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25 Search Results for "sheehy"

  • Considering Franchising? DON'T Considering Franchising? DON'T! until you read this

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Considering autobody franchising? consider this before you ink!

      Consider this before you ink. . .

      By: Chris Sheehy - Autobody Consulting Group

      As seen in ABRN and Collision Hub

      Franchising isn’t for everyone, forewarned is forearmed, so follow these points, and be prepared to ask the tough questions before you commit.

       

      • Know exactly what the start-up and reoccurring monthly fees are. Ask for them in writing.

      • Are there additional fees for belonging to a regional business group or 20-group? Is participation mandatory?

      • Are royalty payments assessed? What’s the percentage?

      • Are there additional fees for participating in corporate (the franchisor) sponsored marketing programs, or are all marketing programs/initiatives included within your monthly fees?

      • If the franchisor has an insurance and/or marketing department – are there any reoccurring fees to support the initiatives of these departments?

      • If corporate insurance programs are available – are you guaranteed placement on any insurance programs?

      • What if you elect not to participate in available corporate insurance programs, are you still a good fit for the franchise?

      • If facility image branding (re-modeling) is mandated, make sure you know the time frame for compliance and the average cost of re-branding for a similar size facility.

      • Are there any mandated fee-based training requirements your business must adhere to? What is the compliance time frame; and approximate cost of compliance - based on your business headcount?

      • Are there any mandatory/proprietary software obligations? Additional fees? Potential hardware/software conflicts?

      • If part and/or vendor rebate programs exist, what percent of rebates go back to the company and what percentage goes to you? Are rebates paid monthly or quarterly? How are they processed?

      • Will your participation (or lack of) in a corporate vendor program (i.e., paint, part, etc…) effect the rebate percent of other franchisees or the franchisor?

      • Is there a “suggested” or minimum staffing headcount criteria to qualify as a candidate?

      • If any “highly suggested” tools or equipment (such as computer measuring, tool carts, or laser printer) are mentioned, what is the expected cost for this equipment?

      • Is participation in an annual corporate conference mandatory? Is any percentage of these fees built into the monthly fee structure? If fees are included, are you reimbursed if you elect not to attend conference, or do you forfeit the money?

      • Do you plan on being in the business every day? Some franchisors mandate owner/operators must be on premises every business day.

      • Are there minimum net worth requirements for candidate consideration?

      • Who promotes your new franchise? If the answer is you do, what are the anticipated costs?

      • Is there field support (regional/district service manager) for your business? What is the minimum visit requirement? Will the support staff you are assigned have the credentials and experience to consult on the unique challenges of your business? (i.e. If your business focus is on production, are you assigned a field support member whose strength is administration?) Ask to review the Bio. of your field support staff.

      • Lastly, ask how many businesses were added to the franchise system and how many businesses left the system in the past 48 months. Request a current list of all businesses that have left or have been removed within the past 48 months and do your due-diligence by calling on some. A list of non-current franchisees is typically provided within the highly-regulated franchise disclosure document package (FDD – sometimes called a UFOC) – make sure your list is current to the month.

      Like any business venture, know exactly what you’re getting into before leaping in.  Before meeting with the franchise delegate, do your due-diligence and be prepared by writing down the important questions you have.  Take the time to review each-one with the franchise representative, your attorney, and your financial adviser.  Good luck.

       

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

       

    • Blog post
    • 5 years ago
    • Views: 1666
  • Engineering Change Engineering Change

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Engineering Change

      Today’s vehicles are being engineered to avoid accidents. “Crash avoidance technology,” is not tomorrow’s technology, it’s here today, and it is changing everything we know about running a successful collision repair business.  Consumer publications are raving about vehicle safety.  Enthusiast magazines are touting the engineering behind the mechanicals. Even the government is number crunching so they can convince manufactures (and Congress) to add more safety features into new vehicle models.

      Technology designed to prevent vehicle accidents is now a major contributor to the lack of volume our industry is experiencing.  As if declining vehicle travel, reduced insurance claims, and economically stressed people who are less willing to spend their claim money on vehicle repairs aren’t difficult enough for body shops to overcome – we are also seeing less cars-to-the-door because of engineered mechanics.  The problem is a daunting one.

      Want a reality check?  Look at what’s in your shop.  Do you see any cars with ABS brakes, or back-up cameras?  How about bumper mounted proximity sensors, fender mounted repeater lamps, integrated hands-free phones, lane departure warning systems?  Maybe you have some LED tail lamps, radar based active cruise control, roll control, run-flat tires, self-leveling & direction-leading headlamps.  Any side mirror signal markers, stability control, third brake lamps, tire pressure monitor systems, or traction control?  There is a lot more of this stuff, but I think I’ve made my point.  Every car manufacturer has designed some of this technology into their products, and customers are buying it.

      So . . . how will we counteract this change?

      √  Know your numbers (start with doing your own P&L statement)

      √  Measure and manage KPIs (lots out there, know which ones matter)

      √  Build a positive can-do culture in your business (it starts with you – show by doing)

      √  Act lean (Think: 5s – waste – constraint – process – efficiency)

      √  Market strong and locally (old-school marketing is out – go local and online)

      If you have questions on any of these things, find someone who has the information you need; and ask them to teach you.  Hire a consultant.  As for my clients, many have said they wish they had reached out sooner, but admitted their ego got in their way.  I hear this all too often – but I will tell you; there’s nothing more bravado than a person taking full control of their business and leading it to a better tomorrow.

      Today’s business climate is different than it ever was.  Old school just won’t work anymore.   The expected shop count for our industry could be reduced from 40,000 to 25,000 businesses within five years.  The future of our collision repair industry will be formed by those businesses that survived this reduction by successfully manage the BUSINESS of collision repair.  That being said … it is still true, that now more than ever – whether running an affiliated or independent business model – how you manage that next car through your door, is more important than just getting another car to your door.

