Tire tree nabs Miller Tire a prize
MEXICO, Mo.-The hardest part of decorating this office Christmas tree was keeping other employees from selling parts of the symbol of the season.
At least that was the challenge for Miller Tire of Mexico, said office manager Donna Folta. She and co-owner Leslie Miller decorated the ``tree''-which really was about 10 tires stacked and adorned with the usual Christmas trappings.
``We had it all stacked up, and they sold our tires,'' Ms. Folta said, laughing.
But the topper for this tree was that it won in Mexico's annual business decorating contest.
Sandy Benn, special programs co-ordinator for the city of 12,000, said local businesses are judged on creativity and uniqueness in an effort to get the companies recognition in the town. Miller Tire won $100 for its efforts.
``It was a very good tree, and it turned out to be tires,'' Ms. Benn said with unmistakable surprise.
The tire tree, which also debuted in the local newspaper, is the talk of the little Missouri town, Ms. Benn said.
Miller Tire, which sells Cooper, Michelin and Hercules tires, was true to its brands with the tree. Michelin's ``Bib'' topped the tires-turned-tree in place of an angel.
Dealership sells tires, packs meat
JEFFERSON, Iowa-At this sale, customers select a tread then pick a chop.
McAtee Tire & Service Inc. in Jefferson held its annual Steak/Iowa Chop Tire Sale in November. The sale-a nearly 15-year tradition for the dealership-features a freezer in the showroom filled to the brim with frozen steaks and pork chops.
After customers buy their tires, they head to the freezer to pick out some meat. Four tires buy a hearty dinner for four.
Manager Frank Kozal said this year's promotion has yielded roughly a 20-percent increase in the store's traffic. The sale was advertised in radio spots, newspaper ads and point-of-sale promotions.
``We're holding our own for the way the economy is,'' Mr. Kozal said.
Mr. Kozal wasn't sure how much meat the store had gone through. When the freezer gets low, he heads to the butcher, who by now has gotten accustomed to the annual sale.
Gemini store wins eco-friendly award
MONROE, La.-Moore & Patron Tires & Service, an independent Goodyear Gemini dealership in Monroe, recently won the 2002 Conservation Marketing award for its environmentally friendly radio and TV ads.
The dealership aired commercials demonstrating its recycling programs, giving vehicle/tire maintenance tips as part of its Gemini services, as well as encouraging the local community to keep the environment clean through responsible vehicle operations.
Moore & Patron's use of the Eco-Auto kit, radio programs and the Bog Frog character in its promotions helped the dealership increase monthly sales by 27.1 percent-including a 38-percent jump in service business-in its main store, along with increases of 6.8 to 16.9 percent in its other stores, according to Water Foundation, the conservation organization behind the award.
Brainerd, Minn.-based Water Foundation airs Eco-Auto radio tips on more than 850 radio stations across America.
The foundation awarded Moore & Patron with an expenses-paid fishing and golfing vacation to Brainerd. Goodyear will present the dealership with a plaque during its dealer conference in February. Moore & Patron operates four stores in Louisiana.
Alaska dealership hits 20th-with gift
ANCHORAGE, Alaska-For its 20th anniversary, Johnson's Tire Service Inc., based in Anchorage, had a chance to give and receive.
The six-outlet retail and wholesale dealership was named one of the top 100 businesses in Alaska by a leading business magazine, and it turned a routine annual sale into a fundraiser for a local charity.
President Jim Johnson, who founded the dealership with his wife Janet in April 1982, said the company donated $7,379 from its annual winter tire sale in September to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Southcentral Alaska.
The funds will be used for recreational programs and equipment, Mr. Johnson said. The company had supported the charity in the past, but this year's donation was Johnson's Tire's largest.
Though Mr. Johnson said he didn't try to lure customers with the promised donation, he said the company's image was boosted with talk around town. He said many customers called the charity's offices to make sure the promised donation was real, then offered their praise.
``Their phones rang off the hook,'' Mr. Johnson said.
He said the recognition from the local magazine also was a milestone for his dealership, which sells primarily Mastercraft and Nokian brands as well as tire lines offered by the Del-Nat Tire Corp. dealer buying group.
``It's basically a dream that came true,'' he said. ``But I've got the gray hair to show for it.''