Posted by: News Works Marketing | April 3, 2018

Keep In Touch

Rhonda HiltbrandThink like a customer.  ~ Paul Gillin

Think like a customer and make sure when they think about auto service and repair, they are thinking about you! Keep in touch with your customers via direct mail and social media.  During a couple of social events these examples of customer loyalty came to my attention.

One man is very loyal to a certain paint company in town, but his wife was getting the kitchen remodeled and had hired a decorator.  The decorator had a paint color in mind, but she used another paint company. The husband took the paint sample to the company he was loyal to and asked them to match it as closely as possible.  He told them he refused to let his wife and her decorator come between them after all these years! 

Of course, this made us all laugh, but I really appreciated the loyalty he had to his preferred paint company.  I’m sure that company felt the same way! The husband was doing all the painting himself and he knew what he liked in a paint brand!

A senior in college was home for a quick weekend trip and was lamenting about how her hair needed trimmed.  She didn’t want to go anywhere else but to her usual salon and wasn’t sure they could fit her in on such short notice.  She said if they could, great!  If not, she would just have to keep her split ends for a while longer, until her next trip home!

I was again amazed at the loyalty!  Of course, I am very loyal, too.  I recently waited a week for a repair to my Jeep because my favorite technician (who is a fellow Jeep enthusiast) was off due to his baby’s birth.

These connections are strong.  Who do you feel extremely loyal to and why?  Make sure you are “top of mind awareness” with your customers.  They might not need to see you every 3,000 miles as in the past, but make sure they would feel terrible if they went anywhere else for their vehicle service or repair.  You don’t have to put them on a guilt trip, of course, just always keep your company in their minds when it comes to quality service and repair.

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | March 6, 2018

The Spare Tire

Rhonda HiltbrandFolks who never do any more than they get paid for, never get paid for any more than they do.
― Elbert Hubbard

 Spare tires … I hear from so many on this subject.  They go to change their tire after a flat and find out their spare tire is flat, too. They then rant about their service provider for not keeping it in working order.  Having experienced that myself several years ago, I can relate.

The excuses from repair shops are many!

  • The trunk is too messy, and I can’t get to the tire.
  • We are just so busy, and I forget!
  • Not every car has a spare, so I no longer think about it!

This is your chance, service advisor, to shine in the eyes of the customer!

  • Always check to see if they have a spare tire and make sure it is serviced just like the other tires.
  • If they don’t have a spare tire, explain to them how manufacturers are trying to save “weight” and are doing away with them. They will appreciate the fact that if they get a flat, they won’t be shocked that the spare is not there.  They also will know that it most likely will require a tow if they get a flat.
  • This is also an opportunity for you to sell them a spare tire to give them “peace of mind.”

Customers like “choices” and they like to be educated.  This is your opportunity to help them!  They will appreciate your concern.

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | February 27, 2018

Your Website Is Now Your Yellow Pages!

Rhonda HiltbrandMany of our customers are telling us that they seem to be getting a lot more visits to their website, but it isn’t generating more sales.  Here is what a recent study discovered:

“The MMA recently unveiled a study for Allstate containing compelling new insights – including proof that there is no direct correlation between click-throughs and conversions.”

Your website will get more visits these days and should…because it is now being used to look up your telephone number. If consumers hang out a bit and click through that is good news…they may just be trying to see if you have an article about what they are experiencing with their vehicle.  Make sure you have that information on your website.

If you need help in this area, please contact us!  We’ll be glad to help!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | January 2, 2018

Business is a Challenge!

Rhonda Hiltbrand“Life is a challenge, meet it! Life is a dream, realize it! Life is a game, play it! Life is love, enjoy it!” – Indian Guru

I ran across this quote today and  realized; if you substitute the word “business” for “life” it works beautifully.  Small business owners know business is a challenge, a dream, a game and a love of what you do!  We have to meet it, realize it, play it and enjoy it every day.

I’m sure the majority of you, like me, ask yourself; how can I make it better?  How can I make my staff happier and more fulfilled?  How can I help my customers even more to realize and meet their challenges?

I think we must rise up daily with the desire to make each new day better.  We must work daily with our staff to encourage their progress; giving them the desire to do better and offer suggestions to help the company move forward.  We must offer our customers the very best we have to give.

If I can help you, my dear readers and customers, to meet your challenges and realize your dreams for your business, don’t hesitate to ask!  Together, we can do it!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | December 19, 2017

Automotive Service Advisor: Doing Your Part

Rhonda Hiltbrand“A satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all.” – Michael Leboeuf

If you are the service advisor but not the owner (I know some of you wear both hats) you are still very responsible for the success of the business you work for!  You are the front line.  Your role is extremely important!

You need to come to the job each day with energy, intelligence and a desire to meet the needs of each and every customer and at the same time, grow the bottom line of the shop you work for.  See how very important you are?

If you feel you are lacking in this area, or have lost your zeal the past year, make this your year to shine!  What can help?

  • Stay current with training.
  • Meet with others in your profession and exchange ideas.
  • Set goals for yourself with an attainable deadline to accomplish them.

