Listening is more than
8 Are You Listening
a courtesy; it is good Making sales without listening is like
going sailing without the wind. You
business. Just think of the can do it
but why? Are you listening
enough to your customers? To your
people you deeply trust. prospects?
by Jay Steven Levin
Now think of the people
you dont. Who listens? 10 Listen With Sincerity
Years ago, I learned a good lesson when
(PAGE 8) a man came into my showroom to buy
a car. I spent half an hour with him
MEMBERS OF THE NJ CAR BOARD OF TRUSTEES
and was convinced he was going to
buy. All that had to be done was for
Charles S. Miller ................................................................. Chairman
Paul A. Larson, Jr. ...................................................... Vice Chairman me to take him into my office and write
Edward J. Barlow, Jr. ........................................................... Secretary up the order.
James V. Tino, Jr. ................................................................ Treasurer
by Joe Girard
Richard A. DeSilva ....... Regional Vice President (Northern Region I)
Stuart Lasser ............... Regional Vice President (Northern Region II)
Robert J. Greces .............. Regional Vice President (Central Region)
Michael DeSimone ........ Regional Vice President (Southern Region) 14 New Vehicle Market
James A. Curley ......................................................... Past Chairman
John Zanger, Jr., NJ CAR Insurance Co. Ltd. ..................... Chairman
Outlook for 2002
A. Theodore Eckenhoff, NJ CAR Group Insurance Trust ...... Chairman At the end of last year, Auto Outlook,
Anthony J. Tolerico, NJ CAR Services, Inc. ........................ President Inc. predicted that the New Jersey new
Brian OShea ........................................... Truck Committee Chairman vehicle market was headed for a mild
Raymond M. Burke, III, CAR-PAC ........................................ President
Robert J. Maguire, NADA ...................................................... Director
slowdown in 2001. And indeed, that is
James B. Appleton .............................................................. President exactly what transpired.
COUNTY TRUSTEES by Auto Outlook, Inc.
Gabe Staino (Alt.)
Raymond Laffin 18 Is The Used Car In-
Donald R. Buhler dustry Alive And Well?
Joseph Dockery Robert L. DeFelice How big exactly is the used car indus-
William Kundert, Jr. William R. Keith
Michael Salerno try in the U. S.? How does the average
BURLINGTON Eric Nielsen
used car turn rate affect sales oppor-
Charles Falkenstein Vladimir Scerbo tunities? Are we headed for good times
Hank Herrington Adam Barish or bad?
Larry Gorin Kirk Larson by Duane Sprague
Joseph H. McErlean (Alt.) Edward DeFelice, Jr.
CAPE MAY PASSAIC
William Kindle (Alt.)
Robert X. Robertazzi
Eugene C. Meyers
24 How to Prosper in
CUMBERLAND SALEM Businesss Regardless
Richard J. Kull (Alt.)
William Eakins (Alt.) of The Economy
ESSEX SOMERSET In purchasing equipment for my busi- For advertising information, contact Don F. Brown:
Andy Hoffman John Kemper ness, I patronized the same dealer
Justus B. Von Lengerke Clifford Nagle, III 1.813.914.0383
West Caldwell for nearly 30 years. I like their wide
GLOUCESTER Frank R. Allocca product selection and attractive prices. Official publication of
Allen C. Eastlack Michael McGuire (Alt.) One day I defected, and this is why.
Mark Pellegrino (Alt.)
UNION by Emmet Robinson
HUDSON Mitchell Friedman
Peter Sucato, Sr. Nelson L. Taylor, Jr.
Joe Bellavia (Alt.) The New Jersey Auto Retailer is a publication of Newsletters Inkcorporated and is the official publication of NJCAR (New Jersey Coalition
HUNTERDON Eric Nielsen of Automotive Retailers). The New Jersey Auto Retailer is published 4 times per year by Newsletters Inkcorporated.
William Muller William Muller (Alt.) The statements and opinions expressed herein are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent the views of New
James T. Botsacos (Alt.)
Jersey Auto Retailer, or its publisher Newsletters Inkcorporated. Any legal advice should be regarded as general information. It is strongly
MERCER recommended that one contact an attorney for counsel regarding specific circumstances. Likewise, the appearance of advertisers does not
H. Richard Coleman constitute an endorsement of the products or services featured by Newsletters Inkcorporated.
Paul J. Muller, Jr.
