Parts & Service Marketing – Market Segmentation

Parts & Service Marketing – Market Segmentation

Marketing is the process of identifying and satisfying customer needs. That process becomes impossible with the thousands and thousands of customers that you have in your assigned area of responsibility (AOR). As a result of that truth, it becomes important to be able to find out what the customer needs and wants, and then to be able to find common elements of their business that will allow you to group them with other customers of common needs and wants.

That is the aim of market segmentation. Market segmentation is the process by which marketeers divide potential customers into smaller groups that are looking for similar benefits from a product or service. The goal is to isolate a group that prefers these features and benefits, and to develop a sustainable differential advantage that satisfies their needs. All of the methods and processes that are required to perform this are covered in the webinar.

We cover the industrial focus, the individual demographics, and the psychographics. We also have to assess the dealer strengths and weaknesses, as well as reviewing the same strengths and weaknesses in the competition. All of this and much more is covered in this comprehensive webinar.

The time is now.

Parts & Service Marketing – Basic Marketing

Parts & Service Marketing – Basic Marketing

Our Parts & Service Marketing series of webinars begins this Thursday, May 14, 2015, with the introductory course: Basic Marketing.

Marketing is a broadly misunderstood sector of business. It is much more than mailings, promotions, and tradeshows. It is all of the aspects involved in influencing the customer to purchase your products or services.

Marketing is the science of choosing target markets through the use of market analysis and segmentation. This webinar exposes all aspects of marketing: Relationship Marketing, Business Marketing, Social Marketing and Internal Marketing. In Relationship Marketing, we focus on suppliers and customers, and the goal is to build loyalty. The Business Marketing is all aspects of the traditional marketing functions: advertising, promotion and communications. Social Marketing looks at everything that impacts society. For instance, the impact on the environment from the use of clean engine technology. Internal Marketing, is the broad communications to all employees of everything that we are doing in the business.

This webinar covers all the basics of marketing: from the four P’s to the more current addition of SIVA. We cover it all. Without creating the environment where your product or service is understood, you make the job of selling much more difficult. This webinar aims to provide you with the tools to use to make selling more successful.

Product Support Selling

Our seminar on Product Support Selling – The New Frontier is coming up in Dallas, Texas on April 15 and 16, 2015.  This 2 day seminar encompasses 4 elements:

  • The fundamentals of selling
  • The foundation of territory management
  • Managing Customer Relationships
  • Customer Service Fundamentals

This program is geared towards Product Support Sales, Customer Service, Instore Sales, Supervisors,  and Managers.

This course covers all the theories and applications necessary for Product Support Selling in the 21st Century.

The time is now.

Parts & Service Marketing

Our Parts & Service Marketing seminar will be taking place in Dallas, Texas on April 13-14.

Back by popular demand, this course is geared towards sales personnel looking to make a difference.

Material will cover:

  • Defining Customers
  • Market Coverage
  • Customer Loyalty
  • Measuring and Managing Success

This seminar offers the fundamentals of Parts & Service Marketing for any personnel that deal with your customers.

For more information, and to register for the seminar, please visit

The time is now.


American Express coined the phrase “Membership has its privileges.”  This is entirely true.  Most of us have professional memberships to various organizations: the Associated Equipment Distributors, the National Trailer Distributor’s Association, the National Groundwater Association, the National Trailer Equipment Association, just to name a few.

We are inviting you to become members of our own group, Learning Without Scars, because we want to recognize individuals and businesses that want to participate in their personal and professional growth.  We discussed doing this by means of special promotions and loyalty programs, amongst many difference alternatives.


We settled on the membership approach.

By joining Learning Without Scars at the nominal cost of $35,00 per year, we have found that we can offer more to you for less.

All members receive a price reduction of 30% on all LWS learning products.  That means that all webinars, self study programs, and classroom programs will be offered at a 30% price reduction to our members.  For those of you who know me, please note that this is NOT a discount!  I still hate discounts.

So, what are you waiting for?  Spend $35.00 and start saving.

The time is now…

Training for the Capital Goods Industry

Training has long been a problem for many businesses.

Management and Leadership have conflicting views on personnel. Edward Gordon, in his book “Future Jobs,” points out the threats posed by under-skilled employees. He goes on to challenge the education providers to deliver more on their promise of providing a skilled individual.

One side of the conflict for leaders is traditional thinking:

  • The employees should come to the job trained and ready to work.
  • The employees should continue their schooling on their own time.
  • Why should I train people? They just leave me and go work for the competition.

On the other hand, there is a growing number of leaders who are changing their views:

  • I don’t want to have under skilled people ever.
  • I will support learning in any form.
  • I expect my employees to be curious and hungry learners.

In the years since 2008 – which I will label “BBS” – “Before Bear Stearns” businesses have reduced their expenditures on employee training dramatically. That results in under-skilled personnel. So the result is that we are choosing to reduce training costs, and therefore providing customers with under-skilled personnel. I am sure you don’t think that this is a sustainable position to take.

We have been offering management training since the early 1990’s. We have done this in combination with Industry associations, as well as directly with manufacturers and dealers. We have provided learning opportunities for Parts Management, Service Management, Parts & Service Marketing and Product Support Selling. Today we do this via a new Company called Learning Without Scars. You can visit our website at to learn more about training and creating an environment of skilled personnel.

Product Support Marketing: A Guide…#MarketingMonday

Let me introduce you to#MarketingMonday.  With the arrival of Learning Without Scars and our embedding the blog in the web site we are kicking off a fresh series of activities. You are by now quite familiar with my Friday Filosophy. Well this is the first of our #MarketingMondays. We will post a new blog each Monday on Marketing.

