Quantcast
Jump to content


CALL TRACKING ISN’T THE BE-ALL END-ALL FOR DETERMINING DIRECT MAIL ROI


Recommended Posts

Tracking the return on your auto repair shop’s direct mail marketing can be a challenge. One tool that can give you a tremendous amount of transparency into your direct mail ROI and that I recommend almost 100% of the time is call tracking. 

For those of you who aren’t familiar with what call tracking is and how it works, it involves putting a unique phone number on your direct mail that isn’t used anywhere else. When someone calls the number, it forwards immediately and seamlessly to your main phone line. This gives you the ability to track and record all phone calls from this special number, in turn giving you some transparency into how your direct mail marketing is performing.

There are of course many other nuances, capabilities, and uses for call tracking that you can learn about from companies like CallRail or Conversa, just to name a few.

That said, it’s critical you understand call tracking is NOT the be-all end-all when it comes to determining how well your direct mail marketing is working. If this were the case, you’d have to assume that 100% of every new repair order you get calls directly from your mailer. However, we all know this will never be the case. Here are a few reasons why.

Your Online Presence

Before they consider using you repair shop, many prospects will go online to check out your website. If a customer lands on your website – assuming you aren’t using a PURL (Personalized URL), which is almost never the case with most auto repair shops – they do their research and then call your shop from the phone number on your website. In this situation, you immediately lose insight on how they heard about you.

Customers are also reading your online reviews, whether on social media or review sites. Sites like Demandforce, SureCritic, Carfax, Repair Pal, Facebook, Yelp, Yellow Pages, etc. all have your shop’s contact details, including your phone number. Any call from customers who used these sites removes transparency on how they heard about you.

Walk-Ins

Our auto repair shop clients consistently tell us customers will just stop by their shop with their direct mail piece in hand. I’m not just talking about quick lube shops that are based on walk-in traffic. I’m talking about general and specialty auto repair shops. It’s great when customers have your mailer with them, because you can attribute these customers to your direct mail marketing. However, this won’t be reflected in your call tracking, which is another reason call tracking isn’t the be-all end-all when determining ROI.

Online Appointment Scheduling

More and more auto repair shops are offering online appointment scheduling. We like to position these shops as being easy to work with, and part of that is promoting their online appointment scheduling. We include verbiage on our direct mail pieces to inform customers they can conveniently schedule online, and most times we accompany this with a QR code that brings them directly to the appointment scheduling page.

This is similar to my first point regarding your online presence and website. However, I also want to point out this specific example because in these cases, we’re actively pushing people to go online to schedule their repair or maintenance service, thus losing transparency from call tracking.

All that said, call tracking is an effective tool that gives you a lot of transparency into your direct mail marketing ROI. However, you should also be running matchback reports that compare new repair orders during (and in the trailing months following your campaign) to your direct mail list. This helps you identify customers who were missed on call tracking or by your service advisor. You can then use your call tracking data in conjunction with your matchback reporting to get a clearer picture of your direct mail ROI.

If you’re using EDDM® Retail or EDDM® BMEU, you won’t be able to execute matchback reporting because there’s no mailing list to compare your repair orders with.

Josh Davis
Mail Shark
Executive Vice President of Sales
Direct: 484-948-1611
Email: [email protected]
www.themailshark.com/Auto-Direct-Mail

