Social Media Case Studies

The Car Doctor: Growing Word of Mouth

Background

Started in 2009, Gary and his brother Chris wanted to show the automotive industry something different. The company started with no customers, and one goal –to give their customers the value that they deserved; education, hands on understanding and preventive maintenance. Within a year of starting The Car Doctor, The Mountain View voice awarded them with a Runner Up in the Best New Business Category. Realizing that their approach was resonating with customers, Gary and Chris knew that the logical next step was to explore ways to get the word out.

Objective

The Car Doctor operates in a neighborhood that has over twenty other independent auto repair facilities. As a relatively new business, it faced the challenge of acquiring new customers and turning them into lifelong customers in spite of intense competition. To build loyal customers, The Car Doctor focused on quality service, and was rewarded by one of the best overall presences on Yelp of any business in Silicon Valley. However, The Car Doctor did not have the knowledge or the time to leverage the positive feedback in order to maximize repeat business and spread  word of mouth to potential clients.

Approach

The Car Doctor began its partnership with Main Street Hub™ in March 2010 on the Value Plan.  Immediately our team began working with The Car Doctor to learn more about their business goals and values. The next step for Main Street Hub was to make the most of The Car Doctor’s good reputation by connecting with its happy customers to spread the word. In addition to setting up their Facebook Business page and creating engaging messages for The Car Doctor customers to interact with, Main Street Hub also responded to the reviews left on their Yelp and Google+ Local page to build that relationship with their loyal customers. In order to reach as broad of an audience as possible, Main Street Hub also optimized The Car Doctor’s Twitter page and posted engaging content regularly to promote interaction.

Results

The Car Doctor’s Facebook Page has gone from having a network reach of 0 people to over 20,000 since signing up with Main Street Hub.   They also have a perfect 5 Star Rating on Yelp with over 100 reviews, each having received a thoughtful and personal response, thanking them for their feedback.

Most importantly,  current and potential customers are now engaging with  The Car Doctor several times a week, instead of only a couple of times a year. This engagement keeps The Car Doctor “top of mind” and has made a significant impact on the bottom line. In fact, Gary and Chris attribute a 20-30% increase in revenue to the work Main Street Hub is doing.

Creating an online presence also distinguishes The Car Doctor from their surrounding competitors who do not manage their social media.  A tweet from a (now loyal) customer pretty much sums it up: “Wow, I love it! An auto mechanic with the times… got my business.”

The Future

As a result of their explosive growth, The Car Doctor has plans to expand.  Originally starting with just 1200 square feet, Gary and Chris are looking to buy or build a facility 10 times that size.  With this growth will come increased investment in various marketing vehicles.  As The Car Doctor adds radio and television to their marketing mix, Main Street Hub will be there right along with them to help integrate social media and maximize the return on their marketing spend.

Fuki Sushi: Managing Online Reputation

Background

Fuki Sushi is one of the oldest and most popular Japanese restaurants in Palo Alto, California. It was founded in 1978 and serves a clientele with an above-average income level.

Objective

As a popular restaurant where the typical customer can spend nearly $100 on a dinner for two, Fuki Sushi generates a large number of reviews. Fuki Sushi had paid attention to those reviews in the past, but it was now concerned that a number of reviews were representing the restaurant as more expensive than other Japanese restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area. Moreover, the restaurant was putting on a number of events and specials on its website and other non-social media, but those were not reaching as many people as hoped for.

Approach

Fuki Sushi began working with Main Street Hub™ in July 2010, on the Customer Reviews Plan. Immediately, Main Street Hub began researching Fuki Sushi’s current online presence, its specialties, and its voice. A dedicated account manager called the restaurant’s manager within one business day, and Main Street Hub began drafting responses to reviews shortly thereafter. Main Street Hub responded to ten of Fuki Sushi’s most recent reviews on both Google and Yelp, and it responded to each new review within 24-48 hours of the review being posted. Main Street Hub also began regularly promoting Fuki Sushi’s events on Google and Yelp, as well as proposing special offers to drive foot traffic and measure ROI.

Results

Since signing up with Main Street Hub, Fuki Sushi has seen record numbers of people finding its profile on Google and Yelp. Fuki Sushi has also been able to spread the word about its traditional sushi menu, where sashimi is prepared with smaller cuts, which was frequently mistaken for a shrunken serving. The restaurant has even received a number of messages from customers thanking them for their courteous responses to their concerns.

The Future

The next step for Fuki Sushi is to match its new attention to customer reviews with an equal amount of attention to social media websites like Facebook and Twitter. The restaurant has a loyal customer base that makes it a perfect candidate to use social media to spread word of mouth to its customers’ personal networks, and there are several advantages to using social media and customer-review websites together.

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Testimonials

“Our restaurants receive many new reviews every day on Yelp and Google. We are grateful for the feedback and want to respond thoughtfully to each one, but we cannot take our focus away from providing a top-notch dining experience night after night. Main Street Hub lets us do both.”

Brandy Marts
The Stinking Rose
Beverly Hills and San Francisco, CA

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