Tug Bankert

Optimum's Company Mentality

Recommended Posts

not exactly sure what you mean by "consumer brand", Optimum has very few Pro only products.  Gloss-Coat provides a quality consumer ceramic and new formula Hyper Seal meets the need for a less durable but easily applied and reasonably prices coating.  As far as marketing, everyone has an opinion (including me) but for Optimum the only one that matters is Dr G and he's happy with his strategy. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/17/2021 at 1:50 PM, Ron@Optimum said:
On 9/17/2021 at 1:50 PM, Ron@Optimum said:

 

Dancing bear, most consumers are not enthusiasts like you. They are sold on a product that their detailer believes in. Enthusiasts do almost hands on test and trying out and installing their own stuff. That is the exception and not the norm. People like you are rare. If we target your type of thinking (absolutely nothing wrong with the way you think), we will spend so much money and time and be frustrated because you still have not been convinced. Marketing can be put this way...put the cookies on the bottom shelf so everyone can reach it. If we market to enthusiasts mixed with general public it will be confusing and complicated. 

By the way, just like Ron said, opti has consumer stuff. In fact, they started with consumer coatings and then later offered both consumer and pro giving everyone something to attain. 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Tug Bankert said:

Dancing bear, most consumers are not enthusiasts like you. They are sold on a product that their detailer believes in. Enthusiasts do almost hands on test and trying out and installing their own stuff. That is the exception and not the norm. People like you are rare. If we target your type of thinking (absolutely nothing wrong with the way you think), we will spend so much money and time and be frustrated because you still have not been convinced. Marketing can be put this way...put the cookies on the bottom shelf so everyone can reach it. If we market to enthusiasts mixed with general public it will be confusing and complicated. 

By the way, just like Ron said, opti has consumer stuff. In fact, they started with consumer coatings and then later offered both consumer and pro giving everyone something to attain. 

 

 

Maybe my view of the car owners/drivers market is different.  Here is my impression (which may be completely wrong) of what I think it's like out there.  Others can chime in their impressions for fun as well.  I don't know if there is a way to know for sure what the market breakdown is, but it'll be interesting to see other opinions.  Remember, this is just my impression with no facts to back it, just a feeling.

Category 1 - People who don't know much about detailing and don't care- wash their own car when it's too dirty, or go to the gas station car wash or maybe even a dedicated tunnel car wash that has car washes from $10-20.  They never think about waxing or protection.  They wouldn't believe a detail job could be $100+ or would never consider a $1k+ coating job.  I'd guess 80-95% of car drivers fall into this category.  It's a broad range but I'm trying to say most people are in this category.  Most people I know would fit here.

Category 2 - People who knows care enough about their car finish but don't want  to learn or spend time doing it themselves - they may have a dedicated detailer they go to for all car washes and listen to the detailer for regular wax/sealant jobs or might spring for a coating job under the detailer's convincing.  They'll debate between doing 2-4 wax/sealant jobs a year between their monthly bi-weekly or monthly washing appointments, or going for a full coating to only need wash jobs and forego the 2-4 wax/sealant jobs they normally get.  This is the person who looks at the price breakdown and longevity of each coating to see what's worth it in the long run, or if they aren't concerned with cost, just going for the best.  Essentially they think of a detailer as an essential service like bringing a car in for maintenance at the dealership every so often, but don't know or care about the details.  I think this category is pretty small.  Maybe 1-3% of people fit into this.  I don't know anyone personally in this category but I know this is the one most detailers are catering to.

Category 3 - Enthusiasts who care about their car finish, and spend time learning and doing it themselves - they wash their own car, do their own wax/sealant/consumer coating jobs, read reviews and join forums.  They also experiment with products and change things around for fun.  There is a broad range of enthusiast level this covers.  I think this category is also pretty small, but somehow I feel there are substantially more people in this category than category 2.  Maybe 5-10% of drivers at most would be in this category.  I know there are plenty of people in this category just from forums, facebook, etc....  However, personally I would say I know a handful of folks in this category but most on the lighter side of research and comparison, and more just doing waxing, claying, themselves with store bought products regularly.  Very few would be comparing everything out there and always trying to put the best on their car, that is an even smaller percentage.

