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The “Mechanics” of Marketing

Ok…on my way to the mall tonight to pick up a new shirt for a big marketing meeting we have in Dallas tomorrow, I had the radio on in the car. (I do this not for the music but to listen to the ads – I know I’m crazy – my wife loves me for this.)

Anyway…on comes this ad for Just Brakes. Pretty decent ad – not stellar – but good.

Here is the kicker though; it didn’t have to be perfect because they had the most important parts of their marketing dialed in so tight.

Let me explain why Just Brakes wins my “Orange Marketer of the Month” award.

1.  The Target

The target is in the name and is pure marketing bliss. Is there any doubt in anyone’s mind what these people do or who these people do it for?

No – plain, simple and to the point. If you need brakes – here is the place (I’m a poet and don’t know it).

Claude Hopkins is the grandfather of advertising in the modern era and one of our serious marketing mentors. In his 1923 classic book, Scientific Advertising, he has an entire chapter on how a product name fits into your marketing plan and the role it plays. The first paragraph of this chapter is worth posting here…

Claude writes…”There is great advantage in a name that tells a story. The name is usually prominently displayed. To justify the space it occupies, it should aid the advertising. Some such names are almost complete advertisements in themselves.”

Just Breaks is an automotive repair shop that does brake jobs.

Their targeting is awesome. They are excluding some to get more. They are not trying to be all-things-to-all-people. The “I’m for everyone approach” is really the “I’m for no one approach.” By focusing on just brake jobs they can be the “go-to-guy” for anyone who needs brakes rather than trying to beg for all kinds of auto jobs like the rest of the repair shops do.

Because they are very specific they get more customers. To reference the "fishing" entry, this is the pond.

Q: Can anyone guess what one of the most wearable items on a car is?


The brakes probably go bad faster than any other part on a car and jb.gifthey make an awful lot of noise and it is easy to know when they need to be fixed.

In their advertising they are not trying to reach all people who need a repair shop. They just want the people who need brakes. I’m sure they do so many brake jobs that they have perfected the system to a point where the mechanic’s time is more profitable than any other place that does brakes and they probably have a killer deal on the brake parts so they can make a huge profit on a simple brake job and have the first opportunity to establish a relationship with customers for other repairs.

It is an ingenious approach to the repair shop. Just Brakes created a niche. They got out of the automotive repair business and created the brake business. All in an easy to understand, simple to grasp, perfect little package.

2.  The Bait

Yes, they have a narrow target audience that they stay true to – which is very important – but they go a step further and have a bait that is fantastic. Here it is: BRAKE JOB GUARANTEED AS LONG AS YOU OWN THE CAR.

This could be combined with a bit more of a benefit driven statement, but it works.

This is a GPS – Gravitational Positioning Statement as referenced in our first Teleconference. This is the bait as mentioned in the "fishing" post.

3.  The Hook

They have the BIG 3 in marketing. Just Brakes has a clearly defined and narrow target, an appealing bait for their product that is powerful and also a strong offer (hook) to reel them in. The offer is a complete brake job for $99.88 (see above).

You don’t always have to have an offer that is related to price. In fact I am generally not a fan of price offers, but this is a good offer and price offers can be very effective depending on the market.

See what you can learn just from listening to the radio on the way home from the mall?