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Taking care of business and customers

By Kate Swanson

Power 50 dealer supports its communities

When it comes to reaching customers, in-person and online, Sky Powersports has built up many years of experience. From dealership events to a highly successful email campaign, this dealership group knows just what to do to keep its customers coming back.

Sky Powersports, a 2015 Powersports Business Power 50 dealer, has multiple locations across the state of Florida, including Port Richey, Lakeland, Lake Wales and Longwood. The dealerships offer Indian, Kawasaki, Polaris, Suzuki, Victory and Yamaha among its locations. The most recent editions have been Sky Powersports of North Orlando and Indian Motorcycle of Lakeland, which both opened in fall of 2015. The original location, Sky Powersports of Lake Wales, opened in 1981.

Sky Powersports’ owner Roc Northey is a GSA 20 group chairman and advisor, a position that he says helps him improve his dealerships across the board. “By being in a 20 group, it allows me to see how other dealers around the country are running their business. If anything they are doing will work in my dealerships, then we will implement it into ours,” Northey said. In addition to trading best business practices, Northey added that looking at each dealership’s numbers can show where dealerships need to improve.

Sky Powersports of Lake Wales was the original location to open in 1981. This dealership was recognized by Polaris as Florida’s largest dealer of Polaris products in 2014.

Sky Powersports of Lake Wales was the original location to open in 1981. This dealership was recognized by Polaris as Florida’s largest dealer of Polaris products in 2014.

Sky Powersports’ mission for the past 35 years has been to provide the best possible customer experience in sales, service, F&I and PG&A. “We first earn our customers’ trust and loyalty at the time of the sale. Then we maintain our customers’ trust and loyalty when they come in for parts and service. … We work hard to be able to offer the customer a good price and a fair deal,” said Ken Christensen, who serves as the marketing director at Sky Powersports of Lake Wales.

While all of the group’s locations strive to offer monthly events in house, the overall focus is to stay engaged with their communities. Sky Powersports of Lake Wales is a member of its local Chamber of Commerce and continues to support its community.

“Our community philosophy is that we consider ourselves as part of our community. We try to support local high school organizations, like Future Farmers of America, the cheerleading squad, etc. with donations and raffle items,” Christensen said. “When approached for assistance for individuals, we try to help out.”

With such success, it’s understandable that these dealerships have not only been recognized by Powersports Business. In 2014, the Lake Wales location was recognized by Polaris as Florida’s largest dealer of Polaris products, and Sky Powersports of Lakeland was named a Polaris VIP. Christensen added that at the Lake Wales location, Polaris off-road vehicles have been among their top-selling units. The accolades continue not only from Polaris, but from Yamaha and Suzuki as well. The Port Richey dealership was named a 2014 VIP Yamaha Watercraft dealer, and Lake Wales has earned a Suzuki service award.

Between monthly customer appreciation events and partnering with charities, Sky Powersports works to give back to the communities that surround each dealership.

Between monthly customer appreciation events and partnering with charities, Sky Powersports works to give back to the communities that surround each dealership.

On the marketing front, Sky Powersports also uses an email campaign to draw customers into its stores. In 2014, the dealership made a large shift to online marketing and social media promotion. “We are presently engaging in daily Facebook promotions, news and tips at all stores,” Christensen added.

Since that time, the dealership has also added other platforms, including Google+, Twitter and Instagram.

The Lake Wales location’s primary promotions are completed using 70 percent email blasts, 20 percent advertising in local newspapers and 10 percent on social media outlets. “We have an extensive email base that grows continually. Once a week we send out an email campaign that incorporates eye-catching colors, current design techniques and great prices on both new and used motorcycles, ATVs, side-by-sides and watercraft,” Christensen said. “Since January 2014, over 1,600 people open these emails every week, which is more than 6,000 a month, and in 2014, we had over 130,000 potential customers open our e-mail.”

From the 15 percent open rate, Christensen said roughly about 16,000 people, or 10 percent, click through to the dealership’s website.

At the end of the day, Sky Powersports holds a commitment to constantly improve and refine its business practices to best cater to its customers. “Outstanding customer service is our goal,” Christensen said. “We strive to achieve it by simply treating customers how we would like to be treated ourselves.”

 

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