This Year’s Crop Sets Themselves Apart
By Tara Taffera
The market seems to be getting more competitive with TONS of shops popping up everywhere,” says Joseph Torbati, owner, OCDetailing Inc. in Fremont, Calif.— and a new addition to the 2019 Top PPF Dealers. The paint protection film companies to whom we spoke are setting themselves apart through expanded use of social media, partnering with other automotive companies and offering high quality and service. These PPF top dealers tell us there is plenty of business to go around as consumers are more aware of the benefits of PPF and are asking for it.
As for that added competition, Carl Melendez, owner of 631 Coatings in Farmingdale, N.Y., agrees that yes, there are more companies doing PPF—because there are so many clear bra manufacturers popping up.
“Another reason for the growth is because consumers are becoming more aware of PPF,” says Melendez. “The fact that people are recognizing it to protect their investment is great. They are asking for clear bra–we don’t even have to pitch it,” he says.
Kyle Owen, owner, Clear Bra Indy, adds that there used to be two major manufacturers in the marketplace, now there are several companies marketing their brands.
“They all have their own marketing dollars to spend so the more brand awareness comes to us,” says Owen. “That is making more car owners aware of PPF which is a big thing for us.”
Customers are so pleased with the service that they tell their friends and family and this is how many of those on our list get their business.
“We do minimal advertising but we provide such great customer service and always ask for referrals. That is what majorly impacts our growth over the years,” says Owen.
Brandon Coddington, owner, PerfecTint in Springfield, Mo., agrees that word of mouth” is the best advertising you can get for your business.
“Out of every 10 customers that come to us for a service, nine of them tell their friends and family, who then become lifetime customers as well.”
This all seems to have translated to a good 2019 for PPF retailers.
“As for business, last year it was consistent and running higher than the previous year,” says Torbati.
Rick Puthoff, owner, Eclipse Window Tinting, says 2019 was a great year, despite minimal growth.
“We didn’t grow as much as we’d like but it’s also a matter of staffing and space,” he says. “However the real accomplishment is the fact we grew where we could handle it and maintained the prior year’s growth with ease. Our infrastructure is better than ever which allows us to handle more calls, clients and installations with no additional staff.
Dave Shefler, owner, Automotive Appearance Pros in Worthington, Ohio, opened its second store in the Columbus, Ohio, area in early March—a joint venture with a “state-of-the-art car wash company.” There was a lube-and-oil building next door to the car wash that Shefler turned into a new shop. “It’s a small footprint with two bays,” he says. “We are work on the cars production line style with multiple people working at the same time to get the vehicles in and out.”
Automotive Appearance Pros will cross market with the partnering business. “Every customer who gets a car wash gets a coupon,” he adds.
When asked what accounted for growth this year, he pointed to social media—specifically posting videos and photos to Facebook and Instagram and “ramping up google ad words.” Owen agrees calling targeted social media marketing great for being easy to “dial into a specific demographic group.”
Sometimes one man—an installer that is— can make all the difference. Melendez hired a key installer from a shop in another state who started right after Christmas in 2019.
“We will double without a doubt,” he says. “I am already seeing it. Because I now have someone besides me who can install. You can only do so much with one person.”
About the List
This year’s top dealers gave a few insights on their customer base—aside from consumers. PPF dealers report that additional business comes from new car dealers and detailers.
The dealers were selected based on their self-reported sales from 2018 and 2019. The companies with the asterisk next to their company name on the chart have not confirmed their information this year, so the numbers are based on PPFMag’s research and estimates. (If we missed your company please email email@example.com to be considered next year.)
Tara Taffera is the editorial director for PPFMag.
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