December 2001 3
NJ CAR Very Much Alive and Well
James B. Appleton, NJ CAR President
With the start of the Coalitions new
budget year on November 1, we begin
our 84th year of serving the interests of
New Jerseys franchised new car and
truck dealers. Let me assure you that,
as the chief staff officer, I know every
member of the NJ CAR staff is commit-
tedperhaps more than everto provid-
ing the highest level of service possible
to the 99.9% of New Jerseys new car
and truck dealers who choose to be Coa-
For many small- and medium-sized dealerships, their
primary contact with the association was through the
Group Insurance Trust. Since the announcement last sum-
mer of the decision to discontinue the operations of the
Group Insurance Trust, a handful of dealerships have ques-
tioned the need to retain their membership with the Coali-
tion. Regardless of the potential financial or member rela-
tions fallout from the termination of the Trusts health
benefits plan, it is clear that NJ CAR still has a crucial
role to play protecting and advancing the interests of New
Jerseys 650 franchised new car and truck retailers.
The events that led to the decision of the Group Insur-
ance Trustees to terminate the Trust and wind down the
Trusts operations forced the Group Insurance Trustees to
act quickly and make certain that any decision they made
would ensure that NJ CAR Group Insurance Trust par-
ticipating dealerships and their employees could find cov-
erage by August 1. As the Trustees weighed the options
available to them, it became clear that the health insur-
ance marketplace was ready to absorb dealer business. Al-
though the Trustees looked at several options to keep the
plan going, it was clear that the best way to protect Trust
participants (i.e., dealership employees) was to give them
immediate notice that benefits would cease at midnight on
July 31. That way, employees and dealers could take full
advantage of a competitive marketplace so they could ob-
tain replacement coverage.
While the Group Insurance Trust is terminating opera-
tions, the Coalition is very much alive and well and still
has a vital role to play as an advocate for auto retailers
and by providing members with other valuable services.
Government, public and industry affairs, education and le-
gal/regulatory compliance issues remain central to the
NJ CAR mission. Member services like the Motor Vehicle
Agency, online title and registration processing through
triVin and CVR, annual conventions and trade shows, edu-
cational seminars, the long distance phone program, hole-
in-one insurance, Section 125 Cafeteria Plan and long-
term disability programs offered through American Fidel-
ity Assurance Company, group life and other services are
still available through NJ CAR. In addition, NJ CAR Ser-
vices, Inc. will continue to offer a full range of automotive
business forms, promotional items, as well as property and
casualty consulting services.
continued on page 26
4 December 2001
The Role of the Coalition
Charles S. Miller, NJ CAR Chairman
Im pleased to be able to communicate
with you through this premier issue of
New Jersey Auto Retailer. This new pub-
lication will be sent to all NJ CAR members
on a quarterly basis. I look forward to seeing
this publication continue to grow in the years
This years NJ CAR Annual Meeting
& Business Expo was on track to exceed
the success of last years event. Changes made
in the programming and a change in venue
to a more centralized location was made to
make the event more accessibleespecially for day-trippers. The
Coalition had lined up a full complement of exhibitors for Busi-
ness Expo 2001, in addition to an extensive listing of keynoters,
speakers and seminar presenters. The tragic events that unfolded
at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania on
September 11 changed all that. The fallout from those events,
including an immediate decline in business and a dramatic plunge
in consumer confidence, made it clear that it wasnt going to be
business as usual for any time soon thereafter. When little had
changed by the end of September, a decision was made by the
Executive Committee to cancel Business Expo 2001 and to scale
back the remainder of the programming planned for the event.
As required by the Coalitions Constitution and By-laws,
NJ CAR held its 83rd Annual Meeting. In addition, the CAR-PAC
events, including the legislative luncheon, golf outing and recep-
tion, went on as scheduled at Forsgate Country Club. Those events
were well received in terms of both the number of dealer princi-
pals and number of legislators who were in attendance.
Obviously, this year has been a tough one for the Coalition, and
the Executive Committee has had to wrestle with some tough deci-
sions in light of the many difficulties that arose as a result of the
decision to liquidate the Group Insurance Trust, and the resulting
impact the liquidation of the Trust will have on the Coalitions
budget moving forward. However, the Coalition remains commit-
ted in its mission of representing the interests of New Jerseys
new car and truck retailers.
