Tell me something

Tell me something

I am regularly surprised by the ease of communication on Facebook  and I am wondering how it changes the way we communicate with one another. Our daughter Lina, who will turn 19, not only claims that she knows every single one of her 973 facebook friends well, but that she also has made Facebook her main communication tool. Setting up events, reaching out to friends, inviting everybody to the next  high school Volleyball home game etc., facebook is her tool of choice. “Email takes too long and is more about facts,” she says. “If I wanted to exchange facts, I’d text.” Lina would start facebook conversations with something like: “Tell me something” or “RAWWR” – and still get quite a bit of responses! I found this mind-boggling. When talking with her about it, it dawned on me that her statements confirmed what we found when looking at car-owner- to-service-advisor communication. Lina said that people she hangs out with people who know what ‘RAWWR’ means,  and they respond within a few minutes with similar ‘interesting’ statements. Since they have developed rapport * already, they express their feelings in a kind of secret language, and are mostly interested in pinging their friends and exchanging ‘feel-good’ statements, or simply waiting for the other to say something exciting. Next time your talk to your  Service Advisor or customer, start with “RAWR” and see what happens. Just kidding. But what is striking to me is that this underlying rapport facilitates all kinds of conversations. Building trust with each other, being on the same wave length, sharing challenges and joyful moments – these all develop strong...
Do u txt?

Do u txt?

Text messaging has penetrated our life so much that even people like me and older use it every day. Although we might feel still some resistance in letting people outside of our family and friends into our “inner text circle”, our 17 year old daughter Lina is sending thousands of text messages every month. “I am using email only for getting college coaches interested in me (she is trying to select the right college to play volleyball for), otherwise I am texting. It is faster to type(!) and I get immediate responses.” Case in point: if you want to respond quickly or get an immediate response from your customers, texting is the way to go. But you knew that already, didn’t you? We at AutoVitals looked at specific scenarios – where text messages make the difference for shop efficiency and customer satisfaction – and then and implemented those. The most important scenarios are: Notify the customer that the car is ready for pick up. Inform the customer that an estimate is in their email inbox and ask them to authorize by replying “yes”. Remind the customer about a scheduled appointment and let them confirm/re-schedule the appointment. Since AutoVitals integrates with any shop management in real-time, the vehicle in question will show up on the Today’s Vehicle Page in a matter of seconds after the estimate or invoice is printed. Sending the customer a “ready for pick up” message by email and text is a matter of two clicks. The email/text is already pre-worded and can be edited before sending off if needed.     As you can see on...
Online Communication Beyond the Counter – Social Search for Auto Repair Shops Part 5

Online Communication Beyond the Counter – Social Search for Auto Repair Shops Part 5

Is the customer interaction at the counter related to the effectiveness of an online campaign? Can messaging to the customer be automated? Can the service adviser be replaced? Watch this recipe for success when leveraging the counter experience in your online communication. Mitch and I explore the potential for local businesses to amplify the effectiveness of his online campaigns. Please leave your comments and questions. Read about this ephiphany we discovered about online communication in customer relationship when talking to our daughters. Find out how to use our service leveraging Google based social search in customer retention....
A Bad Review! Is there such a thing?- Social Search for Auto Repair Part 4

A Bad Review! Is there such a thing?- Social Search for Auto Repair Part 4

Having one’s business out there on Google or other places seems scary to some and a huge opportunity to others. That anybody can leave an unfiltered  review creates some discomfort. To those who feel like it, don’t be afraid, the freedom of the internet also empowers thousand of people to make the right choice. You should be that choice! Explore together with Mitch, how reviews can help creating buzz or hurt and what to do about it. Enjoy the talk and see you next time here Uwe Check out our new Google Booster...
More Than A 1,000 Words

More Than A 1,000 Words

One of the most effective ways to illustrate complex issues is by using images or videos, accompanied by a brief but crisp description of the issue. Having to explain the details of a malfunctioning car part can often be made highly effective, simply by sending the image pointing out the problem, or even contrasting it with one showing a properly functioning part. Additionally, a student’s parent or a third party person trusted by the car owner needs to be involved in the decision about the repair proposed by the service advisor. Thus, the better the documentation about the issue at hand the more effective and reliable the decision-making process. What if the technician, who uncovered the problem during the inspection, could just take a picture with his cellphone and make it available to the service advisor – to be easily sent to the car owner? We  made exactly this available to all AutoVitals shops. The  technician takes the picture with his cell or smart phone and enters the license plate number as subject line of the message. Then he sends it to [email protected], and the service advisor will have the picture attached to the vehicle in question on the Today’s Vehicle Page . He can add more information for the car owner as image description, print the estimate so it gets attached to the vehicle, and click on “Email Estimate”. Done. The car owner, and if needed – more recipients – will receive the email with the estimate and picture so that a decision can be made quickly with all the important information at hand. A few clicks made it happen, no uploading from...
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