       

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 5 years ago
    • Views: 1293
  • Do you make a clean impression Do you make a clean impression?

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:
      This is a quick blog – I need to tell you about something that has been bothering me, something I see all to often. . .

      Have you heard of the expression “you only have one time to make a good first impression”?

      It is true – at least for me – that first impressions burn an indelible image or emotion of how we feel about someone, someplace, or something.

      Which brings me to the point of this weblog post.


      Other than answering the phone – your building/facility image is often the first impression your business makes to most people. Think of that. Not everyone in your town calls you – but at some point they will all probably drive past your door.

      So. . . what is your image saying to your future customers about your business – about you?

      I have asked this to people before and got answers like “I have the best image of any body shop around”, and “I don’t own the sidewalk”. Really.

      Here is my advice – designate someone to ensure that each day your business is swept clean, the entrance is spotless (no peeling paint, dirt, sand, butts etc…), weeds are killed, bushes trimmed, and your door glass uncluttered and clean.

      Be the steward in your neighborhood for advocating a professional image and of showing pride in your community.

      In time, these efforts will be repaid by more visits to your sparkling door. . . .

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 5 years ago
    • Views: 2113
  • Auto body solutions -that work Auto body solutions -that work!

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Autobody Consulting Group - ACG is a business management, administration, production & productivity, estimating, local marketing, and online marketing (website landing page creation - search engine optimization - link building - social media) consultancy providing services to auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the body shop industry.

      We build successful local marketing action plans, boost productivity & employee efficiency, engage B2C & B2B with online social media, get auto body client online profiles (such as LinkedIn, Twitter and FaceBook Business Pages) and websites noticed by using the latest in search engine optimization and link building techniques. Additionally, we put systems in place for better tracking and control of daily activities, monies & financial reporting, as well as implement processes and systems to calculate & manage the most relevant auto body key performance indicator (KPI) measures (i.e. gross profit, technician efficiency, job costing, scheduling...).

      For our vendor-company clients, we create and manage online and social-media marketing action plans that immerse them into the social sphere of the autobody industry. Solutions offered are Turn-Key or Managed-Solutions – giving clients the flexibility of receiving a get-it-and-run or a hands-off fully managed online marketing campaign. A couple of our vendor clients have included the Auto Body Association of CT and the acclaimed body shop management software provider NewEra Software.

      Our marketing strategies are unique, and our approach to auto body management and production has been used successfully for businesses of all. Bodyshop management principles are based on proprietary as well as industry standard operating procedures (SOPs) and best practices; and have been fine-honed with twenty+ years of real-world experience in the field. ACG has been internationally published – particularly in the field of marketing and social-media.

      With clients ranging from two to twenty-two (i.e. $500K to $11M); we hold true to our conviction of being an affordable business advisor for every size business – contact us today to schedule your no-pressure consultation.

      The goal at ACG- Autobody Consulting Group is simply to help businesses work smarter – not harder; connect with their customers & prospects, and make more money.

      Call or E-mail me to find out what I could do for you
      ph. 401.481.4939 or @ CSheehy.ACG@gmail.com

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 5 years ago
    • Views: 1326
  • LEAN SUCKS! LEAN SUCKS!

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Lean Sucks

       LEAN SUCKS

      Read any industry magazine or online trade website and you can’t get away from Lean – our industry obsesses with it, and for good reason – it’s a solid and proven manufacturing ideology that adapts well to the auto body repair industry.

      There are many stories of its positive merits, even in the face of often difficult implementation cycles.  Lean is clearly today's flypaper-of-choice for process management. 

      While this Lean-thing is seemingly ubiquitous, what I’m not hearing or reading about – is what exactly happens to your business when you do become this Lean-mean-production-machine?  

      Does your business mystically become THE place in town people bring their cars to for repairs?  Will all your problems be solved and work will just arrive at your door because of Lean?

      Hardly so . . . indeed, it is more likely that just the opposite will happen - Lean will suck the work out of your shop very likely leaving your workforce sweeping up the floors in its aftermath.

      The story that I’m not hearing or reading about; is just how important a strong marketing strategy is to counter the vacuum that Lean can create. 

      The connection between Lean and the need for marketing is rarely touched upon.

      Marketing planning and implementation actions should be a part of every Lean strategy.

      So - as you consider all the good that Lean and advanced production management has to offer; so too consider your marketing strategy to fill this inherent vacuum, because if done properly – Lean can really suck.

       

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

       

    • Blog post
    • 5 years ago
    • Views: 2205
  • Measure Twice - Cut Once Measure Twice - Cut Once

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Measure Twice – Cut Once  Measure Twice - Cut Once

       

      Every once in a while I get a rather firm pushback from a client about making a specific change, or in implementing a specific process for their business.  Being respectful of their decisions but being one to always want to know "why" I ask the perilous questions that must be asked and in response often hear answers like "I've tried that, it didn’t work", or "that won’t work for me". 

      Nothing bothers me more than to see someone shut-down to a suggestion without giving it due-diligence.  Somehow the need to know "why" overwhelms me, so I push further because I know that I have been here before too and contrary to their experience for the vast majority of times it does work and it could work for them too.  In my experience most process changes fail largely because of one of these two reasons.

      1.  They saw the change as an element and not a process - a spoke without a rim & hub. 

      2. They did not consider the human element

      You see, all too often change decisions are based on what somebody else has done – something someone might have told you about at an industry gathering, or something you might have read in a magazine; and all too often the time it takes to plan and implement this change doesn’t come close to the effort needed to succeed. 

