Have you read the news headlines today?

Harley-Davidson is shutting down Buell and selling off MV Agusta.

Personally I think this is a bad move on H-D's part. The sport bike scene is becoming larger and it is the way many young people come in to our community.

Eric Buell gave a very moving interview on video

I can only imagine the people this decision is going to impact.

I have a question to ask everyone here.
What are your priorities for spending money these days?

Many advertisers are saying business is horrible - no one is buying. We here at the paper are facing another round of advertisers who are going bankrupt, parring back and laying off people and canceling or reducing their advertising. It is the third time the motorcycle industry is going through a shake up in 7 years. Only the strongest of the strong will be left standing after this round, of that I am pretty sure.

So - where are you spending your money and why.
It is hugely important for our advertisers and myself to understand what your priorities are right now.

How important is customer service in the equation? Do great prices mean you will put up with horrid service? I am hearing some horrible stories regarding extremely poor customer service experiences. A few are down right horrifying.
So help us out and tell us where you spend your money and why.

If you are blessed enough to be riding today - PLEASE ride like everyone around you is blind and can not see you.

Belt Drive Betty
National VP AIM-Can

Post a Comment

  1. Anonymous5:48 PM

    As for advertisers.... everyone is cutting back Some people have taken rollbacks to keep jobs. That is the case. especially up in Oil Country. It is the way it will be for a while yet. The fact your still printing. Good on you. I remember when you just had 3 or 4 and only two pages. Youve come a long way baby. Dig deep in the brain. You will get outstanding ideas. "

  2. Anonymous5:50 PM

    Handsome Dave
    People will spend their money where their priorities are. My neighbour, also a rider, and I used to kid around about how we hadn't bought new jeans for 6 months, yet had spent lots on the bike. Heck, I used to drive around in a $600.00 truck and a $20 000.00 bike. I say, bring on the hard times; it will weed out the part time riders and divide... Read More the wheat from the chaff. Heck, I just bought a heated jacket liner a couple of weeks ago. I balked on the full face and opted instead for a neoprene face mask (couldn't find the one I bought the year before) As for service? I do most myself and with a little help from my friends.

  3. Anonymous5:51 PM

    I agree with Dave....weed them out!

  4. Anonymous5:51 PM

    Mike Shooter Cosovan
    dave hit the nail on the head..!

  5. Anonymous5:51 PM

    Marc Aalbers
    Dave=gentleman and a scholar,,,,,damned few of us left........

  6. Anonymous5:52 PM

    Dave=gentleman and a scholar, you have just told me not to try and get a company that sells jeans as a advertiser, but you didn't come up with any suggestions who I should talk to about advertising with us. Did you shop around for your heated vest, or did you use a recommendation of a fellow rider ? Did you go for the cheapest or most expensive?
    I thank you for you input as I am having a he// of a time getting last years advertisers to resign this year.
    3Wheel, BC Sales Rep.

  7. Anonymous5:52 PM

    Michelle Shields
    That's a pretty elitist attitude I am reading here. Most everybody I know got into motorcycling on whatever machine and worked their way up, they didn't start at the top. Get whatever advertisers you can, I certainly hope these few do not speak for the masses.

  8. Anonymous5:53 PM

    Just like the car dealers, they have decided to stick with the trusted and true. When the money comes back, so will the Buell or whatever they will call it then

  9. Anonymous5:53 PM

    As for advertisers.... everyone is cutting back Some people have taken rollbacks to keep jobs. That is the case. especially up in Oil Country. It is the way it will be for a while yet. The fact your still printing. Good on you. I remember when you just had 3 or 4 and only two pages. Youve come a long way baby. Dig deep in the brain. You will get outstanding ideas. "

  10. Anonymous5:53 PM

    Handsome Dave
    Michelle, How did you turn this into a Harley vs, other motorcycles debate? You don't have to ever defend the brand you ride. Seems to me, it's always people that choose not to ride a harley that are either defending their choice or making excuses for the brand of bike they ride. Relax...this thread has nothing to do with brand. And, no, we are not... Read More the masses...that's a part of the appeal of riding for some. ANyway, There are a number of motorcycles that are faster, cheaper, more reliable, better fuel economy than a was harleys that you were referring to when you commented on "Make your way up" wasn't it? Now, I have wasted enough space turning a thread that has NOTHING to do with" my Brand is better than your brand" contest.

