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Comments Off on How To Sell To The Millenials Part IV

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If you are only posting photos from your collision repair business, then you are missing the boat. Of course, posting auto related information on your social sites, before and after photos, cool new cars and more is fine, but if that is all you are doing then you need to regroup.

The millennials lifeline seems to be their smartphones where they will spend three to four hours per day, if not more, on social media, texting and searching for items to buy or services to be had. They positively react to having their tweets or other pin shared with others and so you must do this to gain their social love. If you do this consistently they will be yours. Once you quit, so then will they quit.

Trust is everything, without it you cannot succeed. You need to dig deep and find the causes they are most interested in and support them. Add these sites click through buttons onto your website. Don’t be phony about it though, they can sniff out phony like none other. Gain their trust and you gain the thousands of their best friends trust.

Focusing your marketing efforts towards Generation Y will have no choice but to succeed. It’s simply a question of understanding the demand and meeting them. Once again, change is at our doorsteps, any denial of this fact will cause you and your business to be left behind. If you are lucky, you may be entering the collision industry as a Generation Y which will then make this much easier. This will all seem natural and expected, while the rest of us may look at it as a bit of a challenge.

Nothing is impossible, it just takes a bit of adjusting not just your attitude but your processes for reaching out to the public.

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In:Business Development

Comments Off on How To Sell To The Millenials Part III

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On the same but opposite side of that spectrum, if these millenials have a bad experience, they will have no problem with letting ALL of their friends know and at warp speed. Your business could take a huge hit with just one sour tweet. As a matter of fact, imagine how you hear the word viral on the news all of the time, this is you crashing and burning because you have gone viral. Not good.

Instant communication, engagement and participation are fast enough for these young people. Studies have shown that seven out of 10 millennials feel a sense of duty to share feedback about companies they’ve done business with, good or bad. Are you ready for that? Are you taking advantage of that?

If you can increase millennials’ engagement with your social media sites, get them to follow you, like you, add you to their Google+ circles and talk about their experience with you, you win. If you can get them to continually engage with your social media sites, that’s a bonus. But that means you must regularly post things of interest and seek participation in the conversation.

You must not be an interruption in millennials’ daily online lives. You must be what they’re interested in or they won’t care. As a 24-year-old female told us, “Your brand is either working with me, or you’re working against me.”

Engaging with the millennials is what will make the difference. They don’t want you promoting yourself to them, they could care less. What they want is for you to make them feel important. Keep in mind, this generation got trophies simply for participating on their soccer teams, not necessarily for achievement. They want to feel that you are working as a team and on their behalf.

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In:Business Development

Comments Off on How To Sell To The Millenials Part II

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In May 2013,Timewrote an article titled “The Me Me Me Generation” that stated, “They’re narcissistic. They’re lazy. They’re coddled. They’re even a bit delusional. Those aren’t just unfounded negative stereotypes about nearly 80 million Americans. They’re backed up by a decade of sociological research.”

There is a positive side though, the Millenials are open-minded, confident, express themselves well, upbeat and open enough to consider new ideas. They generally are not very impressed by big houses or flashy cars, although I’ve met quite a few that are into the flashy cars. These Millenials do have more spending power than any other generation in history and have absolutely no trust in traditional advertising. In fact, only 6% trust online advertising.

So you’re probably wondering, who do they trust then? They trust word of mouth by way of their friends through social media; 98% of them will engage a friend’s post on social media rather than a brand’s post. This can be misleading if you don’t understand what’s behind this exceptionally high number.

When someone likes, comments or shares something related to an experience they’ve had with a business, it shows up on newsfeeds their friends see. More than 50 percent of Gen Y can be expected to engage with friends’ posts at least one time each day. If they tweet about their experience (Gen Y uses Twitter more than any other generation), their friends see it. Same for Google+ and Facebook.

This shift in focus in the millennials means that 95% of them will point to their friends as the most credible source of product and service information and 91% say that they would consider purchasing a product or service based off a friend recommending it.

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In:Business Development

Comments Off on How To Sell To The Millenials Part I

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Millennials are known as the Generation Y sector of the US and were born from 1980-2000. This is a very tech savvy group and respond almost predominately to social media and online marketing. There are more than 79 million of them which knocks out the Baby Boomers from before. Unfortunately, the Baby Boomers are dying off and Generation Y is quick to replace them. Just as the Baby Boomers were different in so many ways, such as not having digital communication skills, Generation Y comes with their own set of particularities that can be hard to understand.

Traditional ways of communicating, marketing and advertising will not work with this generation. You will need to approach these in a very different way. This is the first generation to grow up with digital communications as a part of their normal every day existence. Their ages at this point are 14 through 34 and they have seen a world only in digital. Starting with video games and quickly advancing just as fast, if not faster, than the digital world that surrounds them. The 14 year old is required to use laptops for their learning experience and all of their homework is generally done the same way and oftentimes sent to their teachers via email.