      While these things may certainly be working for someone else; that person doesn’t have your facility, your clientele, your staff headcount, your staff skill sets, your finances, or your knowledge of the change process.  It worked for them because they made it work inclusive (knowingly or not) of all these things, and the time it took to get it all working might have take months or years to get right.

      So here’s what I suggest.  When faced with the opportunity to implement change in your business, (and change is an opportunity!) look at the whole picture, think of how it could succeed and fail (that’s important, always have a back-door plan), consider how you will need to get the buy-in from your staff, ask your staff for their input (sometimes they have the best ideas on how you can make their jobs easier!), measure where you are today and know what the metric of success looks like, and plan to do a dry-run whenever possible. Write things down, make sketches of process flow and talk to people you trust outside your business about these changes.  Often we set our own limitations baised on our past experience and knowledge – getting someone from the outside could bring a whole different perspective to your strategy.  Consider hiring a consultant with experience in the change you seek, they may add a whole different perspective on the big picture.

      Careful change-planning specific to the unique demands (both positive and negative) of your business will go a long way to ensure successful change implementation for your business.  As they say, measure twice – cut once.

       

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

       

    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1168
  • Smarter - Not Harder (.ppt) Smarter - Not Harder (.ppt)

  • Insurer repair standards WHAT? Insurer repair standards WHAT?

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      An interesting (indeed provocative) reply was posted on FaceBook from John Parese to my friend Bob Skrip after the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) event this week…

      “CIC was enlightening. I’m going to suggest the trial lawyers association also consider “partnering” with the insurance industry.

      From an outsider’s perspective, I just don’t understand why the insurance industry (which is responsible for assessing risk and indemnifying insureds) would be involved in establishing repair standards. I just don’t get it.”

      John – I can’t agree with you more!

      I agree with what CIC has accomplished in the past, good stuff - but I don't support this. 

      What are your thoughts: who should dictate repair standards for vehicles, insurance companies or repairers?

      (full permission from Bob and John was granted for this blog post)


      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1702
  • Social Media Nirvana Social Media Nirvana

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:
    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1132
  • Do you do it online? Do you do it online?

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      social media

       

      Social Media is sweeping the world with its slick interface, smart-phone apps, and with the promises of instant connectivity.  In the context of business; that means connecting you with your customers and prospects.

      But is social media really all it’s hyped up to be.  Well – Yes, and No.

      Marketing is all about planning and execution; and social media marketing (SMM) is just one part of a through marketing plan.  Twitter nor FaceBook are the end-all of social media marketing, and they shouldn’t be the only methods you use.

      In the online world, website presence is still king, but the way we use our websites have changed.  Being listed #1 on Google is no longer the quest; it’s OK to just be listed on the first search-results page now.  Why?  Because social media has changed the online game – it’s not evolutionary, SMM is revolutionary; and it’s changing the way we conduct business, connect with customers and market for new ones!

      From a marketing perspective, add to your website and social media channels (Twitter & FaceBook are channels) a strong community presence, paper media (fliers and handouts), listings on the right online directories, and you’ll be on the start of having a solid marketing campaign.

      I imagine that you have heard that search engines now index social media sites, but what does this mean for you?    Well, it means your Google business listing just got company.  Activity on certain social media channels (ACG uses about eleven of them for our clients) could – if formatted correctly – show up on that Google search-results page in addition to your regular business website listing (you have a website right?).  Your online search presence has just been multiplied!

      Social Media Marketing is revolutionary; and it’s changing the way we conduct business, connect with customers and market for new ones

      Think of the impact that could have on your prospects and customers.  All the good things you’re doing in your community and in business would be there for them to see – without making a single click on your website link – it’s right in front of them.  Consider it the online version of word-of-mouth advertising.


      Take a look at this presentation (just click on the picture) to see how to create a social marketing plan in just six-simple-steps.  Want to go further – contact me to discuss how to create a winning strategy specific to your business, your goals, and your community.


      Six Steps 2 Social  Media Nirvana


      If you’re not connecting with your customers and prospects – your competition eventually will.


      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1408
  • Phraseology Phraseology

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      PhraSEOlogy

      Is social media only about being social – or is there more to it than that?


      While it is true that social media can convert Twitter or FaceBook followers and friends into customers; and it is also true that these social media channels offer a great way of staying in-touch with these customers as well as cultivate new ones through lead-generation - but there is something else social media can doand it’s a game changer.

      Social media activity can increase your ranking on Google and nearly every other search engine and drive more traffic to your website and ultimately to your door – and that’s exactly why we have a web site; isn’t it?

      I’m sure to get some comments on this statement, but it’s OK to post on social media sites with the sole intention of effecting higher search engine rankings and without intending on being social.

      The job of crafting words on a web page (or online profile or social media post) with the purpose of increasing search engine ranking is referred to as Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  The art of word-crafting is referred to as “phraseology”, and it’s interesting to note that SEO is an integral part of phraseology - literally.

      Understanding the specific set of standards and using phraseology when posting messages on social media channels – like Twitter and FaceBook, are a great way to boost your search engine ranking AND give you more exposure on the search engine results page – referred to in the marketing industry as SERP.

      Google recently made some significant changes in the way it ranks websites and in a surprising statement cited – among other things – that being active in social media will positively reward a website’s ranking.  I’m paraphrasing here, but that’s the gist.

      Google, Bing, and Yahoo! are the three biggies when it comes to search engines – nearly everything else is somehow connected to them.  Each search engine has a different set of rules and standards when it comes to website listings, and these standards change often. 

