The holiday season is almost here, a time for “Ho, ho, ho!” Unfortunately, for auto shops trying to market themselves, ’tis the season to see customers go, go, go.
Car owners need repairs during the winter just like at any other time of the year. However, they often get their vehicles repaired in winter only after a breakdown or for some other urgent issue Consumers often postpone optional repairs and services until the weather gets warmer, when their wallets aren’t so stretched from the holidays.
Auto shops still need customers to schedule oil changes, replace fan belts, get car washes, or attend to scheduled maintenance during the holiday season, as well as during January and February. Marketing must be creative for repair shops to avoid losing revenue when customers don’t have the time, money, or will to make appointments. These are some tips for marketing your auto shop during the holiday season.
Coupon advertising is a great strategy for marketing your auto shop at any time of year, but it can be especially effective around the holidays. Consider register tape advertising, in which coupons are placed on the back of grocery store receipts given to consumers after every purchase. These coupons provide reminders of services that car owners might not otherwise be thinking about during the holidays. Moreover, such a promotion offers an extra incentive to take advantage of a deal—and consumers are always looking for a deal in December. eople visit grocery stores more often during the holidays, resulting in even more opportunities for them to see your coupons.
Even with coupons, car owners may still hesitate to schedule services during the holidays. You might need to sweeten the deal by offering a deeper discount or additional value. Services normally associated with warmer seasons, such as car washes, detailing, and coolant checks, are perfect for special winter deals—via coupon, online channels, or both—that can attract customers looking for a bargain.
Winter is destructive to cars—something your customers know but don’t always act upon. Heating systems need to be checked, snow tires may need to be put on, and wipers and fluids may need to be replaced. Coupons and other special offers act as reminders for car owners to address these important services before the temperature drops and the snow starts falling.
Active Social Media
Marketing your auto shop year-round might include a robust social media strategy. Don’t avoid or neglect this front during the holidays because you are too busy to update your feeds, or because you think your customers won’t bother to pay attention. Post seasonal specials, winter driving and maintenance tips, and even holiday wishes. Encourage your followers to post by asking questions about their cars, pictures of holiday light displays, or stories about the worst snowstorm they ever had to drive through.
An Updated Website
Too many auto shops attempt to market their businesses through a company website but fail to keep those sites meaningfully updated. If you still have summer specials advertised on your homepage in December, not only are you wasting an opportunity to attract and impress customers, but also you are turning off visitors; they might assume that a business that isn’t diligent in updating its website will be just as inattentive when working on their cars. Marketing your auto shop means getting customers to choose you over the competition. Updating or refreshing your website—along with other strategies such as the aforementioned coupon advertising—will give you an edge over other businesses during the holidays and the rest of the winter, not to mention spring, summer, and fall.
What special promotions are offered by your auto shop during the holidays?