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There’s been a ton of changes to the way you should be marketing yourself and your business. Personally, I’m a lot more ‘out in front’, human, and personable. Not only have I been sending out daily Car Count blogs, but I’ve been using social media a bunch more too in order to assist any way I can in the improvement of your repair shop marketing. I’m on Facebook giving everyone an inside peeking into my personal going-ons. I’m on Twitter and LinkedIn with informational messages and links. I’m posting previous episodes of my Car Count Daily series on YouTube and AutoCareVideo using online videos to deliver a lot of my tips & marketing messages. I’m maximizing opportunities to release valuable content to potential customers and further establish Captain Car Count and Repair Shop Coach's online presence with social media (you may have been directed to this very blog through a social media platform).

Marketing Your Auto Repair Business

I’ve been working on my client and prospect lists much more efficiently with social media marketing. I’ve stopped the constant bombardment of “Hey, buy something from me” messages to everyone because as my friend Ron LeGrand says, “When the student is ready, the teacher appears.” If your business has been negatively affected by this economy and that hasn’t been enough of a wakeup call for you, I’ve realized that no amount of my poking and prodding is going to be able to snap you into action.

Why am I telling you all this? Because in regards to management and operations of your auto repair shop, that’s EXACTLY what you need to be doing right now in your own business. We’ve entered a whole new phase of running a business that you’re either going to have to adapt to as a repair shop owner, or be left behind.

It's About The Relationships, Not The Sell

Folks are watching every dollar they spend and they’re closely watching who they give it to. They don’t want to do business with businesses – they want to do business with people. You’re going to have to make you and your auto repair shop a much more inviting place for them to spend their money, or you will suffer the consequences of doing business as usual.

Instead of attempting to present social media messages through push sells, promote yourself and your shop's personality. Clients want a reason to trust you and constant advertising messages are going to steer them away from your business. Share meaningful content, interact with your customers, and personalize your business.

80% of your sales will come from only 20% of your clients. Identify who your top 20% of clients are and focus your money, time and energy on them. That’s where the money is. Clone them. Ask for and get more referrals from them. Target prospects just like them.

Next Steps

Get very active in social media. Let your clients and prospects get to know who you really are on Facebook. Start recording videos (LIVE) with quick tips and meaningful messages and post them on YouTube. Watch your shop and personal profitability rise and let your personality shine.

While you're at it sign up for my seven critical marketing mistake video series that are keeping customers away from your shop.

-- Ron Ipach (a.k.a Captain Car Count)

  • President/Founder of Repair Shop Coach
  • More articles and content like this and originated through Ron Ipach's Car Count Daily campaign
  • Auto Repair Shop Owners, Managers, and Automotive Industry Professionals are invited to join 'Car Count Daily Boosters' LinkedIn group to provide resources and gain insight on boosting car count DAILY and filling up the bays in their shops.
 
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    • By Ron Ipach
      I want to talk about collecting the right information from every one of your customers while they’re in your shop. What do I mean by that? When we’re talking about marketing, it’s important that we collect all the current information that we have on our customers so that we can continue to market to them. Marketing to your current customers, it’s like picking the low-hanging fruit. It’s the easiest group of people to get back into your shop, so we want to make sure that we collect all the data that we can from our customers while they’re sitting right there in our shop.
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      You May Also Like:  What's New In The Automotive Repair Industry? But none of this is going to work for you if you don’t have the accurate data in your database. So here’s a suggestion that you start right now, today, with the very next customer that walks through the door and you start collecting that data. Think of it like when you went to the doctor’s office the last time. What they did is they handed you that clipboard and said, “We’re updating our records. Please fill all this out.” You can protest all you want, but they’re going to make you fill those forms out every single time you go in. Why? They have insurance forms that they need to fill out, and they got to make sure everything’s accurate. You, you need to market to them. You got to run your business off of this data. So require that they fill out each and every one of those lines. Their name, their e-mail address, their phone number, their cell phone number. You want to make sure that you collect all that data so that you can market to them.
      Just assume that they’re going to give you that data and no questions asked. If you just ask for an e-mail address, now there’s a dialogue that kind of goes back and forth. If you simply hand them a form that says “We need all this information for our database, for our records,” they will go ahead and fill that out. Make sure that you get that done.
      You also, at the bottom of that form, you want to have like a little disclaimer that by singing below, and you want to make sure they sign it, by signing below, you are allowing Ron’s Auto Repair to contact them by mail, by phone, or any other electronic means necessary. You want to have that little catch-all, cover-your-butt legalese on there so that when they sign it, they literally have given you permission to market to them using all of those means.It all starts with good information if you want to be able to market to your current customers. Your current customers are your best source of income, and we’ll cover that on other videos like this. You got to make sure that you have the data first so that you can market to them in the future.
       
      note: Be sure to watch the replay of my Live Webinar


    • By Ron Ipach
      What's New In Automotive Marketing? A lot.
      I'm addressing a question from a shop owner named Dave who's been in business for 28 years. He asked, "Is there anything new in the automotive repair industry?" In a word, yeah. A lot has changed in these 28 years. If we look at the car itself, obviously, you know the cars are made a whole lot better than they used to be. You're more in a maintenance business than you were in a repair business. That has changed drastically over these 28 years. Also, what's changed is the consumer, the consumer habits. The way of contacting them has changed enormously. The buying habits of the consumer have changed drastically. Your share of their attention, trying to grab their attention when they're being bombarded by all the advertising that's out there has changed drastically.
      When we think about it, millennials, which is now the largest group of people that are out there, they grew up with cell phones in their hands. Everything is online. They're doing mobile searches instead of looking through the yellow pages. They buy things differently and at different times. You and I have changed a lot as well with that. When was the last time that you did some online shopping? I know I did a lot of my Christmas shopping last year online. I didn't even have to leave the house to whittle down that Christmas list. A lot of people are driving less because they can simply go on Amazon and have it delivered in a couple hours. That's changed drastically, the amount of miles that people are driving as well as people are using services like Uber and Lyft for other people to drive them. It's very inexpensive for people to get driven around. Their driving habits are changing a lot.
      The one thing I can tell you is the marketing principles have not changed. The way we contact people have changed. The messages we give them have changed. The people we're marketing to have changed. All of those have changed drastically over the past 28 years, but the main principles, the core competencies of marketing really haven't changed much at all. What am I talking about? First off, we got to find the right person to market to, the person we want to attract to our shop. Second, we have to give them a very compelling message. We got to grab their attenton. As I said before, there's a lot more competition for those eyeballs. People are looking at email, they're online. They're seeing advertisements bombarding from all these different areas. We have to be a lot more savvy in how we try to attract their attention. That hasn't changed.
      Then we need to give them a very compelling offer. That's a good core competency and make sure that you have that in all of your marketing as well as you got to give them a sense of urgency. We got to have the right target. We have to have the right message. We have to have the right offer, and we have to give them that sense of urgency, so that they come in right now. That all has been the same. Everything else about running the business has totally changed. If you're not keeping up with that, you're going to be left behind. Again, the marketing, the core competencies haven't changed, but everything that layers on top of that, how we deliver that message, that's changed drastically. Who we're delivering it to has changed drastically.
      -- Ron Ipach (a.k.a Captain Car Count)
      President/Founder of Repair Shop Coach More articles and content like this and originated through Ron Ipach's Car Count Daily campaign Auto Repair Shop Owners, Managers, and Automotive Industry Professionals are invited to join 'Car Count Daily Boosters' LinkedIn group to provide resources and gain insight on boosting car count DAILY and filling up the bays in their shops.
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