       The days of establishing a website and leaving it there to do its job are gone.  Today’s websites need up-keeping to stay current with the latest code and listing standards in order to maintain good search engine ranking.  For instance – a website title needs to be crafted within a specific character length and of sufficient keyword density (having enough relevant key words – aka: search words) to be considered by Google for better ranking, too short or long in character length and you’ll suffer a low ranking.  Bing will ding you for having too many characters in a page description, and Yahoo! will drop rank for stuffing too many key words into a web page – a tactic referred to as “keyword stuffing” which was a widely published SEO strategy until recently banned by Google with their new Caffeine algorithm (that's the tool that spiders websites to rank them for inclusion on the search results page).

      The kicker here is that there are no playbooks for this SEO stuff as each search engine considers the details of how they rank businesses to be proprietary and confidential business intelligence.  Hiring an experienced SEO marketer for your online activity who keeps up with these standards and best-practices can really pay dividends…

      So, the next time you’re crafting words for your website, your social media profile, or the next time you post a message on Twitter or FaceBook consider phraseology and remember - you don’t always have to be social in social media.

       

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1660
  • CONTET - Enter The Motor Guard CONTET - Enter The Motor Guard Magna-Spot Contest

    • From: DonnieSmith
    • Description:

      COLLISION BLAST – MOTOR GUARD MAGNA-SPOT CONTEST

      Have you ever put your stud in your stud gun to repair a dent and the stud falls out before it reaches the panel?  Sure it has, it has happened to all of us.  However, the new Magna-Spot eliminates this problem with their exclusive (MPS), which secures the pins in the electrode. 

       

      ATTENTION COLLISION REPAIR INDUSTRY

      ENTER AND WIN THE NEW MAGNA-SPOT STUD GUN

      Details to this contest are going to be revealed in layers as follows:

      • Prize Revealed
      • How To  Video Demonstrating How To Use The New Stud Gun
      • How To Enter Contest and Details
      • Winner Revealed

      So you need to check back often to discover what each layer has to offer.  To learn more about the different stud guns that Motor Guard has to offer visit Magna-Spot Stud Welders.

      New Details:  New Details Will Be Revealed Below As They Are Revealed!

      1.   Judge – Chris Sheehy Is Going To Be One Of The Judges To Help Select The Winner.     Chris Sheehy – Autobody Consulting Group

      2.  Judge – Eric Parsons is Going To Be Another Judge For This Contest – Eric Parsons – Mander Collision and Glass

      3. Start Thinking Creative and Video….Create a how-to video or a video of a project that you are working on.  Be creative!

      4. Got your video ready?  Post it to the contest Facebook Page

      5. Judge – David Barleen, President of Motor Guard Corporation, will be helping select the winning videos.  David Barleen – Motor Guard Corporation

      6. Video of How To Use The New Magna-Spot Stud Welder Gun

      7. We’ve listened to your comments and we are going to help you out. We have a new Magna-Spot stud welder gun to give away and someone needs to win it. We’ve received comments conveying two uniform messages. 1) I don’t know how to create a video. 2) I am too nervous to post a video of myself. Therefore, we are going to allow a few additional options. If you are not comfortable to post a video, you can also: post photos, photos with story board, post essay, or a mix. The key is to be creative. If you have started a video, I encourage you to post it, as video is a good way to capture the attention of other. So post what you have on our Facebook Event Page. Be creative and have fun!!!

      8. This contest has been opened up for anyone involved in the collision repair industry.  Student, Instructor, Technician, Manager, Etc.  We want to hear your story, or watch your videos, learn about your school or shop, etc.  Do you remember repairing damage before we had tools like the stud nail gun?  I do!  Screw in slide hammers, pull rods, etc.  I’ve seen the holes welded, soldered, and even just filled over with bondo.  The stud gun has made it much easier; hasn’t it?  Do you have a story to tell?  Let’s hear it and you may be the winner of a new Magna-Spot Stud Welder Gun.  Just head over to our event page and post your story, video, pics, etc.  Be creative and have fun!

      TO ENTER POST YOUR STORY, OR PHOTOS, OR VIDEOS....WE'RE GIVING YOU FULL REIN TO BE CREATIVE AND HAVE FUN... Post it to the contest AT Facebook Page

      9.  Final details and contest deadline coming soon. 

    • Blog post
    • 3 years ago
    • Views: 503
    • Not yet rated
  • CONTEST - Enter The Motor Guar CONTEST - Enter The Motor Guard Magna-Spot Contest

    • From: DonnieSmith
    • Description:

      MOTOR GUARD MAGNA-SPOT CONTEST

      Have you ever put your stud in your stud gun to repair a dent and the stud falls out before it reaches the panel?  Sure it has, it has happened to all of us.  However, the new Magna-Spot eliminates this problem with their exclusive (MPS), which secures the pins in the electrode. 

       

      ATTENTION COLLISION REPAIR INDUSTRY

      ENTER AND WIN THE NEW MAGNA-SPOT STUD GUN

      Details to this contest are going to be revealed in layers as follows:

      • Prize Revealed
      • How To  Video Demonstrating How To Use The New Stud Gun
      • How To Enter Contest and Details
      • Winner Revealed

      So you need to check back often to discover what each layer has to offer.  To learn more about the different stud guns that Motor Guard has to offer visit Magna-Spot Stud Welders.

      New Details:  New Details Will Be Revealed Below As They Are Revealed!

      1.   Judge – Chris Sheehy Is Going To Be One Of The Judges To Help Select The Winner.     Chris Sheehy – Autobody Consulting Group

      2.  Judge – Eric Parsons is Going To Be Another Judge For This Contest – Eric Parsons – Mander Collision and Glass

      3. Start Thinking Creative and Video….Create a how-to video or a video of a project that you are working on.  Be creative!

