It can be tough to get noticed when you’re one auto shop among many. When you add in all the noise that comes from digital ads, billboards, radio ads, and television ads, getting noticed can feel impossible. However, many auto shops like yours are making the same marketing mistakes over and over again. Luckily, there’s a way to get out of the vicious cycle and finally start to see some results.
Here are the best marketing strategies for auto shops that you need to try in 2019.
Boost Your Shop’s Bottom Line With These 7 Marketing Strategies
Write a car advice blog.
One of the easiest ways to set yourself up as an expert in the auto community is by writing a car advice blog. Regularly post on your website’s blog some customer-friendly tips (such as how often they should be getting an oil change, when to put air in your tires, seasonal tips). Doing this will help your online customer base see you as an auto expert and build trust. Plus, you’ll be the first shop they think of when it’s time to get work done on their car or tires.
Be active on social media.
Most businesses have a business page on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, or other social media accounts. However, not all of these businesses are successful because they are not very active on social media.
What does it mean to be active? You need to be posting regularly throughout the week and keeping your pages fresh with new images, news about your shop, advertising, and updated information (such as hours, addresses, when you are closed on holidays, etc.) This is another way to build trust online and get your shop noticed. Plus, when you advertise on social media, you can target specific types of audiences in your local area.
Advertising with coupons.
This is a classic for a reason. Whether you are sending out coupons in mailers, emails, or using social media ads, customers love coupons. If you create a 30% off tire rotation coupon and send it to the right audiences, you could see an influx of new customers to your auto shop.
Emails to stay in front of your customer.
Email is one of the best marketing strategies for auto shops. Setting up an email database of customers and creating marketing emails is a great, cost-effective way to stay top-of-mind for your auto shop customers. Use email to send reminders, car care tips, holiday greetings, coupons, and more.
Create a customer loyalty program.
The next two marketing strategies for auto shops can go hand-in-hand with setting up your email database. Creating a customer loyalty program is a very effective way to gain loyal customers and keep them coming back. It’s a great way to offer your best customers great deals, birthday coupons, and more. Your customer will save money and feel like they are part of an exclusive club - and your auto shop will reap the rewards of a customer base that stays loyal for years.
Set up service reminders.
Setting up service reminders is a great use of your email database. You can automate emails to send when it’s been 3 months and it’s time for an oil change. You can set up seasonal emails that remind your customers it’s time for a tire rotation. Life is busy and your customers are, too - they will appreciate being reminded to take care of their car so it lasts them for years. Plus, they’ll know exactly who to go to for their auto services.
Customer referrals (word-of-mouth).
Word-of-mouth, or customer referrals, is still a solid way to grow your customer base. You can encourage customer referrals by using marketing emails and by growing your customer loyalty program. Provide 10% off their next service if they refer a friend to your auto shop. Find ways to reward your current customers for bringing you new business. It will strengthen your relationship with the customer and help you to grow your auto shop. It’s a win-win.
You don’t have to settle for just word-of-mouth referrals when it comes to building a strong base of loyal customers.
Creating a marketing plan around these seven marketing strategies will help you to attract, and keep, the type of auto customers you want. Plus, many of these strategies (like email) can be automated. Once you’ve set them up, all you need to do is monitor their performance and make tweaks when necessary. Sounds easy, right? So, use the best marketing strategies for auto shops as your baseline and you’ll be set for success.
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