Link to post
Share on other sites


Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Similar Topics

    • By carmcapriotto
      Matt Fanslow is the diagnostic tech/shop manager at Riverside Automotive in Red Wing, MN. His primary responsibilities are to diagnose driveability and electrical/electronic issues, and perform most all programming, coding, initializing, adoptions, etc. Basically, if it needs to be figured out or has wires, it goes to Matt. He’s been a tech since 1996. Matt is also a subject matter expert for ASE and has instructed at Vision Hi-Tech Training and Expo. Matt has participated on 18 ASE technical committees for the ASE Practice Test, A6, A7, A8, and L1 tests. He’s also done case studies for Standard Motor Products. Fanslow’s goal is to do everything in his power to improve the overall level of professionalism within the automotive and light truck repair trade and also raise the level of its public image. Matt Fanslow’s Previous Episodes HERE.
      Key Talking Points
      Competent technician shortage Biggest issues within shops- communication and remembering everything as things change Commute back and forth to work- have time to think about your day. Be honest and critical. When you’re entry-level there may be more negatives than positives, don’t beat yourself up about it. Unpack it step by step. Were you on your phone too much? Did you have unnecessary motions?   Keeping journal/diary/google docs- while at work jot down some bullet points and when you’re at home expand each one. Helps with great with memory and learning. If using an electronic journal you can search it as time goes on. As you accumulate entries over time, go back and read what you wrote and see firsthand the progress you’ve made. Brings value to yourself and employer. Confidence through competency. Steer the direction of feelings of anxiety and being overwhelmed with new information. Use anxiety to push yourself forward.   Future journal/diary you write in every month or every few months. Where do you want to be? How will you get there? Be a specialty tech or diagnostic tech etc. Build a path and map out weak areas to focus on.  Everyone learns differently- write down your take on processes that helps you learn and remember  The way your brain works is malleable- rewire it with how you learn best What is memory? To learn from mistakes and not doing them again. Our memory has changed as technology has advanced. We no longer memorize information like we used to with the ease of the internet search engines. Remembering phone numbers is a skill of the past.  Scientific proof and studies- Journal of Applied Psychology and National Academy of Sciences.  Jorge Menchu- Episodes 180 and 241  
       
      Thanks to Matt Fanslow for his contribution to the aftermarket’s premier podcast. Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page, highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers. Listen for free on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spreaker, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Podchaser, and many more. Mobile Listening APP’s HERE Find every podcast episode HERE. Every episode is segmented by Series HERE. Key Word Search HERE. Be socially involved and in touch with the show:
      Facebook   Twitter   Linked In   Email
      Join the Ecosystem – Subscribe to the INSIDER NEWSLETTER HERE.
      Buy me a coffee
      This episode is brought to you by AAPEX, the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo. AAPEX represents the $740 billion global automotive aftermarket industry and has everything you need to stay ahead of the curve.  The Virtual AAPEX Experience 2020 is in the record books. Virtual AAPEX lived up to presenting leading-technical and business management training from some of the industry’s best and brightest. Now set your sights on the homecoming in Las Vegas in 2021. Mark your calendar now … November 2-4, 2021, AAPEX // Now more than ever.

      This episode is brought to you by Shop-Ware Shop Management. It’s time to run your business at its fullest potential with the industry’s leading technology. Shop-Ware Shop Management will increase your efficiency with lightning-fast workflows, help your staff capture more sales every day, and create very happy customers who promote your business. Shops running Shop-Ware have More Time and generate More Profit—join them! Schedule a free live demonstration and find out how 30 minutes can transform your shop at getshopware.com/carm

      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By carmcapriotto
      Justin Barrett is the owner and operator of Barrett Automotive, Cornelia, GA. He is excited about the future of this industry with autonomous vehicles and the role the independent repair shop will play in that arena, and with the changing landscape how we are going to have to be nimble and adapt to stay relevant.
      Leadership is something that is extremely challenging to him but rewarding when done right. He had some leadership failures and wins which are adding to his growth in that area. His biggest challenge right now is the same thing that he is working on and that is building a great team. In the last 18 months, he had gone from leading himself and one other to leading 6 and still adding to keep up with growth.  Find out more about Justin’s episodes HERE.
       
