I’ve been talking about marketing online with a local garage, and he’s been amazed at how successful a few simple ideas have been. He already has a website (albeit not a great one, but he knows that and is planning to get it reworked) so I suggested in the mean time he try eBay Local Services and Gumtree.
Currently his website offers aren’t great, offering 15% off labour fees but omitting to reference what his hourly rates are. I suggested some clean and simple adverts such as “Oil and Filter change £37.50”, “Service £89.95″and “Labour rates £40.00/hr”.
Having popped an advert onto Gumtree he came over today to tell me he’s already got an ecstatic elderly gentleman customer who was so proud to announce “I found you on the Internet, is it really only £37.50?” and has booked his car in. He also advertised a car and got an apologetic buyer over last weekend explaining he wanted to buy and could pay a deposit but that he couldn’t get £2000 out of his bank account over the weekend so he’d collect the car on Monday.
Whatever your business, whether it’s retail or service, local online classifieds on sites such as eBay and Gumtree are well worth the investment of a few minutes time. I’ve yet to place an ad personally which didn’t give results but think about the offers you’re going to advertise. Short and simple with a definitive call to action works much better than “We also do car servicing” as my friendly garage owner just found out.