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Blast Your AROs Skyward with KUKUI Text Connect

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After over 25 years of serving customers, Mike DeFino has a clear idea of what customer relationship management (CRM) means to him and to his business, Fox Run Automotive. 

“The reason we’ve been successful is because the team always takes care of the customer first,” he says. Fox Run is not just me—we’re a team. We pride ourselves on customer satisfaction because it impacts our reputation via word-of-mouth and online.”

Fox Run Automotive is a neighborhood 12-bay shop at the northern tip of Delaware. Defino and his team did not achieve an average annual revenue in excess of $2 million through just flyers and postcards; they achieved it by deliberately upgrading the ways in which they reached customers. Connecting with customers on their terms was a revolutionary step in the right direction for Fox Run Auto’s CRM—at least as they knew it—with a little help from KUKUI and their texting program.

“Right now, my active customer list is thousands of customers deep and we do everything we can to wow them,” he says. “COVID has challenged us to look at things differently because people were not driving as much. We switched gears and put good offers out there through texting. We offered new services such as detailing and cleaning/disinfecting. Using this platform to drive customers has been effective to get them in the door.”

DeFino shared that texting is very cost effective compared to other CRM efforts.  For example, a blast of 5,000 postcards at $0.43 per costs several thousand dollars for a break even return ($2,150, to be exact). Texting has been cheaper, more targeted, and a solid supplement to current CRM efforts for his team and his shop. 


Choose KUKUI Text Connect

When Kennedy said, “We choose to go to the moon,” in 1960, many Americans saw it as nothing but a flashy pipe dream. That dream was realized just nine years later, and for many of today’s shop owners, the idea of texting customers may seem much the same. The moon, however, is closer than you think. 

“We have Text Connect configured to automatically send out service reminders. The team also uses Text Connect during slow times to send custom messages regarding customers’ vehicles and offer targeted discounts, whether it is general maintenance or a substantial repair.  I was always traditionally marketing my business, but I could never imagine anything like Text Connect.”


Choose to Go Mobile

DeFino has never been afraid to take a calculated risk (especially when there is a bit of fun involved). It is easy to see when browsing his shop’s site and social media. The Fox Run team is portrayed as a wide variety of cartoonish, seasonal figures like elves, pilgrims, race car drivers, leprechauns, and even doctors. Some may think it silly but to DeFino it is all part of sound customer management.

“I just always thought it’s best to do something a little different to connect with people. For years we have leveraged radio, mailers, and even a billboard to get attention.  We put ourselves out there and most do not see us. But now when we text customers, we are right in their hands, right where we want to be,” DeFino says.

“What makes KUKUI work for us is the platform is simple,” he says. “I didn’t grow up with a computer, but I manage it pretty well. I get a monthly coaching call from a dedicated rep at KUKUI, and Ronni is amazing! During my coaching calls we review our Google AdWords, our email blasts, my text offers and ideas and where we stand with everything.”

“KUKUI has shown me another way to connect with our customers. They helped my team grow  comfortable with the program, and when you achieve trust in a new process, you’ve really got something.”

Looking ahead, DeFino continues to evolve and learn with the business model. He knows he may have to pursue some type of electric car repairs if Fox Run Auto is to keep up with the speed of business.

“Electric may be next,” he says, “like KUKUI, we will listen, learn, then lead the way until it becomes second nature. I didn’t expect this platform to be as easy as it is, but with a little help and a solid crew it’s been very successful for us.”

After that, who knows? Possibly the moon. The rovers are still up there, after all. 

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