Far too many shop owners think that being able to fix a transmission or engine fast and at a good price is enough to ensure they have a successful business.
Running an automotive repair shop that is successful is more than just being able to repair cars. It is about building relationships, maintaining them and capitalizing on them.
Take a moment to think of all the relationships involved in your business
The customer is at the center of it all but there are a lot of interconnected relationships that need to work correctly to ensure that the customer gets what they need and what they want.
They need a vehicle that works correctly at a fair price
They want to know that they were dealt with honestly and fairly. That the car was fixed in the time specified and that there are no huge surprises when they come to pay the bill.
If you give them both of these things then you will have a customer for life.
We all need customers, ones with lots of vehicles and ones with just one vehicle, ones with newer cars and ones with older vehicles. Every repair shop will have a mix of customers, and the most important thing to ensure business growth is that we not only find new customers but that we keep current ones returning to us.
Anyone who has ever been to any kind of gathering, whether it is a family party or a church social will know that people talk about their cars. Quite often they are moaning about how they have problems with their vehicle.
If one of your customers is there would they say "Go see Scotty at Scotty's Transmissions, he fixed our brakes and really was reasonably priced", or would they keep quiet?
Word of mouth is the cheapest advertising any of us can ever get and it only comes about when we have built long term customer relationships.
Retaining Customers Is Cheaper Than Finding New Ones
We are not saying you should not look for new clients, every business needs a stream of new customers, but keeping the ones you currently have is cheaper and more profitable in many ways. You already have their details, you know what has been done to their car and you already know the owner.
New relationships are fun but there is a lot to be said for nurturing the ones your business already has.
Be Informative not Invasive
By only reaching out to a client when they may well be in need of your services and sharing information and discounts you are more likely to get their business. You do not need to contact them monthly, doing it too much is as bad as not doing it enough.
Use Technology To Build Relationships
I am not suggesting you robocall everyone locally and talk about their car. But you should use email/SMS/letters to remind them when they need a service. You could include a discount if they come in within 7/14/21 days of receiving the email/letter.
This acts as a nudge for them to get their car serviced and it also offers them a discount if they do it in a time frame that suits your business.
You could send them birthday cards, with a gift inside of a $50 discount of services at your location within the next month, for example. It reminds people you are in business; it may catch them at a time when they know they need something done to their car and the "gift" may well be enough to push them to call.
Conduit To Success
Rather than trying to create our own marketing system we have created conduits to the best marketing companies in the business. This means that your customer data can easily be taken into their systems and used to send out specialized mail, make email contact or send them a SMS reminder.
All of which will help you get better reviews, bring customers back more regularly and increase your profits.
If you would like to learn more about how PifPro can help your marketing and profitability please fill in the contact form and we can arrange a call back for you. Or call us on 888-274-3776