PPF Posts by Jamie Werner
by Jamie Werner
September 19th, 2018

Ready, Set, Go?

Throughout my travels and time in the PPF industry, I’m always asked about training and how to go about getting into the business. In my early years it was all about trying to get that prospect at our facility for a 3-day course and run through the same platform that had been done years before I even came into the business. I quickly learned the success rate of someone just paying for training was super low and there is no incentive for them to actually go back and practice what they just learned. You just paid for 3 days and walk away with nothing in return. Putting success rates aside, they were never even led through a discussion on what type of investment it would take to even get into the business, let alone how long it would take for their return on investment (ROI) to start being significant. Today we are going to open the book, lay it out there, and let you know what to expect. Ready, set, let’s go!

First chapter after opening the book is the actual financial investment. When you add up all of the necessary equipment, tools, supplies, and time, you should expect to invest around $10-15k in your first few months. Keep in mind I’m coming in with a partisan opinion in the matter as I am an advocate for patterns. There are instances that I do recommend bulk, but most of time a pattern is preferred. With fitment and coverage being much better than the early days, along with more available pieces per car, your risk and cost is much lower than if you were to try and learn bulk from scratch. Cutting on a car is a skill that is learned, not taught and comes with time and experience. It’s like asking a doctor fresh out of med school trying to perform surgery before they’ve done their residency, which is at least 3 years. Just like anything, you can’t expect to go through a basic training and leave being able to pump out quality work at top notch pricing like a 5 plus year veteran in the clear bra world. Like anything new you learn, it takes practice in order to hone in your skills. Even then, we are always learning and trying to get better since new cars come out all the time.

Now that we’ve gotten the toughest part of the book out of the way, let’s dive into the next chapter, applying what you learned. Now that you have inventory to use and practice with, let’s make it useful. You know the phrase, crawl before you walk, walk before you run? Same applies here. Don’t over sell what your skillset is. If you just learned how to do bumpers and partial hoods, don’t rush to sell full cars when that’s beyond your skillset for that moment. It takes about a dozen cars to get comfortable with installing film and about 50 cars to get proficient. If that means offering installs to friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, etc.… for free or for a steep discount, then do it. You’ll need the practice so you can be exposed to different cars. That kind of variety will cause you to learn when you use the tools and techniques that were taught in training. Once you get that kind of experience under your belt, you should be in a good position to start charging market price.

Once your skillset is where it needs to be, you’re in the driver’s seat for where you want to take the business. Your ROI should be very healthy once your skills and pricing match synergistically. That leads us to the last chapter, selling the very product and service you made your investment in. If you can’t sell, find someone who can. Selling is not easy and you have to be willing to talk, educate, network, and grind to create opportunities so that in the long run, good word of mouth will spread over time. Marketing and selling go hand and hand. The best way to market the product is being active in promoting it. That means gathering content, sharing it, doing local car shows and events, talking with local dealerships and body shops, heck even doing a tech session so you have the chance to educate and network with consumers who would buy this very product if they knew more about it. Most consumers aren’t as familiar with PPF for automotive purposes like other aftermarket products so you can sit by the sidelines waiting for customers to call and inquire.

Taking this approach is not a guaranteed ROI, but it certainly is the path of least resistance and also most success. Well-fitting patterns, supplier support, a good network of fellow installers coupled with hard work and a good work ethic will set you up for a great revenue stream. Exceed expectations everyday!

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