Category 4 - Enthusiasts who care about their car finish with enough money to have others do the labor but they know what they want - they pay a trusted detailer to care for their car, but they still research about products and specifically want certain things put on their car to have better shine or protection, or for their own experimentation purposes.  I think this category is very small, as most people who care enough probably want to do it themselves.  They may only utilize a pro detailer to do the work when it's to gain access to a product they can't use.  In that case they are really category 3 people sometimes being a category 4 person based on circumstance.  I'd say less than 1% of drivers would fit in this category.  I don't personally know anyone in this category, but I think there must exist someone like this.  I'd fit in this category in circumstance where I couldn't access a pro product but really wanted it installed, and would pay someone else to do it.  Or if I had tons of money and wanted it done rather than doing it myself.  So I may usually be category 3 but sometimes acting as category 4.  Overall this group should be small since most enthusiasts would be in category 3.

 

I think glosscoat covers category 3 folks, though it hasn't been getting much news lately and seems to be outperformed by many of the ceramic coatings on the market today, at least the impression I get from reading all I have so far.

I think the pro coatings really target category 2 in the current market/marketing conditions.  Category 1 is a lost cause for optimum to worry about.  Category 3, and 4 people would likely not have enough information available to decide on opticoat pro vs pro plus, vs pro 3 vs latest fad graphene/ceramic coatings and would be more allured by all the other coatings that show up all over the internet with comparison tests happening.

It's ok if Optimum only wants to target that category 2 group, maybe that's enough business to deal with at their current size.  I do feel though there is substantial missed opportunity in the Category 3 and 4 people that could be a larger market opportunity than they currently have.  But of course the work of supporting lots of "enthusiasts" is likely much greater than what they have to do now to support their pro installers, and may not be worth the effort for that expanded market size.

I do see DancingBear's point of view who I classify as category 3 person.  As a category 3 person myself too, it's a shame there isn't enough info to make a decision and sometimes move as a category 4 person to get a pro coating installed based on trusting a detailer, we may have to move into category 2 behavior to consider it which is a hard mindset for a category 3 person to swallow.  Thus, more likely than not, the category 3 person will try the latest high performing and marketed consumer coating to try out instead of getting a possibly superior pro coating, which they may have gotten had there been as much info about them as the other coatings they considered.

Anyway, at least on the coatings side of Optimum, I don't think they are targeting the category 3 people much.  The other optimum products there are plenty of reviews, discussion, etc..  that they are all really targeting only the category 3 people.  But the coatings side of things is where that stops and the info pretty much dries up.  I'd guess it's because enthusiasts who like to do reviews and youtube videos, etc.. can't get access to the products and thus this rather large presence of detailing information on the internet has nothing to say about it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/17/2021 at 1:50 PM, Ron@Optimum said:
On 9/17/2021 at 1:50 PM, Ron@Optimum said:

 

Bcwang, strangely enough I understand everything you said. Except.for the fact that your stats exceeding 100% we can overlook that for now. 

I understand yours and bears points but it's a perspective based on what you read and hear and not from personal experience. Every detailer would most likely agree to an extent with your perspective on categorys of people and who likes what. The reality is that there are 2 categorys. Those who care about their cars and those who don't. Those who care have varying degrees of how they maintain their cars. Some go to car wash and some do it themselves and some take it to the pro. 

Every area is different. I think the numbers are split pretty even on who does what. You also have to keep in mind that at any time someone new can be brought into the "take it to the pro" category and once they do they usually stay. I have many customers that were enthusiasts and then they got old and bring it to me. My business grows about 10% a year because more and more people realize that paying someone saves them time and money in the long run.

Furthermore, Optimum is like Oakley or underarmour. When was the last time you saw a commercial on TV for either of those brands. No one ever says, hey UA or Oakley, you guys need to market better or focus on a certain clientele. Nope, they throw some clothes on the back of an NFL player and say go play. Oakley puts glasses on a snowboarder and sales increase.

You also don't see those stores on every corner and yet we know that they are 2 of the best brands on the market. When you see a coating pop up on Google you may not being seeing the best consumer product. You most likely are seeing the best marketed product. 

