With digital communication becoming a significant part of every company’s client relations, there are many creative ways entrepreneurs and small businesses are engaging clients to better the customer experience and increase business success. For auto mechanics and car shop owners, engaging clients via SMS is a simple and efficient way to remind customers of their appointments and all but guarantee that promotional opportunities will be read and acknowledged. 

To further take advantage of the 98% open rate of text messages, car maintenance businesses should choose a mass SMS provider that allows for membership subscriptions. These text subscription products can be modified and tailored to fit any type of customer or sales goal and can further increase customer returns to your shop, while bringing in passive business income each month. 

To help you maximize your use of SMS for your business—and for your clients—we’ve compiled a list of the top four strategies auto shops or freelance mechanics can use to provide added value to clients, increase profit margins, and improve customer service execution. 

#1—Offer Auto Clients VIP Perks When They Subscribe to Your SMS Membership

Like many SMS subscription services, auto shops can maximize the use of their SMS membership software by providing “VIP” perks to clients who sign up for their text subscription service. Top auto maintenance providers continuously offer free or VIP services to their customers and these perks have continued to drive business to these providers for decades. Although without a membership product, companies like AutoZone, Pep Boys, Advance Auto Parts, and Discount Tire all offer some sort of free claim to their customers to entice clients to use their services. 

The same method can (and should) be applied to your car maintenance shop or service. For example, consider offering a text subscription service to all of your clients for a low monthly fee that will give them access to free perks and will keep them returning to your shop over any other competitor. 

Regardless of what SMS membership product you would like to create, you can offer small things like unlimited air top offs in tires, free wheel balances, or complimentary car inspections for any subscriber. While offering free services may seem counterintuitive, your shop will be bringing in recurring revenue each month, while having direct access to your clients phones in such a way that they are expecting and receptive to any messaging that you choose to deliver. 

#2— Level Up Customer Service & Ease Auto Stress with Two-Way Texting

To provide the highest level of service to your clients, you should choose an SMS subscription service that allows for two-way communication following any bulk messaging. These text messages will provide a direct line of communication between your auto maintenance business and your customer, often allowing you to provide the most value to your clients. 

Imagine that your customers had a question about a noise their car was making, needed help making a decision on the type of tire they needed to buy, or simply wanted to check in on when their next maintenance appointment should be scheduled. All of this can be done through an SMS membership platform when your client is a membership subscriber and can cut out lengthy call times, missed appointments, or even reduce car costs by improving maintenance practices. 

This little bit of added customer nurturing can prevent your clients from aligning with the 52% of consumers that feel “ripped off” by mechanics

#3— Send Car Maintenance Reminders and Educational Content with SMS Memberships

Another way to maximize a consumer-facing SMS membership program is to send appointment maintenance reminders or educational content via text message. With no show appointments costing $150 on average, reminding your customers of their set appointments with SMS can help to lower this cost and proves more effective than the 9% open rate of emails that is common in the automotive industry

By sending your customers educational content in addition to appointment reminders, you can increase the value your business provides to consumers by encouraging and educating them on proper car maintenance habits—furthering their trust and confidence in your automotive service company. 

Educational Content Ideas for Auto Shops or Mechanics Could Include:

• Specific Model Information

• How to Make Tires Last

• What Type of Oil to Use

• What Type of Gas to Use

• Engine Sounds to Listen For

• Impact of Missed Maintenance 

• How Road Conditions Affect Your Car

• How to Weatherize Your Car to Make it Last

#4— Offer Automotive Clients Promotions or Loyalty Points for Good Car Maintenance Habits

Loyalty programs are a great way to utilize an SMS membership service and bring consumers back to your auto shop. You could consider a rewards program that offers discounts or promotional offers on oil changes, tire changes, or regularly scheduled maintenance when your membership subscribers choose to utilize your services, furthering the potential for their return. 

To continue to encourage your customers to save their own money and showcase your company’s value, you could implement a rewards program that gains them loyalty points for good car maintenance habits. With 35% of Americans consistently delaying or missing general maintenance appointments, you could remind and reward customers when they regularly maintain their vehicles as they should.

Cut Out Car Shop Competition with Subflow's SMS Membership Products

Subflow is the SMS membership provider that keeps businesses and consumers in mind. From the easy navigation to the quick management payment system, Subflow understands that the client-business relationship could be more effectively nurtured—and has set out to do so. 

If you’re looking to grow passive income for your auto mechanic business or to simply add increased value to your clients, our text subscription platform makes creating membership products a successfully-converting breeze. 

With no upfront costs, you can begin to create text membership products, set your own pricing guidelines, and efficiently manage all one-on-one client communications through our management dashboard. Check out a software demo of Subflow today to start building relationships with your auto customers that are rooted in trust, utility, and growth.