Does your shop need a marketing firm?

Does your shop need a marketing firm?

Hiring a marketing firm won't automatically bring in more business – it can lose you money if you don't take proper steps.

Tire shop owners get into the auto repair business for two main reasons – a passion for working on cars and making a living doing what they love. But to work on cars, you need customers. That’s where marketing comes in. Some shop owners don’t have marketing expertise, so they hire a firm. However, hiring a marketing firm won’t automatically bring in more business – it can lose you money if you don’t take proper steps.

Let’s talk about what you should do before hiring a marketing firm.

First, know your business and what makes it unique. Sit down and write out some qualities about your business – things customers would find compelling and ask you to tell them more about. Highlight differentiators like specialized expertise, certifications or qualifications, no matter how common or uncommon. For example, maybe you’re a Porsche tech who trained in Germany – this is a legitimate quality and could lead to customers wanting to know more about you and your business.

You also need to understand why you’re hiring a marketing team. The obvious reason? To get more leads and paying customers in the door. Don’t get caught up in metrics like impressions or brand awareness, though. Those might increase awareness about you but won’t necessarily bring in real business. Before hiring a marketing firm, ask how they’ll define and measure success. They’re not the right fit if they don’t talk about lead generation as a primary goal or focus solely on impressions.

It’s also a good idea to hire a firm with automotive industry experience. Different marketers excel in different fields, and tire shop marketing often requires specific know-how. Before you hire a firm, interview multiple that have run auto shop campaigns before and ask them about metrics you find important that measure success.

It’s important to remember that, while marketing supplements growth, it doesn’t drive it alone. The best way to expand is to continue to foster great relationships with existing customers through quality service and improvement. A great referral from a customer carries a lot more weight than any online lead could.

If you do decide to hire a marketing firm, just make sure you can convey your unique strengths, align on the right goals and find an experienced partner that understands the tire industry.

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