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Hahahahahahahahahaha! OMG!

Old September 16th, 2011, 03:59 PM
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Hahahahahahahahahaha! OMG!

Taken from Dick Miller Racing website:

"Technical Advice - As the world has been brought closer together with the internet and itís great shopping tools some feel the need to shop for price only and then look elsewhere for technical help when the company they bought their parts from cannot answer their technical questions. Or some shop around for free technical help and then buy their parts at the cheapest location possible. Even the large mail order companies with their lack of Oldsmobile technical experience refer their customers to Dick to solve their problems. Because the free Oldsmobile technical aspect of our business has gotten out of hand with people wanting Dick to design their engines and solve their technical needs DMR now charges $20.00 (1 time only) to all non customers for Oldsmobile technical information. This $20.00 will be FULLY REFUNDABLE with your first order and is for Oldsmobile technical calls only. You can either send a check or put it on a credit card or purchase in the order department under Oldsmobile Engines. Dick still answers most of the phone calls and takes most of the orders and will offer free technical and installation advice to callers for parts being purchased.
$20.00"
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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:13 PM
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I can understand that!! However, he needs to think of all the ill will created by this attitude. Been there, done that, got the "T" shirt!
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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:16 PM
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He's tired of freeloaders.

I can't blame him. So am I.

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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:20 PM
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I understand it, but it is an aspect of customer service to be able to talk to people about their project. It is a sales game, if someone calls for advice and you can't talk them into buying your product then you lose. If you're good and have products that solve problems, when I call you and you offer a solution, 9 times out of 10 I'm a buyer.

Charging to talk with someone? He better sound hot over the phone and talk a good game or I'll want my money back.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:21 PM
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time is money if he was on the phone all day giving free help he would have less time to sell parts and give advice to paying customers it's completely undrstandable .
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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:30 PM
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It is a sales game. I have sold cars and many other things in my life. Do you know how many "no's" I heard for every "yes"? A lot.

Build your business, educate your salesmen, and use the knowledge you have to turn a "technical question" into a sales opportunity. When I read that he charges $20.00 to talk to me, it tells me that he isn't interested in earning my business. It's a take it or leave it attitude that cannot possibly be beneficial to the business. In fact he just lost one customer because of it. I was going to buy from him when I ran across this.

Take it or leave it, I don't need you is what I got from it. It is the same attitude many on CO have experienced when dealing with DMR.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:40 PM
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i have never dealt with dmr or any big name olds specialist and i tend to stay away from that . but i understand where you're coming from that buisness shold be earned not bought but in todays world you have to make money on everyhting i guess even advice .
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Old September 16th, 2011, 04:46 PM
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Imagine going in to a dealership and having to pay for a test drive. But it's ok, if you buy the car we'll refund your money. WTF? No!

I'll test drive with you, if you can't close me on a deal then I go shop your price. If your price is good and you built a good rapport with me then I'll be back. It's the cost of doing business. DMR should look at his prices and how they compare in the market. If they aren't competitive then it's his fault for not closing sales. If it is, he should offer to compete (price match) unless it becomes unprofitable to do so.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 05:35 PM
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I'm done helping all of you deadbeats on here. Take my 3600 posts, subtract 15% for the times I'm goofing off on here.....
Then multiply that by 20.

ClassicOldsmobile.com......You owe me $62,900.
PAY UP SUCKERS.

Or I'm going to go gas up the repo truck.


