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Marketing your auto repair shop to a distracted audience

Thursday, June 28, 2018 - 06:00
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Believe it or not, scientists have figured out that goldfish have the attention span of 9 seconds. Aside from wondering how the heck they figured that out (or even why), you’d probably agree that 9 seconds isn’t very long, right?

I bring that up because the same scientific community that brought that amazing fact to light has also figured out that the attention span of the average person (aka your potential customers) is only 8 seconds according to a study in 2015 — a full second less than that slimy little goldfish. Crazy, right?

Thanks in large part to digital devices within arm’s reach that give us instant access to the internet, email, texts, video, games, online shopping, newsfeeds, music, social media, and more, we’re constantly bombarded with the "what else is happening?" phenomenon. How often do you find yourself watching TV while searching the internet on your phone? Going through email while talking on the phone? How about texting while carrying on a conversation with someone across the table from you? We’re not immune; neither are your customers.

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You’ve no doubt realized that attracting more car count to your shop has become a lot more difficult, too. What used to be a highly effective marketing message, now seems to be falling on deaf ears. And it might as well be. Your marketplace may be hearing it, but amongst all the noise, clutter, and short attention spans out there, it’s being totally ignored.

Not long ago, your advertising choices were pretty limited. Yellow pages, newspaper, and direct mail made up the bulk of media being used by shops. But now, there are literally hundreds of choices to choose from to get your message out there — email, text, Facebook, video, blogs, podcasts, and more — which is causing even more distraction because the marketplace is being bombarded (and continually numbed) with a constant barrage of advertisements selling everything from ab workouts to Zombie Apocalypse Survival Kits. According to many studies, the average person is exposed to more than 4,000 advertising messages per day — and that number is now growing by leaps and bounds.

So how do you get noticed among all the noise and clutter? I teach dozens of attention-grabbing strategies, but due to space limitations, I’d like to cover the four most important ones here.

Be the familiar face

Have you ever been in a room full of people and amongst all the noise and chaos, you heard someone mention your name? It immediately caught your attention and you zeroed in on the person that spoke it? Or maybe you walked into that same crowded room full of strangers and saw someone you sort-of recognized and were drawn towards them because it made you feel more at ease?

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