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Bankston’s Kawasaki/KTM – Daytona Beach, FL – May 16, 2005

May 19, 2005
Filed under Power Profiles

BANKSTON’S KAWASAKI/KTM

CONTACT
3566 West International Speedway Boulevard
Daytona Beach, FL 32124-1026
386/238-1091
www.bankstonka.com

OWNER
Jeff Bankston

BUSINESS PROFILE
Bankston built the dealership in 2001, 30 minutes from the Atlantic Ocean and five miles west of the Speedway. Carries Kawasaki (full line) and KTM. Largest-selling segments are cruiser and sportbike, followed by ATV. Nine employees.

GREATEST CONCERN
“Legislation is my greatest concern,” says general manager Mark Crozier. “There are so many regulations on watercraft now. And there have always been so many on ATVs, like age limits and what we as dealers can do. There are no places to ride off-road bikes anymore because the government has gotten its hands on those areas. There are many tree-huggers out there, so it’s really hard for us to find a place to ride off-road.”

WHAT’S HOT?
Crozier says that, pre-season, customers have been asking about the three-passenger Jet Ski STX-12F (1200cc) and STX-15F (1500cc) PWC. Hot sportbikes include the Kawasaki ZX and Ninja lineups, while the entire Vulcan cruiser range sells well. The dealership recently took on KTM off-road motorcycles, and has ordered a broad spectrum of models. In PG&A, “We sell a lot of apparel, especially Joe Rocket jackets, Kawasaki apparel, and motocross gear.”

CUSTOMER BUYING TRENDS
Bankston’s clientele covers a broad span in the 25-to-60-year-old age bracket, with a personal income of $20,000 to $40,000. “I’ve seen a lot more financing nowadays,” notes Crozier, “in part because there are more OEM finance programs. And people are accessorizing more at time of purchase, especially on motorcycles versus ATVs and PWC. They’re less likely to buy the bike, then come back later and accessorize.”

PARTS AND SERVICE
Bankston’s has one service manager, two service technicians, and two parts salespeople. Crozier says that the dealership has made no large changes lately in either its parts or service departments.

PROMOTIONAL HOME RUNS
Bankston’s places advertising on cable TV, on billboards, through direct mail, and in both local and national print (racing programs, local shopper guides, Cycle Trader, and Cycle News). “On the third Saturday of each month we hold a customer appreciation day,” says Crozier. “Several motorcycle clubs meet at our dealership around 10 o’clock, and we serve them coffee and donuts. Then they go for a ride and return by noon or 12:30. We have a cookout with free hotdogs, hamburgers, and soft drinks.” The dealership has not yet held a similar event for ATV or PWC customers. Bankston’s also supports several local road and off-road racers.

WORDS OF ADVICE
Crozier says that the best advice he was given is, “You have to be friendly-customer service is number one. As my boss, Jeff Bankston, tells me, ‘We’re into shaking hands and kissing babies.’ As long as the customer is comfortable and treated nicely and with respect, he’ll definitely come back. You know how it is: one bad apple spoils the whole bunch. Once a person is dissatisfied, he tells 10 other people. So you have to make everybody as pleased and comfortable as you possibly can.”

—Julie Filatoff

If you would like to share your story with the readers of Powersports Business, please contact Julie Filatoff at filatoff@cybermesa.com.

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