John Hickey

John Hickey

John Hickey is the Channel Marketing manager for Castrol brands. He can be reached at: john.hickey@bp.com

ARTICLES

What's in a Name?

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
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Guarantees with a Meaning: Boldly Go Where Few Have Gone Before

Someone said, “Science offers no guarantees because it’s the exploration of the unknown.” The “unknown” may, indeed, be a part of scientific research and exploration, but it is not a welcome factor in the world of automotive service guarantees. Unlike Captain Kirk and the crew of the starship Enterprise, when it comes to automotive service, customers do not want to experience, “A mission to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new adventures or to boldly go where no man has gone before.” In this column, we’ll discuss the reasons why having guarantees, which actually mean what they say,
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A Ford, Not a Lincoln: The Value of Plain Talk

“I am a Ford, not a Lincoln,” said President Gerald R. Ford. “My addresses will never be as eloquent as those of President Lincoln. But I will do my very best to equal his brevity and his plain speaking.” In my opinion, those sentiments are most fitting for anyone in the service business, particularly those of us in automotive services, like fast lubes. That same brevity and plain speaking is what customers repeatedly ask for when it comes to how the necessary automotive services are explained to them. On Saturdays, I often listen to a local radio call-in show
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Training for Transparency

As a fast lube operator, if you weren’t aware of it already, you should know your customers have some very uneasy feelings about having services completed on their vehicles. Their likes and dislikes are very definite, especially with regard to one aspect of the automotive service process, transparency. Surprisingly, at least to me, their feelings haven’t changed very much over the past 25 years. One fast lube survey, which was done over 20 years ago in the early ‘90s, showed, “Over 80 percent of customers equated getting an oil change on their vehicles on par with going to the
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