Why It’s Time For A Change In Thinking!

What can manufacturers do to improve the growth of the Recreational Products Industry? In my opinion, too much has been left up to you, the dealer, to strengthen and grow the industry. I believe that manufacturers have always had a challenge in supporting the industry the way they should. So it is time for a change in thinking. Why?  It’s very simple. Read More.

The whole concept of manufacturer participation came to mind when I read an article recently about how large corporations have lost their ability to innovate. I think the recession has created a fear in these corporations - and in particular Recreational Products Manufactures – that translates into just holding on to their position in the market place.

Research and development and many of the lucrative marketing programs were shelved in favour of cutting costs. Understandable perhaps, given the hand we were dealt by the recession.

But despite the impact of the recession I believe that manufacturers have always had a challenge in supporting the industry they way they should.

The majority of the industry is non-exclusive, which presents a unique problem. If you’re a dealer carrying multiple lines, how can one manufacturer respond to even your basic needs? 

In the Auto industry, dealers are provided with operating systems to manage their business operations and accounting. They analyze dealer financial data and conduct monthly group meetings to promote profitability.

They review financial statistics to provide dealers with achievable industry targets and, of course, develop marketing strategies to promote the sale of their automobiles.

Motorsport and Marine dealers are left to do this on their own. They have to source a third party operating system, develop their own local marketing and are left to wonder what the rest of the industry is doing. All this without any formal training in the art of financial management.  So what is the solution?

It starts with profitability. It’s common sense that the only way an industry can grow is through all parties being profitable. 

Dealers must be confident that making a profit is not a hit or miss proposition each year.  The more profit dealers are able to retain in their business each year naturally promotes a healthier industry and the likelihood dealers will buy more inventory. It is not enough for just manufacturers and finance companies to be profitable. You need to be profitable too!

So it is time for the industry to innovate and find a way to provide the training you need to properly financially manage your business. It may seem impossible with individual agendas, but collaboration between finance companies and manufacturers could result in a Recreational Product entrepreneur training camp, where owners are given the tools to effectively manage their business – right out of the gate!

Otherwise it will be left to specialists like Lifeline Business Solutions, born out of the industry, to assist dealers on a one-by-one basis to maximize their profitability by incorporating analysis and planning into their management tool box.

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