in the account very rapidly.

How do you control this program?

1. Whenever a customer appears to have met the requirements of the program, the ASM must present to the Dealer or GM the proper documentation to get an approval number.
2. We do not want the service manager, etc. to have that authority.

Why does the program work?

1. The program improves the parts and service business because the customer wants to stay in the program.
2. The Dealer makes money from all the service work.
3. Some customers will not service with the Dealer because of distance or whatever.
4. Some customers over a period of time will fall out of the program.
5. Because the customer is having all the maintenance performed, including tire rotations and alignments, they do not wear out their tires as often.
6. Many customers will trade or sell their cars before they ever need tires.

What’s the risk and/or contingent liability to the Dealer?

1. The form the customer signs clearly states that should the Dealership ever be sold, etc. the deal is off. Always get competent Legal Advice.
2. The customer paid nothing, thus there is no refund provisions.

How to get started?

1. Engelhardt & Partners Advertising has all the point of sale materials, including the agreement the customer signs as well as the reinstatement form, etc.   Call Dayna Engelhardt at 954-927-2886.
2. It’s simply a matter of buying the paper products and you are in business.






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