Niche. Finding Specialties to Create New Business Services.
A very interesting summit, a lesson for the forever student of the aftermarket. We’re talking Niche or Finding Specialties to Create New Business Services. A vibrant discussion to challenge the use of your talent and facility and to listen to your customers and find out exactly what they want and need from you.
The panel warns you to keep your eyes open. The shift is coming. Toss out those unprofitable jobs. Clean out your closet. Review your current business model. We will not survive doing what we always have done.
The panel will help you understand How to consider a specialty, product based niche vs. service based niche; but an overlying theme is to be sure the basics are being done right. You cannot add a new service if you don’t aren’t fixing your customers’ problem right the first time. Get your house in order before adding.Listen and view episode notes
Can David Beat Goliath?
The Academy panel dives into the dichotomy of David and Goliath. David, quick nimble and did not perceive that he was an underdog. The panel considers that larger industry players can be Goliath-like … complacent, too structured, weighed down with rules and inflexible. It doesn’t mean that it is bad, but they say small and nimble is better than big and sluggish. They are quick to point out that we can learn a lot from Goliath’s as it pertains to systems and processes.
Ironically we did discuss that having a Goliath mentality may be good for a David. We talked about business models, being able to adapt to changes in the marketplace and consumers habits. A great example in the discussion was that Starbucks is a Goliath but they hire Davids. A very potent strategy for success. We also talk customer loyalty and what we can learn from the Goliaths of the aftermarket.
The Panel: Bambi Crozier, from Car Clinic in Lowel, AR, Jeremy O’Neal, Freedom Automotive, Freedom Automotive in Hesperia, CA and President and Lead Sales Trainer at AdvisorFix and Scott Pelava, Lonsdale Auto Works in Lonsdale, MNListen and view episode notes
Looking Thirty Years Into the Future
The evolution of electric, hybrids, hybrid/electric and the internal combustion engine and how we will do business in the future. Deb and Craig Van Batenburg share their view of the pace of tech changes and evolving business models.
Craig believes in zero emissions and that climate change is real. He feels that students at high school and college level must learn to work on hybrid and electric cars and that the transition from the internal combustion engine will happen faster than anyone knows. The driver for a rapid change will be the cost of a barrel of oil.
Deb and Craig are sought after speakers and trainers for OE, aftermarket and through worldwide clients. Their training company, Auto Career Development Center (ACDC) is all hands on and only accepts nine students per class.Listen and view episode notes
Shop Of The Future. A Business Coaches Perspective.
Bill Haas from Haas Performance Consulting and Bob Greenwood President and CEO of Automotive Aftermarket E-Learning Centre bring their viewpoints on the future of the service professional.
Bill and Bob talk about training, culture, the dealership factor, pricing transparency, and the importance of daytime training. They also share their viewpoint on competing, hiring and retaining top talent, both technicians and service advisors.Listen and view episode notes
The Shop of the Future: Are You Prepared?
Have you thought about how you will do business in the future? Well the mission of this panel was to stretch the boundaries and serve up plenty of thoughts, concepts and changes coming that you need to be fundamentally be prepared for.
So happy to be able to present this audio recording from Vision 2018. With me are shop owners, Summer Gurerro from Affinity Automotive Services, Inc in Wichita, KS, Keith Williamson owner of Williamson’s Repair and Tire in Bondurant, IA, Trainer and Mobile Technician Eric Ziegler form EZ Diagnostics, Chris Chesney the Senior Director, Customer Training at the Carquest Technical Institute and Donny Seyfer the Executive Officer of NASTF, the National Automotive Service Task Force and co-owner of Seyfer Automotive in Wheatridge, CO.
Many great thoughts that will help shape your future. There are many important action steps discussed that need your support and engagement. Listen carefully for those cues.Listen and view episode notes
Chicago. No Car. No Problem.
Joran Thompson lives in Chicago and hasn’t owned a car for years. She does fine commuting to work, buying fresh groceries and dry goods. Her dry cleaning gets done, perfectly and on-time, and her latest IKEA purchase gets constructed. When she needs medicine, pizza or to wait in a line for a restaurant on a Saturday Night she just uses her smartphone. There’s an APP for all of her needs.
The story for aftermarket professionals is that all the miles Joran is not driving are being done by the services she contracts. Transportation as a Service will rack up the miles to support all the Joran Thompson’s who don’t own vehicles. Someone will need to maintain and repair those vehicles. It’s time to make those connections.Listen and view episode notes
How To Sell Diagnostics at a Profit?
This is not an easy question to answer. Service professionals must be paid for their expertise because the cost of doing diagnostics is the most expensive service you have in your building.
It is time to move from diagnostics to testing and analyzing. Every shop needs to build a premium product around testing and analyzing. You need to be known as the ‘we can fix anything right the first time shop’. Your motto: “We have the best technicians.” Your shops testing and analyzing skills is the premium product you sell and are known for in your marketplace. No need to go anywhere else. We do the research, test, analyze and discover what is wrong. We present the solution then you decide.
