Professional Carwashing & Detailing

Not Your Father's ICA

Blendco Systems™ Tip of the Month

November 26, 2007

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No doubt you noticed about a year ago that the International Carwash Association started putting out weekly video newsletters under the name "INSIGHT", replacing those dry email newsletters of old. The video format is a good move on the part of the ICA, putting faces and voices together to personalize these updates and giving them more immediacy. I'm happy to report that the video newsletter is just one of many changes that the ICA is putting into place to bring more value to its members.

New Offerings for New Times

The ICA is bringing many new offerings to its membership that will benefit carwash operators in every segment of the market. Here's a sampling of what's new:

  • "The Cleaning Edge" – topical videos on issues carwash operators are facing today. These videos are designed to give specific details and information that operators can use to help them make informed decisions about their business.

  • Water Conservation Studies – droughts have threatened carwashing in various parts of the country, and the ICA has contributed greatly to educating regulators with fact-based research that shows that professional carwashes conserve water, and use a tiny fraction of municipalities' water needs.

  • Business Improvement Groups (BIGs) – carwash peer groups that share valuable input and advice on what has worked (or not) for them at their wash. The groups are made up of operators in the same market segment but different geographies so that they aren't in competition with one another.

  • New Investor Seminars – offered in conjunction with the regional association's shows, these seminars provide experience and expertise both to 'newbies' looking at investing in their first carwash and to existing operators looking to expand. The seminar also provides a dose of realism that helps investors make thoughtful and balanced decisions about their potential investment in the industry.

In addition to this sampling there is much more to come, including an upgraded Web site scheduled to launch next Spring that will provide better access to business tools, industry news and networking opportunities.

Let the ICA Help You Build Your Business

So as a carwash owner, don't just join the International Carwash Association, work it! Attend Car Care World Expo, seek out the educational and networking opportunities offered by the ICA, and make use of the wealth of industry research and business tools offered by the ICA. As Frank Lash put it in this week's INSIGHT: "When I decided to go into business for myself, I didn't decide to go into business by myself." Let the ICA be your partner in building a successful carwash business.

Laurie Sherman is Co-owner of Blendco Systems, LLC and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the International Carwash Association. Blendco manufactures a full line of detergents and waxes for the professional carwash industry. You can contact Blendco at: www.blendco.com.