Why don't we see opti everywhere like we do avalon king or ceramic pro or cquarts,  etc? It's because all of the R and D is in the product and little to marketing. The marketing is left up the the individual installer to reach his market. 

On a side note, the group of people who are willing to bring it to the pros is probably the largest category, the most informed and educated category. When I think of and enthusiast who does it himself I see someone who needs help but also wants to learn by doing. Perfectly acceptable. Matt Mourmon is an enthusiast who says he strives for excellence. He may be better than most non pros but mainly because money is no object. That does not mean he is good. 

If someone can make a birdhouse beautifully and trim it out and paint it and it's beautiful but it took him a week to build he would have.to charge $1,000 based on his man hours. If a pro can do the same quality in 12 hours and charge $250, who is better? Who is profitable and who can make more birdhouses and fulfill the need? (There are a lot of homeless birds out there). 

My point is that you yourself may know how to coat a car but you can't coat a car as good as the pros. As you age you will find that doing it yourself is fun but paying a pro and having it done right is more fun. When your body starts to break down and time is more important because of kids and vacations and long hours you will begin to see that doing it yourself is a young man's game and you will leave that behind. (Hopefully you will mature). 

That does not mean you won't take care of your car. On the contrary, you will find ways to make it easier to care for your car...as in a pro grade coating. By the way, you make think washing a consumer grade coated car is fantastic (hopefully you have thrown away the soap and got yourself onr and use nothing else), cleaning a pro grade coated car is so much better. 

Anyway, it's late so until next time. (Because I could talk about this subject all night)

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let’s put it this way…

I am currently faced with a choice. Pro, Pro+, or Pro3 on my wife’s new Audi. These products all have a MAPP which implies that Optimum sees a market value to each. But nowhere online does Optimum explain to me what that value is. How is Pro3 twice as valuable as Pro?

I faced the exact same scenario 3 years ago when I bought my Jeep. I ended up with paint guard because the detailer on the shop couldn’t explain to me why to spend more. Frankly that guy was more interested in putting xpel ppf on Tesla’s than coating my car. There’s no doubt some online resources would have up sold me to Pro back then. 

As a consumer, a product with MAPP should be backed by the manufacturer pre and post sale in a way that optimum does not do. To @Ron@Optimum’s question, that is part of what I mean by consumer brand. Speaking directly to me as a consumer around value and service and quality to assist and reinforce my buying decision. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dancingbear,

The fact that you couldn't be sold on a better coating than paint guard is the fault of the installer and not Optimum. I do agree that opti could put more info out there but I have a feeling you may still not be convinced. (Please understand I am trying to educate you and not criticize you.)

With that being said, whenever I offer a coating I always start with pro 3 and work my way down. Pro 3 is best because.it is thicker and harder. When plus is applied as the last layer it makes the coating so glossy and hydrophobic I can see a significant difference between PG, pro or pro plus. Bugs are almost completely removed without touching just using 1400 psi from a pressure washer. It is backed by a limited lifetime warranty. It is easier to clean and looks incredible compared to any other coating. 

This is personal experience. If you need more scientific or hands on experience go have your car coated with pro 3/plus. I have a customer that loves to wash and wax his own car. It took me 3 + years to convince him to coat his car. I established a great relationship with him over those years. We he finally decided to do it he got PG. Over these 3 years he was educated on it 100 times over. This was a lot of work for not a lot of profit. My ROI was (as in, I invested more time into him than any 5 customers combined). I showed and explained what coating was the best and he chose PG. He would not take my expert opinion on it. I really doubt anything from Opti would have help to convince him, by the way.

Here is my point, I am willing to educate anyone who wants to be. What I can't do is make you understand why 1 coating is better than the other. It's pretty self explanatory which one is better. Price point helps to explain it. Length of warranty is another help. Number of layers is another. I'm not sure what else I could have said to that customer that I didn't already say. One of the reasons I became better at presenting my coating was because of him. The better I got at presenting it the closer he got to purchasing until he finally did. 

You don't need to be convinced. You already know that opti is the best coating out there. If you can answer why UA apparel is better than the rest then you know why Pro 3 is the best.

We can't cater to everyone because some people just won't be convinced but we can educate as many as possible. 

If you would like, you can call me at my shop and I will explain why pro 3 is the best. 717.356.0480

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now