When we first started our Mobile oil change business in 1999 there was NOhelp out there for us. The person we bought our first system off of didn't give us very much information to go on and what he left out was critical! We KNEW it was a good business idea, we KNEW that there was a market for this service. What we didn't know was how hard it was going to be to get a "handle" on the whole thing. We didn't know that we would make tons of costly mistakes before we would really learn this biz! We had no one to turn to with our questions. No one to help guide us. Not many had even heard of such a business much less have any ideas to help us. To say it was rough would be an enormous understatement!
We tried and tried and plowed through doing the best we could but geeze did we waste a ton of time and money! We threw away thousands of dollars right off the bat by advertising in the wrong places! We didn't know what approach to use when going after customers. Quite honestly, we simply didn't have a clue as to who our customer base should be or how to advertise to them.
We paid way too much for our product - oil filters, air filters, etc., because we simply bought them from our oil distributor. (They set us up with a list so we just assumed that buying from them was the right thing to do) At that time we didn't realize how much we were overpaying until after much searching for ways to cut costs we found other high quality, lower priced vendors. We also paid a small fortune to our oil distributor to dispose of our waste oil and filters. (again, they told us they could set us up so that it would be taken care of - we assumed that they really wanted to help us)
And the money we spent trying to find the right gloves and rainsuits that not only did the job but were comfortable to work in was unbelievable!! Basically we ended up with a surplus of gloves and rainsuits that didn't work and less money in our pockets. If we had a quarter for every time one of us said "I could of just opened the door and tossed the money out much easier than all the time and effort I wasted on that" we would be among some of the wealthiest people in the world!!
We wanted to "throw in the towel" and admit defeat so many times during that first year. However we had many people praying for us and the customers that we did have just lovedthe service. So we kept pushing on and started learing. Eventually things clicked, costs went down and our customer base began to grow. We had turned our mistakes around, learned from experience, polished up our approach to potential customers, continued to find better vendors, and began to do very well.
We started getting emails from other "mobile lubber newbies" asking questions, seeking advice. We would sit and type long answers, going into so much detail, wanting so much to be able to help. Many times after answering we found ourselves laughing and saying "whew! We should write a book".
FINALLY one day we realized that while we were helping those who emailed us, what about the countless number of others who didn't just happen to email us with hope that we would answer their questions? That is when it hit us! YES we really should write a book.
A "How to" manual so that we could answer all the questions we had been asked PLUS include a lot of tips that we had learned that people hadn't even thought to ask about.
The rest as they say, is history. We spent every spare minute and worked many late nights working until we knew it was right. From the response we have received it's obvious that many people have felt the need to learn more about this business and we are very glad that we have found a way to reach out to them.