January/February 2011 Archives - Shop Owner Magazine
Five Tips to Improving as a Leader in 2011

If you are like a shop owner friend of mine from New Hampshire, you probably don’t think of yourself as a leader; most good
leaders don’t. They just do what they do … lead, and they do
it so well, that others take notice.

Executive Interview: Michael Proud, Director of Marketing, North America, Federal-Mogul Corporation

Federal-Mogul is a premier global OE and aftermarket manufacturer with such leading brands as ANCO wipers, Champion spark plugs and performance additives, Carter fuel delivery products, Fel-Pro gaskets, MOOG steering and suspension components, National hub assemblies, Sealed Power and Speed-Pro engine parts, Wagner ThermoQuiet brakes, and Wagner lighting products.

Business Maintenance for Peak Performance: Internal Analysis Will Rev Up Your Business, Part 2

In Part 1 of this article, we discussed how shop owners should follow a routine of daily monitoring and maintenance to ensure that performance is meeting business targets. Now, we turn to monthly, quarterly and annual checks to keep your business running smoothly and profitably all year long.

Taking the Mystery Out of Leasing

For the typical shop owner, the world of leasing can seem like a confusing landscape of options and costs. You may have heard conflicting information; some good, some bad, some neutral. I’m going to attempt to clear up this financial maze called leasing and suggest what to avoid and what to pay attention to.

New Hampshire Shop Repairs Vehicles to Precision: Dick Horan’s Precision Imports Fixes Vehicles Other Shops Can’t

Precision Imports in Manchester, NH, is a clean, modern vehicle repair facility with nine bays, and housing the latest in scan tool technology to fix a variety of import vehicles for a wide customer base. But when owner Dick Horan opened the doors 31 years ago, the shop could hardly be described as state-of-the-art.

Things to Consider Before Opening Your Second Shop, Part 3

If you talk with my wife or my clients, you would quickly learn that I have issues regarding control. I want to have control of my life and my future, and knowing the individuals who run automotive service businesses as I do, I know that control of your life, control of your destiny and control of your property is very important to you as well.

Direct Mail Campaigns: Targeted Marketing Strategies Yield Great ROI

For repair shop owners, advertising was once as simple as buying a large advertisement in the local Yellow Pages. Those bulky directories were the best way for customers to locate a shop when they needed repairs.

Volz Bros. Auto Service – Brand-Building Efforts Pay Dividends in Customer Loyalty

There’s no place like home, and for John Volz, home in this reference is the Volz Bros. Auto Service shop that he started 28 years ago. After 20 years of working 50-60 hours a week building his business, Volz sold the Grass Valley, CA, repair shop in 2001 to shop foreman Bill Greenman to retire to the Oregon coast where he spent seven years. Then, moved back to Northern California in 2008 to work in the auto parts business.

Tips for a Successful Direct Mail Campaign

Advertising can be a great way to drive business, but the key is finding the right vehicle to spread your message. What I really wanted was a compelling way to reach the highest-caliber customers located closest to my shops. Direct mail allowed me to achieve that goal. I was able to target higher-income households within two miles of my shop.

The Training and Education Value Proposition

Whether you are a business owner or an individual, continuous education and training improves your return on investment. The key is to have a plan that can be implemented and measured.

Don’t Assume That Person is Qualified to Handle Your Social Media

There seems to be a common misconception in the business world that because “new media” involves technology, college-age people are automatically qualified to manage it. Don’t make this mistake! At the very least it could cost you wasted time and resources. Potentially, it could wreck your company’s hard-earned reputation.