Now, it’s not uncommon to see a three and four year old working a tablet in a way that you have never seen before. This isn’t so much of a miracle anymore, this is the standard. Understanding how those under the age of 34 interact online will surely make you far more successful online. Building a loyal customer base from these 79 million should be your main focus. The generation behind them will only become more technically advanced so getting ahead of the ball now will pay off in generations to come.

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In:PDR

Comments Off on Collision Repair Demands More from High School Vo-Tech Courses and Their Instructors Part IV

Hood Stand Day 1 PDR Training

Body shop owners need to understand that there is no teaching program that will turn out seasoned auto body technicians. The only way that this is accomplished is by having the opportunity to work in a body shop or as a technician. The trick is to ensure that these students are learning from an instructor who is willing to engage with their students and teach the correct way of doing the work from the beginning.

Now speaking on behalf of the instructors, when these high school vocational classes are offered, the instructor has their hands tied by the compliance issues that come with government funding. The only way to loosen the nonsensical death grip is to get on the vocational advisory board. Don’t let the qualified instructors become disillusioned. You can make a difference and the changes necessary to advance the education process for the youth and instructors. Bottom line is this, you cannot change things from the outside. Sitting around complaining won’t get the job done, you need to get inside before you will see changes to the program.

Fortunately, here at The Ding King Training Institute, we offer these fresh out of high school, and anyone else who wants to learn the trade, the opportunity to take their passion for the collision industry and turn it into a full-time professional career as a Paintless Dent Repair Technician. Come join our highly skilled and professional instructors and their courses offered, and turn your passion into a profitable entrepreneurial career. See you soon.

For sure, our industry needs new technicians. Rather than trying to teach a kid with a degree in English or a history of flipping burgers to hang a fender, hire a kid who graduated from a vo-tech program in auto body. Want the best kids? Get on the advisory board and meet them.

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In:PDR

Comments Off on Collision Repair Demands More from High School Vo-Tech Courses and Their Instructors Part III

Hood Stand Day 1 PDR Training

The processes being used as our industry grows, such as aluminum and more, require an invested collision repair leader to instruct our youth on the minute by minute changes and the excitement that surrounds them. They need to be taught where they fit into these industry changes and that their yearning to create the next greatest software or hardware discoveries could be useful to our industry as well. We may need to enter their realm of interest through the side door by tickling their technological interests with solutions. They can get their hands dirty and bring computer technology with them.

Next will be to change the narrow mindedness of shop owners who won’t give a young student the chance to get their bearings within the industry. As it sits, shop owners are not at all impressed with the lack of training, even on a high school level, that these students are bringing to their shop. In most cases, the most that these students have learned is how to destroy a vehicle for the fixing but not actually having any hands on experience on how to fix it. All of the learning is lecture based instead of hands-on.

Most of these students lose interest quickly, and if you look at the statistics you will see that out of 20 attendees at the beginning of the classes, only end with less than a handful. There is something wrong with these statistics and only we can change what is wrong. If you want to protect the industry and its potential growth, then you will have to find ways to positively affect our youth.

Add to all of these issues the lack of respect these young adults have for their superiors, poor skill set and overall poor attitude, it’s no wonder the body shop owners won’t hire them. Most likely, these young adults never even graduated from the class. They aren’t a part of the five who did. True graduation requires regular testing of skill sets, consistent attendance and realistic expectations.

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In:PDR

Comments Off on Collision Repair Demands More from High School Vo-Tech Courses and Their Instructors Part II

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1 on 1 Certified PDR Training

My purpose for taking this walk through history is to shed light on how some of the most basic of vocations, collision repair, is losing its luster to our youth. Gone are the days of greasy hands and physical labor and here in its stead are the worries of getting a hangnail or blisters caused by holding the control pad too hard on gaming devices. This comparison is not at all meant to be funny but just simply is the state of our youth.

In our society, as it applies to collision repair, the only way that we are going to bring back the pride in this industry is by changing from within. Our attitudes and how we view this ever changing industry need improve. In addition, we need to focus some of our expert attention on the Instructors that are teaching these skills to our youth in high school. Just because a person has done collision repair doesn’t mean they are any good at it. Our instructors need to be held to a higher level of technical expectations. The true pros need to put together a check and balance system for the hiring of these instructors. This may require that you and others get on the board that makes these decisions.

As it is right now, an instructor doesn’t have a stringent set of qualification processes that should be standard. Many of our Vocational Instructors in the high school environment are simply collecting their Government Funding paycheck instead of feeling and teaching passion. How can the future of our industry flourish if the industry is being slighted by the teachings of an uninterested instructor?

