When car counts aren’t what they need to be, most shop owners will pump more money into their auto repair marketing efforts. But before you invest one more dime in your marketing campaigns, you should first make sure that you’re doing a good job of converting your current leads into customers. At Elite, we’ve discovered that the number of phone leads lost by most shops is staggering. They’re lost by not having enough staff available to properly handle the calls, by having poorly trained receptionists or service advisors, by having service advisors who are content with either their workload or their income, etc. Needless to say, putting more money into your marketing is not going to fix these problems.
The solution is simple. Make sure you have clearly defined car count goals, and hold your advisors accountable for reaching them. You should ensure they keep a simple log that shows why they feel they lost each lead. The log options should include: The caller didn’t have the vehicle, they didn’t have the time to bring the vehicle in, they were price shopping, and they were not the decision maker. At the end of the day, discuss these lost leads with your staff, and decide on the appropriate course of action.
Lastly, don’t overlook the value of having a couple of friends call in as mystery shoppers, and recording their conversations. So before you spend one more dime on marketing, let’s make sure you’re not losing those priceless leads that you already have.
Since 1990, Bob Cooper has been the president of Elite (www.EliteWorldwide.com), a company that strives to help shop owners reach their goals and live happier lives, while elevating the industry at the same time. The company offers one-on-one coaching from the industry’s top shop owners, service advisor training, peer groups, along with sales, marketing and shop management courses.