The majority of auto repair shops do an excellent job fixing vehicles, but when it comes to marketing their services they are way out of their element. Just like every business there are slow periods and that can cause financial stress. The last thing a shop owner thinks about is spending a lot money they do not have to try to bring in new customers. The following list is five marketing strategies that have all been proven to work, and not break the bank.
- Word of Mouth
The best strategy for auto repair shops to acquire new customers are word of mouth. Auto repair shops depend on the word of mouth marketing strategy and it works well for them. This is the precise reason you do not see very many advertisements or other marketing strategy used, and it makes perfect sense, everyone with a car problem wants an auto shop that is recommended by someone who has had a positive personal experience with them. If you can get your customers to go to a site like Angie’s List and leave a positive review all the better.
Designing a simple eye catching flyer and have a small print run of them are another great and affordable marketing strategy. Adding a coupon or discounted service such as an oil change for 20% off or a fixed price that is below the minimum of your closest competitors will help your shop gets noticed. You can mail the flyers to the residents in your town or you can have them as an insert in the local newspaper.
3. Post Cards
After you service a customer’s car, send them a “thank you for your business” post card. You can also send oil change, tune ups, or other service related reminder post cards. A great example is to send post cards seasonal, for the winter season send a post card about new tires or snow tires – but send the post card in the middle of the fall season, to give the customers time to think about it and make an appointment.
4. Social Media
Social media networks are the fastest way to spread word of mouth marketing. If three or four people post a status about their car repair experience it has the opportunity to be seen by hundreds even thousands of users. Having a Facebook page and Twitter account can also help tremendously, as long as you use it daily. Social networks are similar to a gossip column, and your posts, tweets and your customer’s post and tweets will have your auto repair shops name out there, and your appointment book will be full.
5. Strategic Alliances
Partnering up with similar businesses that target the same industry and passing each other’s business information along to customers is an extremely effective way to market your business. For example you are an auto repair shop, so you would refer business to a windshield repair and glass shop and they would refer business to your auto shop. When this marketing strategy is done correctly both businesses win.
If you need help with your marketing strategies do not be afraid to call in the pros.