NJ CARs commitment to the New Jersey dealer body was
demonstrated in its push for amendments to New Jersey fran-
chise law, to clarify the formula used to calculate retail for
parts used by retailers in warranty repairs. After the legislation
became law in 1999, Ford dealers, many of whom quickly acted to
request an increase in their warranty parts reimbursement, re-
ported a substantial increase in their service department bottom
line, with increased payments being received from the manufac-
turer. GM dealers also benefited with an agreement reached with
that manufacturer to increase parts reimbursement for New
Jerseys GM dealers to cost plus 60%. When DaimlerChrysler
threatened any dealer who filed for an increase with an across-
the-board surcharge on the new vehicle invoice, it was the Coali-
tion that went to court to protect the rights of dealers, and suc-
ceeded in obtaining an injunction prohibiting the manufacturer
from continuing to pressure dealers not to file for an increase in
warranty parts reimbursement.
We know that the manufacturers have already begun attacking
continued on page 26
December 2001 5
Making sales without
listening is like going
sailing without the
wind. You can do it
but why? Are you listen-
ing enough to your cus-
tomers? To your pros-
pects? Your lead turn-
ing rate should reflect
that you are. Does it?
Are you trusted by your customers
and potential customers? Do you lose
control during customer objections or
rejections? Do you justify yourself and
your position when you meet resis-
tance in what you are selling? Are your
appointments going smoothly? Are the
people in front of you helping or re-
sisting you? Listening is more than a courtesy;
Whos talking more you or your it is good business. Just think of the people you
client? Do you have that nagging edi-
torial need to cut, paste and insert
deeply trust. Now think of the people you dont.
your sales pitch into every point your
customer makes? Do you feel that
Who listens? STEVE DOYLE, DELOITTE & TOUCHE
what others need to say is more or
less important than what you thought field. They know its value. They prac- solutions to sales objectives faster and
you had to say to win the sale? Are tice it. Sharpen it. And rely on it. Any more efficiently. Their win rates stay
you learning how your clients think good sales person knows that without high and their customers remain cus-
and what their needs are? their ears they would be out of a job. tomers. But most importantly, they win
their customers to themselves and into
Listening well is a skill. Just ask the Listeners in any field win. They win better relationships than the competi-
top sales performance leaders in any people to their points of view. They win tion has with them.
8 December 2001
12 December 2001
New Vehicle Market
Outlook for 2002
Sales Predicted to Decline, but Remain Strong
Despite the economic slowdown (and excluding the
At the end of last year, Auto Outlook events of September 11), the outlook for the States new
vehicle market would otherwise be bright. Granted, the
(an independent automotive market States unemployment rate is headed higher; but personal
analysis firm) predicted that the income growth remains adequate, interest rates are at near
recordlow levels, and vehicle transaction prices are
New Jersey new vehicle market was stableall contributing to improving consumer
affordability. After seven straight years of strong sales and
headed for a mild slowdown in a slowing economy, the market was due for a slowdown,
but there were enough sound fundamentals in place to
2001. And indeed, that is exactly give the market a boost and avoid a major falloff. Then came
September 11, and with it concern about the psyche of the
what transpired. consumer and what the war on terrorism could mean for
Sales declined by 4.6% through September of this year
vs. a record-setting year in 2000, with the States retail mar- At this point, these questions have not been concretely
ket on track to exceed the 525,000 unit level for the second answered, but early signs are very encouraging. October
consecutive year. And then came the tragic events of Sep- new vehicle sales were strong and consumer sentiment
tember 11, which made previous assumptions and conven- appears to be rebounding. It is practically guaranteed that
tional market predictors obsolete. Or did they? sales in the fourth quarter of this year will significantly
exceed last years total, greatly assisted by generous incen-
In a nutshell, there is a predicament that forecasters find tives. And Auto Outlook is fairly confident that 2002 will be
themselves in during these uncertain times. In general, there another good year for the States new vehicle market. A
are two sets of factors that will shape the direction of the decline in sales next year is almost certain, but by histori-
States new vehicle market for the rest of this year and 2002. cal standards, the market should remain in relatively good
The first key factor is typical and identifiable economic and shape.
automotive market characteristics that have proven to be
accurate predictors of new vehicle sales. The second key Forecast conclusion: New Jersey new retail light vehicle
factor that will affect the market over the next year is con- registrations are predicted to decline by less than 2% this
sumer attitudes and reactions to the ongoing war against year (vs. 2000), and decline by 7.0% in 2002. (See graph page
terrorism. Following is our synopsis on how these two broad 17 for historical and forecast registrations in the State.)
