Posted by: News Works Marketing | November 20, 2018


Rhonda HiltbrandTo speak gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch Heaven. ~Johannes A. Gaertner

I have been hearing a lot about gratitude lately on the news and reading about it in articles.  When people are stressed and feeling anxious, they are always advised to write down what they are grateful for…to count their blessings.

Many of us gather together on Thanksgiving with family and friends and take a moment to count our blessings at that time.  Wouldn’t it be a wonderful thing to be mindful of our blessings every single day?  It would make us a more positive people.

I want all of you to know that I am very thankful for you.  You have all been a blessing to me professionally and personally.  I am grateful for my suppliers who enable me to have the business that I do.  I am thankful for my employees and know I would be nothing without them. I am thankful for family and friends who surround me with their love and support.

I hope each of you have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | October 16, 2018


Rhonda HiltbrandBe kind whenever possible. It is always possible. ~Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama

I am a great believer in helping young people get ahead.  Giving them words of encouragement along the way is always helpful.  When they are learning it can be challenging but perseverance can pay off.

In the past year, a young apprentice where I get my vehicle serviced was so excited at his opportunity.  He was very energetic and didn’t let any job deter him.  I have seen him progress over the these past few months.

When he started out on my vehicle, he put in new headlights per my request…one pointed up and one pointed down.  He overflowed my oil and what a mess.  However, I was kind and he wasn’t daunted.

When I was in again this month, he was so excited that he is now an assistant manager.  His confidence was a wonderful thing to behold and … he serviced my vehicle perfectly.  He has made a lot of progress this year.  Truthfully, at this moment I can’t even tell you his name, but I am sure it is on his shirt.  I do, however, feel proud of him.

If you have a new apprentice, be patient, check their work and you might have a future star on your hands!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | September 25, 2018

Is Your Marketing/Service Rated E/I?

Rhonda HiltbrandMore than ever before, consumers want to be educated and informed! Are you doing your part?

It is hard to turn on the TV and not run across programs that are rated E/I.  You see that rating on children’s programs, cooking shows, woodworking shows, history programs and yes…car repair programs.  Of course, while they are educating and informing you they are also doing so in an entertaining way.

Think about your marketing.  Are you informing, educating and entertaining?  Is it memorable?

Think about your interactions at the service desk.  Do you take just a moment (alas, a moment is usually all the consumer will give you at the counter) to educate, inform and in this case, do so in a pleasant manner with a smile or with a feeling of empathy?

Give it some thought.  If you need help in this area, contact us today!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | August 7, 2018

Good Reviews!

Rhonda HiltbrandThanks for the kind words!

When you get a good review, be sure to respond.

I notice some of my customers share a good review at least once a month on their Facebook page.  That is an excellent idea.  I am going to start doing that myself this month.

Most of my reviews come through email and I know it makes me so happy when we get these words of praise.  I know it makes you happy to receive them, too!

Here are a few of ours.  It just makes me feel so good to know we are helping our customers and that their customers are enjoying the newsletters/flyers/postcards.  It truly makes our day!

I figured I would reach out to think about our next campaign. Since January we’ve gotten 38 cards back, $22,680.28 in revenue, $990 in discounts, so before expenses that’s an ARO of over $570. That’s almost $200 over our ARO for the same period. Awesome! BUT, the most priceless return is those that talk about the cards and never use them! Go figure, I guess they are keeping them to pin on the refrigerator. The last card was so colorful it grabbed people’s attention immediately. 

Great job! 

We love the flyer soooo much! Customers are calling saying how cute it is.  One lady said, “I get so much advertisements in the mail that is COLD, but yours is WARM!”

Just thought you would like to know that I have had a lot of response on our newsletters. All positive and saying they really liked it, including the interior. The other response is they like my face on different bodies. Makes them laugh. 

You done good!!!


Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | June 26, 2018

Customers Aren’t Always Right

Rhonda HiltbrandI recently had an interesting conversation with a 16 year-old that works for a fast food chicken sandwich restaurant.  He was telling me that they have a man who comes in once a week, and orders a combo meal.  He then complains about the meal, so he is given a coupon for a free one next time.  He goes through this routine every week.  I was amazed and asked why they let him get by with it.  He said it is their policy (not widely known) and everyone who works there knows what the guy is doing, but they don’t want the hassle of correcting him.

I have customers who are devastated when they get an unfair, unkind review online.  They ask me what they should do.  They panic! I look at all their reviews and they are glowing…except for the one “mean” one.  I tell them to ask (online) the disgruntled customer to call them directly, or to stop in.  That gets it off the Internet and shows caring to any other reader.

I do notice one thing in common…it is always a complaint about the pricing first…then maybe the work.  I feel that makes it a pricing issue.  They want something for free and feel if they go online and make a fuss about it, the shop owner will cut them a deal just to keep them quiet.  The customer probably does this over and over again at different repair shops.  It is obvious that they knew the price before they said, “go ahead” so…

If this ever happens to you, and they do come in and talk to you, determine if this is just a “money-grab” or a real complaint about the service/repair job.  Of course, if the service/repair was incorrect, make it right!  If it was really about the money, ask why they gave permission to proceed with the job.

I am mostly writing this to say, should this happen to you, don’t be devastated.  There are people out there who almost make it a profession to “get something for nothing” due to the convenience of online complaining.  Don’t let it tear you or your staff apart.  You know you are great, I know you are great, and most importantly, from the majority of the glowing reviews, your customers know it, too.

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

Posted by: News Works Marketing | May 22, 2018

Get The Best Help For Your Business

Rhonda HiltbrandA college education has been a matter of course for students seeking work and for businesses hiring them. But that’s beginning to change as the job market tightens and as businesses realize a degree isn’t necessary for many jobs.

Fast Company online

I have worked for the independent automotive service industry for over 20 years now, and what has been one of the consistent complaints I have heard?  It is so hard to get good help!  My staff and I have been discussing this very thing and, working with one of our star customers, we have come up with a great newsletter interior that covers all the different job opportunities available in the automotive industry today!  It is customized for this particular shop, but we can modify it for you, too!  We also worked with a local tech school and they are very excited about this newsletter.

Now is a great time to get the best help for your business!  If you would like to see the interior, just ask and we can email a copy to you!

On another subject, have you reminded your customers to get their car serviced before they take off on road trips?  Tis the season!  My 4-year-old grandson has been working hard on his Jeep as you can see from this picture!


Happy Memorial Day, everyone!

Rhonda Hiltbrand
News Works Marketing

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

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