       
      Barrett Automotive Website HERE.
      Key Talking Points
      Justin’s toolbox has been at the business for 11 years, since the beginning- wants to be able to bring it home and work on the business instead of in the business 2 weeks of working in bays to catch everyone up turned into 6 weeks Saw production gaps between some of the technicians- was able to work side by side and teach younger technicians how he plans his work and gets it done. See if you can combine work orders. Realized the need for more SOP’s for the shop to follow for both in the bays and in the office  Downside- losing focus on business Had technician from dealership lined up to come work in business to replace his spot- technician ultimately decided to stay at the dealership. When the technician told Justin he was staying, Justin left things on very good terms to keep an open door for possible future. A customer came in for his BMW evacuate the refrigerant so he could replace the compressor- was back in the shop within an hour and a half time. Justin and the service advisor were impressed and asked about his experience. He loves working on cars but never worked in a professional setting. Gave him an application and is currently working in the shop on a trial basis. Considering implementing an apprentice program for him.  
      Thanks to Justin Barrett for his contribution to the aftermarket’s premier podcast. Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page, highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers. Listen for free on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spreaker, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Podchaser, and many more. Mobile Listening APP’s HERE Find every podcast episode HERE. Every episode is segmented by Series HERE. Key Word Search HERE. Be socially involved and in touch with the show:
      Facebook   Twitter   Linked In   Email
      Join the Ecosystem – Subscribe to the INSIDER NEWSLETTER HERE.
      Buy me a coffee
      This episode is brought to you by AAPEX, the Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo. AAPEX represents the $740 billion global automotive aftermarket industry and has everything you need to stay ahead of the curve.  The Virtual AAPEX Experience 2020 is in the record books. Virtual AAPEX lived up to presenting leading-technical and business management training from some of the industry’s best and brightest. Now set your sights on the homecoming in Las Vegas in 2021. Mark your calendar now … November 2-4, 2021, AAPEX // Now more than ever.

      This episode is brought to you by Shop-Ware Shop Management. It’s time to run your business at its fullest potential with the industry’s leading technology. Shop-Ware Shop Management will increase your efficiency with lightning-fast workflows, help your staff capture more sales every day, and create very happy customers who promote your business. Shops running Shop-Ware have More Time and generate More Profit—join them! Schedule a free live demonstration and find out how 30 minutes can transform your shop at getshopware.com/carm

      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By carmcapriotto
      Craig Caudill, Manager at Fine Tuned Automotive Erie, CO
      Key Talking Points
      Lean- eliminating waste in processes. Waste is anything that doesn't add value to the customer’s experience 7 wastes in lean- motion, inventory, waiting, defects, overproduction, transportation, over-processing Motion- excessive motion techs/advisors being away from the work station. Using instant messaging on the shop management system for instant streamline communication Inventory- excessive inventory isn't bringing value to customers. Has to turn over so it's not wasted money Waiting- technicians input in system precisely parts needed and update lead time in the management system Defects- categorize comebacks Overproduction- doing more than what customer requested Transportation- the movement of vehicles in the shop. Accurate diagnosis first time and identify every issue Over-processing- don't develop processes that are overly complex. Simplify everything to key elements. Don’t overthink or over the process. 5 S event- sort (take out everything you have and see if it's necessary to keep) set and order (essential items are identified and set in order. Tape off areas where items go and have a picture of how that area is supposed to look) shine (after everything is in its place then you clean) standardized (building processes and SOP’s) sustain People don't want to be questioning what they should do- build a structured culture Parts are labeled specific to parts suppliers Improving profitability- waste is time and money. Customers are willing to pay for the value you offer them How to start? Don’t be intimidated. Do research on 5 S and start seeing benefits. Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page, highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers. Listen for free on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spreaker, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Podchaser, and many more. Mobile Listening APP’s HERE Find every podcast episode HERE. Every episode is segmented by Series HERE. Key Word Search HERE. Be socially involved and in touch with the show:
      Facebook   Twitter   Linked In   Email
      Join the Ecosystem – Subscribe to the INSIDER NEWSLETTER HERE.
      Buy me a coffee

