Dealer work was never my favorite (low pay…slow pay etc.) but it did give us a big lift in the winter when retail work slid up to 50%. Naturally, we wanted the “good” dealers, but they don’t exactly wear white or black hats to identify themselves, so we had to have a steady supply of new ones until we could settle on the good “keepers.” Here were some tactics that kept the wheels turning.
Network through PDR techs, glass techs, bumper techs, tinters, and detailers.
“Hey, you know a good dent guy?” “I need a bumper guy. Who do you recommend?” Other techs are constantly asked for recommendations, and YOU should come to mind. If you’re a dent guy, you should know all the bumper techs in town. Send them work. Make sure they know it came from you. They’ll recommend you to their best dealers. Everyone that isn’t your DIRECT COMPETITOR should be your ally.
At least twice a week, you should hand out a few cards “cold turkey” at a dealership you drive past. Do this on the job, off the job, on weekends…whenever. You drive by at least 20 dealerships a week! Just stop in, say hi, and drop off a few cards in 60 seconds. More than a few times, the dealership was looking for a new detail shop the VERY DAY I stopped in.
The companies that sell you paint, chemicals, stickers, advertising…everything you need to stay afoot…work with the car dealerships, car rentals, fleet dealers, etc. that can get you the high-volume work you want. Talk to them, gain their trust, show them your work, and give them cards. When they really like you, and are willing to put their name behind you, they become like loyal soldiers to your business.