NAC Helps Agents Build Brands

 

National Auto Care takes relationship-building a step further by giving agents a competitive edge in a crowded market while offering industry-leading products and support.

Tony, what does your company do? For over 35 years National Auto Care has marketed F&I-related products and services to agents around the country. In turn, they market our products and services to dealers in their particular region or area. Those products include service contracts, GAP, tire-and-wheel, ding-and-dent — we have many, many products, really encompassing all the different things a dealer needs in their F&I office or on their loans.

How does region affect performance? Well, there’s a different level of risk for each product in each region. The Northeast is pretty notorious for tire-and-wheel issues, for example, due to road conditions, density, and the types of wheels and tires that are popular there. On a ding product, any high-population area is going to put you at a higher risk level. For GAP, the risk is higher in areas prone to catastrophic flooding or hailstorms.

Has that changed the way you price products? I think historically our industry has been fairly consistent in pricing, and in most cases, it is not based on regions or market areas. Today, we’re getting more sophisticated in looking at different factors, including a region. Now the challenge is when you are one of the first to implement regional increases, you most likely will lose market share.

But as I have always said, I am happy to give high-loss products to our competitors. Start to look at some of the companies out there now doing regional pricing — it’s a little bit painful in the short term, but overall I think it makes a lot of sense.

And it’s the long term that matters. Yes. I think for any business, consistently doing the things you need to do to ensure your profitability — as well as your clients’ — makes a lot of sense.

Is there anything NAC and Family First does for agents that no other product provider has? From a support perspective, when we started Family First in 2011, we were a small company. I worked for a large corporation and formed a lot of great relationships, but we needed to stand out and be different.

One of the things I knew a lot of our agents struggle with is branding — building websites, marketing their programs effectively, having a sense of consistency, and white-labeling products for their agencies rather than marketing someone else’s big-box brand. And that’s important, because the agents are the ones who are really out there providing the support.

So, to drive agent brand vs. your provider, we put together what we call the Agency Brand Builder. With Brand Builder, we provide website development, brand and logo design. We produce agent-branded marketing materials that are consistent with their vision and mission statement. Overall, we help them stand out and build their own independent brand no matter who their provider is.

Is it working? The agencies we’ve done this for now produce 55% to 60% of our overall business. Their average production is dramatically greater. And our relationship is better because we get to understand them better in how they do things and what they were really trying to accomplish.

Are those materials restricted to NAC products? We’re agnostic. If you’re using somebody else, we still will help you build your portfolio around a competitor’s program. We would hope that we might be able to pick them up on those products later on, but if you do business with a competitor, that’s fine, too. We’re here to help you grow your business and increase your profits.

Why else do agents love doing business with your company? We think it’s our respect for agents and the passion we have for this business. You can call us at 11 p.m., and someone’s going to pick up the phone and take care of your needs. And we know the agent’s dealership clients are going 24 hours a day and it’s always a fire drill. The company that can support you in that way, to take care of them — even if it’s a false alarm — I think we do a fantastic job of being able to be there for our clients when they need us, and we do the things they need us to do to retain and grow their business. Really, I don’t think there is anyone in the business like us.