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How Not To Sell A Motorcycle Via The Internet

28
March
2004
  Posted at 09:50:31 AM
  File under  Opinion
  Author: Mike Werner
  Location: Paris, France

Here's an interesting story that has been going on for a few months. I've read about it in a few motorcycle forums, but it has turned into a real "eye-catcher".

The story is one that has been told billions of times in the past - The eternal struggle between a dissatisfied customer and the supplier's response. But there's a twist; the story is being told on the Internet.

The customer buys a motorcycle for a salvage sales outfit. The supplier has an attitude, doesn't respond to phone calls and, as has been demonstrated by the customer (photos and emails), has been lying. Nothing new, just part of doing business.

The difference is that the customer tried to contact the supplier on an Internet Discussion Forum since he wasn't replying to emails or phone calls. And here is the lesson for companies today. Never let it get to the internet, since the internet has a free flowing, easy to reach and massive eager audience. What starts out as a one-on-one relationship between a supplier and a customer, turns into millions of people listing-in to your discussion.

And with that comes the very, very bad and negative publicity. Before he knew what was happening, the salvage dealer has become infamous with not only almost every motorcycle discussion forum on the internet, but the story has been picked up with boats, cars, sports, and many other different websites. And you would have thought that this would have been enough for the motorcycle dealer. But no, he's suffering from CRI, and is still "fighting" the real issues.

Personally, I've noticed twice now when dealing with companies, the threat of taking it to the Internet is often enough to calm the companies down. In the old days (before the internet), the most someone could do was write to a newspaper, hoping that an editor would publish the letter. Today, publish it on a discussion forum, or "blog" about it, and soon millions will now about it.

I guess this is a good lesson, something that MBA schools should be teaching to new business graduates. The "net" can be great for marketing & sales, but it can also be your downfall! You need to realize that you're not in a one-on-one relationship anymore.

Click here to read the original discussion thread. It's a long thread....(WERA Discussion Website)





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