All money is some form of green but not all money is good! Some dollars make you work harder for them than others. And all people are some form of customer – but are they the ones you want?
We’ve all experienced it at some time or another – we’ve taken on a work we knew we shouldn’t. It might be the car or the customer. And even though we knew inside we shouldn’t, we did anyway. As a result, we get saddled with one job too many at best and, at worst, one job we can’t complete properly and has sucked the morale of the shop way down.
How do you avoid – or at least minimize – a challenge like this?
You take the time to define your target market, also known as finding your best customer.
Knowing what your prime customer looks like will go a long way toward overall satisfaction both at your shop and with your customer. So where do you start?
Think about the customers who meet the following criteria.
- They appreciate your shop’s knowledge and skills and happily pay their bill. Granted, we ARE in the “Grumpy Money” business – no one really likes to have to spend money on car repairs. It’s not like they’re spending “Happy Money” on a new set of wheels and tires.
- Still, they’re easy to communicate with. In the fast pace of the shop, getting the customer’s approval quickly can be the difference between a lift or bay unnecessarily being tied up. And when a bay is tied up, you are losing money.
- They come back. This point is key because returning to your shop says they like you, your team and the way you do business.
- They refer their friends. A customer who sends you referrals says a lot about you and your shop. These are the Gold Standard customers who believe in you so much that they are willing to risk their reputation for yours, knowing your shop will take care of their friends. These are the customers that you want to go the extra mile for.
A side benefit of knowing WHO to target helps to improve HOW you reach them, increasing the effectiveness of your marketing.
As you seek to define your prime customer you’ll realize they fall into a couple of categories, demographics and psychographics.
Demographics is basically this:
Age. Gender. Income range. Number of children And living statistics: do they rent or own? value of the home and distance from your shop?
Psychographics is a little harder to pin down, but just as important.
Their preferences, concerns, aspirations, fears, personality type, approach to life, values, and even worldview could be considered. These are the elements that affect their buying decisions. If the values of you and your shop align with theirs it’s a good chance you’ll create a common bond on the first visit.
This list isn’t exhaustive but it will give you a great starting place as you look to define your prime customer who could become a lifelong customer.