EverWash Panel Portrays ‘The Future of Wash Membership’ At ICA’s Car Wash Show

l. to r.: Scott Pashley, Justin Salisbury, Scott Caplan, Len Finegood, Anoop Kanthan

The average household has nine streaming subscriptions. So where is the car wash industry right now when it comes to membership and where will we be in 5, 10, 20 years? 

EverWash conducted a panel session attracting nearly 100 attendees at the moist recent ICA conference in Las Vegas, The Car Wash Show. Moderated by EverWash Chief Revenue Officer Scott Pashley, the panel also included experts from a variety of pertinent fields.

Today’s average household has nine streaming subscriptions. So where is the car wash industry right now when it comes to membership and where will we be in 5, 10, 20 years? 

EverWash conducted a panel session attracting nearly 100 attendees at the moist recent ICA conference in Las Vegas, The Car Wash Show. 

Moderated by EverWash Chief Revenue Officer Scott Pashley, the panel also included experts from a variety of pertinent fields:

·      Justin Salisbury, owner and Chief Operating Officer of Breeze Thru Car Wash in the CO/WY region and the founder of ‘Leadership Worth Following’, a non-profit dedicated to enhancing the value of the car wash industry.

·      Scott Caplan, Founder and President of EverWash, who built chain of 13 gyms in an industry that went nearly 100% membership.

·      Anoop Kanthan, CEO & Co-founder of omniX Labs, whose real-time analytics platform for vehicles is an industry first.

·      Len Finegood founder of Loyalty Insight, a Las Vegas-based loyalty program consultancy serving casinos, airlines and national retailers.

Given that millions of Americans wake up every day and drink subscription-purchased coffee to get caffeinated…drive to work listening to Spotify…receive packages during the day delivered through their Amazon Prime subscription…listen to an Audible-streamed book while enjoying a Blue Apron dinner, and end the night watching Netflix, it’s clear that consumers have accepted subscriptions in a big way!  As a result, car washes have more reason than ever to make membership an integral part of how they do business.

Advantages of Membership

First and foremost, membership really stabilizes business for car wash.  It has completely changed the business model. Before a wash had to rely on favorable seasonal weather, Now, there’s financial stability.  A wash can have predictable revenue plus additional income from the single-wash purchases.

Membership, or loyalty programs as they are called in other fields, are a proven way to create a vested customer. That is the key to a solid business.  Membership is a powerful reason why a customer will not go anywhere else. 

Really a simple way to think about that is you now have a member that’s loyal to you that is using it on frequency. That’s very favorable to your business. And then you compare that to the value of your single purchase or retail customer that’s visiting three or four times a year. And you find that’s probably similar to the neighborhood, 10 to 12 X, the value of the retail customer. Its no brainer to consider how to nurture this program point. That lifetime value has two key elements to it. One of them is length of time they are with you in churn, if they’re carrying out too quick, you might find yourself in a bit of a pickle, so to speak, but I would say that the life and values that will critical and when you get the program up and running, get some underneath.

Ideas to Acquire More Members

Another big thing is a singular focus on a culture of membership. Other promotions that distract visitors from a membership program actually dilute wash results.  For instance, wash booklets that provide no information about the customer keeps a wash in the dark about if and when revenue will grow. Forget one-off promotions. Membership provides continuous promotion! 

First, among the most effective marketers a wash can put to use immediately and at a comparably low cost are its customers.  Track the countless reviews from social platforms and other industry websites. A wash owner can get feedback that confirm its perceived value proposition.  Is the wash seen as professional and friendly? By following and promoting customer feedback, a wash owner can nurture what keeps people engaged, focus on areas of improvement, and more effectively grow.

Technology Powers Success

Technology is powering member data collection and analytics. The EverWash mobile app is the most visible advanced technology tool using multiple means of reaching members and promoting referrals or adding vehicles. 

EverWash has proven that members with more than one vehicle or a family plan stay longer and that each additional car visits a wash less than average. A wash must make every effort to extend individual member business, and the mobile app is a key tool is an ever-present marketing tool.

Today’s technology expands the membership program purview to take in the total membership lifecycle from acquisition techniques to point-of-sale promotion, outreach advertising, and text-based marketing.  

Personalized and contextual engagement with a member, prediction of a customer’s churn likelihood, and proactive engagement with members are still in the early stages, but new technology will bring more personalized and more targeted membership experience. 

How will these developments change wash owner business practices?  With more in-depth data analytics, a wash that was happy converting 10 out of 100 customers to membership could learn that 50 more of those visitors had the ideal profile of a member.  

The enhanced data analytics resulting from new technology can reduce churn, too.  Today, smart washes measure attrition, but what’s the root cause of attrition? Data can help washes uncover root causes. Was there an issue with the type of promotion?  Was the messaging compelling?  Was the timing wrong? 

Analyzing each engagement is more important than ever. How was each experience for the customer throughout the membership lifecycle?  How many times are they contacted over a specified period? Today’s predictive analytics can help a wash be proactive is preventing attrition.  

The Importance of a Membership Ecosystem 

If you look at the growth of dot com retailers in the past two decades, e-commerce stores are now everywhere/. Every business wants to acquire customers.  However, they started realizing that staying in contact with the customer, adding value to the relationship along the way, and using metrics to ascertain the health of each relationship reduces at-risk member count and maximizes the value of the relationship for the business.

Creating a membership program ecosystem is another proven way to strengthen member loyalty. Good examples include Apple, Amazon, and any number of casinos or airlines. Members recognize the added value of the overall relationship rather than a singular product or service. A decision to end the relationship is much harder when multiple added-value features will be lost.