Strategy and Implementation Summary
The sales and marketing strategy is to move as quickly as possible into the eBay Motors classified listing service for heavy trucks and equipment. It has been shown that these market areas are presently not being actively pursued by the competition. We will maintain our lead and competitive advantage if we:
We will focus on surpassing our customers' expectations in every facet of our business.
Build a relationship-oriented business
We will build long-term relationships with customers, not single-visit deals.
Focus on target markets
We will focus our offerings proactively to the customers that are most profitable.
5.1 Competitive Edge
Clearly, our competitive edge is the experience and approach that our management team will bring to the table. We plan to utilize a proven business model that targeted the automobile industry and convert it to the heavy truck and equipment industry. With the maturity of eBay Motors and Truckbay being the first to market, we will grow exponentially as we fill a need in this market.
We will also keep abreast of the latest Search Engine Technology to maintain top ranking in our industry categories. Finally, our commitment to the entire user experience, striving to exceed our customers' expectations, will support a loyal following as new competitors join the market.
5.2 Sales Strategy
The marketing strategy discussed previously in this business plan will generate the desired sales leads. These leads will begin with a phone call or email to Truckbay. In addition, our Sales Team will proactively make calls to their respective assigned regions. Initially, we plan to divide North America into eight regions of responsibility (Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, North Central, South Central, West, Canada and Mexico). Team members will be provided with a contact database of heavy truck and equipment dealers in their area. This list will be acquired by Polk, the leading provider of list in our industry.
As mentioned, our Sales Team will be proactively contacting Dealers, Trucking Companies, Fleets, Finance Companies and individual owners of heavy trucks and equipment. We will support whatever level of service the customer requires with the objective to get their listings in our database. We will even have the ability to send a 3rd party inspector to their property and gather the data and take multiple pictures to achieve this goal.
To protect the company's long term viability, team members will be required to sign a limited non-compete agreement. In addition, we will invest in the infrastructure to maintain the integrity of our sales database. The company will provide each team member with a networked PC that will allow them to access the internet at high speeds. The Company database will be maintained by Salesforce.com, which will deter theft of information and keep the data clean. Each PC will include limited software to keep the initial investment low. All PCs will have the ability to print to a single laser printer.
With regard to our database of customers and prospects, it is essential that a consultative sales approach be adopted to ensure a thorough, organized, orderly approach for each prospect. Detailed notes will be kept on each client. Follow-up and persistence will pay off. This approach will allow the company tremendous flexibility in case of turnover. A new team member will have the ability to be quickly trained and instantly become a profit center by utilizing the existing contact database with detailed notes.
The typical sales position will consist of the following responsibilities:
- Proactively call 40-50 prospects per day.
- Assist clients in listing a minimum of 15 classifieds per day that go to auction.
- Qualify and enroll 5 Dealers to our full service inventory management package.
- By using historical eBay Motors data, match showroom inventory with highly successful eBay auctions and propose wording to our clients.
The Team Member compensation package will consist of the following earning options. The goal is to provide a quality, persistent salesperson the ability to earn $37,000 annually and includes incentives to achieve unlimited income potential.
- Team members will receive a straight 10% commission from a standard $160 listing.
- Closing a full service Dealer will earn the Team member 50% of the 1st month's fee along with a 5% per-listing commission.
- When a listing is sold on eBay Motors, the Team member will earn an additional $25.
- When the Sales Team reaches their collective monthly goals, each member will receive a $200 bonus and the Company will purchase lunch to be served in-house.
The goal of the draw/commission package is to fairly compensate each Team member for solid work ethic, while offering strong financial incentives to cultivate strong customer-centric ownership and maximize the revenue from each potential client. It requires additional energy to listen to each client every day. While some clients require more hand-holding than others, the Team member that "goes the extra mile" to achieve the ultimate goal, a sold listing, will be substantially rewarded.
