High aspirations from Garner Cottman Man

Daniel Simon, the owner of Cottman of Garner, North Carolina, had a rather eclectic background before taking the reins of his transmission and auto care center. He was educated in ichthyology (the study of fish), he worked as an operations manager for UPS, and he was the senior engineer for a security company

“I kinda did a little bit of everything,” he says with a chuckle.

About 9 years ago he started looking for his own business and found the local Cottman center was available. “The shop wasn’t doing very well, but I looked at his numbers and realized all he needed was one more customer a week.” So he bought the shop and has been operating it for the last eight years.

Daniel believes that a lot of his success has to do with his background in security. “If you can’t trust someone who’s devoted that much of his life to security, who can you trust?” he says.

“Too many shops try to entice customers with a low price, and then they call a dozen times, ‘Oh, I didn’t realize you’d need this or that; that’ll cost more.’ I won’t do that. I give a clear, honest price, I offer a warranty, and I stand behind it, no questions asked.”

Fast Auto Repair Service in Garner, NC

The secret to Daniel’s success? “The internet. This was before internet marketing really got big. Probably 70% of our business came through the internet.

“We built a web site that was directed to the customer who was having a transmission problem, and we set it up so a customer could contact us through the internet. And they’d get a response from us, often within a few minutes of putting in a request.

“The request would come to the center or to my cell phone or, back then, my PDA. So we were able to respond quickly. Most of the time the customer’s response would be ‘That was quick!’

Daniel also tries to help out in his community when he can. “A couple years ago, we gave out 100 new jackets to the homeless. The local news station was running a drive so we brought the jackets to them, but they refused to give them out because they had our logo on them. So I went around town and handed them out to the homeless myself.”

Honesty and community: a terrific blend for any community.

To reach Cottman of Garner please visit www.CottmanofGarner.com.