A Tire Made Just For Us?

Imagine you called the shots at Big Tire Inc. Would you order the development of a 20 series 27” sport truck tire? Nah. Probably not, because you live and sell tires in the Northeast, THE REAL WORLD. Maybe you’d rather have something that’s truly practical. Something that you could sell everyday that would solve people’s problems. What if you had a tire that you could put on customer’s cars, CUVs, and small SUVs that worked a lot better than the typical touring tire in the snow without the expense and hassle of a set of dedicated winter tires, conquered potholed roads and didn’t back down from dirt and gravel? In other words – a tire specifically made for the Northeast. Cooper heard your call for this. Now what to call it? I suggested Endora. Cooper settled on Discoverer EnduraMax and it’s coming early next year. Traction? Yes it’s got a more open tread design that’s packed with sawtooth grooves to grab hold of snow and muck. EnduraMax earned it’s 3 peak mountain snowflake symbol. Bad roads? We got ‘em. Ever drive through Rhode Island? E-Max doesn’t just look the part like some others, it has extra-strength steel belts like Cooper puts in their on/off road tires. Dirt and gravel? Cooper is big on cut and chip resistant compounds that they’ve perfected for LT and commercial truck tires and the E-Max will have it too. It’ll arrive with 29 sizes and when you start buying them like crazy they’ll make more. They’re promising a very quiet ride and a 60,000 mile warranty. See you in February.

Go Ahead, Say Uncle.

Rejoice, Cooper dealers, rejoice. You’re aligned with one of the only tire brands that has an honest to goodness ‘brand message.’ A message that has a good chance at resonating with consumers… ordinary people that are not looking for tires to go drifting or mud bogging on. The marketing team at Cooper has been researching consumer tire buying behavior for years. What they found was consumers continue to be confused and anxious about the whole tire buying process. Despite all the available information, consumers often prefer to ask a trusted friend what to buy. Even after the sale, they have nagging doubts… Did I buy the right tires? Are they safe?

All this pointed Cooper in the direction of a new campaign that features a trusted source of tire advice, call him Uncle Cooper. He’s expert in all things automotive and would never steer you wrong about what tires to buy. The campaign started October 1st with television spots airing on MotorTrend, DIY Network and HGTV, as well as digital and print ads.

Cooper’s Director of Brand Development Jessica Egerton says, “Consumers consistently tell us they need someone they can turn to for straightforward advice on tires. Now through Uncle Cooper, we can offer that advice in an extremely relatable and engaging way. We are telling consumers: You don’t have to be a tire expert because you have an uncle for that.” The tagline at the end of the spot ties into the counter experience where a customer has just been offered a few brands and it’s decision time. Uncle Cooper says: ‘Go with the Coopers.”

To see video of Uncle Cooper giving the straight scoop on Discoverer AT3s click HERE.

Roadmaster Steers the Way!

Guess how long it takes Cooper to design and test an all new premium steer tire? If you said ‘about 3 years’ you’re correct. Cooper’s new RM832 steers are flowing into warehouses now. They’re big and beefy with a 5 rib tread pattern and decoupling grooves. Cooper benchmarked Michelin’s X Line Energy Z, as many consider it to be the best of the best. Part of the reason they took three years to debut, was Cooper’s goal to make sure they wore evenly and looked great at the end of their lifespan. That took a fair amount of R&D time testing in the real world, but they know that goes a long way with fleet owners. Testing shows the RM832 consistently racking up 140,000 miles. For more on the story, click here.

New Falkens. Finally.

Those crazy kids at Falken have been teasing us with spy shots of their new tires for almost two years. But now the wait is over. You’ve already heard about the new WildPeak A/T Trail for macho CUVs, now say hi to the ZIEX ZE960 A/S. It replaces the hot selling (but quick wearing) ZE950 high performance all-season line. The 960 carries the full suite of Falken’s new technologies to up the treadlife ante (65k mile warranty) and increase traction.