The purpose of a Team concept versus the typical Salesforce is to cultivate a "true" team environment. Our mission statement clearly describes our focus to surpass the customer's expectation. What typically happens when a customer calls a company and their assigned salesperson is not immediately available? They are quickly passed on to voice mail or put on hold. This will not surpass our customer's expectations and they will become frustrated, hang-up and/or take their business elsewhere. This is not an option.
Therefore, our customer experience will be much different. If an assigned Team member is not available to immediately speak with our clients, the individual that picks up the phone call before the end of the second ring will take ownership of the call. They will be trained and provided access to the client's information so that the customer is "wowed" by the ending results. While the interim Team member will not receive any commission for "going the extra mile," they will be able to confidently expect the same treatment of their clients in the inevitable event they are unavailable. This is a main reason why we will have a monthly team bonus structure. This positive office environment cultivates a win-win solution. If we do not master these skills, someone else will.
To assist in the hiring process, we will offer the best, qualified candidates a base salary of $2,500 per month. Each assigned cubicle will be treated as a separate profit center for the company. The office structure will be an open call center with cubicles that cultivate active energy and positive synergies for the Team members. Cab Trucker has a successful history in building and managing a team environment as a manager.
5.2.1 Sales Forecast
As the following table shows, the company plans to deliver sales of approximately $824,000 in the first year, $1,290,000 in the second year, and $1,660,000 in the third year plan implementation.
5.3 Marketing Strategy
Truckbay will position itself as the online classified listing solution for the heavy truck and equipment industry in North America. By utilizing the latest Search Engine technology and purchasing specific ad words to secure top placement, we will gain immediate recognition as an industry leader. We also plan to secure a substantial market share of all eBay Motors' commercial vehicle listings. We will be consistently recognized as a leader, with the exposure eBay auctions, stores and keyword searches provide within this leading marketplace.
Currently, eBay has over 62 Million registered users, 7 Million unique visitors each month and eBay Motors is by far their most profitable division, bringing in over 30% of their revenue. Last year, eBay Motors handled over 600,000 vehicle transactions, averaging 1,600 trades per day. It is estimated that eBay Motors is helping sell 1 car per minute, clearly making them the top automotive seller in the world.
For the first time in eBay's history, it has hired sales staff to actively contact used car dealers and promote the site. Truckbay will also have a Sales Team that proactively contacts the heavy truck and equipment market. Ford has recently advised its dealers that the number of vehicles being sold sight-unseen prior to sale has risen above 5%. Our goal is to be first to market for trucks, and offer the best service to this large niche market.
Our first milestone will be to secure $475,000 in capital from the private market. 19% of the business will be available with a minimum investment of $25,000 securing 1%. We have allocated 2 months to gather these funds; however, this may be accelerated as interest has already been expressed by outside investors.
After the holidays, we plan to begin building the technical infrastructure and the eBay Motors API integration. Concurrently, we will redesign the website to improve upon the existing structure. A main focus will be to eliminate the password requirement in order to access the existing inventory. There will continue to be a private "Dealer-only" link which will be password-protected and include wholesale pricing.
Once the website is complete, the core search engine technology will be cloned to the homepage of 10 new affiliate websites that target a smaller, popular niche market. While these websites will look entirely different, they will ultimately provide filtered search results from the main website database or information for typical Search Engine questions from the consumer. In addition, there will be links to all other Truckbay websites on each homepage navigating users to areas of interest. This will not be transparent to the average Web surfer.
We estimate the design and development will take no more than 3 months. Assuming we stay on schedule, we will try to secure office space and begin the process of recruiting and training a Sales Team for a March 1, 2005 launch date. The first month will be used to perfect the website functionality and training. In the 2nd quarter of 2005, we will begin aggressively contacting target markets and selling our services. If our marketing survey results are still valid, we expect rapid acceptance. We will offer a 7-day money back guarantee to any prospects that may be unsure.
The Company believes that activity breeds activity, so we plan to initiate numerous advertising campaigns to drive high volume for the first year. This includes selective pay-per-click ad words on Google, Yahoo, MSN and Overture.