How Blackcircles uses Conventional Media to Boost Online Sales
Blackcircles.com’s rapid success, gained through adapting dotcom technology to suit the tyre business, is well documented. According to Plimsoll’s 2007 analysis, the online tyre enterprise is the 32nd fastest growing company in the UK tyre business and blew away industry sales averages by posting sales growth of 80 per cent. So what’s the secret? The ever-increasing number of “fitting stations” listed as Blackcircles franchisees is one reason for the business’ rapid growth, but the company’s use of conventional media strategies appears to be another way it has kept traffic coming.
As Blackcircles prepares to sign-up its 300th franchise garage, the company has also launched a service designed to give consumers instant access to mechanics across the UK. The move follows the launch of www.mechanic-torque.co.uk in which consumers can post queries about their car and receive an expert answer from a Blackcircles franchise mechanic. Since launching in early 2006, the Blackcircles franchise network has spread across the UK. The franchise arrangement sees local independent garages retain their identity, but gain access to Blackcircles’ stock checking and ordering systems. Blackcircles plans to increase the number of franchises to 500 by December and 800 within a year.