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Adapt or Die



Adapt or Die’… those words applied in 2008, 2020, and they're likely to ring true again in the not-too-distant future.  Sales volumes, inventory levels, and shopper trends would all suggest that the road ahead may be bumpy.  So, what will you do?


In 2020, the decisions many dealers made ushered in the most profitable (retail) run in our industry's modern history.  But the conditions forcing those decisions had never occurred before, and they're unlikely to occur again.  So, for my money, 2024 will most likely resemble 2008 in terms of the challenges that retailers will face.


If that prediction proves true, then the next few years are likely to be very good for some but not for all.  In 2008 and for the next few years, we witnessed the effects of two opposing mindsets.  The successes realized by those who were able to adapt came largely at the expense of those who were not.  The retail market didn't grow; it tilted.  Fortunes slipped away from some while racing toward others.


(*Disclaimer: the following statements are not a pitch for inventory management/pricing solutions but are instead an examination of the conditions that made these solutions what they have become - indispensable.)


For example, in 2008, many early adopters of inventory management/pricing solutions enjoyed unprecedented growth.  The recommendations made, data leveraged, and the technologies employed together produced a powerful competitive advantage, which early adopters exploited, often at the expense of the dealers who were unwilling or unable to evolve.


Therefore, the question is what the difference maker(s) will be going forward. Will it be a disruptive new technology, an innovative philosophy, or radical changes to processes and/or personnel? The answers will be revealed over time, and it's those who embrace change, who seek out the newest solutions, who will not only survive but will likely enjoy disproportionate prosperity.


Conversely, those who go 'back-to-basics', who lean on the 'tried and true', are likelier to struggle. Consider this: If something is 'tried and true' or considered part of 'the basics,' then by definition, there's no competitive advantage to be found within it. To be clear, these things, while not bad, are just not good enough.


'Adapt or Die', 'Fortune Favors the Bold', 'Those who don't know history are doomed to repeat it…', you get the gist.  Simply put, truisms persist because they're just that.


-Tom Murphy

President/CSO

Lotpop Inc.

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