Automotive Service Providers Aim to Leverage Customer Data, Digital Experience

Automotive Service Providers Leverage Customer Data

If someone has taken their car to one of your stores to get an oil change, they’re a good candidate to go to another one of your outlets for a car wash. The key is to capture their contact information and then reach out to let them know about the other services you offer.

With a database that now includes information about 20 million unique customers, Driven Brands Holdings aims to do just that. The provider of automotive collision, maintenance and car wash services said it expects its new digital and data strategies to accelerate its growth.

“The digital and data unlock is underway,” Driven Brands President and CEO Jonathan Fitzpatrick said Wednesday (Feb. 16) during the company’s quarterly earnings call. “Nothing is modeled, but it will absolutely provide an upside.”

Cross-Promoting Different Brands

Four months earlier, the company added its first chief digital and data officer. When announcing the addition of Matt Meier in the newly created position in October, Fitzpatrick said Driven Brands’ data was already providing a strategic advantage, and the company was looking to derive even more business benefits from it.

During the Wednesday earnings call, Fitzpatrick outlined three opportunities that are presented by this digital and data unlock. For one thing, it will help the company make sure it is promoting its brands appropriately with different customers that live in the same trade area.

“So, if you’re a quick-lube customer, let’s make sure you’re invited to our car wash, and vice versa, or to our other brands,” Fitzpatrick said. “So, really, that sort of cross-promoting activity is something that we continue to work against and execute on.”

Creating a Seamless Digital Experience

Digital marketing is already delivering benefits. The company reported that the maintenance segment, which posted same-store sales growth of 26%, has benefited from targeted digital marketing that led to an increase in car count from both new and repeat customers in the fourth quarter.

Another piece of the digital and data unlock is the digital experience, which is about making it as easy and seamless as possible for customers to do business with one or more of the company’s brands.

“So, you could be thinking about how we connect our different brand offerings in a market to our customer and make sure that, that digital experience is flawless and easy for them to connect with multiple of our brands,” Fitzpatrick said.

Leveraging Information About 20 Million Customers

A third opportunity is presented by the data. Fitzpatrick said the company’s platform captures information about 900,000 new customers each quarter, and now has information about more than 20 million unique customers.

“I don’t think anyone else in our industry has that,” Fitzpatrick said. “So, we have that process built so, really, it’s now taking that really strong platform and leveraging against both the digital and cross-promotions.”

With the new initiatives currently in early stages, the company plans to release the first metrics later this year, Fitzpatrick told analysts during the earnings call.

“We’re saving that for another call later on in the year, but we’ll give you a lot more detail in terms of what’s being done and the return profile associated with that,” Fitzpatrick said.