When Tyrepress.com spoke with general manager at GiTi Tire UK, Brian McDermott and Marketing manager & European brand manager, Jenny Leeson about the new GT Radial Performance Centre initiative – supported by Micheldever – the first thing to be noted was the dynamic presentation materials, led by the latest version of the brand’s marketing manual. Where before, the relatively young brand was represented by a modest A5 booklet, the latest edition, ring-bound to allow for anticipated new products and announcements is “streamlined for personal selling”, says Leeson.
The enhancements to the GT Radial Performance Centre (GTPC) programme for independent garages were announced by GiTi Tire and Micheldever in August, with a significant three-year growth plan. Micheldever chief executive, Paul Fox claims the programme is “the most exciting brand proposition in the UK tyre business today”, and McDermott says this enthusiasm, and the additional “pleasing” presence of Micheldever chairman, Michael Boxford and wholesale director, Alan Baldwin, shows the joint commitment of manufacturer and wholesaler in building the GT Radial brand.
Micheldever has also appointed a dedicated GT Radial brand manager, Matt Horscroft to help continue its development. In front of area sales managers and the vehicle main agent team, Fox reaffirmed his statement with a significant three-year growth plan to boost the number of GTPCs and units sold, saying all figures were “deliverable”.
Talking T&A through the support measures put in place by the enhanced GTPC initiative, McDermott explained the range of promotional materials – including plasma screens, petrol pump advertising, liveried courtesy cars and billboards – are to be accessed through a monthly fund related to average monthly units sold.
This improved “Passport to Profit scheme” is designed to increase footfall and profits through tailor-made marketing initiatives, as well as training, merchandising, ETC events at Mira, described by McDermott as “probably one of the most powerful tools we’ve got”, and a broadened lifetime warranty, which has been extended from passenger car to include 4x4 and light commercial vehicle tyres.
Another reason for GT Radial’s keenness to work so closely with Micheldever in enhancing the GTPCs is the standard of in-house training the manufacturer perceives at its distributor. With dedicated training facilities around the country, McDermott and Leeson both expressed the company’s desire “to be a part of that process”, connecting the producer to the end seller through the distribution partner. The extension of these relationships is not purely down to increasing GT Radial unit sales, McDermott says, but “about getting quality and sustainability” in the brand’s customers.
Presenting the brand proposition to Micheldever sales managers, Alan Baldwin said: “We are very excited by the partnership between Micheldever and the GiTi Group, two forward-thinking organisations with a commitment to service and quality. We are working together to provide our GTPCs with a powerful and unique selling proposition which will lead to sustainable growth for everyone involved in what is an increasingly crowded and competitive marketplace.”
McDermott added: “The GTPC programme has been developed to provide the independent tyre dealer with a truly compelling profit opportunity with one of the fastest developing tyre brands worldwide, boosted further by the full support from the UK’s largest independent wholesaler and distributor.
“With Passport to Profit there are numerous opportunities for every GT Radial seller to be supported locally… We will deliver exceptional products and service backed up with a real opportunity for business building and profit.”
To ignore the old adage about books and covers, the latest manual to support the Micheldever Tyre Services exclusive brand, GT Radial says something about the support the brand is now receiving.