Talkin’ Paint Podcast Episode #3 – Getting Started in PPF
Welcome to the Talkin’ Paint Podcast, serving the Auto Detailing, Ceramic Coating, Window Film, and Paint Protection Film Industry.
What is PPF?
First things first, let’s decode what PPF is. Paint protection film, also known as clear bra, is a thin, transparent polyurethane film. Its primary purpose? To shield your vehicle’s paint from rock chips, scratches, and UV discoloration. For your customers, especially those with newer vehicles, it’s a high-value service, ensuring their car stays in tip-top shape.
The Profit Margin Magic: The average full front PPF job can fetch around $2,000, with profit margins soaring between 75 to 80 percent after materials and labor. But there’s a catch – many don’t know where to begin. That’s where I come in, offering pearls of wisdom to kickstart your PPF journey.
Getting Started with PPF
Tool Time: To embark on your PPF venture, start by gathering the basics – spray bottles, squeegees, and knives with snappable blades. Don’t forget the heat gun!
Baby Steps: Begin with simpler tasks like door edges, cups, and headlights. These are low-skill yet profitable areas. Think $100 for door guards and $200-$300 for headlights.
The Slip and Tack Solutions
Soap or Dish Soap? Creating your slip solution (8-10ml of soap per gallon of water) is crucial. It lets the film slide and float over the vehicle’s surface. Popular choices? Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo or the eco-friendly 7th generation dish soap.
The Tack Solution: This concoction, made of alcohol, water, or just hot water (best with deionized or distilled), is essential for cleaning soap residue and activating the film’s adhesive. But be wary – too much alcohol can damage the adhesive. I recommend two ounces of 90 percent isopropyl alcohol per 32-ounce bottle.
Finding a Quality PPF Supplier
Research is Key: Spend time finding a reputable supplier. Consider warranties, return policies, and lead times. Personally, I swear by Ceramic Pro KAVACA due to its self-healing properties, minimal orange peel, and 12-year warranty.
Tailoring Prices to Market and Client
Know Your Market: Prices vary based on service and location. A partial front might cost $800-$1,300, while a full front could go for $1,800-$2,500. The track pack (full front plus rocker panels and lower doors) ranges from $2,500 to $3,500.
Vehicle Value Matters: Align your prices with the vehicle’s value. A Honda Civic owner might balk at a $2,500 protection, while a Porsche owner sees the inherent value.
The Power of Suggestion: A simple question like “Are rock chips a concern for you?” can open up a dialogue about PPF. It’s all about gauging client interest and tailoring your pitch accordingly.
The Plight of the Plotter
To Plot or Not to Plot: A plotter is a significant investment but not essential for beginners. You can start with bulk installs. However, a plotter does offer efficiency and ease, especially for expanding businesses.
Training Your Team
Invest in Learning: Proper training is vital for long-term success. Consider professional on-site training or attending workshops. I’ve personally benefited from Ceramic Pro training and regularly host sessions at my shop. This hands-on approach has proven invaluable. Not only does it familiarize your team with the nuances of PPF installation, but it also instills confidence and fosters a culture of continuous learning.
Selling the Concept
The Art of the Upsell: To effectively market PPF, you need to integrate it into your sales process seamlessly. Highlight its benefits during client interactions and use your social media platforms to educate potential customers about its advantages.
Utilizing Digital Platforms
Online Presence: A robust online presence is crucial. Share educational content on YouTube, embed these videos on your website, and actively engage with your audience on social media. This not only builds trust but also positions you as an authority in the field.
Embracing the Learning Curve
Patience is a Virtue: Understand that mastering PPF takes time. Be prepared to redo jobs, especially in your first year. The industry average to reach proficiency is about 30 to 40 cars. This journey requires patience, resilience, and a willingness to learn from mistakes.
The Psychological Aspect: The stress of learning PPF can be taxing. It’s important to manage your expectations and maintain a positive outlook. Remember, every challenge is an opportunity to grow.
The Journey to PPF Success
Embarking on the PPF journey in your auto detailing business is not just about adding a service; it’s about embracing a mindset of continuous improvement and client satisfaction. With the right tools, training, and marketing strategy, you can transform this addition into a profitable and rewarding venture. Remember, the road to mastery is paved with patience and perseverance.
Now, go out there, get your hands dirty (with PPF, of course!), and start making those cars shine while protecting them!
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