This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
From the Field

Sell to the Owner I

dentify the decision maker. That’s a basic sales principle. At your dealer- ship, the decision maker may or may not be the ones driving that tractor or zero- turn mower, but they are the ones that tip the scale from a shopping experience to a purchasing experience.

I wanted to offer another way to look at the decision maker, or the person who influences that decision maker. Recently, I was test driving a compact tractor. I was already impressed with the equipment’s versatil- ity. I had been bombard- ed with specifications and was a little wary of the price. During the demo, I scraped the loader bucket on the asphalt lot — and cringed because the

equipment was brand new. With these six words, “You’re not going to hurt anything,” the salesperson changed the dynamic of the demo experience.

At that moment, that salesperson made me feel like an owner, not a shop- per. It wasn’t about the specs, controls or options. It was about how I was going to make that equipment work on our prop- erty. I would be scraping the bucket. That shiny paint would be speckled with mud. His friendly, informal response helped me envision how that tractor would help us accomplish our improvement projects this spring.

I encourage you to try a similar sales strategy and treat your customers like they own the machines they’re walking around and see if it changes how they respond.

Go & Find Them

Dealers shared this statistic in our 2013 Dealer Business Trends & Outlook Survey: More than 56% of dealers say rural lifestyle customer numbers have increased in the last five years and 11% define that growth as 20% or more. If those numbers hold true in your area, are you seeing 20% more rural lifestylers in your dealership? If not, maybe

225 Regency Court, Suite 100 P.O. Box 624 Brookfield, WI 53008-0624

Phone: 262/782-4480 • Fax: 262/782-1252

it’s time to go out and find them. When your outside salespeople are making stops with production farmers or commercial users, have them also stop by when they see a rural lifestyler. They won’t be interested in a sales call if they’re working, but a friendly hello or a compliment on their property can start a relationship. Make it quick and be sure to share a promotion, even if it’s just a parts special. Plant the seed for new equipment purchases by offering a demo.

Investigate Adjacent Markets Manufacturers have been busy this year expanding their market reach, with the lat- est being Polaris and its new commercial vehicle, Brutus. This is the first commer- cial vehicle and the first side-by-side utility vehicle to deliver front-end power take-off capability for a variety of property and facility maintenance duties.

Take this cue and stretch beyond your current markets. Research opportuni- ties for selling to facility managers, for instance. It may not be feasible for you to add a new line, but you may already sell some equipment they need. Regardless of whether you’re selling to commercial users or rural lifestylers, take advantage of the optimism spring brings. Project lists are long and your equipment can get the job done. Let’s get to work.

New Digital Edition All of us at Rural Lifestyle Dealer are pleased to announce the new digital com- plement to our magazine. This digital ver- sion lets us share even more information and photos. It’s an interactive approach to providing you with the success strategies you need today and tomorrow. Go to www. to check it out. And, as always, contact me any time with ideas and suggestions or comments about how we’re doing. We work for you. RLD

Lynn Marcinkowski Woolf, Managing Editor


FOR CHANGE OF ADDRESS CALL: 262/432-0388 • Fax: 262/786-5564 PUBLISHER

Michael Ellis (ext. 432)


Mike Lessiter (ext. 403)

EXECUTIVE EDITOR Dave Kanicki (ext. 414)

MANAGING EDITOR Lynn Marcinkowski Woolf


ASSOCIATE EDITORS Kim Schmidt (ext. 431)

Darrell Bruggink (ext. 420)

John Dobberstein (ext. 425)


Cole Vandermause (ext. 440)



MARKETING SPECIALIST Joanne Jones (ext. 442)

AD SERVICES MANAGER Lynn Boesen-Burnside (ext. 430)

CONFERENCE MANAGER Alice Musser (ext. 413)


Christopher Nielsen (ext. 418)

SENIOR GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Jeff Lazewski (ext. 423)

Greg Miller (ext. 428)

Trish Holzhauer (ext. 417)

PRODUCTION MANAGER Amy Johnson (ext. 409)


AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT Patrick Sharpe (ext. 405)

E-MEDIA DIRECTOR Jeremy McGovern (ext. 434) jmcgovern

CIRCULATION MANAGER Sue Ramstack (ext. 407)


EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Frank Lessiter (ext. 402)

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80