To say that there are challenges in the towing business is an understatement. Since I announced that I’m available for coaching and consulting, I’ve been covered-up with requests for help. Some inquiries are from those wide-eyed individuals who don’t yet know about the challenges that exist in our industry…They’re looking for a way in.
But most are existing owners, and one of the biggest challenges they bring up is the need for more cash calls.
Of course it’s voiced somewhat differently depending on who you talk to. But most everyone has expressed similar challenges when it comes to working with the clubs. And because I’ve been there, I always suggest that, to minimize those challenges, business owners should work to decrease their dependency on the clubs.
And also because I’ve been there, I understand the gap the clubs fill and still believe that, some of the clubs, should play a role in their businesses. But just what that looks like is dependent on many factors.
But today rather than discussing all that is wrong with the clubs, I want to offer some help. The way to decrease your dependency on the clubs is to get more cash calls. And to do that I offer you three simple tips.
My first tip is to:
1.Be Where Your Customers Are Looking
One of the biggest mistakes towers make is to believe that all motorists have Roadside Assistance Plans.
It’s like you’re all are wearing “Motor Club Goggles.”
And because of this mistaken belief, you fail to properly position yourself where potential customers are looking—when they need a tow.
To dispel the belief that everyone has an 800 number in their back pocket, I ask that you consider the number of people you know who carry liability only insurance…And of those people, how many do so—only because it’s the law?
And then…think about those who, only after being involved in an accident where their car is totaled, realize that they are underinsured. Because comprehensive coverage doesn’t mean complete replacement.
What this means is that most motorists don’t plan ahead. Most PEOPLE don’t plan ahead. Have you ever seen a guy at the grocery store wearing pajama pants and flip-flops? I guarantee you he’s not walking 5 miles for 2 gallons of gasoline. And if he didn’t plan far enough in advance to have a clean set of clothes for shopping, he probably didn’t consider the possibility of needing help.
What this means is one way to get more cash calls is to take off the “Club Goggles” and be where customers are looking—when they need a tow.
And no…They’re not looking in the Yellow Pages.
2.Express Your Value
Most of us don’t like talking about ourselves. We believe that if we were to talk about how good we are that it will be perceived as bragging or conceited. But the only way your customer can distinguish between you and your competition…as more than just another tow truck…is to express your value as much more than that.
I’m not talking about the number of trucks and the size and scope of your operation. I’m talking about what your customer values. They value courtesy, cleanliness, and their time. So if you operate in such a manner that recognizes what they value you’ll be remembered. The small things matter.
3.How About A Little Gratitude?
And While You’re Being Grateful, Leverage What You Got To Get More.
You have something that they want and one way of decreasing your commodity factor and getting more and better repeat customers is to leverage the customers you already have.
…leverage the customers you already have.
What am I talking about?
If you want to decrease your dependency on the clubs you need more cash calls and to get more cash calls you need to partner with other businesses. And the way to do that is to give them something they want.
The secret sauce to the growth of any business is more quality repeat customers. And if you can show a repair shop owner how partnering with your company can get them more of that secret sauce, they’ll listen. And the partnership door swings both ways. So while you’re expounding the benefits of working with you, don’t forget to ask for what you want in return…Referrals.
You have a choice. You can spend all your time and energy complaining about all that is wrong with the industry or you can use that time and energy to work on making your business work.
So take off the goggles and decrease your dependency on the clubs. And to help you do that I’ve created a 4 tier program that shows you exactly how to do it. Want to learn more? click HERE.
Don G Archer is the founder and creator of the Tow Academy, an educational institution that helps others start and build profitable towing businesses around the country. He’s the former owner of a 12 truck 20 employee towing operation and is also a multi-published author, speaker & educator, www.thetowacademy.com
Good article, Don.
What stood out most to me is your first point – be where your customers are looking.
If a good tow truck company can leverage marketing and be where the most customers are, those cash calls can start coming in. In my opinion, those customers (the unprepared ones that you mentioned) often go to one place.
What do you think an unprepared driver does when his or her car breaks down? They immediately go for the phone. And if they don’t have coverage that includes towing?
They start looking for a tow company. And where do they look?
Get in front of your customers guys! You won’t regret it.
I find it surprising that not more tow truck companies are advertising online. It would seem to me that people who don’t have AAA or any other kind of roadside assistance would search on Google. When tow truck companies don’t advertise on google they’re leaving a lot of money on the table. Great site and great article.
You are right. The truth is most people don’t plan ahead, everyone has an I Phone so they feel they don’t need to plan. Plus, millennials don’t like paying a monthly fee to AAA or some other roadside assistance company, they don’t want to pay for something they don’t believe they’ll ever use. Your digital presence is a huge part of your business, if you don’t have all your ducks in a row you’re losing money. Thanks
You are exactly correct. The customers are out there. But getting them to call is tough. I firmly believe that a ranking and mobile responsive website helps tremendously.
Waiting to talk to someone