In order for the expansion project to be successful, we need to increase revenue. With an additional 4 bays, we will have the opportunity to service more vehicles in a given day, but opportunity alone does not pay the bills. Filling those bays each day will be the challenge.
I have put together a plan that will increase car counts by increasing our exposure in the community and by providing a while-you-wait service program. We have begun TV advertising the start of the summer and have already realized positive results. We made a decision to decrease all print ads and increase our direct mail advertising to existing customers and prospect customers. We spent months getting all our advertising in order: creating a central theme, logo and artwork. It’s important to be being consistent with our message, creating our brand and value proposition.
Our “Say Yes” program has been a huge success and will be our platform to launch the new facility. The “Say Yes” program simply means will never say no to a customer and will make attempt to accommodate the customer on their terms. I know what your thinking, “Is he crazy, have the customer dictate the schedule?” All I can tell you is that it works. Our “Say Yes” policy has increased our car counts and gross sales. Yes, it was difficult in the beginning and our techs did revolt. But after they saw an increase in productivity pay, they quickly changed their minds.
We also plan on having radio ads and expand our exposure on the Internet, using Google and Yahoo. In addition to our paper newsletter, we started a monthly email newsletter, which is sent to all customers and all businesses the area. Email programs are extremely cost effective and can be launched at a moments notice.
The last piece of the plan involves teamwork. We have created in-house customer training seminars to reinforce the value of customer service to all employees. Marketing starts and ends at the front counter. The best brake job in the world means nothing if the service you provide is not world-class.
Next, I will share how to organize a large project.