      Are you seeing auto shops in your area get hundreds of 5-star Google reviews and are you feeling left behind because your shop only has a few?
      Hey look, Broadly is your answer to getting more online reviews. With more reviews, your business will rank higher in search results — and that means more customers coming into your shop every day.
      Broadly helps you automatically request reviews so that your customers can promote your business with just one click.
      When you immediately ask for a review after service, when the experience is still fresh in their mind, // you’re more likely to get a 5-star positive review.
      Plus, asking for feedback makes your customer feel valued and more connected to your business. Isn’t that what you want a connected customer? See how Broadly can help grow your auto shop.  Visit www.getbroadly.com/carm to learn more.
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By carmcapriotto
      Stephane Grabina, BMW Excluservice, Rockville, MD, and Scott Pelava, Lonsdale Auto Works, Lonsdale, MN share the reasons they keep their floors clean. They use a commercial floor scrubber. Learn how and why these two successful shop owners have invested in keeping their shop floors clean.
       
       
       
      Comment from Kevin Eckler:
      Great episode and I loved the promoting of a clean shop. We picked up two 5-year-old floor scrubbers and a floor burnisher made by minute man that retails for almost $10000 apiece through an auction where a local school was updating their equipment. We paid less than $300 per machine and the only expense that we had was to install new batteries. They all work absolutely fantastic and it was a great deal. The toughest thing was finding a place to store them but they get used very frequently and the floors are significantly cleaner than the shop feels brighter and the guys have a better attitude because of it.
      Things to consider when purchasing a floor scrubber Is to find out the proper kind of soap to use to clean your floors and what to do with the wastewater when you are done so that you are not polluting when you dispatch the dirty water. Certain soaps break down the oil too fine to be caught in an oil-water separator and oftentimes there is a large amount of sediment that collects into the machine when you are done. Emptying the machine into a smaller holding tank to separate off the settlement and the oil and then dispensing the water from there helps to not unknowingly polluted the local water sources and get yourself in legal trouble. Just something to consider. ~Kevin
      Link to the ‘BOOKS‘ page, highlighting all books discussed in the podcast library HERE. Leaders are readers. Listen for free on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spreaker, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Podchaser, and many more. Mobile Listening APP’s HERE Find every podcast episode HERE. Every episode is segmented by Series HERE. Key Word Search HERE. Be socially involved and in touch with the show:
      Facebook   Twitter   Linked In   Email
      Join the Ecosystem – Subscribe to the INSIDER NEWSLETTER HERE.
      Buy me a coffee
      Are you seeing auto shops in your area get hundreds of 5-star Google reviews and are you feeling left behind because your shop only has a few?
      Hey look, Broadly is your answer to getting more online reviews. With more reviews, your business will rank higher in search results — and that means more customers coming into your shop every day.
      Broadly helps you automatically request reviews so that your customers can promote your business with just one click.
      When you immediately ask for a review after service, when the experience is still fresh in their mind, // you’re more likely to get a 5-star positive review.
      Plus, asking for feedback makes your customer feel valued and more connected to your business. Isn’t that what you want a connected customer? See how Broadly can help grow your auto shop.  Visit www.getbroadly.com/carm to learn more.
      Click to go to the Podcast on Remarkable Results Radio
    • By mikerisich
      If you want to become a successful independent auto repair shop, it’s essential that you have your sights on not only developing a long-term strategy for expanding your customer base but also pivoting in a way that has sustaining momentum. 
      The key to accomplishing this strategy is not by focusing on gigantic steps, but by achieving a steady stream of small efforts, which means using effective and trusted tools that are specifically designed for you as an auto repair shop owner. Fully utilizing your Google My Business (GMB) page is an efficient way to grow your business and we can tell you why you need to be using it to be competitive. 
      GMB is a free and completely verified online listing service that uses best practices for getting new customers in the door. Are you the type of business owner who uses an online marketing and branding strategy? If not, you should!
      LEARN MORE about how to optimize your GMB page.