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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:09 PM
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i can completely understand it. it will weed out 99% of all the "tire kickers" but unfortunately there will also be a % of good people that he will lose. in the 90s i was working on 3 and 4 wheelers as a side job. i worked 60 hours a week at work and the main time i had to work on the ATVs were Saturday and Sundays. i had to quit answering the phone on weekends because i would get 40 to 50 calls on the two days. people learned to call on week nights and not on weekends but it turned into a problem of people just showing up while i was working the weekends and ask "can you look at this for me and tell me what is wrong" or "can you put this on real fast or fix this real fast" i then started a $30 minimum with a $50 drop in minimum. it worked out great for me. those people quit coming around mostly and it gave me the time to devote to my good paying customers. it had gotten to the point that i couldn't get anything done before i did that. then if a good customer stopped by i would not charge them the fee but most of them would make me take the money anyway. my business was only a 200 mile area where he is a national brand so i can only imagine how bad it is for him.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:21 PM
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I understand a 1 man show...you can't answer phones and talk to customers AND work on cars at the same time. But DMR is NOT a one man show...nor are they a repair shop. They are in the business of selling parts, and building engines. There are so many other shops out there making it work, why can't he? I don't know, he just seems shady to me.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:26 PM
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I have spent untold countless hours helping fellow Olds guys out without compensation. Sometimes it helps me unload a part or two but I guarantee you it doesn't add up. I do it to help fellow Olds guys and I consider it my community service.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:28 PM
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sellers like dmr are over priced and they know people who buy from them think they are the bees knees . They are olds people targeting olds people for money due to the small market oldsmobile has. im tired of all the specialty shops having specialty prices what's the diffence between an intake of a chevy from an olds the material is the same it might weigh abit more and look diffrent but its the same part yet edelbrock charges way more for an olds intake its not like they are limited or special ordered shops stock em like jegs or summit.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:30 PM
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I can see it for a small shop with 1 main guy doing the work. Taking time away from a paying job to talk to a bunch of tire kickers that will pick your brain and then go buy stuff off ebay or somewhere else is a money loser. If you're serious about building something, what's $20 in the grand scheme of things?

It's like going to look at a car some guy is selling and giving him money down to hold it. Separates the BSer's from the serious.

It's no different than paying for labor.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:34 PM
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Originally Posted by coppercutlass View Post
what's the diffence between an intake of a chevy from an olds the material is the same it might weigh abit more and look diffrent but its the same part yet edelbrock charges way more for an olds intake its not like they are limited or special ordered shops stock em like jegs or summit.
Its the economy of scale they sell a lot less Olds stuff than chevy or Ford. So they sell less for the same amount of effort of making it.
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Old September 16th, 2011, 06:48 PM
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I well understand that but if they make 1000 chevy intakes and 1000 olds intakes. The chevys will sell faster but the olds will sell slower but they will sell em anyway . I understand maybe 20 bucks more but its a big diffrence
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Old September 17th, 2011, 05:42 AM
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What you all seem to be missing is that you are paying for these services one way or another. Take the example of test drives of new cars noted above. The cost to the dealership of hiring a sales staff is ALREADY INCLUDED in the price of the cars. That's why there's dealer markup. The cost of the dealership building, inventory carrying, and even advertising is also already built in. None of that stuff is free.

Now in DMR's case, those costs were ALSO already built into his prices. I can only assume that he's been faced with the choice of raising prices to cover additional tech help costs or charging separately (or the third option, of doing BOTH and increasing profit...). By the way, this is no different that what airlines are doing, and I think we've seen that the price-by-the-drink model doesn't win customer loyalty.
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Old September 17th, 2011, 06:06 AM
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Originally Posted by joe_padavano View Post
What you all seem to be missing is that you are paying for these services one way or another. Take the example of test drives of new cars noted above. The cost to the dealership of hiring a sales staff is ALREADY INCLUDED in the price of the cars. That's why there's dealer markup. The cost of the dealership building, inventory carrying, and even advertising is also already built in. None of that stuff is free.

Now in DMR's case, those costs were ALSO already built into his prices. I can only assume that he's been faced with the choice of raising prices to cover additional tech help costs or charging separately (or the third option, of doing BOTH and increasing profit...). By the way, this is no different that what airlines are doing, and I think we've seen that the price-by-the-drink model doesn't win customer loyalty.
In the long run he will lose business! I'm telling you the ill will he creates will allow his competition, and/or, create competition to capitalize on his narrowmindedness! What he needs to do is decide on each conversation how long he will stay on the phone! You can weed out the deadbeats and ******** with a few simple questions, then proceed from there!
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Old September 17th, 2011, 06:47 AM
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I don't understand why any of us cares whether Dick will stay in business, or whether his business decisions are a good idea.

