Dealers selling under 40 Horsepower Compact Tractors must have looked at the recent Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) Flash Report and collectively shook their heads...saying, "Told you so, the compact tractor market is dead! Now, what am I going to do with these things?"
For the record, the AEM report released this past week reflects sales of equipment for the month of February and it said under 40HP tractors tanked by 20%. A big number...but we think meaningless. In other words....dealers should now ramp up their marketing efforts...not slow down.
We posted about compact tractors back in December and if you wish, you can read that post here. We're stickin' to it. In addition, we think this report tells us what we know:
- Dealers are already stocked and because manufacturers have promoted "just in time" delivery...why buy in the winter tractors you are not going to sell until April?
- Many more players are entering the market. We hear yet another player will arrive from Europe within the next six months.
- There is a sense of "jitters" (oh my!) in the market. John Deere changed their advertising agency relationship this past year, Montana tractors last week changed internal direction by shaking up their leadership and a host of other companies are fighting for market share. Kubota? Adding product.
- Compact tractor manufacturers have a serious disconnect with their more traditional dealers. Translation...the dealers still don't "get it" while manufacturers are (after five years) still teaching.
But, that is only our take.... What say you? If you have a stake in this market...we'd love to hear your thoughts.
Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications where you can see our work...or make contact with us by clicking here.