  • Similar Tagged Content

    • By Joe Marconi
      Do customers really have clear expectations when they arrive at your shop?  Think about it.  Who is responsible for setting clear expectations?  Consumers may have a preconceived idea about what to expect, but when it comes down to what or who sets the expectation, it's the shop's responsibility. 
      Great customer service is created by the shop and its people. The consumer will judge that experience, but they don't create it, you do. 
      We may think that the consumer will tell us what they expect from us.  I think it's the opposite. 
      Henry Ford once said: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”
       
       
    • By Joe Marconi
      Here's a tip I preach at the Elite Fly with the Eagles Marketing course:
      Study your competition in your local area, know everything about, learn what they do in your community, learn about their advertising strategy and marketing strategy, find what their strengths are, and find out what they do special for their customers. 
      Ok...once that is done, here is what you do: Ready?  Don't do anything that your competition does! 
      That's right, in order to stand out, be different. Don't mimic what your completion does. Tell YOUR story and build a marketing and advertising strategy based on what YOU do that the competition does NOT do. 
      For example, If you are active in youth sports, then make that your community story. Promote that everywhere.  
      Remember, to stand out you need tell the world what makes you different. 
       
       
    • By Joe Marconi
      The common buzz in business is to market to new, potential customers. This is a smart strategy given that every business losses customers each year, and we need to replace those lost customers.
      However, we also need a marketing plan that takes care of our existing customers.  It is cheaper and easier to retain your customers, than to market for new ones.
      What strategies do you employ to retain your existing customers?
    • By Joe Marconi
      I think it’s safe to say that few people go to McDonald’s for the fine dining. In fact, McDonald’s struggled a few years back when it introduced healthy choices on its menu. Even with its challenges, McDonald’s is considered one of the most successful business models on the planet. It’s a brand that is so well known for its consistency that it actually promotes comfort in the mind of the consumer—a lesson in marketing that could prove powerful for your business.
      Imagine yourself traveling with your family on a highway far from home one night. It’s late, everyone’s hungry, and you’ve been on the road for hours. You’re not familiar with the area but you tell yourself to turn off the next exit and find food. As you drive off the exit, you notice a cluster of stores and bright lights; a good sign for weary travelers. As you approach the stores and bright lights you notice two food establishments: Billy’s Burgers and McDonald’s. The only two restaurants in town. Now you tell me: Which one would you choose? Most would choose McDonald’s.
      While there are many reasons why most people would choose McDonald’s over Billy’s Burgers, perhaps the most compelling reason is that McDonald’s has done an amazing job building its brand on the consistency of its service and its products. McDonald’s’ customers know exactly what they are getting, and that communicates comfort. People tend to feel more secure with what they know and what they anticipate.
      So, what does McDonald’s have to do with running a repair shop? It’s the marketing lesson of consistency of service. Promoting consistent world-class service with each customer will create an experience that will give customers a compelling reason to return in the future.
      Now, most of us are not franchised across the country, and many of us are single location business owners. Our business model is different in that we tend to build relationships over time. While we may not be a national brand, we can still have brand recognition in our community. We can still have a brand that communicates consistency and comfort; a winning marketing strategy.
      When a customer walks into your business, it’s not because he or she is hungry and looking to eat a meal. There’s a problem with his or her car, or a service they need to have done. People rely on their cars and leaving their car at your shop can be disrupting to their lives. This causes a level of anxiety within every customer. We need to recognize this and find ways to reduce or eliminate this anxiety. If not, the experience won’t burn a positive impression in their mind, which means they may not be back.
      The customer experience is a crucial element to the success of any company. But, do we fully understand the impact of consistency in service at every step of the customer experience? How being consistent can promote a feeling of comfort and security? Your customers must be greeted the same, the phones must be answered the same, car delivery must be the same, and the quality of service and repairs must be consistent. Something as simple as forgetting the lube sticker or not resetting the maintenance light can raise anxiety and make the customer question the quality of your service, which will have a negative effect on the entire experience.
      However, the marketing lesson is not only how you define great customer service, but in defining how to deliver consistent, great customer service at every step of the customer experience, time and time again.
      This strategy will ease the anxiety within your customer, which will benefit you the next time your customer’s check engine light comes on or when her car needs servicing again. By delivering a consistent, amazing customer experience again and again, you will instill comfort and security in your customer’s mind. This simple strategy increases the odds that the customer will think of you the next time for their automotive needs. And that’s the secret of McDonald’s.
      Think about this. A consumer is traveling to work on a Monday morning. She notices that oil change maintenance is on. This consumer has been to your shop, the dealership and the local quick lube in the past. She knows the cars needs servicing. Where will she choose to get her oil change done? Will it be your shop? Will it be the dealership or quick lube? That all depends on what business made the best impression in her mind.
      This story was originally published by Joe Marconi in Ratchet+Wrench on January 25th, 2019


