Originally Posted by AirwolfPJ
Going off topic here but, in the late 70's my shop had a contract with the local RR repairing their yard trucks....all GM. I'd go through probably at least a dozen OEM fenders, door skins, and box sides easily a year. When I first started ordering them they came in good shape. The dealer saw the volume I was doing and started stocking a good volume of them. Funny thing - they all started showing up damaged. Talked to the dealer about it and he said that's the way it was.
One day I needed a fender and he didn't have any. Called another dealership, they had one in stock and picked it up. Opened the packing at the dealership and it was perfect. Told the guy my predicament with the other dealer and the volume I was doing. Come to find out the other dealer was ordering damaged seconds at a great discount but no added discount to me, and didn't even tell me they were damaged seconds.
I didn't say anything to the other dealer. About a week later he calls me and says he's putting in an order to GM and wanted an estimate of the volume I'd be doing. Told him probably 18-20 of each - which was true. Said he'd order them and have them on hand. What I didn't tell him was that all my business was going to the other dealer. When they came in, he called to let me know. Told him I found out about his game and I was taking my business elsewhere. Always wondered how long he sat on them....
I love it...it's the old "screw me, no no, Screw you". So many people don't understand simple marketing...I've had the privilege on more than one occasion of speaking to students that have recently enrolled in marketing courses in different University's and Colleges in several Cities across Canada. The first thing I do after I introduce myself is ask them a question. The question is "Who is the hardest customer to get"...in over 20 years of doing this, I have never gotten a right answer...and the answer is so simple, the hardest customer to get is the one you lost.
The first rule of marketing, in my opinion, should be, look after your existing customers before you go looking for new ones...again, simple, if you can't look after the ones you have, how are you going to look after the ones you get. The sad part is that what happened to you "AirwlfPJ" is that I would bet that you weren't the only one it happened to and that the dealership (or the parts department) kept on doing it. If ownership condoned this type of behavior, they don't deserve to be in business, if they found out about and didn't resolve the issue, they don't deserve to be in business. If they never found out about and their business kept dropping off, then they didn't care enough about the business to find out why and...they won't be in business.
Thanks for your story, I love those...I've seen that you read a lot of threads and posts, however, you don't post all that often, when you do, what you have to say is well thought out...you strike me as that quiet guy that is very methodical...for anybody not on the up and up...that personality trait you posess should scare the crap out of them...LOL