      4. Got your video ready?  Post it to the contest Facebook Page

      5. Judge – David Barleen, President of Motor Guard Corporation, will be helping select the winning videos.  David Barleen – Motor Guard Corporation

      6. Video of How To Use The New Magna-Spot Stud Welder Gun

      7. We’ve listened to your comments and we are going to help you out. We have a new Magna-Spot stud welder gun to give away and someone needs to win it. We’ve received comments conveying two uniform messages. 1) I don’t know how to create a video. 2) I am too nervous to post a video of myself. Therefore, we are going to allow a few additional options. If you are not comfortable to post a video, you can also: post photos, photos with story board, post essay, or a mix. The key is to be creative. If you have started a video, I encourage you to post it, as video is a good way to capture the attention of other. So post what you have on our Facebook Event Page. Be creative and have fun!!!

      8. This contest has been opened up for anyone involved in the collision repair industry.  Student, Instructor, Technician, Manager, Etc.  We want to hear your story, or watch your videos, learn about your school or shop, etc.  Do you remember repairing damage before we had tools like the stud nail gun?  I do!  Screw in slide hammers, pull rods, etc.  I’ve seen the holes welded, soldered, and even just filled over with bondo.  The stud gun has made it much easier; hasn’t it?  Do you have a story to tell?  Let’s hear it and you may be the winner of a new Magna-Spot Stud Welder Gun.  Just head over to our event page and post your story, video, pics, etc.  Be creative and have fun!

      TO ENTER POST YOUR STORY, OR PHOTOS, OR VIDEOS....WE'RE GIVING YOU FULL REIN TO BE CREATIVE AND HAVE FUN... Post it to the contest AT Facebook Page

      9.  Final details and contest deadline coming soon. 

    • Blog post
    • 3 years ago
    • Views: 476
    • Not yet rated
  • KPI: Cycle-Time KPI: Cycle-Time

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      KPI: Cycle-TimeCycle-Time

       Cycle Time, the golden-standard by which collision repairers are measured from both the customers as well as insurer’s point of view. Currently the standard CT is 10-days; in other words, it takes ten-days from keys-in-hand to seeing tail-lamps to repair a vehicle (bumper scraps to train-wrecks, all repair times get averaged).

      This is undeniably one of the most vital key-performance-indicators (KPIs) to measure; getting this right will increase production throughput and earnings.

      To define Cycle Time (CT) I must first state that Cycle Time is often perceived in two measures, production biased and customer biased.

      DEFINITION:
      Production Biased Cycle Time: The average number of calendar days elapsed from the date the vehicle was received at your business, to the date the repairs were completed.
      Formula: Date Received / Repairs Completed

      Customer Biased Cycle Time: The average number of calendar days elapsed from the date the vehicle was received at your business, to the date the customer took delivery. This is also commonly referred to as keys-to-keys.
      Formula: Date Received / Date Delivered

      Production CT is the traditional (read: “old school”) method of calculating the average calendar days for auto repairs. Since a shop cannot control when a customer will take delivery of their vehicle, this method calculates the part of the repair cycle a repair shop has most control over. Or so it seems – read on. This is a key measure for KPI management.

      Customer CT is a more contemporary measure, and one that, when managed well, is more focused on the vehicle owner receiving a positive customer experience. Managing this measure has a direct impact on CSI. From an insurance perspective, this measure also has a direct impact on loss-of-use (LOU) severity (insurance lingo for rental expense) as well as having a proportional, although indirect impact on bodily injury severity. In a nutshell – this is the Cycle Time measure both the customer and insurer “feel” and is most important to control.

      So which measurement should you use? I say measure both!

      Analyzing the variance in Cycle Time between Production and Customer biased formulas could target process waste in your business that you can eliminate and be working more “lean.” More specifically (in LEAN terms), it could identify SMED waste – the time wasted in between jobs; like ending one job and getting onto another – or processes, like the transition from a quarter panel repair to door-skin replacement. When analyzing the differences you should ask yourself, “Could we have done anything differently to get the customer back into their vehicle sooner?” Often the answer is yes.

      Here are some ideas you could use to cut Cycle Time: blueprinting repairs, change from the in-Monday/out-Friday schedule madness, proper technician allocation, transparent SOPs, deliver the car to the customer’s home or work (drive or tow), pick up the customer at home or work, open early or stay open late on advertised day(s) of the week, or change how you schedule the intake of vehicles.

      These KPIs are easiest to measure when working with a management system. Ed Rachwal from Designer Systems confirmed Cycle Time could be easily measured on Mitchell ABS and ABSe. For businesses operating without a management system, these measures have been difficult to calculate. Autobody Consulting Group has copyrighted tools enabling their clients to measure and manage these most important KPIs.

      Managing Cycle Time effectively is a great way to increase CSI, and being proactive in marketing your Cycle Time ratio to prospective or existing business partners just might bring more cars to your door, too!

      You are not alone in setting repair Cycle Time expectations. Here is an interesting story about CT from a different perspective. Not too long ago while in a meeting with a major Massachusetts insurer, Cycle Time was the very topic of concern with several of my clients. At some point it became apparent to me that the insurer never looked inward at their systems to see if they had any control of cycle time. “And why would they,” you ask? (Funny – they asked the same thing).

      Knowing what I know of the process, I had a hunch the insurance company had some (albeit, to a small degree) influence on setting the initial CT expectation with the vehicle owner and rental company. Here is what I noted – when an insurance adjuster receives a damage analysis report from a staff appraiser or repairer (network or otherwise), they do the same math to calculate rental days as most body shops do to rough-calculate the anticipated repair days [total hours ÷ some number = expected rental days].