      View full article
    • By CAR_AutoReports
      The best advertising comes in the form of referrals, which are usually free but don’t happen overnight.
      Advertising is perhaps the most confusing part of owning any business, not just an auto repair business. Advertising is, to take your marketing materials and broadcast them in mediums where you anticipate your target audience. The internet has drastically changed advertising as most understand it. We used to think of advertising as the “yellow pages” and newspapers. However today, the yellow pages comes in many different forms these days. All of which promise you the world and few of which will deliver.
      We recommend taking a broad approach to advertising to test what will draw in the most amount of new business to you. When thinking about how to advertise for your business, below are some suggestions to consider. First, establish a yearly/monthly budget, then to execute a plan. The most important part of your plan is to follow through on asking your new customers how they found you, that way you know what advertising is working.
      Our advertising model assumes you have a few things in place, as we also discussed in Part 2: website with contact module, Google Business Page, and a Facebook Business Page.
      We are firm believers that Google’s vast grasp on search is what makes it the king of advertising for now. Most people start their searches on Google, and if you’re not on Google maps and your website hasn’t been crawled by Google… you may not exist. We can argue this until the cows come home, but the truth is they hold a grasp on nearly 80% of all search in the US. Picture 10 people searching for “auto repair in my town”, nearly 8 of them are using Google. It’s much easier and fruitful to advertise to 8 out of 10 than 2 out of 10.
      We are going to assume you have a $250 budget, the starter plan would be something like this:
      Google Business Page – Free Facebook Business Page - Free Adwords Campaign through your Google Business Administration Page – Budget Dependent - $100 per month recommended Local Paper Advertising – Prices Vary – Assuming $100 per month This leaves you with $50 left over. Personally, we recommend a service called Yext, however we are unsure of their price these days as they have gone into a "Demo mode". This means  they likely introduce you to the price after you’ve demo’d their product. For a one location auto repair business, we believe their estimated price may be over $600 a year, which kind of busts the budget a bit. But once you see how much time their platform can save you… you may reconsider.
      Yext does a few great things that stand out:
      They broadcast your correct business information to well over 100 directory systems, including Google and Facebook. They also allow you to make business updates from their platform and broadcast it to all the directories in the network. They manage your inbound reviews from your customers on all those platforms and immediately inform you when you receive them. They allow you to broadcast messages of specials you may want to promote. They link your business website from 100 different directories, instantly giving your business credibility online. The most underrated thing they do… is save you time from trying to log into 100 different directories and fix errors, omissions, and broadcast them all at the push of a button. Can you imagine the time it takes to create 100 different accounts and to regularly check and manage them? We did, so we tested Yext at our founder’s facility and have been a subscriber for well over 5 years now. This article originally published in CAR's News Section

      View full article
  • Our Sponsors



×
×
  • Create New...