The MOT inspection on your car can be comparable to sitting in a dentist’s chair – stressful, costly and if you use a cowboy outfit, ‘painful to boot’. Employing an honest garage owner who values his reputation is a sure way to reduce the agony and minimise the anguish.
John Barks established Masters Garages in Bristol in 1996 and in 2004; John was joined by Mark Pearce, a friend and colleague. Working in partnership they set out to realise their ambitions to be successful. Each had distinct roles, innovative ‘wheel’ Mark steered the business in the right direction, whilst pragmatic ‘engine’ John powered the vision.
Firstly the business underwent a makeover to establish a new garage and fleet centre complete with an impressive car showroom and comfortable smart reception areas. It was time for the Big Push. First port of call was radio advertising which proved expensive and ineffective. Pound for pound Yellow Pages didn’t make financial sense. Enter DOR-2-DOR, a sturdy marketing vessel that John had tested previously. The consequences of the high fixed costs of the motor service sector are that profit can only come through business volume. To increase its profitability, Masters had recently moved its fleet work for leasing companies to a 7 bay workshop nearby. When Gary Hardwell, (DOR-2-DOR franchisee for Bristol), instigated a marketing campaign for Masters in March 2006, the aim was to promote the newly vamped city centre site and fill the spare capacity created by the move.
13,000 leaflets were distributed (aimed at families and professionals with second cars) within 1 mile radius of the garage They would be owners of 3 to 10 year old vehicles with hectic lives who wanted peace of mind and flexibility from their transport. The leaflet design echoed this message. The result – a business increase of 10%, which equated to one extra retail job a day.
With June’s heat wave Mark was puzzled by the lack of response to their Air Conditioning promotion, then as temperatures continued to rise the telephone line became ‘red hot’. “It was a bit of a problem serving the demand but a nice problem to have.’
Mark and John were awarded the accolade of ‘Garage of the year’ by one of their major leasing clients. Thanks to great teamwork and strategic vision the future looks promising.
Mark Pearce said:
“It’s the way they deliver the leaflets separately from the newspaper in a non competitive manner. Our flyers in newspapers were just put in the bin. Peter’s service has been excellent, he knows what he is doing and he is full of ideas to update our designs.”