      Armed with this information the adjuster simply informs the vehicle owner of the number of days the rental vehicle is covered for, often adding a day for good measure. In doing so the seed is planted with the vehicle owner of the perceived repair cycle time!

      After hearing this scenario, the insurer admitted they never looked at the process from this perspective and assured us they will evaluate it in the near future. What I haven’t told you yet was that the time of these extraordinary cycle time lapses coincided with some of the worst weather this area had experienced. In this case the cycle-time “perception,” being set by the claim adjuster didn’t account for the extraordinary increase in claim volume my clients were dealing with – indeed, an honest oversight.

      Let’s be realistic. Insurance companies are huge and nothing happens fast, so nobody’s holding their breath for this change to occur. However, having a broader understanding of the process will make all parties work a little smarter in the future.

       

      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 5 years ago
    • Views: 2784
  • Collision shop for sale Collision shop for sale

    • From: badams
    • Description:

      A friend of collision repair consultant Christopher Sheehy is looking to sell her auto body repair shop due to some challenging family issues.

      Chris is offering three months of his process and marketing consulting services at no charge to the new owner. The shop is located in Catskill, N.Y.

      Check out the shop for sale.

    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1401
  • Rank It Up! Rank It Up!

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Building A Strong Social Media Presence While Increasing Search Engine Ranking

      So – you have a website – GREAT – now how to you get people to find it?

      Unless someone types in your website address (URL), they are most likely to find your business online by using a search engine.  Getting your website recognized on these search engines and thus be found by your prospects and customers is not rocket science – but neither is replacing a quarter panel.  Both however require unique tools, some forethought (strategy), ingenuity (innovation), and a person with the right skills to get the job done.

      Replacing a quarter panel isn’t a job for the inexperienced; similarly marketing your business online isn’t kids play.

      These steps are sure to get you headed in the right direction – this isn’t article fluff, this is the same tactic I use for my clients.

      1. Start with your website!  A website that scores high in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Compliance – yes, there is a tool for that – is the foundation for social media because all your online and social media profiles should point here.
      2. Content and Compliance are king when it comes to ranking on search engines.  What you say; and how you say it – makes all the difference between ranking #1 or #101 on the search engines.  The art of crafting word-content that increases your search engine ranking (and thus more people see your site) is referred to as Search Engine Optimization – SEO for short.
      3. Constantly source and link-to online networks like LinkedIn, profile pages such as Yahoo!, maps including Google, and directories – MerchantCircle and YP to name a couple.  This is referred to as link-building.  The more online connections you have, the greater visibility your business will have to search engines.  There is a direct and well-published correlation between social media activity, and link-building that will improve your ranking on the big three search engines – Google, Bing, Yahoo! (listed in order of influence) and thus elevate your website exposure to more prospects and customers.
      4. Engage with people who engage with you – simply stated; if someone comments, likes, or shares your post; at the very least send them a thank you.
      5. Inter-link all of your online activity.  FaceBook allows you to link to Twitter and several other communication sites – take advantage of this, it will make it easier for your viewers to connect with you and hear your message.  Many social media channels have this inter-connectivity – look for it.  Also, don’t forget to add your social media badges to your website home page (also called a landing page).
      6. Be consistent – schedule time to commit to social media and stick to it!  If you post two posts each week, stay resilient.
      7. Reaching Business-2-Business (B2B) through your vendor partners is a great way of extending your social media audience.  Combine this with your Customer-2-Business (B2C) activities to increase your chance of your social media affecting your search engine ranking.
      8. Lastly – share other people’s stories if it is in-line with your strategy and make sure to give them ample credit, as you would expect to receive.  (you can start with this story :)

      Sometimes having all the answers still isn’t enough – applying the theory is often more difficult and complicated than it seems on paper.  If this sounds like your situation, or if the article above might as well have been written in Navajo, consider hiring a pro – it’s an investment that could be a game-changer for your business.


      By: Chris Sheehy – Auto Body Consultant at Autobody Consulting Group LLC www.AutobodyConsultingGroup.com

      Autobody Consulting Group, a business operations, administrative, production, estimating, management, marketing, and social media consultancy serving auto body collision repair businesses and vendors to the autobody industry.

      Twitter  FaceBook  LinkedIn  Blog

    • Blog post
    • 4 years ago
    • Views: 1381
  • Marketing ROI (podcast) Marketing ROI (podcast)

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

       

      Are you getting a return for your internet marketing efforts?  

       

      Listen to this podcast for some ideas. . . 

       

       

      By: Sidewalk Branding Company (in affillation with Autobody Consulting Group) - aRhode Island inbound marketing company – helping small business market BIG online with SEO, website optimization, internet marketing, local search, competitive SEO, and social media.  Visit them online for more information at: WEBSITE  FACEBOOK  TWITTER  LINKEDIN

    • Blog post
    • 3 years ago
    • Views: 1742
  • Write Your Website Like A Book Write Your Website Like A Book

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      By: Chris Sheehy | Sidewalk Branding Co.

       

      The website has become the quintessential mark of contemporary business. Paying some attention to details here could really pay dividends for any (size) business. 

      I am frequently asked over and over "how can I make our website better". Here's my advice.Think of your website like a book

      Think Of Your Business Website - Like Writing A Book

      You will need a story, an attractive cover, contents navigation, well written copy to fill the book, appropriate illustrations & graphics, an index, catchy book title and chapter titles, and a good idea of who will read your story so it will "speak" to them.

      You'll need to assemble the right team to put it all together, market it, manage it's distribution, and report on it's meeting your performance goals/expectations. 

      Business websites need the same resource (time & money) and strategy considerations - but all too frequently do not get it.

