What's in a Name?

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As part of a fast lube training campaign, conducted 20 years ago by a fast lube operator of numerous centers, there was a jingle that included the following lyrics:

“Over time, I will see if you’re someone to be counted on when help is a must. Not just now and then but time and again. To me, it’s a matter of trust. I’ve heard all about the things that you’ve done in the past. Was it just a passing thing or will you make it last? I hear your claim, but can I count on all the things that made your name? Time will tell.”

So what’s in a name?

Well, whether you’re talking about a person, an organization or a business, when it comes to hearing the name attached to each, fair or not, out of necessity we have to make judgements as to whether or not they are to be trusted.
Consistent, honest delivery + time = trust.
As implied in the lyrics to the jingle, trust associated with a name is the result of experience, not just claims, and involves consistent delivery over time. So when it comes to the matter of trust connected to the name of your fast lube business, the formula is simply no different: Consistent, honest delivery + time = trust.

In this column, let’s consider a few factors that determine, in large part, if trust is the first thing that comes to mind when people hear or see the name of your business. The Small Things Make

All the Difference

Albert Einstein said, “Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted with important matters.”

A friend of mine told me the following experience that illustrates Einstein’s point:

“When going to have my oil changed at a local fast lube, I asked the attendant the price for a standard oil change. His response surprised me, as it was nearly $15 more than it had been just a few months previously. I asked the attendant if they had any special offers or if there were any coupons available, to which he responded, ‘No.’

Once again, he lied about the very offer he’d been accepting all day.”

“Needing the oil change and lacking the time to go elsewhere, I proceeded. As I sat in the waiting room, I noticed almost every customer armed with a ‘$15 off’ coupon. The very same attendant had been processing customers with that coupon all day and, yet, had lied to me about having such an offer available. I pulled up the offer on my phone, and there it was — the very same discount coupon. When I got to the counter to be billed out I said, ‘I thought you told me there were no coupons or offers.’ To which he said, ‘Oh, I forgot about that one.’ Once again, he lied about the very offer he’d been accepting all day.”

For my friend, the issue was not only that the business had been untruthful about the coupon, but it had also become a matter of wondering how truthful they were being about the need for additional services they were recommending to nearly every customer in that waiting room.

The point for any fast lube operator is a simple one: everything you say and do, even if it amounts to just $15, creates an impression in customers’ minds whenever they hear the name of your business.

Not Just Once in a While

Building and maintaining trust can’t be just a “once in a while” thing; as the jingle said:

“Over time, I will see if you’re someone to be counted on when help is a must. Not just once in a while, but mile after mile. To me, it’s a matter of trust.”

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