In a world where the marketing game is changing constantly, business owners are often forced to play catch-up. It’s important for a repair shop owner to stay ahead of the game. With these five techniques, your auto shop marketing can become instantly more effective.
1. Use text message marketing
It’s no secret. People are constantly on their phones and if you send them a text, they’re going to see it and read it. Even if your cell phone service is texting you letting you know your available cell phone data is running out for the month, best believe it gets read – not to mention that text messages have a 99% open rate. So what better platform to announce special promotions, codes, and shop updates for your customer. Not only are you targeting a wide variety of consumers, but you’re also forming important relationships. Need an even more telling stat? According to Derek Johnson of Tatango, 43% of text messages are responded to within 15 minutes! Know right away what’s working and what’s not with your auto repair marketing.
2. Get Reviews
One of the first things many folks do when they are unsure of a new product or service is they Google them. For instance, a customer Googles “auto repair shops in my area” and I’ll bet the one with most reviews and positive feedback gets the most business as a result. In fact, according to Dan Hinckley of Moz: 67% of consumers are influenced by online reviews and over 50% of searchers don’t even go beyond the first page of their search results. The more positive feedback you get, the higher up and respected you are on Google. This poses as an opportunity to combine text message marketing with getting online reviews. After your customer leaves the shop encourage them to leave feedback. This way, online users will see the positive reviews online, and gives you a chance to show off your excellent auto repair customer service and fix some of the negative experiences customers have in your shop.
3. Set up a Facebook business page
A Facebook business page is essentially another website for your shop that allows you to be more in touch with your customers. Not only does it allow you to uncover different ways in which your shop can be successful through customer comments, it’s yet another way to form relationships with customers outside of the shop. You will feel more connected to your customers needs, and customers will appreciate the accessibility of your shop. Along with providing extra accessibility, a Facebook business page will improve your auto shop management. How? Well along with Google reviews (we’ll get to those), Facebook has a votes feature that allows customers a separate way to review and talk about your auto repair shop. The more places you are online, the higher your repair shop sales become.
4. Harness the power of social media
Wherever your customers are, find them. If they ask, you answer. Meaning, social media marketing is there to help your shop if you want it. It’s also there to hurt it if not utilized correctly. It’s important to have an online presence for customers reviewing your shop and have questions. It also serves as another outlet for any sort of promotion or news-worthy material coming from your shop. Lets face it, if you’re not online and using social media, your competitor is.
5. Produce simple 2-minute videos
Another product of the “they ask, you answer” technique. Think of how many times customers have come into your shop and asked a question that prompted a quick, simple answer. Well, chances are other customers have the same question. Simply take a camera (your phone, for instance) and answer common questions in quick, 2-minute videos. This works great for providing your customers with excellent free resources, as well as increasing your auto repair shop’s brand recognition. The more videos you put out there, the more credibility you gain, and the more cars come into your shop, making this an an excellent example of one of my increasing car count strategies.
An auto repair business owner has a lot on his/her plate. Following industry trends allows for the best chance at success. And in return the business you build up by doing these five things online, will relieve the some of the stressors you have in your shop offline. Take the time, get online, EDIT your operations, INCREASE your profitability, and BETTER your business.
Have a question or comment? Leave them below! Repair Shop Coach is always here to help.
Ron Ipach, President of Repair Shop Coach