A Michigan body shop’s advertising campaign is spinning the uncertainty created by dealership closings into a new way to draw customers. Crain’s Detroit Business reported that Campbell Collision in Brighton, Mich., has launched a campaign emphasizing that although dealership shops may not be able to honor repair warranties in the future, Campbell’s Collision in business for 40 years isn’t going anywhere.
“We’ve had quite a few instances where a vehicle was towed to a dealer and the owner didn’t want [that], so it was moved to Campbell Collision,” shop co-owner Donna Campbell told Crain’s.
This summer, Chrysler revoked franchise agreements with 789 dealerships, and GM announced it would close more than 1,300 dealerships by October 2010, making some consumers nervous about having vehicles repaired at dealership collision centers.
“People are just nervous about the unknown,” Campbell told Crain’s.
Campbell also said that dealerships have told the shop that their collision repair business has been slow recently. Shelton Pontiac Buick GMC of Rochester Hills, Mich., told Crain’s that its collision business was down about 40 percent in 2009; Campbell’s, a 12-employee shop, estimated a 19-percent increase in revenues for the year.
Clinton Township-based Collex Collision, which operates 11 shops in Michigan and three shops in Florida, told Crain’s that its business has also benefited from dealership closings, also citing consumers’ reluctance to have a dealership perform a repair and possibly not be able to honor the warranty in the future.
Read the full story from Crain’s Detroit Business