This is our 3rd in the series of the AMSOIL Dealer Story. We find it amazing how each an every dealer chose to get started and work at their business. We also are inspired by what has worked for them as well as noting the things that may not have worked so well.
LONG-TIME AMSOIL DEALER JUMP-STARTS BUSINESS IN RETIREMENT
New Dealers know they can work their businesses as much or as little as they choose. Direct Jobber Dan Ziegler of Hebron, Indiana proves it.
Ziegler first became a Dealer in 1980. “Back then, we didn’t have the programs we have today; we could only sell retail or register Dealers,” Ziegler said. “Today, the Preferred Customers, commercial accounts and the retail/installer accounts have changed the AMSOIL business and made it much better for everyone.” The wide range of opportunities for Dealers allows today’s new Dealers to develop a diverse – or specialized– Dealership. “Whatever floats your boat is what I tell my Dealers,” said Zieglar.
Ziegler is like many Dealers in that his first interest in AMSOIL products was driven by the costs and time of servicing his vehicles. “I had two vehicles and was changing oil and filters at least every four to five weeks,” Ziegler said. He and his wife, Estelle, were each going through a tank of gas every three to four days.
After a couple years, he replaced the family car with a “bare-bones” truck as his work vehicle. “Although this helped the finances somewhat by eliminating the constant repairs, it didn’t change the maintenance required to keep them in good running shape,” Ziegler said. “I was driving 30,000 miles each year.” Looking down the road he saw a cycle of maintenance, repairs and short-lived vehicles. “Back then, if you got 100,000 miles on a car, it was worn out,” Ziegler said.
The AMSOIL Opportunity
In the mid-1970s he started reading about synthetic motor oil in auto enthusiast magazines, and he dug up as much information as he could. In late 1979, Ziegler’s work partner introduced him to AMSOIL products and the opportunity to become a Dealer. “I bought my first oil change from him, and it was magic,” Ziegler said. “I immediately gained an extra day and a half of driving per tank of gas, my truck started easier and I didn’t need to change the oil for a year, or 25,000 miles, a big jump from the 2,500-mile interval I was doing with Valvoline*. I was so impressed I put that oil into everything I owned, and I asked (Dealer) Larry Boswell to be my sponsor and register me as an AMSOIL Dealer in February of 1980.”
Laying the Groundwork for Success
Ziegler jumped into his AMSOIL business. “I studied everything in (the Dealer kit) – put the tape into my tape player and I listened, read and memorized everything about the products. This was the starter training AMSOIL provided.”
He talked to friends and colleagues about his experience with AMSOIL products. His first order that March was for $1,500 – and it was “100 percent sold,” he said. Ziegler attended DJ meetings, read corporate newsletters and attended corporate meetings. “(The meetings) were invaluable, helping
me keep up with fresh information on the new products, learning how to use, demonstrate and explain the advantages and benefits of using AMSOIL versus conventional oil,” Ziegler said. “I gained experience meeting and talking to other Dealers at these meetings.”
Ziegler also hosted his own meetings, inviting friends and associates from work. He put on demonstrations. “The freeze box oil test demo was the best of them all,” Ziegler said. “Once they saw
what the cold weather did to their oil they were locked and focused on how great AMSOIL was in cold weather.” A career change in the late 1980s sent Ziegler back to college, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering. “During this time there wasn’t much time for AMSOIL, but I continued on at a much slower pace. This slower pace continued until I retired in 2006, which left me with time to spare.”
Retirement Frees Up Time to Grow Business
Ziegler’s Dealership languished during his career-driven years. “During the time of career transition
(late ‘80s to early ‘90s) I was extremely involved with raising my young family and going to night classes at Purdue, along with working and learning how to manage my new job as an electrical engineer,” Ziegler said. “My regular week didn’t slow down until after I retired. I was heavily committed to the steel industry, working 60 to 84-plus hours weekly. With that kind of a grind, one really doesn’t have much time for anything else in life.”
A couple years after retiring in 2006, Ziegler was ready to tackle something new. He was buying parts for his lawnmower when a conversation about AMSOIL products turned into his first retail account. “That store is one of my best accounts today,” he said. “I still had a few Dealers who were purchasing products, so I decided I would get back into the business of building my AMSOIL Dealership and reconnected with my downline Dealers.”
Ziegler jumped back into his Dealership. “The first thing on my agenda was to become T1 Certified,”
he said. He ordered business cards and distributed them everywhere he could. “Every bulletin board in every store/restaurant I visited had my business cards pinned to that bulletin board,” he said. “I offered everyone I met the AMSOIL opportunity, I registered Preferred Customers and commercial accounts, took every lead I could get and slowly it has paid off. “Today, I have learned how to utilize all the opportunities available to me. I tell my prospective Dealers to become T1 Certified as soon as possible. This is the base of knowledge for every serious Dealer.”
“The first thing on my agenda was to become Certified, I tell my prospective Dealers to become Certified as soon as possible. ”
Advice to New Dealers
Ziegler said he encourages his new Dealers to diversify rather than focusing on one area of sales or a
specific territory. He tells them to start small, use the products and sell the products they use. “I am always available to help in any manner,” Ziegler said. “When one of my Dealers calls, I am there to help,
advise and support them all the way. I suggest that they work with what is most familiar, begin their learning and development in their everyday circle of activities.”
He recommends a goal of talking with three people a week about AMSOIL products. “Some people are quick to catch on to a new opportunity and others take longer, and, sadly, some will never catch on, so don’t waste time on them,” Ziegler said. “Be patient. Don’t give up, and don’t go too big too soon. Don’t make promises that you or AMSOIL cannot back up.”
AMSOIL U, Other Corporate Resources
Corporate resources are invaluable for Dealer success. “All Dealers today have the opportunity to use AMSOIL U Online – these are professional salesmanship courses, and they work,” Ziegler said. “If you can give AMSOIL U 15 to 20 minutes every day it will be time well-spent. Make a habit of visiting the AMSOIL Dealer Zone often. There is a lot of information available to help you get going and keep going.”
Ziegler takes a hands-on approach with his Dealers and accounts. “Anytime they want to set-up a
display at a show, local fair, group meeting, customer appreciation day or grand opening I am available to help by providing what is needed to get the job done and the information presented. I help my commercial accounts and customers with oil analysis and understanding its benefits.”
“All Dealers today have the opportunity to use AMSOIL U Online – these are professional salesmanship courses, and they work,”
Ziegler helps train personnel at his retail accounts. “It helps to bring a couple of pizzas when you do this after work,” he said. “Sales training helps sell more AMSOIL products, and the business owner realizes that and is appreciative – the more the sales personnel know about AMSOIL, the more they can sell. I help restock the shelves for them if they allow it. If any of my accounts do not have the time to place an order, I’ll do that for them also. “When I get a new account, I try to be helpful, but not bothersome. Feed information slowly, don’t get in their way and remember time has value and their primary focus is something very different than AMSOIL. Over time your business will grow.”
Michael and Alecia Sparks are full time AMSOIL dealers who have achieved the AMSOIL Regency Gold Direct Jobber recognition level. We have built a large AMSOIL business that consists of Dealers, Commercial, Retailers and Preferred Customers. We help dealers get started fast with their business and begin earning money right away.
Are you motivated to start your own Business as an AMSOIL Independent Dealer? Consider joining our team. We will help you achieve the success you desire. Contact Michael and Alecia or get started today by clicking on the joinamsoil.com link