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Steve Evans recently purchased Cole’s Garage, Inc., an automotive repair shop that has provided complete car care services to Akron residents and fleet customers since 1976. His experience in the industry has convinced him that building customer loyalty is vital to long-term success. In the short time he has owned the shop, Evans has been able to increase customer retention dramatically—with the help of the Epicor Service CRM solution.

Soon after his purchase, Evans realized he couldn’t count on the shop’s longtime customers to navigate the transition to new ownership seamlessly. That led him to seek a CRM solution that would be user-friendly, not take up a lot of his time, and help him easily communicate with customers.

“I needed a way to retain old and new customers and a simple solution to help me do it,” Evans said.

A Surprising Boost

In an increasingly digital world, Evans was surprised to discover how effective conventional direct mail campaigns can be.

With the help of Epicor Service CRM, he launched a postcard campaign that has garnered an impressive 3.5% return and generated nearly $60,000 in additional revenue. Moreover, the shop’s average repair order has increased to nearly $600.

“With Epicor Service CRM, I see the return on my investment every week, and it has increased my bottom line,” Evans said.

Paying Daily Dividends

Among all the features available through the Epicor solution, including impressive texting capabilities, Evans remains most optimistic about the available postcard campaigns. Not only do these campaigns help his business stay relevant for customers, but they also encourage them to come back for maintenance and/ or emergency services. Epicor Service CRM makes it easy to pick custom promotions or messaging and send postcards directly to the shop’s mailing list.

“After I get a customer’s address, Epicor takes care of the rest,” Evans said. “It is easy. We continuously run promotions and see a great turnout from them.”

With Epicor Service CRM, I see the return on my investment every week, and it has increased my bottom line.

Evans also found it is easy to measure the ROI of each promotional activity. He can quickly track the customers who redeem these special offers and modify campaigns to increase response.

“This solution has really helped with retaining customers,” Evans said. “We send postcards out weekly, and I have customers bringing them in all the time.”

Growing with Service CRM

As Evans has built a strong foundation of success, he is exploring more of the Epicor solution’s capabilities, including text messaging.

Although Cole’s Garage is already ranked high on Google, thanks to Service CRM, and has more than 160 customer reviews, Evans targets increased visibility by sending customers a text link to post feedback following their appointments. He can also more easily engage with customers by sending appointment reminders, images of broken parts and other inspection results, and sharing detailed estimates for timely approval.

“We live in an age where people look at their texts a lot faster than email and phone calls,” he said, “so I’m excited to add texting. I think it will be a good fit for my customers.”

Company Facts

  • Location: Akron, Ohio
  • Specialist Industry: Automotive Aftermarket
  • Specialty Sectors: Maintenance & Repair
  • Website: www.colesgarageinc.com

Challenges

  • Customer retention
  • Boost customer engagement and revenue
  • Increase online visibility

Benefits

  • Create customized promotions that drive sales
  • Track marketing results by customer
  • Increased customer retention
  • Significant ARO gains
  • Increased Google ratings, online visibility
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