January 13 2004. Black Horse Motorcycle Finance is launching a new Merchandising programme to all its dealers, which contains consumer advertising and a new "Approved Dealer" scheme. This followes the success of a regional pilot, and is intended to help raise the profile of finance in dealerships across the country, accelerate showroom traffic and ultimately increase dealers' F&I profits.

The programme will be rolled out over two phases, one in January and one before the end of February. A limited number of supporting dealers will be issued with a variety of new showroom merchandise, including shaped hanging panels in various sizes, window and floor stickers. These items are in addition to the existing range of Black Horse point of sale support materials.

This move signifies a major development in the way finance is promoted at the point of sale.

Direct lenders are taking an ever-increasing share of the finance market year on year, and as market leaders in point of sale finance, Black Horse has a responsibility to ensure that its supporting dealers retain control of the sale and the related profit.

The new material has been designed to fulfil this role by making it obvious to the customer that "finance is available" from a highly respected service at the point of sale and provides them with greater 'comfort & confidence' in arranging their finance in the showroom instead of going elsewhere.

Research has shown that increased merchandising of this kind at appropriate points throughout dealer showrooms, not only brightens up the showroom, but also emphasises the strength of the brand. In this case, Black Horse is a brand that customers can trust, particularly when they know they have the backing of one of the biggest, most recognised brands in the market, Lloyds TSB.

As well as the new merchandise, Black Horse has also launched a unique concept in dealer advertising, which leverages the Black Horse brand with the aim of helping dealers sell more motorcycles and more finance.

Dealer's who pay a minimal flat fee, can participate in four quarterly Black Horse advertisements in the regional Bike Trader publication over the course of a year. The cost of the annual advertising will be debited from the dealer commission accounts meaning that no cash will change hands.

In addition to this, these dealers will also be entitled to use the Black Horse "Approved Dealer" Stamp in their own advertising and their website for the year in question.

Becoming a Black Horse Approved Dealer brings with it many advantages and is an excellent opportunity for dealers to gain additional credibility and status with their customers through their links with Black Horse. The black horse is one of the most recognised brand images in the UK with 84% unprompted recall (October 2002 research). It stands for reliability, security and dependability and these qualities will automatically be associated with Black Horse Approved Dealers.

John Anderson, Sales Director, Black Horse Motorcycle Finance said " We must continue to differentiate ourselves from our competitors, and we see this latest initiative as another positive step in reiterating our commitment to our dealers and the Motorcycle Industry on the whole."

For further information about Black Horse Motorcycle Finance, or to make appointment to hear about the benefits for yourself, please call Fiona Robertson our PR Manager on 0131 311 2127.