Winter is coming. It may have already started to hit in some parts of the country. Where I come from, we often joke (at the first sight of snow) about how many drivers have forgotten how to drive in the snow since last winter. Freeway pile-ups and cars sliding off the road are common sights during the first snowfall.
Despite our best intentions, this little anecdote illustrates one fact: nobody really wants to prepare for winter! Ignorance may be bliss, but it won’t prevent a car crash, especially on slick surfaces.
Your dealership can do something about this, and you can profit from it too. The biggest reason drivers don’t prepare their vehicles for winter is inconvenience. Make it easy for them and you can make money and make the world a safer place in the process.
Winter Preparedness Kits
Every winter, we hear stories of folks who get stuck in snowstorms, or stranded on the side of the road for hours or days at a time. When temperatures are below freezing, having the right tools and equipment in your vehicle can sometimes mean the difference between life and death.
This time of year is a great time to offer winter preparedness kits for your customers. An ideal kit would include at least a flashlight, blanket, some flares, energy bars, mittens and woolen socks.
You can offer them for sale in your service and parts departments. These kits would also make a nice giveaway with a vehicle purchase, or winter prep service.
Winter Prep Service Packages
When the snow starts flying and the roads get icy, a vehicle can start to act and handle much differently than under normal weather conditions. Some drivers anticipate this change, and others don’t recognize it until they have experienced some difficulty.
Regardless of when they come around, many drivers will switch out their regular tires for snow tires, or will want to replace bald tires with new ones. They also will be interested in other services as well, such as a cooling and heating system check, wiper replacement and windshield washer refill.
By aggressively promoting package deals on some of these services, your dealership could be positioned to make great profits, and earn positive reputation points with those customers you have helped to prepare for the coming months.
Winter Driving Class
As illustrated earlier, many drivers forget how to drive on snow and ice. Some never really learned. If you are looking for ways to reach out to your community and provide a thoughtful service to your customers, you could plan and host a winter driving event.
Whether you offer the event for free as a community service, or choose to charge an enrollment fee, there are many options available. Some manufacturers host their own winter driving schools, as do many local law enforcement agencies. Teaming up with expert instructors can ensure the event’s success.
A well planned event can be an amazing ambassador for your dealership, and can be used to further educate customers about services you provide and winter capabilities of vehicles you sell. A successful winter driving event can provide many opportunities to sell winter service packages, winter preparedness kits, and even new vehicles.