Excerpt From the Article "Building Brand Loyalty Between Manufacturers and Dealers". Jan/Feb 2010 Issue. Page48.
United Trailers hosted approximately 20 dealers from across the United States and Canada the day before the NATDA Trade Show. The meetings covered over 95 topics, including operations and quality, new products, sales strategy, marketing, and tips for growing a dealership. To enhance the dealer’s experience, United brought in guest speakers from several different vendors, from Dexter Axle to Pure Coatings Group and more. The full day of meetings came to a close with a cocktail reception where dealers could talk one-on-one with everyone in attendance. Mark Osvold of Pine River Sales enjoyed the chance to talk face-to-face with people who build the product as well as with other dealers. “It was nice to see the product first hand and to meet other dealers and gain insight as to how they do things and what works for them,” he said.
While this was the first time United hosted their dealer meeting in conjunction with the NATDA Trade Show, it was not their first stab at an annual meeting. For the past nine years, United Trailers has held annual dealer meetings and has seemingly reaped the benefits. Todd Bontrager, president of United Trailers, says United understands “it is a great opportunity to open the lines of communication and receive feedback and direction from the dealers.” Dealers concurred that the meetings were a large factor in their success with United. Jim Mickunas, president of Majestic Trailer and Hitch, was happy that United incorporated their dealer meeting into the same weekend as the NATDA Trade Show that he was already attending. Mickunas said, “One of the main reasons United has been a great partner for over 15 years is they are constantly looking for ways to improve their product and making us more profitable. We looked at every enclosed trailer manufacturer at the show and it only confirmed to us that United is the best value in the industry.”