As an auto repair shop owner, you may not think much about your day-to-day business is newsworthy. However, you couldn’t be more wrong.
Local news is quite different than national and even statewide news. You have everything from local papers and business journals to hometown and indie radio stations. It’s surprisingly easy to get in touch with reporters and show hosts from these types of media outlets. In addition, there are many story angles when it comes to topics like buying or selling a vehicle, and auto repair and maintenance. Consider some of these questions to discover interesting and timely topics:
These topics can be very valuable to the public and can make great general interest stories. In addition, changing weather often makes your expert contributions especially relevant to local media sources.
Getting featured in the local news offers many benefits to auto repair shops:
The trick is to develop relationships with reporters before contacting them and then to contact reporters before they even need your story. Social media makes it easier than ever to develop relationships with public figures. You can follow them, friend them, re-Tweet them, and comment regularly on their articles and content. Monitor the online activity of various reporters, publications, and media outlets to get a better sense for who you think might feature an article about car buying, repair, or maintenance. After you’ve done this for awhile, write a letter formally introducing yourself and attach your story ideas or a recent press release.
Contact them first by email, and follow that up with a paper copy of the letter and/or press release. If you offer anything unique or significant, be sure to cover that. Introduce yourself to the reporter and let him or her know your areas of expertise, should they ever want to do a news story covering a related topic. Keep the letter brief, courteous, and to the point.
To learn more about how to increase business at your auto repair shop, contact us. We understand the unique business of marketing automotive services to customers who just want to buy from someone they can trust. Sign up and start getting more leads today.
For the unversed car owner, taking a vehicle in for repairs can be a somewhat daunting task. Auto repair shops are notorious for being “boy’s clubs” where the answers you get are loaded with industry jargon that is not only meaningless to the novice but also intimidating. Shop owners set on maintaining that status quo in their businesses risk missing out on valuable business growth opportunities.
Car novices value an attentive, non-judgmental attitude as well as a sense of humor. Translate these findings into your auto repair marketing.
Draw attention to the fact that your shop has invested time, money, and effort to meet the rules put in place by governing bodies and rating organizations in the automotive field. Certifications and professional affiliations are a must. Case in point is a RepairPal certification that quickly helps you to differentiate yourself from others in your field. Contact us to get started today!
Customer loyalty is perhaps one of the most critical aspects of increasing business at your auto repair shop. When customers are loyal to your shop, they not only come to you for any repairs they need, but they also refer their friends, family, and neighbors to your shop as well.
Here are a few things you can do today to help improve customer loyalty and foster stronger relationships with your customer base:
There are plenty of tools available to help you better understand your customer base. By doing so, you can be more strategic in how you market your shop to new and existing customers.
Google’s free analytics tools can help you get a better sense for who is visiting your website and what they’re interested in through their “Demographics and Interests” tool.
Similarly, customer relationship management (CRM) tools can help you grow your customer base by tracking and analyzing their behaviors on your website and their interactions with your team.
Many types of business software being utilized by auto repair shops today have CRM and analytics built-in; it’s just a matter of learning how to use them.
A 2% price increase across the board will not scare off your loyal customers, especially if you are already offering stellar service and fair prices.
With that extra revenue, you can create a strategic marketing plan to solidify those relationships and attract new customers within the demographic you already serve. A detailed marketing plan that includes some of those exciting ideas you’ve been kicking around will give your staff a confidence boost and re-energize their enthusiasm for the job.
Appreciating the customers you have is the best way to create opportunities for growth in your business and improve customer loyalty. It’s always less expensive to keep a current customer than it is to gain a new one.
So, what if each of your current loyal customers spent just 20% more with you next quarter than they did last?
Commit to treating your customers like royalty. Find out what they want by talking with them. Make sure your service is up to par by asking them about their experience. Taking care of your customers will help you fire up the word-of-mouth engines that will give your marketing campaigns the ultimate boost.
Exceeding customer expectations creates great relationships that lead to more business. Whether through positive word-of-mouth or repeat visits, having a loyal customer base is crucial to your auto repair shop’s health and well-being. To learn more about how to increase business at your auto repair shop, contact us today.
Each year, RepairPal chooses one of our talented automobile technicians to receive the RepairPal ASE Master Automobile Technician of the Year distinction.
This year, we are pleased to recognize Gary Sharits as the 2016 winner.
Gary Sharits is an important member of the RepairPal Certified Shop Network. He is employed by Christian Brothers Automotive, owned by Larry and Cindy Giannone, in Land O’ Lakes, Florida. We chose Gary as the winner because of his outstanding performance on ASE tests, in addition to other RepairPal criteria.
Winners of the RepairPal ASE Master Automobile Technician of the Year award must be employed by a RepairPal shop in good standing. They actively participate in professional development, have a stable career in the automobile field, and have established themselves as a leader in their chosen profession. Winners score high on ASE Master Certification and recertification, and are respected instructors who are willing to share their knowledge with others.
Christian Brothers Automotive lives up to the RepairPal Certified status regulations and offers experienced and trustworthy mechanics that use high-quality parts, offer top-notch work, and charge a fair price. RepairPal Certified shops must pass a rigorous application process administered by ASE Certified Technicians who have worked at and owned auto service companies.
Customers who understand the level of expertise and security offered by RepairPal Certified shops seek out these businesses for the best possible outcome when they need a repair or routine service for their vehicle.
Gary will be recognized at the 2016 ASE Technician Awards banquet held at the Embassy Suites-Concord in Concord, North Carolina on Wednesday, November 16. A Welcome Reception will be held on November 15. Gary’s airfare, hotel stay, and meals will be covered by RepairPal.
About 50 other technicians from all over the United States will also receive awards from various sponsor companies at the banquet. At the 2015 banquet, 46 technicians were honored. In addition to award winners and their guests, corporate award sponsors, the ASE Board of Governors, certain ASE staff members, and various industry guests will be in attendance.