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Obviously in a new car franchise you have less control as your inventory is dictated a great deal by the OEM but even they somewhat dictate your allocation by marketing. In our Toyota store here in Houston that I ran in the 90’s GST would give us our allocation based on our “Rolling 90” the average number of vehicles we sold in a 30 day period for the last 90 days. In a sense you could say they were dictating what we stocked by Marketing.
During the worst days of GM’s VOMS program at our Chevrolet store we fought to get the best vehicles including the Avalanche a very popular vehicle from 99 – 2001 Why? They sold better “Marketing”.
In a sense one could say and I will say it, what you stock has ALWAYS been a “Marketing Decision”.
Back then I would line up Chevrolet and Ford Trucks on the front line or our Toyota store, this would just twist our GST reps head, but my point then was the same then as it is now.
“I have huge sign that says I sell Toyota’s and people know that what they don’t know is what else I have and there are a lot of potential customers driving by our store that are going to buy a Chevy or Ford pickup and I want them to know we are a choice for them.” –
I made it a point to stock that “Product” on our Toyota lot and “Place” it where I did: IE “A Marketing Decision”.
In used cars you are 100% in control of what you stock (one of the reasons why I love that business) and if you are doing that right you are basing what you stock on marketing decisions “What Sells” NOT what you can buy cheap!
THE VERY FIRST QUESTON YOU SHOULD BE ASKING YOURSELF WHEN YOU GO TO BUY OR TRADE FOR A USED CAR – “HOW AM I GOING TO GET OUT OF THIS USED CAR?” THAT IS A MARKETING DECISION
The “Book” really no longer has any value from a purchase perspective; the only thing that does have value is what cars are selling now and how much you can get for it. If you have a good recon dept. a great sales process and great marketing you can pay more for a car than the other guy because you can sell it for more and you can get out of it faster. This was true 20+ years ago when I started in the car business and its true today, the only difference you have better tools and information to make those decisions but make no mistake if you are doing it right you are making them based on marketing.
Those are my thoughts what say you?
Larry Bruce @pcmguy