If he wants to charge for advice, some people will think his advice is worth paying for and will pay for it, and others won't. Some of the latter group will be turned off and not buy anything from him on principle, others will buy, but get their advice elsewhere (such as here).
It's a reasonable experiment, and I'm curious how it will turn out.

In the professional world, it is a given that free advice is not valued, and that giving it out will reduce customers' respect for you, and from my experience I believe this to be true. Go try to get meaningful advice out of a doctor, a lawyer, an accountant, or an architect (one who's not your close friend or your brother in law) for free and see how far that gets you. You MAY get something off the cuff, but it will be with the proviso that it's just a general statement, and may not apply to your exact situation, which can be better explored in detail if you'd make an appointment. Why is it that we value the knowledge and experience of high-quality mechanics less than those of these conventionally accepted professionals? Is Dick Miller a smart guy who knows a lot and has valuable information to provide, and valuable judgement to impart, or is he a schmuck? I think the entire line of argument in most of this thread is both personally and professionally insulting to Dick (and I know NOTHING about the guy), and is really inappropriate. If the guy wants to charge for his years of experience, whether to separate the wheat form the chaff, or to make an extra buck, then so be it. If it's a bad business decision, and you're his friend, then call him up and say, "Dick, I think that's a bad idea." If not, then it's none of any of our business what he chooses to charge for. It's the American way to be able to run your business the way you see fit, and unless we're going to open a "Free Business Advice" forum here, I think we ought to let it drop.

Also, as far as relating Dick's business to being a car salesman: A car salesman is just that, a salesman. Many have no mechanical skills whatsoever, but they are skilled at SALES. Put them in a mattress store or a restaurant supply outlet, and they will make money by selling things. A car salesman can spot a "lookey-Lou" across the lot and "walk" him in a minute to avoid wasting time, but a mechanic, engine builder, and business owner, who is NOT a salesman (but who needs to make sales to stay in business) probably does NOT have this skill, and, being a mechanic and engine builder, probably enjoys talking about engines and tuning, and has trouble telling whether a given caller is a potential customer or not. From a salesman's perspective, it may be easy to know who a buyer is, but it may not be for Dick, and this may be the only way he can think of to eliminate this distraction.

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Old September 17th, 2011, 07:43 AM
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Hmmm, I'm a car salesman and a mechanic, I've also been in management, a business owner, and an employee! I've worked and been successful in many industries, aircraft, food, industrial, and yes, sales! I'm also 53 and feel qualified to voice an opinion when asked! Oh yeah, its free!

Don't shoot the messengers here, opinions are like a-holes we all have one. But let me tell you straight up, if I call or walk into an establishment and ask a question and someone says give me $20 for an answer, then we are done!
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Old September 17th, 2011, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by oldcutlass View Post
But let me tell you straight up, if I call or walk into an establishment and ask a question and someone says give me $20 for an answer, then we are done!
Then I hope you never need to see a doctor or a lawyer.

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Old September 17th, 2011, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by MDchanic View Post
Then I hope you never need to see a doctor or a lawyer.

- Eric
Major difference! Although over the years I can't see how that industry evolved into what it is today!

