LAGUNA HILLS, CA (BRAIN)—Next month Bicycle Retailer & Industry News staff will get on bikes to personally visit more than a dozen Southern California retailers, kicking off the magazine’s first regional Dealer Tour.
The staff is currently selecting retailers—primarily in Orange County—to talk with them about the state of retail, issues they face, and how they are managing in today’s challenging business climate.
The weeklong event begins Monday, Nov.10, and ends that Friday. Editors will ride from shop to shop producing daily web coverage that the industry can follow at www.bicycleretailer.com.
In addition, the magazine will publish a special section in the January issue—filled with photos and dealer profiles—that will delve deeper into the complex issues facing retail.
“The tour lets us post unique material on our Web site and offers readers a chance to learn what dealers in Southern California—a bellwether market—experience every day,” said Megan Tompkins, the magazine’s editor. “It’s real-time reporting, on site, and with the depth that only we can do,” she added.
The concept originated from Giant’s Tony Lo and his organizing of the Tour de Taiwan, which put a diverse group of competitors on bicycles for 10 days.
“We’ve taken that concept and given it a retail angle. It’s a great way for the staff to meet store owners and their staff face-to-face in a retail environment, and we’re doing it on bicycles,” Tompkins said.
As the tour’s presenting sponsor, Giant will provide bikes and support. In addition Giant executives and other sponsors will join the ride to learn more about the challenges retailers face.
“The whole concept of getting on a bike and riding from dealer to dealer to gather intelligence is very appealing,” said An Le, Giant’s global marketing director. “We like the idea of getting to know what a local community experiences, not only at retail but what riders experience while riding in that area.”
The magazine’s staff is currently plotting the route and selecting dealers to visit. Look for more details on the route and the dealers selected over the next few weeks.