In terms of marketing mix the overall auto repair service offering is referred to as the Product or Customer Solution. As in all endeavors applying the basics will ensure a firm foundation from which to achieve long term success. Every business is different and strength and weaknesses are determined by a number of factors. The end product in auto repair is the entire service offering – or the customer experience. The methods by which the service is delivered, the benefits provided, positive attributes and presentation all combine to formulate the end product. Following are keys to developing premium service offerings:
It’s the context, not the content of a sales process that’s decisive. And the single most important contextual element of sales flow is sequencing … Harvey Mackay
- Remember That Service is the Product – In the service industry every interaction with the customer merges in their mind to formulate the perception of your offering. Of course the actual repair or maintenance work provided are the primary reason for the relationship but all the other factors in their experience combine to become the service provided and therefore the perceived value to the customer.
- Clearly Define What You’re Selling – To provide the best quality service possible it’s necessary to break the service offering down into smaller pieces and examine each component to ensure that it fits as well as possible with your overall philosophy. Defining and clarifying parts of the service process ensure uniformity. Customers like consistency and non-conformity makes them uncomfortable.
- Think in Terms of Features and Benefits – Customers don’t buy products they buy benefits. In service every aspect of customer interaction should serve to provide or highlight benefits provided. Price and reliability are an extremely significant part of auto repair service in the customer’s mind but the aspects of service surrounding these deliverables can often be the differentiating factor in earning a customer’s business.
- Identify What You Do Best – Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is critical to formulating the best possible service offering. All aspects of service delivery should play to your strengths.
- Define the Characteristics of your Service – It’s not possible to combine all possible positive attributes into a service offering. Some objectives oppose each other. For example highest quality and lowest price are competing goals. However, achieving best quality at the most competitive price is possible. Success is predicated on defining the positive attributes of your service offering.
- Remember that Presentation is Everything – The impact of structuring the best service offering in the world will be minimized if no one knows it. The benefits and positive characteristics of your end product must be communicated effectively in order to bring maximum value.