When I was in business, I went to dinner with some colleages and my co. Attorney. When it came time to order we all ordered steak and my attorney ordered shark. I looked at him and said, "So you guys do eat your own"!!!!!!
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Old September 17th, 2011, 08:30 AM
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Having owned a major speed shop in the Chicago area I can empathise with DMR. We could have spent the entire day bench racing with customers about their cars. It doesn't pay. When you should be on a car and you have to take a call to talk to someone who "might" build something it is a complete waste of time and money. The real customers could be weeded out in about 5 sentences. But you still had to answer the phone and take time out, set down your wrench, etc. Even now when I call there I keep it as short as possible or better yet I text. As Bill Crystal said in This is Spinal Tap, "Mime is money!"
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Old September 17th, 2011, 08:55 AM
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I don't know Dick Miller and probably nver will. Personally I think his policy if fair. It is only $20.00 and that is a one time charge. If it were per question, that would be a problem. And then you get credit when you order. What the heck is $20.00? You are probably planning on spending at least several hundred and possibly several thousand dollars and you worry about 20 bucks. Chances are his prices are slightly higher than somebody like Summit because he is not buying in he volumne they are. If you are not calling just for free advice, I see no risk on your part. I would have no problem with this policy. If I am buying a cam and he put me on the correct cam, $20.00 is a helluva lot cheaper than buying the wrong cam. That's all folks.
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Old September 17th, 2011, 08:58 AM
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Believe me, Dick Miller has never been generous with telephone advice. Ask on ROP how many guys he's hung up on. He's a knowledgeble guy and sells good stuff, but his customer relations skills leave a lot to be desired. While I can see where a guy could get tired of handling advice calls, a little tact goes a long way and some other "one man show" shops are willing to talk without the "either buy something or see ya" attitude.
I remember calling Joe Mondello many years ago when I knew just about nothing about Olds engines. He never spoke with me before and I was not a customer at the time, but he spent a good 20 minutes with me and I got lots of advice about my first SBO build. I ended up buying lots of stuff from him, but probably wouldn't have if he hadn't been such a class act on the phone. A little good will goes a long way in business.
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Old September 17th, 2011, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by oldcutlass View Post
Major difference!
Why?

You are asking a person who has invested time and money in developing expertise. How is an automotive expert any different from a medical or legal expert?

I still find it amusing that you would rather have the $20 included in the cost of goods that you buy (with no visibility as to how much is really in there) rather than have a fixed cost. Again, make no mistake. You are paying for it either way. In one case you know how much, in the other, you don't.
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Old September 17th, 2011, 10:01 AM
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Fixed it for ya :

Originally Posted by redoldsman View Post
If I am buying a cam and he put me on the correct cam, $20.00 (which becomes zero dollars as soon as I place an order) is a helluva lot cheaper than buying the wrong cam. That's all folks.

Originally Posted by copper128 View Post
I remember calling Joe Mondello many years ago when I knew just about nothing about Olds engines. He never spoke with me before and I was not a customer at the time, but he spent a good 20 minutes with me and I got lots of advice about my first SBO build. I ended up buying lots of stuff from him, but probably wouldn't have if he hadn't been such a class act on the phone. A little good will goes a long way in business.
I agree that this is the best way to run a business, but I can't tell him how to run HIS business.

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Old September 17th, 2011, 10:52 AM
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It's the principle!
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Old September 17th, 2011, 11:45 AM
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i think its diffrent when you walk into a shop and talk to the man one on one but even me and my fellow olds racers i feel like i bug them when i call them i have even explained why im very breif on the phone with them., but when you are a major retailer which i beleive dmr is on both sides of the fence of being nationally recognized but also is a bit smaller then say summit racing he has to do something if his time is being eaten up by tire kickers and people wanting free advice . i agree this is like seeing a doctor if you are sick and ask him what do you think is best for my fever he will tell you you need to make an appt. for that . Dmr is just has enough marbles to say enough with this bs if you are serious about our advice and products than invest in the advice and we will refund you with your firsr purchase it dont seem to bad
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Old September 17th, 2011, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by oldcutlass View Post
It's the principle!
What principle? The principle that you deserve a valuable item (experienced advice) that he has in limited supply (based on the number of hours in a day) for free?

I respectfully disagree.

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Old September 17th, 2011, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by MDchanic View Post
What principle? The principle that you deserve a valuable item (experienced advice) that he has in limited supply (based on the number of hours in a day) for free?

I respectfully disagree.

- Eric
Personnally I've done quite well without his advice!!!! I've never spoke with him/ nor done any business with him! His valued sevice is a matter of opinion, I have no basis for that opinion!
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