Auto Service World
News   July 27, 2022   by Adam Malik

How to raise R2R consumer awareness

James Channer from In Motion Brands speaks during the webinar, The Data Dilemma: Who Owns the Data Generated by Your Car?

Automotive service providers are struggling with how to get the message out about right to repair to their customers, according to an industry expert.

To support them, all corners of the automotive aftermarket need to come together to help, said James Channer, co-founder and chief operating officer of In Motion Brands.

Consumers today don’t get right to repair or the importance of it, he said during the webinar The Data Dilemma: Who Owns the Data Generated by Your Car?, hosted by the Automotive Industries Association of Canada.

He likened right to repair to taking your bank card and being able to withdraw cash from a competing bank’s machine — consumers have access to their money no matter what bank they use. The same should apply to auto repair — consumers can take their vehicle to any business they choose to have repairs done.

There’s a big opportunity here to educate consumers, he noted. Otherwise, a customer will be forced to take their vehicle away from an independent shop and over to the dealer, which is exactly what automakers want to happen. They’re motivated in this area to hold off on any right to repair action.

“Many statistics have demonstrated over the last several years, their service bays have continued to decline in terms of demand. And we’ve seen an increased demand from the automotive aftermarket,” Channer observed.

There’s a level of trust that exists. ASPs need to capitalize on that.

“We collectively as an industry got to continue to think about how we arm ASPs to help in that communication and awareness to consumers,” Channer added.

However, shops are busy and owners are finding themselves working in the business rather than on it. He called on the entire aftermarket spectrum, including jobbers and suppliers to help shops in this area.

“We have to be thinking strategically more long term on how do we equip our customers, these ASPs, to help them sustain their success, long term,” Channer said.

“And this right for repair and this ‘who owns the data’ discussion, we really need to feed ASPs with more access to information, more resources,” he added. “Because when they’re having those one-on-one conversations, they need to then begin to help educate their customers on how important it is for them to understand what’s happening with the data in their vehicle. So it’s a collective effort that needs to happen.”

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