 

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In:PDR

Comments Off on Collision Repair Demands More From High School Vo-Tech Courses and Their Instructors Part I

PDR Certified Training

1 on 1 Certified PDR Training

When a high school student signs up for a course in their potential career choice, it should be exciting and informative. By the end of such a course, the hope is that the vo-tech class has given the student a true snapshot of what their lives would be like in that vocation and should also serve as an opportunity to see if they are both any good at it and if this career option can sustain them and their future families, if they should decide to have one.

The problem is that collision repair has become less interesting to our youth who are determined to become the new Steve Jobs of their time. There of course is absolutely nothing wrong with these ambitions. These days I think that most adults are happy that they have ambitions at all in a time of nationwide crimes and disappointments. I’m not trying to cast a disparaging light on our youth, but like you, I worry about not only their goals but also the lack of responsible role models in a morally declining society. Never before in our history has there been such a high rate of fatalities at the hands of our role models and youth alike. Except of course as it relates to Al Capone and the mob bosses during our countries Prohibition Era followed only by the Great Depression. During the early 1920’s to the end of World War II.

Respect for life was questionable at best and people of all races, religious beliefs and financial classes were murdered out of either an elimination process directed by the mob bosses or because of the lack of basic needs to survive. Now we live in a world of a different type of gangster but again coming from all walks of life. The respect for life is driven more by the sensationalism that our TV programs offer to our growing youth as well as the sensationalism that surrounds our mentally troubled responsible for multiple deaths and the never ending coverage within the news media.

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Comments Off on Using Certified Alternative Parts Or OEM; How Has This Affected You? Part II

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Bipartisan legislation has been introduced in both the U.S. House and Senate that would fix this loophole and, the QPC states, “safeguard consumers against price gouging.” The QPC says that the Promoting Automotive Repair, Trade and Sales (PARTS) Act of 2013 (H.R. 1663 and S. 780) would “ensure consumer choice for auto collision repair parts is preserved and protect 60 years of competition that has existed in the auto repair parts market.”

“It is simply not fair to saddle consumers with higher repair and insurance costs as a result of car companies seeking to eliminate competition and charge monopolistic prices,” said Jack Gillis, director of public affairs for the Consumer Federation of America. “This report highlights the extraordinary consumer savings inherent in a competitive marketplace and the need for Congress to pass the PARTS Act without delay. Consumers need to make their voices heard to ensure that happens.”

Clearly, there are strong opinions on this subject and depending on your opinion or side, you need to speak to it. The only way that there can be change is if everyone’s voice can be heard. Think about it, if we allow just one company or just one industry (vehicle manufacturers) to dictate what we buy and who we buy it from, then we open the door for many, such as insurance companies, who will see it as weakness. A hole in the fabric of collision repair. For this reason alone, it’s worth standing up and speaking out. The hard truth is that if we don’t stand up now then we really have no right to complain later. The same theory is applied to voting for the President. For those that don’t vote, they have no real leg to stand on when things fall apart. Yet, these are the ones that will complain the most. Just like every vote counts, so does every voice.

So for the lack of another word, rally together everyone in the collision repair industry, make a difference. The Body Shop Business newsletter provided some of the information on this subject matter.

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Comments Off on Using Certified Alternative Parts Or OEM; How Has This Affected You? Part I

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What if you no longer had access to lower-cost, quality crash parts for your vehicle? Major car companies are trying to squash competition and force consumers to buy their higher-cost parts when less expensive quality alternatives are readily available.

But competition is good for everyone. It’s good for consumers because it keeps costs down. It’s good for businesses because it ensures availability. And it’s good for the U.S. economy because it supports tens of thousands of jobs nationwide.

A recently released report conducted by the Quality Parts Coalition (QPC) revealed a dramatic price gap between OEM and aftermarket or alternative versions of the top 20 most commonly sold certified auto collision repair parts from 2009-2014.

The study found that the top 20 aftermarket parts that were tested by the Certified Automotive Parts Association (CAPA) were priced up to 50 percent less than OEM versions of the parts. Aftermarket versions of all of the top 20 were priced lower than the OEM versions; the average was 29 percent less expensive. The QPC claims these price differences have led to more than $80 million in consumer savings since 2009.

“This report reinforces the importance of consumers having a choice when making collision repairs to their cars,” said Ed Salamy, executive director of the QPC. “Without competition, auto manufacturers would be free to charge inflated prices, and consumers would have no other options.”

The QPC says that in recent years, automakers have begun “exploiting” a loophole in design patent law to limit access to alternative collision repair parts, forcing consumers to pay car companies more to fix their vehicles.

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