      For many businesses, the days of DIY web design and marketing are a thing of the past, the internet marketing machine is much too complex and interconnected to invest into it part-time. Most people wouldn't dare fix their boiler or electrical fuse-panel; so too should small business recognize when it's time to outsource website, SEO, and internet marketing services. 

      Well-designed websites get noticed, draw inbound leads, and convert browsers into buyers - starting with the end in mind by design.

       

      about: Chris SheehySidewalk Branding Company - a Rhode Island based seo & internet marketing firm connecting small businesses with buyers via website, social media, and search engine optimization & marketing.

    • Blog post
    • 3 years ago
    • Views: 3480
  • What's In A Name? What's In A Name?

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      What’s In A Name?

      By Chris Sheehy | Sidewalk Branding Company

       

      auto body name game“Auto Body”, “Autobody”, “Body Shop”, “Collision Center” – all the same right? 

      We recognize all these name iterations as simply different terms for auto body repair businesses, but do search engines see it the same way as we do; and could selecting one name or phrase over the other influence our visibility on search engines?  Po-tay-toe or po-tah-toe; it's still just a potato.  Isn't it?

      With the internet proving to be a significant lead generation tool for small businesses - the auto body industry included – businesses are discovering that local marketing is a hyper-competitive marketplace and being discovered online is getting increasingly complex.  The days of set-it-and-forget-it website marketing are long gone, today’s businesses need a strategy with quantifiable results for their hard earned marketing spend.  With respect to internet marketing – this means selecting the right words that will enable your business to rank well on search engines thus be discovered by more buying-prospects searching for what you have to offer.

      Regardless of what the name is on the sign outside your body shop – the wording you use for your internet marketing plays a significant impact on both overall visibility and brand recognition by your customers and prospects searching for you online.  A businesses listing on Google for example – is often the first impression a new customer has of your company.  Conversely, for your older customers who haven’t needed your services in a while who look your business up on the internet instead of searching for your business card - that they most likely misplaced - low ranking on search might cause them to be lured away from your business by your competition who appears more prominent in the local auto body repair scene – judging solely by that businesses higher ranking and increased visibility on the search engines.

      High ranking on search engines is all in the words – choose the right ones, and they will come.

      I was talking with John Shoemaker from JSE Collision Consulting a few months ago about a client of his who was setting up a new auto body shop.  I was included in some email exchanges between the two for my input on what to name this new business - from both an offline and online perspective.  The overwhelming recommendation John and his client was getting from the local vendors and from a recommended local marketing firm, was to name this new business “Town Collision Center” (For this article “Town” = the actual town the business is in).

      My advice was vastly different from what they were hearing.  I advised they incorporate the dominate local identifier (their actual town name in this case, but it could have been a nearby city name if they are on the outskirts) along with the phrase “auto body” not only in the name of the business as seen from the street, but in their online presence too.

      I was rigid with my suggestion of “Auto Body” - not autobody, bodyshop, body shop, collision repair, and certainly not collision center.  Auto Body.

      Being that my business specializes on the unique inbound marketing needs of the auto body repair industry, I have done some name-game studies; and Auto Body is –by far- the phrase that pays.  That said, identifying the need to incorporate “Auto Body” into their business website title and marketing wordtrack is only half of the name game.

      Think for a moment how you search for something online.  If you were looking for great pizza in New Haven CT (hands down, the greatest pizza town in the US), this might be how your search could play out:

                  >Pizza< (whoa – way too many results)

                  >Pizza restaurants in CT< (refined, but not specific)

      >Pizza restaurants in New Haven CT> (that nails it!)

      Doing this search, Giulios Pizza and Restaurant pulls top rank (for a non-paid listing, called organic search results).  But having lived in New Haven half my life, I can tell you that Modern Apizza is the local favorite.  So why aren’t they ranking #1 in the search?

      Apizza is a thin-crust pizza unique to New Haven CT; it even has its own Wikipedia page; if you want good pizza in CT, Apizza is what you're looking for.  Rolling back on that search – this time replacing Pizza with “Apizza” you’ll find the beloved Modern Apizza owns the search engine results page (aka: SERP) with four-listings on the first page of Google.

      Pizza or apizza – auto body or collision center.  What’s in a name?

      Done right, body shops using the targeted term “Auto Body” in the key elements of their website and within their online marketing wordtrack (like on Facebook, LinkedIn, and directory listings) will rank higher in search because overwhelmingly that is consistently the phrase people search for.  How much so?  Take a look at this study we conducted:

      name game - Auto Body

      With 823,000 searches every month, “Auto Body” is by far the most searched for phrase in the study.  The results were slightly different for mobile searches.

      “I am surprised; “bodyshop” is most often associated with a bath & body company while searches for “body shop” leads with women’s care products before getting into the auto body listings, and any use of "collision" gets just a fraction of the traffic.  Auto Body is the clear winner - it really pays to do your research.” said John Shoemaker after reviewing the findings.

      Now for the second part of the name game;  including your location reference within the name of your business to target your business locally – so it’s discovered by more local people.  This is pretty straightforward, the focus though is to do some local keyword research to see if your actual town name should be added to the front or back of the principle keyphrase Auto Body.  The in-between words, such as of, the, and in are referred to as stop words – search engines will ignore these words in the title of your website – so looking back at the original discussion I had with John over the naming of a new business "Town Collision Center", I was thrilled to hear his client had indeed selected "Auto Body of Town” as their namesake – both online as well as for their business identity.  Search engines will see it as Auto Body Town – and that’s about as tight as you can get with name optimizing (aka: search engine optimization SEO).

      After hammering out some solid metric on how to best position this business for high visibility on search engines, their success in online marketing is off to a solid start.  Website optimization followed by search engine marketing, and social media postings will round up a solid online marketing strategy for new and established businesses alike.  The name game – played well.  


