National Car Care Month Preview
National Car Care Month is very much a celebration for the automotive aftermarket industry. It is a time to really promote preventive maintenance services and help customers keep their cars in good shape for as long as possible.
“National Car Care Month is a great time for shops to take advantage of the increased publicity that goes out through the Car Care Council and retailers,” said Rich White, executive director of the Car Care Council and the “Be Car Care Aware” consumer education campaign. “It’s a time of increased awareness about the benefits of taking care of your car, whether it be for environmental purposes, safety or dependability.”
April was declared National Car Care Month because it’s post-winter, pre-travel season. This makes it a great time for customers to get their cars checked out after the harsh winter season when the temperatures warm up and people are generally in better spirits.
“Shops should leverage this time and incorporate it into their marketing strategies,” White said. “There is a buzz created around National Car Care Month, and shops should take advantage of that. Customers might think of it as spring cleaning for their cars — a spring tune-up.”
Customers don’t always think about having their belts, hoses or under-car parts checked out every time they take their car in for service. National Car Care Month allows shops to offer a stress-free, educational environment where technicians can assist customers and inform them about services to consider to keep their cars in the best working condition possible. Hosting free events is also a great way to approach this opportunity.
“Shops can host events that take very little time and very little money to draw people in, whether that’s putting up a banner displaying that it’s National Car Care Month or hosting an event in a mall parking lot with technician lanes and students from the local auto shop informing customers about necessary services in a stress-free, no pressure environment,” White said. “What better way to draw in new and existing customers than to offer free information in a sales-free environment? It’s a lot like being able to talk to a doctor or a lawyer for 20 minutes to get advice, free of charge.”
This is a fantastic way to draw in customers. Why wouldn’t they want to return to a shop that gave them free unbiased tips that will help them keep their car on the road longer? The Car Care Council also offers free inspection forms for shops to utilize. Hosting events can be used as a morale booster for your employees and can be a great way to increase your presence in the community in a positive way.
“There is a special place on Car Care Council’s website where shops can go to find all the tools they might need to participate in National Car Care Month, whether it’s ordering Car Care Guides, a bay banner or how to host an event,” White said. “All of these tools can be found on www.carcare.org under the industry toolbox tab.”
The automotive maintenance industry doesn’t always maintain the best reputation, but National Car Care Month is a fantastic way to shift the narrative and create a positive feeling for customers nationwide. Many shops who choose to participate in hosting events receive great feedback and incorporate it into their yearly marketing strategy. National Car Care Month is right around the corner, so take advantage of the tools provided to you and start planning.