Referrals Part 3 – Campaign Specifics


Hopefully you have read the last two emails and are working on making sure your customers have a fantastic memorable experience with your shop and you totally exceed their expectations.

This post is a tad long but trust me there is nothing you will be doing in the next 5 or 6 minutes that will impact your income as much as reading this right now.

Today we are going to talk about building an ongoing campaign that makes sure your customers cant help but talk about you to their friends, family and co-workers.

In order to get referrals you have to ask for them. What I am talking about is way more than just “hey tell your friends about us.”

What I am talking about is a systematic approach that happens with every single customer every single time.

The first step is how the customer is treated when you are closing out a repair order and the customer is picking up their car.

After the customer has paid their bill, it is important to shake their hand and sincerely thank them for their business. I always said something like this. “John thank you for doing business with us. I know you have a ton of choices when it comes to which shop takes care of your car and it really means a lot to me that you decide to chose us.”

Most times after you say this phrase, the customer will say something like, “O well thank you”, and here is where you ask for a referral.

Magic words – “Well the best way you can thank us is to keep coming back and also tell your friends, family and co-workers about us.”

That’s it you want to keep it short and sweet, because we don’t want to beg for referrals. We are just planting a seed for what’s to come.

Now the second step is to send a thank you email and a printed thank you letter to your customer.

Don’t start wining about the cost of postage and direct mail being dead. This works, remember I grew from 1 to 21 shops in less than five years. I know what I’m talking about.

Ok in the letter you again thank them for their business, and then explain your referral program.

O that’s right, we have not designed the program yet. So lets put one together.

This campaign can be very simple or very elaborate. The things to remember is you want to reward the person who gave you the referral, and you want to give an incentive for the new customer to try your shop.

The stronger you make the reward, and incentive, the better response you’ll get.

Here is where most people get tripped up. They try to reward the person doing the referral with money. This works but is the worst type of reward available.

The reward for the person giving you the referral should be something like a gift card to a local restaurant, or tickets to a local theme park, or movie tickets. The reason this works better than just giving money is because when they have the experience of going out to eat, or going to a theme park, they tie that great experience to you and your shop. We want to positively reinforce the image our customers have of our shop as often as we can.

Here is a secret weapon that I can’t believe I am sharing for free.

Send them a package of Omaha steaks. Just think of the amazing memory you are creating that is tied to your shop. Your customer is going to sit down with their family, and enjoy a steak dinner from you. I just checked their website and you can send a package of 4 bacon wrapped filet’s for $41.99. Do you think any other auto repair shop has ever done this for them?

Ok so now the person who did the referring is taking care of, what about for the person coming in for the first time.

Give a discount off any of your services. I found a good one is either $50 or 20% off their first visit. The goal is not to make money off of this transaction. It’s to get them to try doing business with your shop. If you are providing the best experience of any shop around, and doing your follow up marketing like I teach, you will make plenty of money on this customer for a long time to come.

Ok If you take the information I have given you over the past three days and put it to use in your shops I know you will be wildly profitable and see a huge increase in your referrals.

However, I need to be honest with you and let you know that I have purposefully left out a very powerful piece of an effective referral campaign.

This was done to be fair to my private coaching clients.

But if you would like to know what this key piece is and get my help putting together a total referral marketing campaign for your shop here’s what you need to do.

Send me an email at

In the subject line put – “Referral Campaign Secret”.

Give me your name, telephone number and a couple times that work to speak with me. I will give you a free private consultation and share this secret with you.

Don’t worry this will not be a sales pitch in disguise, and you will not be forced to join my coaching program with some sneaky bait and switch used car salesman trick.

I just don’t feel right about sharing it on the Internet with the whole world to see, it’s that powerful.

I hope you have enjoyed this training series.

Now put it to use and start getting some more referrals, and send me an email to have your free consultation.

To your success,


PS. Please feel free to leave questions or comments below. I will answer them as I can.

1 Comment

  • david mcginnis

    Reply Reply March 25, 2014

    Hey Dave! Long time no hear. How are you doing? I’m doing good in sunny Sumter South Carolina. I wine up to part 3 this morning and it was the first time Ive heard from you in years. How’s the wife, son and daughter? I need to get to Tampa and drop in on ya. Talk to ya soon!

Leave A Response

* Denotes Required Field