How many people understand marketing in the Product Support world?

Let me start with a definition of marketing. Marketing is “the selling of products or services – the business activity of presenting products and services in such a way as to make them the primary choice of the customer.” Marketing is basically the selling of products or services.

We should start with the basics of marketing – the 4 Ps:


  • Product
  • Place
  • Price
  • Promotion

These are the ABC’s, the fundamentals, the foundation of most of the marketing class work done today. As with most everything in our world the 4 Ps have evolved. Today there is a new approach called SIVA:


  • Solution
  • Information
  • Value
  • Access

SIVA is much more customer focused. More recently, there has been an addition to the 4 Ps and now there are 7 Ps as  process, physical environment and people have been included. We will discuss these in more detail over the coming weeks and months.

I want to also address market share. This is the ultimate measure of success in the parts and service world. I will provide you with methods to be able to calculate the market share for parts and service. Not with the precision of capital goods market share, i.e. Boeing plane share, or Freightliner Class 8 share or Chrysler 300 market share, but very accurately.

We will discuss the significance of customer retention, and how we can influence that in our operating world. What influences customer defections, recovery methods, and the strong influence that retention has on the profitability of your business.

We will also cover market coverage methods. The “how to” manuals for setting up personal and telephonic territories. This will also cover compensation methods and options to consider.

In other words, this blog is intended to be able to cover everything and anything about marketing parts and service. I hope you will join me on this voyage.

The time is now.

The Work Truck Show – Indianapolis 2014

Once again I had the privilege of providing an educational session for the NTEA. The subject matter was Parts & Service Marketing: Making a Difference.

The dramatic changes that have taken place over the past ten years, and those ahead, demand a more professional, productive and profitable Product Support Operation. To support the realization of this Parts and Service Opportunity we have designed this program aimed at those charged with the responsibility of managing this segment of the business. Parts & Service Marketing – Making a Difference consists of 6 elements presented during this learning session.

The Customer Service Focus

Why this is no longer a fad but deadly serious business. We explore the various aspects of customer service – what they are and how can we learn to be better at them.

Defining Customers

The “customer” has become a generic description of who we serve. We need to segment the markets that we serve and define the customer more precisely using a broad array of categories that allow us to more completely define customers with similar needs and wants.

Customer Relations

Expectations must be understood and shaped – when, why and how can they be changed in order to provide systems, procedures, methods, tools and training that will meet the expectations. Satisfaction of customer expectations requires us to have internal excellence in everything we do.

Designing Customer Service Excellence

Understanding who your customer is and what they require is critical in designing service excellence. People perform service, create expectations, satisfy expectations and create the perception of a difference.

Customer Loyalty

Strong Products or Services are central to customer loyalty and loyalty must be a company wide commitment. Everything should be aimed at creating and maintaining this loyalty. We discuss the tools and methods to create, develop, and maintain loyalty.

Measuring and Managing Success

Long term behavior is critical in understanding the return on investment from Parts & Service Marketing initiatives. Clear goals, measurement criteria and profit targets must be constantly reviewed and adjusted to adapt programs to changing customer needs and expectations.

We had a good turnout and some good dialogue. Thanks to all.

Marketing Missiles 2.1

In the Construction Equipment market the parts and service groups have very low market capture rates.

I don’t think that any customer service provider is aiming to have less than a 50% or even less than a 25% market capture rate. Yet that is where the parts and service departments are in these critical measures. The employees care about the service they provide to their customers. Yet obviously there have been events that have caused many customers to find solutions to their needs elsewhere.

I am convinced that part of this is created by the lack of market coverage that is provided to customers.

  • First there are not enough salespeople involved in the parts and service area. It appears that the number of sales people is determined to minimize complaints from suppliers rather than a deliberate choice of who to cover and why. I know that is strong but how else could you explain that there are typically more than double the number of prime product sales people compared to product support sales people.
  • Second there is little if any follow up on actual transactions. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a supplier give you a call and ask how you were treated during your most recent sale or inquiry? Of course it would.
  • Third we don’t engage the customers who have a change in buying habits. A customer that has had a change in buying habit and has not purchased anything or contacted you in more than the standard time between activities should be contacted and engaged. That leads to a defection rate that is unusually high.

How do you rate on market coverage? Are you engaged with ALL customers every year? Do you know your defection rate? Do you know your market capture rates? These are important questions with serious answer from which you can make the necessary business decisions. In this case ignorance is not anything like bliss.

The time is now.

Marketing Missile v2.0

Branding is a critical element of Marketing. It is who you are and what the market believes you to be. A brand is an elusive element of marketing. How do you create a brand? It is the same as your culture. It is not what you want it to be it is what it is – plain and simple.

Do you remember the amazing Kreskin? He made his incredible skill of reading minds a marketable skill. He is still going strong well into his seventies. There was a recent article on him in the American Way the inflight magazine from American Airlines, my preferred airline, even in these troubled times. Back to the subject – Kreskin – he says “To those who understand there is no explanation necessary…but to those who don’t no explanation is possible. That is the same with marketing and branding.

You must have a brand. It must represent who you are and what you do. You must have marketing in order not to remain in the shadows of the market.

In today’s world of social media it is now being said that unless you are using Twitter and Facebook you lack credibility with the younger generations. The older generations have differing needs and channels. The point through all of this clutter is that your brand and your marketing have to span all generations and all motivations for your products or services.

So what is your brand image? How do you protect it? Who drives your marketing? How is it designed? These are critical questions for you to answer. The time is now.