factors might impact the New Jersey vehicle market over
the next year. Source for historical data: The Polk Company
14 December 2001
Is the Used Car Industry
Alive and Well? By Duane Sprague
is 38% of all used vehicles are sold by franchise dealers,
How big exactly is the used car indus- 34% by independents, and 27% C2C.
try in the U. S.? Is it an area of grow-
Based on the past 11 year average, franchised dealers
ing opportunity? How does the aver- sold 15,375,178 used vehicles every year, which represents
39% of the used market. Over the same period, the inde-
age used car turn rate affect sales pendent dealers sold an average of 13,084,181 units per
year (32.6% of the used market) and the C2C market has
opportunities? How much of the used averaged 11,151,000 per year (28.2% of the used market).
car market do independent dealers The average for the past 3 of 11 years shows a slight
increase in the total volume of used cars sold by the
own? Are we headed for good times independents (1.4% increase). While the franchised deal-
ers lost 1% and the C2C market lost .2%.
Of the 213.3 million registered vehicles in 2000, 42
million were re-sold, re-leased, or turned in within the
Based on an 11 year average, 57 million vehicles are calendar year, which represents a 19.7% annual turn rate.
sold each year in the U.S., with an average of 18 million And this percentage remains quite constant year to year.
(31%) being new vehicles sales (including private, gov- So we can bank on the fact that one-out-of-five registered
ernment, commercial and fleet), and 39 million (68%) vehicles will change ownership every year. This means
used. Of the record 59.1 million vehicles sold in the that based on a 20% annual turn rate alone, over 41 mil-
year 2000, 30% were new, and 70% (41.6 million) were lion adults will be in the market for a vehicle every year.
used. The used market alone represents $363 billion
dollars in gross sales, with an average selling price of According to the Global Vehicle Remarketing report pub-
$8,716 per copy. lished by the ADESA Corporation, and written by Tom Kontos,
used vehicle sales are expected to grow from the 41.6
Of the 41.6 million used vehicles purchased in 2000, million in 2000 to 46.5 million in 2005 an increase of nearly
28% or 11.9 million were bought and sold between con- 5 million units. I would say the used car industry is headed
sumers, known as the C2C market. This means 72% (29.7 for good times.
million used units) were sold by franchised and inde-
pendent dealerships. Nationally, the three-year average continued on following page
18 December 2001
By: Emmet Robinson
In purchasing equip-
ment for my business, I We all say thank you when the sale is made, but talk is
cheap. If youre really grateful for someones business, send a
patronized the same thank-you note. Be brief, but sincere. Say what you feel, as
dealer for nearly 30 long as its positive.
years. I liked their wide may be the most competitive times in ways of making your note more special:
product selection and the history of our nation. In a surging Thank-you notes are always hand writ-
sea of change, your customers have a ten, never computer printed.
attractive prices. One rapidly expanding selection of provid- Blue ink is more reader-friendly than
ers to choose from. To have them con- plain black and less likely to be mis-
day I defected, and this tinue to choose you, how you acknowl- taken for a pre-printed form.
edge their contributions to your eco- Be specific. Refer to the order placed
is why. nomic welfare can make the difference or transaction completed.
between winning and losing in the tricky Use a real stamp instead of a postage
I suddenly realized that, in all the years years to come. meter.
of giving those folks my money, they never Mail it today-before days end if at all
truly expressed their appreciation for my We all say thank you when the sale possible.
loyalty as a long-time customer. After 30 is made, but talk is cheap. If youre really
years and thousands of dollars, I never grateful for someones business, send a This inexpensive activity is based on
received so much as a simple thank-you thank-you note. Be brief, but sincere. Say the simple principle of positive reinforce-
note. Each time I left the store with a new what you feel, as long as its positive. ment: What gets rewarded gets repeated.
purchase, I ceased to exist.
Okay, so youre not a great writer. Always remember: They didnt have
Since then Ive found other provid- What can you say in a thank-you note? to buy from you; they could have given
ers who have the same products at the How about, Dear Bill: Thank you for their money to someone else. n
same prices. The difference is that they your order.
show their appreciation for my business. Emmet Robinson is an entertaining professional speaker
serving the financial services profession. For a Free
What does this mean to you? Thats short, simple and easy to spell.
Catalog, call 610-647-4341.
You could scribble that in 60-seconds flat.
For American business people, these Can you spare a minute? Here are a few
24 December 2001
THIS MAGAZINE IS DESIGNED AND PUBLISHED BY NEWSLETTERS INKCORPORATED