The Vendor Benefit

Aug. 30, 2019

It’s OK not to be an expert in everything—learn to ask for help 

Throughout my years in the industry, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with many different shop owners, as well as the vendors that they work with, and have been able to see the positive impact that a beneficial relationship can have for both parties when the right two people find one another. Jeff Bragdon, owner of Service Masters Total Car Care and Ryan Burton, owner and founder of Leads Near Me, are an example of this. 

Long before opening his first shop, Jeff worked as a lead technician for various shops, building his experience and expertise along the way. In 2009, he made the jump from lead technician to shop owner when he opened Service Masters Total Car Care in Safety Harbor, Fla. At that time, it was a one-man operation and Jeff was single-handedly doing $16,000 in business per month. Service Masters was relying solely on word of mouth for all of its marketing and advertising needs. 

Jeff knew there was room for improvement and growth, but wasn’t sure how to go about it and was nervous about spending money on marketing without a guarantee that it would work. As we all know, we are business owners and experts in running automotive shops. Very few of us are considered marketing experts or online advertising experts. Especially in a realm where the dynamics of online marketing change everyday. However, Jeff knew that he had a great shop, great service and great employees. What he needed was a great marketing plan to tell customers about his business. Finally, in 2015, he sought advice from his business advisor, Scott Wheeler, and was quickly referred to Ryan Burton and Leads Near Me. 

Ryan helped Jeff create a new website for Service Masters and began running Google Ads for the shop. While Jeff was hesitant to spend money on something like online marketing and Google Ads, Ryan made sure to work with him every step of the way to reassure him and show him where his money was going. There was heavy communication in the early days to ensure success.

After one year of working together Jeff’s revenue jumped to around $26,000 in revenue per month. Jeff continued to see improvements in revenue each year. He was thrilled. And not just with the increase in business, but also with the working relationship he was forming with Ryan. Their relationship went beyond just a vendor/customer partnership. Jeff realized that Ryan really cared about the success of his clients in all aspects. The Burton family even joined the Bragdon family and the entire Service Masters staff at Bragdon’s home for the 4th of July this year for the annual “Bragdon Fireworks Extravaganza.” 

As of this writing, Jeff has expanded Service Masters Total Car Care to a second shop and is seeing revenue in the $85,000 range each month. He has also moved from his original shop to a larger location in Clearwater, Florida and is forecasting $1.4 million in revenue for 2019. 

He has added direct mail and coupons to his marketing endeavors but continues to turn to Leads Near Me for all of his online marketing needs and advertising advice. When Jeff first met Ryan, his shop had exactly three Google Reviews. Today it has over 300 positive reviews and he continues to grow.

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