Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco. Ed enjoys sports of all kinds and is a part time stand-up comedian.


He can be reached at era39@aol.com.

Tuesday, 04 May 2021 16:49

How to Get Your Customers to Trust You in a Skeptical World

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John Stuef, industry consultant, life coach and author, said if you can establish five truisms with a new customer, they will trust you completely. John Stuef, industry consultant, life coach and author, said if you can establish five truisms with a new customer, they will trust you completely.


...placate them and get them to trust you---and that’s not easy.


In most cases, your customer is in a rush and wants everything done yesterday. No one ever says, “Hey---let’s have some fun and get our car serviced!” Vehicle repairs rank right up there with trips to the dentist.


John Stuef is an industry consultant, life coach and the author of “From Doing to Leading: Your Guide for Inspiring People on the Front Lines.” He has managed MSO shops for decades and dealt with literally thousands of customers, so the topic of trust is a subject Stuef has been studying for decades and developing techniques to address it.


“Trust is built when people see that your actions line up with the words you say," Stuef said. "I often talk about the five truisms and how important they are to establish trust with your customer. Point them out when they show up to your shop for an estimate, almost like a checklist, because studies prove that when you show someone five truths, they feel you are trustworthy.”


Here is an example of five truths communicated during the first 10 minutes interacting with the customer for the first time: the appearance of your shop/reception area; the way your people dress and speak; the plaques on your walls showing I-CAR, training and OE certifications; the overall attitude in the shop; and the thoroughness of the estimate.


Stuef claims you can’t build rapport until you establish trust, and the best way is with the five truisms.


One way to build trust is by using technology to provide a better experience for your clients. By using today’s tools, you can enable them to make their lives easier and drama-free.


Now they can eliminate phone calls and paperwork; they can communicate instantly via text or email. If they want photos of the repair, it’s a snap, and they are kept in the loop during every stage of the process. By writing estimates that are fast, easy and, most importantly, accurate, there are never surprises along the way.


By bringing more to the table with new technology and cutting-edge techniques, vehicle repairers are building trusting relationships with their customers. By continually pursuing cutting-edge tools, these forward-thinkers will continue to excel in a market that’s already more knowledgeable, skeptical and more discerning than ever.


You can tell people great things about your business all day long, but folks want to see it, and the five truisms described by Stuef will always speak louder than words. The underlying message is if you run a good shop that produces quality work, trust is the byproduct and good things will happen as a result.


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