The Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance welcomed more than 100 sales and marketing professionals last week to San Antonio for a fresh take on the group’s annual Sales and Marketing Forum.
The event brought together key personnel from Alliance shareholder member companies for three days of informative seminars, collaborative roundtable discussions and special keynote speakers.
“This meeting exceeded all expectations,” said Tyler Reeves, director of marketing for Bennett Auto Supply. “We included more emphasis on our people and improving them. The variety of speakers and classes put our team in a better position to win.”
According to the Alliance, the meeting included a strong lineup of industry speakers and outside perspectives to spark new ideas and new ways of thinking about customer relationships. Arthur Greeno, Chik-Fil-A owner and operator, Guinness World Record Holder, entrepreneur and author, delivered a “REMARKable Sales and Marketing” talk with emphasis on the need to deliver messaging efforts and personal interactions that customers will “remark” about.
Tom Shay of Profit Plus Solutions discussed “Lessons from a Postman,” utilizing multiple clips from the major motion picture starring Kevin Costner. The presentation laid out how sales people are the best tools to grow profitability.
Norman Rose, president of Excel Sales Consulting, addressed customer service and leadership best practices by focusing on teach the teacher-style training to improve team leader skills at all levels of distribution.
Christa Bryant, marketing director – specialty categories for Valvoline, presented marketing brand strategies and best practices. Bryant discussed bringing to market brands and services through multiple marketing channels and primed the audience for classes the following day.
“Christa is one of the best marketers in our industry,” said Shane Norman, vice president of marketing for Eastern Automotive. “Having the support of Valvoline behind our Forum and allowing Christa to address our people put this event over the top. This exemplifies our relationship with our manufacturing channel partners and is a unique way to leverage their talent and expertise.”
Alliance staff and area subject matter experts hosted classes ranging from sales and marketing to product seminars, information technologies and more. Attendees learned about exclusive national brands, how to deploy certified service center program elements, principles of photography and videography, launching social media campaigns and calendars as well as leadership best practices.
“I loved these classes,” said Dinah Volante with Moog Louisville Warehouse in Kentucky. “We really were able to get after it and make things happen. We covered a lot of ground. The next step is now to take what we did here and bring it back to our teams.”
Over the course of the three-day agenda, attendees were able to enjoy several networking opportunities including meeting with Alliance marketing services partners to reinforce the programs and support services available for their local sales and marketing efforts. In addition, evenings included some fun times together at receptions, dinners and nights on the town.
“This Forum provides us with an opportunity to strengthen our membership,” said JC Washbish, director of marketing for the Alliance. “We not only learn how to maximize our efforts but we do it together as one group, with the goal to be the best sales, marketing and service providers possible for our customers.”
The Alliance shareholder members will gather again this November in Las Vegas for the group’s exclusive Aftermarket Jackpot Convention Oct. 30 to Nov. 3 in conjunction with the 2018 AAPEX and SEMA Shows. The event will bring together more than 5,000 of professional technicians from across North America for a three-day conference at the Mirage Hotel & Convention Center. For more information, go to autovalue.com/convention.php or bumpertobumper.com/convention.php .