Marketing this premium product requires a strong testing/analyzing process that both the service advisor and technician are totally in agreement with. The benefits allow the SA to confidently sell testing and analyzing.
The diagnostician knows that the SA will sell the value and benefits to the customer because the process dictates the work to be done. A very strong discussion and powerful take-a-ways that will arrest the black hole in your business of profitable diagnostic time.Listen and view episode notes
Growth Strategy: Fleets
Fleet business can sustain your revenue during the up and down times of the year. Get started and be willing to change and adjust as you move along. These three experts agree that it may be time for you to ‘Get out of your comfort zone’ and jump into the fleet business.
Learn from Tom Palermo from Preferred Automotive Specialists in Jenkintown, PA, John Constantin from Bison Fleet Service in Buffalo, NY and Bill Nalu from Interstate Auto Care in Madison Heights, MI.
We talk how to recruit fleet customer, obvious reasons to get into fleet business, the how and the challenges of implementing and growing fleet revenue.Listen and view episode notes
Super Growth rate of 40% Has Its Challenges to Expense Control and Cash Flow.
Ryan Blair of Blair Automotive is a highly honored Audi technician and worked at an Audi dealership for eight years before deciding to start his own Audi/VW specialty shop.
As an independent, he has brought a high level of differentiation and a better than dealer experience to his customer. His new location was a perfect ground zero for his increased sales.
We find Ryan with big growing pains and a huge scale up when he moved into his new 12 bay facility. He has no regrets to get the shop where it is and admits he stretched and has personally guaranteed his expansion. Ryan has the perfect outlook and is building a strong business long into the future.Listen and view episode notes
This panel’s perspective is meant to excite a dialogue, to present ideas and concepts to support your decision or to inspire you to take a stand; one way or the other.
This topic is a worthy discussion because of the growth rate of e-commerce part availability, transparency in pricing, and ease of self-diagnosis on the internet.
At risk can be your reputation based on the quality of part being installed. You own the cause of their concern. This panel has not gotten one new great customer from ever installing parts for walk-in customers.Listen and view episode notes
The Power of Performing a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunity, Threats) Review of Your Business.
Join Maryann Croce, Greg Bunch and Murray Voth for a wide-open discussion on the power and value doing a SWOT on your business. These three aftermarket professionals know the worth and outcome of a well-done SWOT.
Involve your team, assign priorities to the outcome and create a timeline to do the things discovered in this exercise. You are creating a strategic plan to best prepare your company for doing business in today’s market and into the future.
Go to the show notes page for this Academy episode #40 to download support tools.Listen and view episode notes
Is Tradition Preventing Shop Owners From Buying Technician Tools? FACT: Shop Owners Are Already Paying For Their Employee Tools, And At A Super Inflated Premium With A Ton Of Interest To Boot.
This Academy panel feels that making employees supply tools is an outdated tradition, based on poor understanding of economics and is commonplace for all the wrong reasons.
We cover a lot of ground including the debt load carried by technicians, tool truck time, improved retention and loyalty. We talk side work, and how to approach starting this new strategy. The panel agrees it takes more than just money to retain top talent.
When the shop provides all the specialty tools you need to have them cataloged so everyone knows where they are located to prevent wasted time finding them. In the end, what is in the best interest for your shop will guide how you tackle this.Listen and view episode notes
Shops That Have Created a Brand Where People Trust You Find Their Business Booming.
Tom Marx, MAAP, Chairman and Chief Strategy Officer from The Marx Group, a full-service marketing communications agency, says the service segment of our industry is in the Golden Age. He is also very outspoken on industry consolidation as a partner in Hart Marx Advisors a mergers and acquisition consultancy.
Tom knows the aftermarket and the service professional. He’ll be speaking at AAPEX 2017 on ‘Amplifying Your Brand’. In the interview, Tom talks about industry consolidation from both the service and distribution side. He also shares his perspectives on training, marketing and the need for quality financial statements, if you are interested in selling your business.Listen and view episode notes
What does the future with Autonomous Cars Look Like?
Derek Kaufman a Managing Partner at Schwartz Advisors is thinking large about the future of the auto care industry and the acceptance of TaaS (Transportation as a Service) with ride sharing and ultimately vehicle ownership.
Vehicle ownership will have a big impact on our industry and it will have a big impact on the miles driven with the remaining vehicles in the car parc.
Derek is challenging a report that says there will be only 44 million vehicles that will handle the 6 trillion Vehicle Miles Traveled in 2030 in the car parc vs 270 million we have today. He is accepting the technical evolution with AV’s, however, he is questioning the numbers from the report and applied some of his own math to figure out what our future may look like. Will these vehicles be able to handle the miles we drive today for work and pleasure? What about convenience. What about our work trucks? Listen to his view on our future.Listen and view episode notes