      About:  Chris Sheehy is an auto industry veteran with twenty-five+ years, has been published internationally within the automotive, auto body, insurance, and marketing industries and is the founder of Auto Body Consulting Group, a sister company to Sidewalk Branding Company, an award-winning Rhode Island based SEO and Local Marketing firm - named a Top Startup Business in New England.

      Sidewalk Branding Co. gets businesses discovered online by the people searching for what businesses have to sell using website optimization, on/off-page SEO, link building, inbound marketing, social media, search engine marketing, hyper local optimization, and content marketing.   More @ http://sidewalkbranding.co

    • Blog post
    • 2 years ago
    • Views: 3057
  • Top 4: Why You Don't Backlink Top 4: Why You Don't Backlink

    • From: CSheehy
    • Description:

      Top 4 Reasons Businesses Don't Get Backlinks

      By Chris Sheehy  |  published with permission by MarketingProfs.com

      In this article, you'll learn...

      • Four reasons businesses aren't getting enough website backlinks
      • The importance of backlinks to your website's visibility and SERP rankings

      auto body seo marketing and link building

       

      Website links that point to your business website are one of the most important search engine optimization (SEO) factors that influence the online visibility and search engine ranking of your business.

       

      Those backlinks signal to search engines how influential and relevant your business is online; they trigger local citations of your business and aid in deepening your local market penetration. Therefore, those backlinks help increase the online visibility of your business and influence the discovery of your business—over your competition—by online searchers.

       

      So, if backlinks are that awesome for SEO and search engine results page (SERP) rankings, why do so many businesses struggle to get links that lead to their websites? Here are my Top 4 reasons.

       

      1. It's hard work (with no effective shortcuts)

      Sustainable results are best obtained via sweat equity. In this case, that translates to finger-numbing keyboarding. Automation doesn't cut it here because, typically, it's too general, so hitting the keys is your best bet.

       

      Even publishing great content isn't enough in and of itself to get other websites to link to you. You need to get out there and promote that content (but that's a topic for another article).

       

      Businesses have to commit to the notion that just as they have to be on the hunt for their next customer, so too do they need to be vigilant with their online linking. Linking is an all-the-time thing—not a one-time thing. Marketers don't know any secret tricks about "backlinking" other than those that "do" it... do well.

       

      2. Commitment and consistency are fleeting

      Setting a monthly strategy of creating a set number of backlinks seems to work best for many businesses. Stay on track, and commit time to get the work done. Consistency is the key: an hour a day keeps the competitors away.

       

      Search engines take into consideration how many links your website picks up within specific time periods. Generating links to your site in bulk might seem like a great idea and could provide a short boost to your ranking and branding, but that tactic will ultimately hurt your business when along with your link-building actions your SERP rankings take a dive.

       

      Continual Trickle Linkonomics (yup, I just made that up) is the best strategy.

       

      3. You might be linked-in with an SEO scammer

      There seem to be as many SEO scammers as search engine optimization specialists. Telling them apart is not that difficult, though, if you know what to look for.

       

         •Scammers promise quick results for quick cash.
         Specialists (I'm refraining from using the word "expert" here) advise sustainable results over time and speak of your marketing dollars spent as a business investment rather than a quick spin of the return-on-investment (ROI) wheel.

         Scammers speak of guaranteed top listings or No.1 placement.
         Specialists will let you know that nobody—no one—can guarantee top search engine rankings or page rankings. Specialists are also more likely to show you a list of top-ranking client sites or testimonials that pan out when you do your due diligence.

         Scammers promise to list your business on hundreds of directories and search engines... practically overnight.
         Specialists speak of listing your business on relevant directories and online resources, and likely not on search engines, because they know that if other elements of your online marketing are in place, search engines will find you organically.

         Scammers speak of immediate results.
         Specialists speak of the big picture.

      Listen to your gut. If the promises sound too good to be true, they probably are.

      • 4. Tricking the system will not serve you well
      • Loopholes and SEO tricks are openly published online, but taking advantage of such trickery will eventually result in having fewer prospects knocking on your door. If you have doubts about using a particular tactic, or if your SEO Guru Ninja Rebel Fighter says things such as "Google won't even see this" or "It's safe; I've done this with other clients and haven't had any trouble," you should probably stop right there and reassess.

      • Ultimately, the search engines will create ways to find the businesses that took advantage of their vulnerabilities, and they will most likely return the favor by reducing those businesses' rankings—or, worse, removing those listings altogether.

      • The practice of implementing those aggressive SEO tactics is referred to as Black Hat SEO (think of it in cowboy terms), and those who follow best-practice standards are referred to as White Hat SEO specialists.

      • Don't get me wrong: White Hat all the way may well not be the best strategy for a business in a tough market. Shades of gray exist. Sometimes, the pioneering SEO practitioners and their unconventional ways get the best results—but such specialists are also most likely to know the difference between a tightrope and a sidewalk.
      • * * *

      • Businesses that rank high on search engines do so because of many factors. Building backlinks to their website is, arguably, second only to website search engine optimization (on-page SEO) in terms of importance and lasting results.

      • Committing the appropriate amount of time and money to link-building is a continual process that will provide long-term competitiveness and visibility via greater online search-engine discovery.

      • Remember: Those who dowill do well.

       

       


      Author Chris Sheehy is the founder of Sidewalk Branding Company.  An award winning and internationally published local marketing & SEO firm.  Get your business DISCOVERED.  

      Read more at MarketingProfs: http://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2012/7488/top-4-reasons-businesses-dont-get-backlinks#ixzz20897oUvG

    • Blog post
    • 2 years ago
    • Views: 2766
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