In 2018, there were more than 200,000 auto repair shops operating in America. Since that time, the number of auto repair shops has increased annually by approximately 2% and this trend is expected to continue regardless of economic conditions.
While it is true there is a steady demand for the services of auto repair shops, existing business owners cannot afford to be passive, especially on the marketing front. The competition is stiff, and with the industry further expanding, it’s important for individual car repair shop owners to establish their shop in consumers’ minds and stand out from the competition. Automotive branding can help you achieve this, effectively retaining current customers and drawing in new ones.
What Is Branding?
Branding refers to the process of creating a distinct identity for your business in the minds of your customers and your target audience. In its simplest form, branding can include your business logo, design, and mission statement. Brand identity can also be seen in your pricing details and in the quality of your products or services.
The branding concept can also involve the creation of an appropriate website for your business. If you’re running an auto repair shop, your website should adopt the corporate colors associated with your company, and the design that you will use across all of your social media channels. This is how you influence the perceptions that people will have of your business.
Importance of Effective Branding
Even if you have no plans of investing in a detailed and strategic branding plan, your business will still end up having a brand image in the minds of people. A shoddy car repair service, for example, can negatively impact how customers perceive your company.
If your auto repair business is currently operational and doing repairs it will inevitably have an image, and this image will be directly linked to the quality of your repair work. A high-quality repair job creates a positive image just as a poor quality repair job creates a negative image.
Simply put, automotive branding is all about establishing and portraying a certain business image. Given this, how you manage your branding strategy is critical to the success of your company.
Ways of Branding Your Auto Repair Shop
If you’re involved in the car repair business, you should be aware that it’s a highly-competitive industry. To compete effectively, your auto repair shop needs to have a well planned marketing strategy that establishes your brand and drives customers to your shop.
Below are some branding techniques that, when included in your marketing plan, will consistently gain you new clients.
1. Produce explanatory videos.
Videos are great for capturing customers’ attention. For an auto repair business, it’s best if your video explains how certain car parts are repaired or what their functions are. Ideally, you should end the video with an invitation to visit your car shop for the best repair service.
2. Upload pre/post photos.
Customers will likely trust you if you share content that demonstrates the value of your work. This can come in the form of before and after photos of your repair jobs. Post these in your social media accounts, and where possible, include pictures of your mechanics and the body shop staff as they go about their work.
3. Create rewards programs.
Inform existing customers about rewards programs that your auto repair shop may have. These reward programs should be based upon a reward for referrals of new customers to your business. A successful referral can mean service discounts, freebies, or some other rewards. This will entice people to tell friends and family about your business and the services that you offer.
4. Send personalized messages.
Launch an email newsletter by collecting customer email addresses using wifi marketing. Emails help you to stay in touch with your customers, but to be an effective marketing tool, you have to identify your target audience first and then segment it based on automobile behavior and habits.
When sending email messages, make it a point to mention the recipent’s name as this makes things more personal. Also, send only content that is relevant to your customers.
Truck drivers, for example, would find it pointless to receive promotional discounts for car owners.
5. Do customer follow-ups.
Follow up with your customers after they visit your auto shop. This is one of the basics of branding and should be made applicable to both your loyal clients and first-time visitors. A follow-up program is a great way of building a more personal relationship with customers and it gives you the opportunity to get feedback on your existing repair services.
6. Offer subscription plans.
Consider offering regular maintenance services in your auto shop business. This program will ensure that your customers will seek you out for any future car needs. The scheduled services can be offered either at a discounted price or under a special subscription plan that allows your clients to spread out their monthly payments.
7. Consider social listening.
Social media is more than just sharing messages and images to others. It’s also about listening to people. Social listening involves the act of following conversations online to understand customers’ needs and thoughts. For your auto shop, this can be helpful in trying to learn the problems that your target customers encounter and how they feel about your business.
It takes time and lots of careful and deliberate planning to create a good branding strategy. This is especially true for auto repair outlets as they are in an industry that is highly competitive. Simply put, there’s a need to have a distinct and unique brand if you want your shop to be successful.
There are several simple and practical ways of getting your car repair center properly branded. However, they are not something you should try implementing on your own. For your branding strategy to be genuinely effective, it’s best if you get the help of a respected digital marketing company.
Contact Advanced Digital Automotive Group for the best branding plan for your car repair business.
If you want to increase the customer base and customer recognition for your auto repair business, you have to engage in brand marketing. Indeed, for people to actively seek out your auto repair shop you have to create a unique brand image and continually promote this image. However, brand marketing is not a simple process and if your efforts in this area are yet to produce results, then it’s time to consider Advanced Digital Automotive Group.
Advanced Digital Automotive Group are a reliable digital marketing company and we have auto repair SEO experts that will establish an effective branding campaign for your auto repair business. We are fully committed to helping the automotive repair industry cater to car owners’ ever-growing needs. Call us today so we can work together.