Wishing you all the best in 2018!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | December 12, 2017

Success for the Auto Repair Shop

Rhonda HiltbrandYou will succeed if you persevere, and you will find a joy in overcoming obstacles, a delight in climbing rugged paths, which you would perhaps never know if you did not sometime slip backward.  Helen Keller, writer and activist

It seems hard to believe that we are wrapping up yet another year!  It is true what our parents always said when we were young…time goes faster the older you get.

How was your year?  Did you meet your goals professionally and financially?  If you did, I offer my congratulations and hope our company helped you to succeed.  If not, don’t despair!  January is always a time of new beginnings and you can start fresh to overcome obstacles and do great things in 2018.

If you need help, please contact us.  We are always here to assist you to climb those rugged paths.

I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday season!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | November 21, 2017

Looking for The Positive in a Negative World

Rhonda HiltbrandBusiness owners and/or service advisors often must set the tone for their business day.  If you are in the front-line servicing customers, you deal with all sorts of personalities.  Some days, you may feel a bit stressed and anxious and you aren’t exactly sure why.  I got to thinking about this recently when I was having a conversation with someone about how to deal with negative people.  They were wondering why people in general seem so negative lately.

We concluded that people could subconsciously become negative due to many factors; like waking up to the news on the alarm clock/radio each day.  The news is rarely good in those few minutes, and one’s head starts to be filled with negative vibes then and there.  What can you do to make life better for these negative folks you deal with?  You have to try to be the positive force.  It isn’t always easy but greet each one with a smile and hopefully your good attitude will spread and push out the bad attitude. Smile when you talk on the telephone, too.  It really does make a difference.

I also find counting my blessings helps me feel positive and I have much to be thankful for, including all of you.  I appreciate you more than I can say!

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Stay positive!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | October 31, 2017

You Are A Problem Solver…Sell That Service!

Rhonda Hiltbrand“Sell the problem you solve, not the product you make.” Unknown

 I ran across this quote and thought it was very profound.  You solve problems for consumers every day!  If you are the service advisor, let your customers know that by briefly explaining the problems the technician has discovered with the customer’s vehicle on the phone, by text or at the counter.

If you are the owner, use your marketing pieces to explain what a vehicle needs and how the customer can be proactive by having regular service and how they can be aware of a car’s needs by noticing if something sounds, smells or looks different.

You are the problem solver! Let your customers take note of that fact.

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | September 19, 2017

The Tale of the Hot Dog Vendor

Rhonda Hiltbrand“Early to bed, early to rise, work like [#%!] and advertise.” – Ted Turner

Over the years there have been similar versions of this tale.  It is one of my favorites.  From time to time I get asked to share it again, so here it is!

The Hot Dog Vendor

There was a hot dog vendor who sold the very best hot dogs by the side of the road. His business was booming, people loved his hot dogs, and his business steadily increased month after month. The man loved his business and believed in the need to provide great food at a great price.

This man was so busy advertising and selling his hot dogs and making lots of money, that he didn’t even have time to read the newspaper or listen to the radio. Consequently, he never heard a word about the potential economic slowdown. He just continued to offer his delicious hot dogs and his customers bought them. He kept advertising and selling, and they kept buying.

Then one day his college educated son told him that an economic downturn was surely coming. His son told him that people wouldn’t have enough money to buy his hot dogs. The successful hot dog vendor believed this, so on his son’s advice, he cut back on his advertising. Additionally, he started ordering less supplies and product, because after all, people would be cutting back soon.

He even went so far as to take down many of the billboards that led to his roadside stand. And sure enough, people stopped coming to him. People stopped buying his hot dogs, and he eventually went broke.

Then he thought to himself. “How smart my son is in predicting this.”

Hope you enjoyed it!

Happy advertising!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | July 25, 2017

It is Time…

Rhonda Hiltbrand“Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.” – Leo Burnett

It is time…back-to-school time, that is!  Back to school is big business and retailers sure aren’t shy about getting the word out to buy their products at this time.  Auto repair shops shouldn’t miss this opportunity either; especially as the work you do keeps us all safer on the roads.  As Leo Burnett’s quote above says, “Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at.  Make it fun to read.”  News Works can help with that!

One very important item that should be on everyone’s check list is their vehicle’s maintenance. Yes…we may put more miles on the car in the summer but that is usually because more road trips are taken.  Those who have children in school, however, are dashing here and there and everywhere to get their children where they need to be.  Those trips may not rack up the miles as quickly as a summer vacation trip, but it is usually more severe driving.  Picking kids up after practices and other school events keeps mom and dad, and yes, grandparents’ taxi services busy!

We point out in marketing for our shop owners, that even those who don’t have children/grandchildren in school, feel the pain!  Traffic is heavier and therefore slower.  Children are fast and we all need to be more alert when they run around in busy traffic and are in school crossings.

Don’t miss the chance to get the word out to your customers that they need to remind drivers to get their cars serviced so they are as ready as they can be during the hustle and bustle of back-to-school.

Let us know if we can help!
Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

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