Benchmarking – Be Yourself

When I first started in the Buy Here-Pay Here industry, I always looked over my shoulder to see what everybody else was doing.  Call it insecurity or just the need to know that our business was unique.  I collected every brochure I could that detailed my competitors’ offerings.  I felt I was always the underdog and had to be less expensive and more aggressive.  It took a few profitable years to begin focusing more on our own strategy than our competitor.  As Oscar Wilde once said, “Be Yourself, every one else is already taken.” (Click Here to Read More)

Grow Smart

During High School, I started painting houses in my neighborhood during the summers.  I would hire my unemployed friends and soon I had several crews working.  My supportive father greatly assisted in my entrepreneurial venture’s growth.  I saved money to reinvest in the business but I really needed outside capital to fuel my growth and this is where my father stepped in.  I soon realized the importance of having access to capital and managing leverage. (Click here to Learn More)

Smart Decisions are Data Driven

Baseball’s overwhelming reporting of thousands of team and player statistics continues to amaze me.  Does all this data really matter and make a player or a team more productive? With baseball season in full swing, I was able to catch a recent game and I watched the scoreboard flash number after number.  It seems every year there are new ways to measure success.   The MLB acknowledges this change in an article on their website; “The entire language of evaluating player success has indeed changed, from batting average and RBIs to newer-age statistics like Weighted On-base Average.   While these metrics can sound like a mouthful to the casual fan, they’re simply the next step in evaluating which players help a team accrue the most wins and avoid the most losses”. As I think about the Buy Here Pay Here industry, I recall listening to a speaker years ago about a philosophy known as the balanced scorecard.  I liked the concept and have implemented components here at SDA with great success. Read More...

Get With The Program (Capital Program)

Most Buy Here-Pay Here dealers use an outside capital provider to help grow company or a third-party capital provider specializing in our industry. With the high costs of vehicles, dealers with their lots and growing their business than those self-funding. There are dozens of options in the marketplace with a mix of programs that should be matched to your needs. names and terms, but the basis of the programs in the marketplace are often similar. The differences come in the advance amounts, terms and the structure of the payback. Knowing the program’s pros and cons really point for one dealer can be a negative point for another. Read More

Stay the Course

In the 30 plus years I have been involved in the BHPH industry, I have never seen delinquency rates so low. AFSA members who lend to subprime borrowers’ report that delinquencies overall are at record lows. Many dealers have this false sense of security that robust collections will continue indefinitely. To completely analyze this phenonium let’s look at the key reasons collections are going so well. Read More….

Driven by the Numbers

Fundraising campaigns do that all the time – I know you’ve seen the big sign in your church lobby with the thermometer graphic showing progress. Everyone gets involved when you post month-end results of new accounts that have been added toward your annual goal. Keep it simple and don’t try to measure everything. Read More…

Technology for the Non-Technical

I must admit I’m not the most technical guy in the world. I do, however, understand the importance of implementing technology in our workplace and our everyday lives. Listen, I held on to my BlackBerry as long as I could and I had a pager longer than most. And I mastered the fax machine that now serves as a large paperweight in the office. But change happens – especially with technology. Even non-technical guys like myself need to implement the latest in technology to stay competitive in this changing environment. A good business practice is to always surround yourself with people who have the skills you’re lacking. In my case, those are technical skills. Learn More

Golden Rules of Business

People do business with people they like.   This fundamental rule of business has been repeated many times – because it is true.   There is another rule of business that is equally as powerful; “People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel.”  Living by these golden rules will bring repeat business, keep customers happy, and translate to higher profits. And these rules apply to collections if you have the right plan. Read More

Learn to Fish

As I think about providing BHPH dealers with advice on securing capital for their business, I am reminded by the old proverb we have heard many times; “Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”  This proverb sticks out as I view SDA’s role as a teacher on how to successfully use a capital provider as opposed to just providing dealers capital.  I would like to share some lessons learned after 30 years of providing millions of dollars in capital to BHPH dealers. Read More

Increasing Referrals

In a time when it seems almost everything has changed, there is one thing critical to business success that has never changed – the value of a referral.  Every sales and marketing expert will tell you that referrals are one of the top means to generating sales and growth.  The reason it is so discussed and written about is simple – it works!  (Read More….)

Navigating the Road Ahead

BHPD Dealer Magazine December 2020 –

As we wind down one of the most chaotic years in history, we need to think and prepare for the road ahead. There is not a soul on earth who can accurately predict 2021. The only things that are certain are change and unpredictability. Still, as unpredictable as 2020 was, there are many positive aspects we should factor into our plans for next year. (Read More….)

Customer Training

When we think of training, we naturally think about training our employees – whether they are the sales force, collectors or office staff. While training employees is critical – we often forget the need to train our customers. Buy Here Pay Here customers need to know about the payment process, service issue procedures, and key contact information after the sale.  (Read more….)

Sprained or Broken

At 6’4”, I have an advantage at sports – especially basketball.  As I age the simple things get harder.  Back in the Fall a routine rebound left me with a painful injury and I’m not sure if I sprained my ankle or something is broken.  Regardless, it will take time to recover. I share this as the news continues to swirl in the business world and within our own Buy Here Pay Here industry.  Are we broken or just sprained? Regardless, it took time to recover and we will have to do things differently. (Read More…)

Sell for Pride

There is an old saying in golf: “Drive for show, putt for dough.” For those not familiar with golf, it’s a reminder that while your drives off the tee might be impressive, putting is the real key and usually determines who collects the winner’s check. In the BHPH industry, our saying might be, “Sell for pride, collect for profit.” Like golf, much has been written about the skills and best practices of collections. Topics range from account aging analysis, GPS technology and related finance companies to the basics of hiring and training. (Read More…)

Interview with Gary Page

In April 1990, Gary Page took a chance on his dream. Using $10,000 he’d saved while working as an investment banker fresh out of business school and an equal amount from a loan acquired using his money as collateral, Page founded SDA Inc., as a floorplan company serving dealers in the Atlanta area. Thirty years later, SDA has grown into one of the largest providers of capital to Buy Here-Pay Here dealers nationwide. (Read More…)