TireNews March-April 2018
The March-April issue of TireNews is now available online. You can flip through it here, but first, a few words from the Editor in chief of TireNews, Jack Kazmierski.
Your clients depend on your expertise to make the right tire choice.
If you’ve ever wandered around your local wine store, trying to figure out which bottle to buy for a friend or which wine to pair with a certain meal, you know how confused the typical tire shopper feels.
While the wonderful world of tires, and all the options it offers, makes perfect sense in your mind, oftentimes it’s a place of confusion for the average consumer.
Granted, some of your customers are well informed, and they know exactly which brand and size they want, as well as why a specific tire is the right choice for their vehicle. But the vast majority of drivers shop for tires the way most of us shop for fine wine. We look at the price, read the description on the back of the bottle, and when all else fails, we ask the expert working at the store to give us a hand.
Be the expert
That last part is where tire retailers come in. As a tire expert, it’s your job to help confused consumers make sense of their options. Just as all wine looks red or white to us, all tires are black and round to your customers. It’s up to you to tell them which tires are best paired with the vehicle they’re driving.
I like to think of tire retailers as “tire sommeliers.” Just as a wine sommelier helps customers at a fine restaurant figure out which wine is best paired with the meal they ordered, your job is to walk the customer through their options so they choose the best tire for their needs, their driving habits and their vehicle.
Price is also a factor. And just as the perfect wine may be too expensive for our pocket book, sometimes the perfect tire may be too costly for your customer. That’s when the “tire sommelier” jumps in with more affordable options, perhaps offering “good, better and best” options, and allowing the customer to make the final decision.
It’s an art
If you’ve ever seen a sommelier in action, it’s clear their job is part education and part art form. The customer may not always understand what the sommelier is talking about, but they present the information with style, earning the trust of those at the table.
The same can be said of the “tire sommelier.” Your customers may not always understand everything you say about a specific tire, but if you treat them with respect, and if you earn their trust, you can be sure they’ll see you as a trusted expert they can depend on.