It’s the perfect time to start marketing autumn and winter protection services at your car wash. Summer months are often slower, but a return to cooler – and often messy – weather can also bring a return in profits. Many operators are making their winter maintenance checklists, right now, and making notes to perform necessary cat pump repair, order backup pressure washer pump parts, and stock additional car wash supplies, but what about reviewing their fall and winter marketing plans? Marketing and promotions can be crucial to take advantage of changes in consumer patterns during this season. Here are a few tips to help you attract and retain customers this season:
Educate your customers.
Remind your customers that their cars need to be maintained and protected during the winter months. The harsher elements of the season can pose a threat to painted surfaces, even though clear coats these days are better than ever. Suggest regular sealant applications during the winter months to help protect the vehicle surfaces. Increased rainfall can bring carbon and oil to the road surface, requiring increased undercarriage and tire cleaning regularly. If you live in a climate which sees snow and ice, remind your customers that road deicing chemicals can cover the vehicle surface, and advertise that your cleaning process can return shine and offer additional protection from such residue. Informing your customers of the cleaning challenges brought on by the elements can bring more cars into your wash each week.
Promote premium products to protect customers’ vehicles from the elements.
Adjust your presoaks to address the increased challenges brought on by the elements, road deicers such as magnesium chloride, and sand, which can be everywhere during winter months in colder climates. Be sure to advertise the changes you’ve made, and set yourself apart by using words like “Removes Magnesium Chloride” in your promotional materials. Also, emphasize the protective powers of the premium product in your top wash package to offer the maximum vehicle surface protection and underbody rust prevention.
Promote convenience, and use storms and other weather events as an opportunity to run specials.
When it’s cold and windy, few customers are going to want to wash their cars themselves. If you offer heated flooring or heated water, let your customers know that it will prevent water freezing on their vehicles, and remind them of the danger to their vehicle posed by improperly heated wash systems. In addition, each fall or wintoer storm offers an opportunity for car wash business promotion. A day or two after a snowstorm or other bad weather, run a special after the snow plows have had time to clean up the roads, or when the weather clears and the mud has dried. In addition to added holiday discounts or other regular discounts, these promotions might be just the thing to bring in those extra customers. Be sure to take advantage of every opportunity fall and winter conditions offer to increase your revenues.