Digitalization within the industry is increasing at an unprecedented rate. Statistics showing the rising amount of time customers spend online, and how online reviews influence purchasing decisions, should be taken very seriously. ZF Aftermarket, recommends workshops to adapt their communications accordingly. To help do this and, as a result, strengthen their businesses, the next episode in the long-running TRW ‘True Originals’ campaign looks at digital marketing tools and analytics.
This is led by a short video highlighting the digital best practices of a forward-thinking auto repair shop. To follow up, a series of thought-provoking and commercially useful essays, hosted on its web-based information hub https://www.trwaftermarket.com/original-workshops/de/kunden-service/ , explain everything a workshop needs to know. By examining how various universal platforms work, the business shows how digital marketing and social media can be used to great advantage, particularly by those with a limited budget to increase sales and secure customer loyalty.
“By the year 2020, an entire generation, Generation C for ‘connected’, will have grown up in a digital world immersed in an online culture and well versed in social networking methodology.” explains Ben Smart, Global Marketing Director ZF Aftermarket. “Furthermore, figures show that by next year the average person will be spending 84 minutes a day watching videos online.”
As ZF Aftermarket continues to lead into the next generation of mobility, it sees the responsibility to ensure that the current and future customer base has fast and easy access to the information they need, on their terms. This latest phase of TRW’s ‘True Originals’ campaign will help to empower workshops and provide guidance on navigating an often confusing landscape to make a big impact.
What is digital marketing?
Digital marketing is any marketing that appears online. Independent garages who may lack the budget or infrastructure to organize big advertising campaigns can reach their target audience cheaply and easily by using social media (the main platforms being Facebook, Twitter and Instagram), email and websites. These channels are excellent vehicles for utilizing outbound (paid for) marketing – paying to put your logo or banner on someone else’s website, for example – and inbound (minimal cost) marketing, offering your audience something that interests or benefits them, such as social media posts to communicate discount offers, service reminders or a well-written hints and tips page on a workshop’s website.
Continuing the long-running TRW campaign, based on the concept that both TRW people and their loyal customers excel in all they do and are therefore ‘True Originals’, the campaign this time focusses on digital marketing. This phase features TRW customer Russ Stanley, Director of Revolution Porsche, Brighouse, UK. In a short video Russ explains how, as one of the first workshops to capitalize on digital marketing, he’s increased loyalty and seen impressive business growth since opening in 2011.
“Our interactive website means that customers can contact us outside of working hours, and social media has allowed us to grow far more quickly and easily. Every time we send an e-mail we ask our customers to follow us so it’s really easy to organically build up a good database. Sharing links to forums, exhibitions and other websites, together with engaging and relevant information about our team enables customers to interact.”
“We also practice video servicing logging,” explains Russ. “This is where we send videos to our customers so they can actually see what work their vehicle needs – a good way of sharing information that really builds trust and confidence. Digital marketing costs very little other than your time, but the reach and rewards can be fantastic.”
The video can be found on #ORIGINALWORKSHOPS - an ever-growing hub of useful advice, tips, videos and more to help installers and garage owners to offer great service, work efficiently, promote themselves to customers and build a strong and successful business. New web-based essays include:
Ben Smart concludes: “In summary, digital marketing can significantly benefit garage workshops because, with very little cost, it can keep customers engaged, prompt return visits and establish a connection that increases customer loyalty. It can also increase business awareness and expand the potential customer base as those you reach begin to share offers and news with their friends.”