Short’s tire law states: Aggressive looks sell. You know guys that really need H/T tires end up with A/T tires? And people that should buy A/T tires really want R/T tires? And gals that R/T tires would do the job are happier with a set of M/Ts? Yes it’s a thing. Falken correctly read the market and sales soared when they came out with their AT3W. The M/T looking upper sidewall sold itself. The old H/T01 was just your basic mild mannered highway tire. I’ve had more than a few people say to me, “I need an H/T tire but I don’t want it to look wimpy, like a minivan tire.” Wanna sell way more? Put that AT3W shoulder on an all new super heavy duty H/T package and you have an instant winner. Falken’s Drew Howlett says, “We didn’t want to develop another typical highway terrain tire, we wanted to build a tire that could support the most powerful and capable trucks on the road today. That’s why all LT sizes of the H/T02 were rigorously tested and developed using the latest 3/4-ton diesel pickups. We pushed our heavy-duty construction to the limits, so as a testament to the H/T02’s toughness and durability, all LT-size offerings feature the ‘HD’ badge on the tire’s sidewall.” The WildPeak H/T02 comes with a 70,000-mile tread life warranty (50,000 miles for HD sizes) and Falken’s Road Hazard Protection. I believe this new look is going to move a lot of rubber. All that goodness plus Fanatic dealers will earn double rewards on all three new lines all through Q4.

Why did you buy ’em there?

The August 2019 edition of Tire Review’s Source Book is stuffed with facts and figures on our business. Mostly ho-hum, but I did spot this gem. A nice big graph titled Consumer Study “Why did you purchase tires where you did?” They broke it down into 18 categories. Coming in at number 1 with 52% of respondents choosing was ‘Price, sale, discount, rebate.” From there the list goes on with convenient location, good past experience, fast service, yada yada… and then, at the very bottom of the list, with a whopping 7%, “Car was already there for service.” I knew it. These are the all-important cars that are on the rack for a state inspection or oil change and the dealer did his job and recommended tires. BUT ONLY 7 PERCENT. The other 93% are possibly cheating on their favorite mechanic and buying their tires from someone who is more aggressively marketing themselves as a great place to buy tires. For you automotive repair shop owners: Do most of your tire sales only occur when you happen to catch someone who is in for unrelated service? If that’s a ‘yes?’ Would you like to sell more of these good folks (the other 93%) their tires? Even when you don’t have them up on the rack? Well that’s where K&W comes in. We have tried and true methods to help shops that want to sell more tires and make more money doing it. Email me back or call 717.314.4949 and we’ll talk. And to see the whole list on ‘Why you bought them there’ click HERE


Purple Heart – NEXEN Hero

NEXEN has partnered with the Purple Heart Foundation. This organization raises money to fund programs and services across the country to support veterans and their families. They pick a Purple Heart Medal recipient to honor with a cool customized vehicle and promote the organization. This years NEXEN Hero is Army Master Sgt. Brian Porter. NEXEN reports, “Porter’s military career spanned nearly three decades, and more than half spent with special forces. He volunteered for the elite 75th Ranger Regiment and completed the Special Forces Qualification Course to earn the U.S. Army’s coveted Green Beret. In 2004 during his second combat tour in Iraq, Porter was returning to base after a combat operation in Fallujah when an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) detonated under his vehicle. Not only did the IED explosion spawn an ambush of the convoy, Porter absorbed the full impact of the explosion to his face, resulting in a near-death experience. After multiple surgeries to restore his ability to eat and breathe on his own without assistance, Porter courageously returned to active service to rejoin his unit. Porter completed two additional tours to Iraq before retiring in 2013. The injuries sustained by the IED explosion has required more than 33 surgeries and for his actions in combat, and Porter was awarded the Purple Heart Medal. He continues to serve the country as a civilian role as an Exercise Planner for the United States Army.” To see a video of Sgt. Porter receiving his prize

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