General Motors must concentrate on building cars and controlling expenses. It must quit making bogus excuses for why it is losing market share.
To fix GM, you have to get to the root of the problem. GM continually ignores its customers and its dealers. At times, GM appears oblivious to the world around it.
Since the loss of Oldsmobile, we are a Pontiac and Subaru dealership in Helena, Mont. GM's general marketing is fragmented and horrific. It speaks to no one. There is no call to action. There is no consistency or constant recognizable theme. It is never given time to work. The marketing program of the week is just that: here today, gone tomorrow.
My favorite GM marketing programs of late have been the launch of the Pontiac Solstice and G8. Most of the marketing dollars were spent before GM had any inventory on the ground.
People came to the dealership to see both of those cars. There was some excitement for the first time in a long time over new GM product. We didn't have it and couldn't get it.
Those were real customers. They wanted to buy a new car, and you can bet they bought one. But in most cases it was not a GM car. By the time the product hit the ground, it was old news. Moreover, the GM media blitz for the product was long over.
If we dealers did business like that, we would all be out of business.
Cultural change at GM is long overdue. GM must get back to the basics of building cars and marketing them so we dealers can sell them and cultivate long-term GM customers.