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Go Ahead and Wear It Out, It’s Your Issue

September 21, 2010
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The stylized thumbprint on the stark front cover of this issue may seem an odd choice. But I can assure you the graphic selection was purely intentional.

We could have gone a more traditional route with an altered photo or with cool icons as we have in past years. Perhaps a hand-drawn interpretation of the Sourcebook concept would have been in order. There are literally hundreds of ways this could have gone.

But the simple, straight-forward thumbprint was the best choice. Why?

Because the Sourcebook is your issue. The reams of data included here are all about you, specifically for you and directly from you. What better way to illustrate that point than with a very  human element, something that defines the uniqueness of each reader?

The thumbprint design also harkens back to some of my favorite reader phone calls and letters, explaining how happy they were to receive the latest Sourcebook because the old one had been worn through from use, the cover smeared by thumbprints.

Already the most comprehensive inside look at the North American tire industry, we’ve made the Sourcebook even better with the addition of exclusive research on consumer buying hab­its. Thanks to our partners at Market­place Insights, we offer access to real-world feedback from recent tire and service buyers, trending data that shows their loyalty to tire brands and stores, why they buy the tires they choose, and, most importantly, how they work through the tire buying process.

What we have been able to present here is just a small sample of the data Marketplace Insights collects and analyzes for its tire dealer and tire company customers, and we are truly excited to be the first industry publication to deliver this invaluable information.

In the Market Profile section, you can see first-hand the impact of the economic downturn, the sharp falloff in tires shipped and the direct effect that had on dealer channel marketshares. Plus, you can track the shares of the top OE and replacement segment sizes, how independent dealers stack up against other channels, and the continuing shift toward UHP tires.

Our annual Dealer Profile Study continues to deliver one-of-a-kind data on North American tire dealers, the size and scope of their businesses, their worries and concerns, how they source tire and service products and where they – you – see future opportunities.

Always a point of conversation, this year’s Brand Study results also provide an interesting view of the impact the economic calamity has had on our in­dustry. From a dealer’s perspective – the Brand Study is, after all, your opinion on the tire brands you regularly sell – major brands tended to weather the storm better than others, though dealers were not pleased about fill rates or other aspects of how tiremakers aid their brands. And, for the first time, we look at how tire fuel efficiency is viewed by dealers.

Finally, the Sourcebook is home to the industry’s largest, most comprehensive Buyer’s Guide, a soup-to-nuts list of tires, parts, tools and equipment, and service companies that serve the U.S. and Canadian tire industries. Nearly 1,000 individual companies are listed, along with contact info, giving you a one-stop-shop for all your business needs.

So take your time and enjoy this issue – today and through the next 12 mon­ths. Thumb through the pages, digest the data, think about how it impacts your business, and develop your future attack plans.

From you, about you and for you, that’s our Sourcebook!