Each of us has heard many stories about the auto business, especially when taking your car in for repair. There’s the story about how the repair guy always seems to find something else wrong, driving up your bill. You’ve obviously heard the one about when you take your car in for one thing, that the unscrupulous operators always loosen up something else, causing you to have come back again. . . and again. The other day I heard a completely new variation on this age-old complaint. A good friend of mine had taken her car in to a man who not only fixed her car when he said he would, charged her considerably less than she would have paid at another outlet; then when asked why he hadn't done the oil change this visit, his answer was “I have to charge much more than if you took it to a quick service oil change place; it will likely cost you about $15 less!” Can you believe this guy?Here is a fellow, let’s call him Kurt, who operates an auto service and repair outlet in a big, competitive city. He is famous for doing what he says he will do. . . for charging fair prices for his work, never gouging the customer. He always goes out of his way to help people spend less on their repairs. Naturally, he is much beloved by hundreds of customers. He has made his reputation by truthfully promising and then keeping his promises. He always exceeds his customers’ expectations. She has been taking her cars to him for years.
So have all her friends. I know you are expecting to hear Kurt’s name. location and contact information in this article. No, it’s not going to happen. I’m not even going to give you his last name, or where he’s located. This is not a story designed to generate more awareness or business for Kurt. Why? ‘Because he has discovered the most important secret in marketing. . . for any business owner. Do you have an idea what that is? I’ll give you a hint. The secret of all marketing starts with one word: the Customer. ‘Not lip-service. Real service to and for the customer. That one word dictates what you have to do in order to be a successful marketer. It is not enough effectively communicating to your intended target group, using one form of media or another. The real secret lies in how you “think” and “act” within your business when it comes to that one important word: customers. Everything begins and ends with the customer. Kurt, is successful because he breaks all the rules of his own industry. He keeps his promises.
He doesn’t over-promise and under-deliver. He does the exact opposite. He knows the lifetime value of a customer. He knows that if he does his job well – the first time – he will be so positively different from his competitors (especially in the auto repair industry!) that he will differentiate and distinguish himself. Additionally, he doesn’t charge like there’s no tomorrow. Voila: he has a customer for life, who tells friends, relatives and colleagues. This is called ‘word of mouth’ personal referrals, the best form of advertising there is. So I am not going to tell you where Kurt does business.
I am not going to give you his web site URL, his email address or his phone number. I am not going to tell you anything more about him. Why? ‘Because he doesn’t need or want me to. He doesn’t need the help. (To learn more about Kurt and his phenomenal marketing secret, click on the live link to my video in the ‘biography box’ just below). Kurt has so much business already he just barely keeps up. It makes sense to him to help a valued customer save fifteen bucks on an oil change. At the same time, he is reducing the number of oil changes he does, (which probably takes up too much space and time); they may not be the kind of work he really wants to do. He wins and the customer wins.
He is more profitable too because he never has to advertise. He doesn’t even have the extra printing expense of a business card. Wouldn’t you love to have a guy like this work on your car? ©Copyright, Roy MacNaughton, 2007
Roy MacNaughton is a niche marketing coach and business writer. He’s a seasoned marketer, with more than 30 years of international marketing and franchising experience, including nine years online. To see Roy's video about Kurt and his phenomenal marketing secret mentioned above, click on this link: http://members.viditalk.com/view/?id=OBOF7U39OMPYWQHF6UOK Roy's soon-to-be-published e-book, (Marketing Yours), teaches solo practitioners, entrepreneurs and professionals how to market their most important product. Learn more at his blog: http://www.UmarketingU.com