This article could have been written prior to the round table discussion at the 2017 Ratchet & Wrench Conference, but it would have been incomplete. Incomplete because it would have lacked the input from the top shop operators that sat down at the round table discussions. Premature because I needed the input from my peers to complete my take on how revolutionary our industry niche is.
Transformative: To create a marked change in someone or something.
Transformative is fitting because in the end our goal is to transform ourselves and our companies into top shops. Companies that inspire other businesses in our community to rise up and be the best they can be. At our round table we discussed Bill DeBoer, of DeBoer's Auto and his goal to raise his average repair order amount. Bill is marketing to his competition to educate them on best practices they can use to provide better service and be more profitable. Thus, enabling DeBoer's Auto to charge what their services are worth.
Disruptive is another term that came up. Leveraging tactics not mentioned in the automotive space to reach more potential new customers, more cost effectively, and with a message that reflects your companies culture and values. Gmail Ads targeting your competitors was an example of this. Ads that show above your competitor’s emails, within a Gmail account, and give you a cost-effective way to have micro-touches with your ideal customers.
As a child I loved the game of chess. No two games are the same. In each game we must form an evolving strategy that adapts to our competition. We can never rest and rely on a previous strategy. We transform and think moves ahead of our challenger.
It is when we break out of the automotive space and look beyond the "platforms" and molds that we can be disruptive. Leveraging tools and tactics that our competitors are unaware of because they are not the cookie cutter programs that favor the vendor and not the auto repair shop. So, let us begin the transformation that will result in sustained growth within our businesses, employees and communities.