In a time of pandemic worries, Scott Smith sees opportunity in selling peace of mind.
With unemployment topping 13 percent and tens of millions of Americans unsure about their next paycheck, few have the stomach for unexpected and pricey transmission and engine repairs.
Smith, president of Smith Automotive Group outside of Atlanta, is turning that worry into a profitable reassurance.
The Nissan dealership, which employs 357 people and sold about 7,000 new and used vehicles last year, is pitching service contracts to customers as a hedge against major vehicle repair bills. Vehicle service contracts pick up where manufacturer warranties run out.
As much of the economy began shutting down over the coronavirus concerns in March, companies began issuing pink slips to conserve cash. Around that time, Smith noticed what he called an "explosion" of TV commercials hawking insurance and warranty products.
"I've never seen so many CarShield commercials," he said, referring to the service contract marketer. "It shows people are anxious."