You’ve probably heard the news earlier this month that the world’s largest coffee company unveiled a new logo. Starbucks’ fresh, new look drops the words encircling its iconic twin-tailed mermaid and gives her a few subtle updates.
The new “wordless” logo, the fourth since the company’s beginnings as a small coffee, tea and spice shop in Seattle in 1971, parallels a new direction for the company and paves the way for the company’s expansion into other product areas and markets.
Starbucks grew too far, too fast and its appeal faded as the recession hit and consumers drank coffee at home or went to lower-priced competitors.
In a rebound strategy, Starbucks brought back founder Howard Schultz to lead daily operations in 2008, closed hundreds of stores and cut jobs. It re-emphasized training for employees, allowed customers to customize drinks more, opened stores with more local flavor, increased its Wi-Fi offerings and launched a rewards program.
And, its strategy worked; Starbucks’ sales rebounded, and its fiscal 2010 profit was more than double what it earned in 2009.
While I’m not suggesting you drop the name from your shop logo, as did Starbucks, there are two messages here that could help your shop win and retain customers this year:
Don’t become complacent. Look for ways to give your shop a fresh image to re-enforce in your customers’ mind that they’ve chosen a good shop, and take steps to keep your shop top of mind when their vehicle is in need of another repair.
As in the Starbucks example, you are providing more than just vehicle repairs. You are selling a vehicle repair experience from the moment the customer drives into your parking lot, walks through the front door and is greeted by you or the service advisor, to the time he/she pays the bill, and everything that takes place in between. So, think about changes you can make to elevate customer first impressions.
Don’t take customers for granted. Once you get them in your shop, you need to earn their business and re-earn their business with every subsequent repair. Your reputation, as well as your customers’ trust and respect, is riding on the quality and effectiveness of every repair.
You need to drive home the message to everyone at your shop that you are doing much more than just fixing cars. Every part of the service experience should reflect quality, service excellence and professionalism, as you work together as a team to make customers return to your shop with confidence and commitment time and time again.