Bruce Saulnier

Editor in chief of Dealerscope

To strengthen their cases with retailers and end-users, warranty companies are shoring up efforts on all fronts - marketing, customer support and sales training - while driving home the perennial "peace of mind" message the category has been built on.

Sales of extended warranties, despite a few glitches right before last year’s fourth quarter, seem to have stabilized going into the new year, due mainly to providers that have ramped up dealer programs and retailers who have discovered new strategies and leveraged market trends to push the coverage.

Extended service plan companies came to the 2008 CES in “response mode,” offering freshened programs and strategies and “green” initiatives that dovetail with the environmentally conscious bent exhibited of late by the manufacturing side of the industry. Aiming to make warranty sales an easier proposition on the self-directed sales floor, AMT Service Corp. has launched the Protect-it Card program. The turnkey pre-packaged-product program, says AMT’s president, Bruce Saulnier, is directed at smaller retailers and also at e-commerce sites. It is being presented in gift-card style on information-rich hangtags, and will be administered end to end by AMT -- from program evaluation and

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