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Content Marketing: Why to Start a Shop Blog and Basics to Blog About

I’m sure you’ve heard the term “content marketing” and maybe assumed that it meant good pictures for social media or great tweets.

There’s a reason bloggers are so successful and why major brands have a blog that’s regularly updated. The secret is that people love learning in a low pressure way. A blog post is the perfect way to educate customers on automotive basics, allow them to learn in a simple, straightforward way, and impress on them that you’re an expert. Blog posts help people learn to trust you before they’ve ever stepped in your door. 

Sometimes the key to bringing in a customer is as simple as proving to them that you:

  1. know what you’re talking about;
  2. can explain a complicated subject like a car in a simple, easy-to-understand way.

Another beautiful thing about writing a blog is that it gives you fantastic content for your social media account. You can add your blog posts to your social media rotation for years to come. While minor edits may be needed over time, most automotive blog posts can be reused again and again to create filler content. There’s the old adage of “always be selling,” but taking the time to prove your knowledge is important. Take a break from selling to do something that will benefit your potential customer and they will love you more for it. 

One way to utilize blog posts most effectively is by pulling out quotes or paragraphs that are interesting, then using them as your caption on social media when sharing the link to the blog post. With this, you entice followers to click your link and read the content.

I could go on forever sharing the benefits of blogging, but I’ll give you one more before moving on. Blogging is a great way to grow an email list of people to retarget. Have a pop up that asks readers to subscribe to your blog. You can then send the subscribers regular email updates when you have new blog posts and include any sales or promotions that are going on. On top of that, it sends visitors to your site and you can use a Facebook pixel code to target those readers with coupons via Facebook ads. Check out my last article in this series for more info on pixels. See me using these concepts right now?

So – what to blog about?

Keeping it simple, you can start by blogging about who you are. Introduce yourself and your team to your readers. Don’t just talk about yourself, give your readers and potential customers a feel for you and your shop. Add a few photos. You can even make a series of introduction posts, focusing on one member of your shop each post, and alternate those between posts about automotive fundamentals. 

The next and most straightforward thing to write about is the car, of course. Spend a week writing down the questions your customers ask you about their cars. What do they want to learn about? What confuses them?

Then take those questions and write blog posts about them. Topics are endless! One of my most popular automotive posts is on Mechanic Shop Etiquette. Silly right? But it’s what people asked most! Don’t overthink it.

Keep your blog post to 600 – 700 words and keep paragraphs short, dispersing photos between the paragraphs. If taking photos regularly in the shop is a challenge for you, I would mix photos that you take in the shop with stock car images available on various websites, free or paid, depending on exactly what you are looking for.

When you think about what your customers want to know and “take their pulse,” you end up with content that is relatable, interesting, and click worthy. Talk about the difference between different types of tires, explain tire sizes, and maybe even help people understand why synthetic oil is now required by so many car manufacturers. Narrow subjects with to-the-point writing tend to do well. You don’t want to overwhelm your potential customer with too much information that bounces around different subjects. 

Don’t forget that you are the expert! Write from your heart and your knowledge base.

Author: Chaya Milchtein

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