  11. Anonymous5:53 PM

    Handsome Dave
    I can't shed any light on who to advertise to or target. It was cold, I wanted a heated vest with sleeves, I went to the local shop and bought one.
    I wish advertisers could see the value in paying for ads. I tried a number of years ago to get advertisers to buy space in Alberta Motor Sports Magazine. Even well-heeled retailers that I knew and had dealt with for years would balk at the prices.

  12. Anonymous5:54 PM

    Michelle Shields
    Actually comment had nothing to do with what you ride, could care less, was referring to the weeding out of the part time riders and the wheat from the chaff

  13. Lori Linwood
    We are very fortunate that my partner has owned his bike since 1986. Most of the work done on it is done by him. She still runs like a dream!And looks almost new! Right now, our money goes to bills and the bare necessities of life, utilities and food, and keeping our four wheels running so we can get to work. Times are tough, and yes, spending is ... Read Moretight. I want to get my motorcycle license, and a little 250, but that will have to wait. In the meantime, I do get out with my partner, as a passenger. The leathers we wear are old and show the wear of time. Our new helmets were a gift from my partner's sister who works at a motorcycle retailer here in the niagara region.

    As for Customer Service....that is what I do, and I tell you it is THE MOST IMPORTANT PART OF MAKING ANY SALE!!!! Without good customer service, you might as well lock the doors and walk away. I can't tell you how many times I have not purchased because of poor customer service. I have even thought about putting together a presentation to show customer service reps how to do their job to the very best of the Customer's expectations! I have been doing customer service for over 20 years. I know from feed back and my own personal experience as a customer how very important it is to be met with a smile, a calm voice, manners, excellent support and a helping hand.

  14. Anonymous5:54 PM

    Belt Drive Betty
    Thank you Lori - truly out of all of the posts here yours is probably the most concise and actually answers my questions.

    I have been trying to explain to a number of businesses that customer service or the lack there of is their biggest problem.

  15. Anonymous5:55 PM

    Lori Linwood
    My pleasure!

  16. Anonymous5:55 PM

    Poet P Poet
    If you know Dave like I know him, you wouldn't call him a gentleman, never mind a scholar. lol.

    I most certainly have to agree with Lori.
    My business is 100% Customer Service based. I am doing services for free these days because some of my clients can't afford to pay. So where does that get me? Deeper in the hole on the face of it, but on the flipside, it gets me more business. Just yesterday I received a thank you card with a $50 Tim's card in it. ... Read More
    I have also gotten calls from people that said she recommended me. And all it took was to come back to her house and correct a problem under warranty, free of charge.
    NOPE, I'm not gloating..........Just laying out how Customer Service can get more business by word of mouth.
    In the past, I have done work for free, because of health issues that could come up for my clients if I didn't.

    My company has had to scale way back on advertising in order to make ends meet.
    On a personal level, I have had to do the same.
    Much as I like KD, having it 3 times a week gets stale real quick.
    The recession has forced many people into bankruptcy in Alberta, as well as the rest of the country. I do what many companies won't do. I will call people back after hours, on weekends, and holidays. I do not charge people after hours call out fees, because that is punishing people for having a problem.
    I have had to get innovative with the services I provide, and how to get more people to notice my company.

    And it all comes down to one thing, and one thing only....Customer Service and Satisfaction.

    Ok, I'm done my rant.

  17. Anonymous5:55 PM

    Graham Ackeral
    Well, as a Parts Tech at a CT here in Edmonton, a lot of people are buying the cheap parts. As for buying parts for my bike or pickup, quality wins every time no matter the price. You get what you pay for. Customer Service for me is critical, I want to know that whoever is selling me parts, is giving the same kind of service they expect to get. A ... Read Morebad experience will result in me not buying from that company and letting others know abnout it. On the other side of the coin, if I get good service, I let people know too. Other people opinions about something I'm looking to buy is good to know aas they have already tried the part or clothing and have an idea if it is good or not.

    My bike has a couple of dents and needs a new paint job but will have to save for it as I don't make much.

  18. Anonymous5:56 PM

    Brian Oxtoby
    This whole Buell getting the axe from H-D is not a huge surprise to me , Is it a bad move on HDs part , yes i believe it is but as i feel Buell was making big leaps & strides in the product. So i have to ask this .....If the harley dealers were a little more supportive of the Buell Brand and actually gave a shit and sold & serviced them would Buell be where it is today ?? There is so many dealers out there that wouldnt have nothing to do with the Buells .