Business

Hills to Climb

About this product:

Motorcycles and scooters play a key role in transportation systems throughout much of the world. Economical to own, maintain and use, easily navigated through tight and winding roads, a breeze to park and flat-out fun to ride, they are primary conveyances in Asia and large segments of Europe. In the United States, however, motorcycles and other powersports machines, such as all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) and side-by-side utility type vehicles (UTVs), are viewed almost exclusively as luxury items—toys that enthusiasts prize but most mainstream consumers consider only for hobby or secondary use.

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$1.99

Shifting Gears - Hot Rod Market Update

About this product:

Each of us may have different definitions of what constitutes a “hot rod,” but we all know one when we see it. The classification can encompass anything from a ’27 T-bucket roadster to a current-model Mustang, from a ’67 Camaro to a ’92 pickup, from a four-door station wagon to an early-‘80s Malibu. Only a few years ago, those last two might have raised some eyebrows among performance aficionados, but the wobbly economy and an aging consumer base have led to even greater latitude in what hot rodders consider acceptable raw material, and the segment’s manufacturers have obliged with an ever-expanding portfolio of parts from which to choose.

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SEMA’s Financial Benchmarking Program

About this product:

The SEMA Financial Benchmarking Program was developed in order to provide SEMA members with financial benchmarks they could use to help measure and compare their business operations with others in the industry. Industry-specific key performance indicators are reported that can then be used by participants to improve or grow their businesses.

The program provides business owners and managers information, such as: how their year-to-date sales compare with other specialty-equipment companies; how their shipping costs compare to those of other companies; and what other companies spend on advertising.

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Trade Show Leads

About this product:

Trade show participation can be one of the most effective ways to introduce new customers to your products or services as well as to update current clients about innovations. A trade show provides an opportunity for face-to-face consultations and hands-on demonstrations, delivering everything up to and including order agreements. Yet somewhere between 75% and 85% of the leads developed at trade shows are never followed up after the show. That’s a staggering waste of a significant investment.

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ProPledge Manufacturer Profile

SEMA NEWS-MAY 2010-PROPLEDGESEMA News recently had the chance to catch up with long-time manufacturer and ProPledge participant Check Corporation. We spoke with Brian Champa, the company’s national sales manager, to learn a little more about its products and about ProPledge program benefits the business has realized over the years.

Trendspotting

About this product:

In an effort to better analyze the tastes and preferences of today’s auto enthusiasts, SEMA, in coordination with Ford, launched the Enthusiast Opinion Leader Research Program at the 2009 SEMA Show.

The program invited 527 enthusiasts, selected through a rigorous application process, to the second day of the Show and tasked them with using social media, including Twitter and Facebook, to broadcast their personal product and trend highlights of the Show.

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Finding Financing

About this product:

This series of SEMA News stories is based on the idea of using reliable and repeatable methods to ensure business success. In coming issues, we will delve into a range of topics aimed at developing Best Practices through knowledge, motivation and skills.

Money has been tight for more than two years. Small businesses were especially hard hit by the recession that began late in 2007, with some estimates indicating that companies suffered sales losses ranging from 10% to 40% or more. The resulting constriction resulted in layoffs, cutbacks, inventory reductions and consolidations that made a bad situation even worse for businesses that were on the bubble between solvency and bankruptcy. Some did not survive.

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Mobile-Electronics New Products

About this product:

At the 2009 SEMA Show, 10,603 buyers filled the aisles looking for the latest mobile-electronics products and innovations. To satisfy their appetites, 102 exhibitors in the mobile-electronics section turned attendees on to the newest gadgets driving the custom audio, video and portable infotainment accessories industry. Buyers were clearly interested in grabbing information on the latest technologies and accessories, scanning the barcodes of mobile-electronics products registered in the New Products Showcase more than 4,500 times during the Show.

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