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Keeping Up with the Latest Trends

Keeping Up with the Latest Trends

December 14, 2023

5 minute Read

Pitch™ webinar covers latest developments in customer engagement, chemistry and wash enhancements.

One of the most surefire ways to stay ahead of the curve is to be in the know with the latest products and services designed to make your business better. Attendees say it is the top reason they head to The Car Wash Show and it’s why International Carwash Association offers online Pitch sessions. ICA’s Pitch webinars give ICA members the chance to hear from leading suppliers on their trending or new products and access exclusive promotions.

The most recent Pitch webinar was held July 26 and included information-packed segments with AMP, Arcadian Services, G&G, NCS, Placer.ai, QualChem and Rinsed: The Car Wash CRM. They shared the latest developments in customer engagement, chemistry and wash enhancements and answered these three key questions posed by ICA VP of Business Development Kendra Johnson:
1. What does it solve?
2. Why do you need it? 
3. How will it make your operation better tomorrow?

Integrating Mobile App Technology
Better integration with existing point of sale (POS) hardware and technology is now possible with AMP’s mobile app. This latest enhancement allows users to fully integrate with RFID and license plate readers, in addition to being able to activate the app with a mobile phone, said Adam Trien, chief technology officer. With the ultimate goal of getting customers in the gate and through the car wash, AMP designed the app to be flexible and customizable. “We want to make sure we are never limiting people on how they want to run their business,” Trien said.

The update allows for more data collection, too. The app enables users to look at all the scans that are happening in AMP, giving insight into customers’ activities. “Data is so incredibly important,” Trien said. “So many are operating in the dark as far as who their customers are.” 

Sustainable Maintenance for Sludge
Most car washes experience this problem at some time in their operations: stinky sludge at the bottom of the pit. So, chemists at Arcadian made it their goal to come up with a solution. They call it the Reclaim Defender Series.

Michael Gordon, director of national accounts, said they came up with a catalyst that is used inside the mud pit and will attack the bacteria to nullify the odor. It also attacks where the bacteria really live, in the sludge at the bottom of the pit. “It converts it to an aerobic-type bacteria, which produces CO2 gases instead of sulfur. Then the sludge goes away and the water clarity gets better and better,” he said. “This is not a Band-Ad approach … the solution is attacking where the problem occurs,” Gordon said.

David Buzzard, research innovation and manufacturer engineer, said it takes about 30-45 days for the water to start to clarify. 

Colorful, Synced Lighting Solutions
Being able to customize and make changes to their lighting systems is a customer request that G&G Lighting hears quite often. Enter the G&G portal, which has had some major updates lately, including an option for syncing. Now, indoor and outdoor lights can by synced together and with music, said Tyler Mooney, sales manager.

The best part? It’s not only more efficient, it’s quick and easy, “You can go in and make any changes you want on the fly, from your phone,” Mooney said. “Push to click and then press a button to make changes.”

This lighting solution is fully customizable with individual designs — both inside and with the new EDGE outdoor perimeter lighting. G&G provides controls, cabling and everything else needed. “We try to make it as simple as we can. We tailor it exactly to your needs,” Mooney said. 

Quick-and-Easy Chemical Handling
Simplifying the chemical operations that take place in the back room is the primary goal of The Connected Chemistry System at NCS. 

Precision dosing using AccuDose is the first of three steps in this new system. The second is having an app-based control platform, which is achieved through the NCS Lens app and allows users to set parameters for who can make adjustments and reveals what a change will impact as far as the cost per wash. The third is using UltraConcentrates, which are housed in lightweight and efficient gallon jugs. 

It is about dialing in the chemistry directly so you are using the correct amount of product, without wasting it, damaging vehicles or not getting cars clean, said Travis Feller, senior product developer. “Ultimately, we want to give our customers peace of mind, so they know what is going on with their wash and there are no surprises.”

Using AI for Location Analytics
While Placer.ai is still relatively new in the car wash space, they are long-time experts in using artificial intelligence algorithms and tracking to solve problems, especially ones related to the lack of visibility. The less you see, the more you risk and the greater the variables that cannot be accounted for, said Ethan Chernofsky, senior vice president of marketing. Placer.ai’s advanced AI platform can help with this, especially when it comes to maximizing site selection. “Every choice you make comes with more challenges and a greater likelihood that it won’t work out,” Chernofsky said. Placer.ai accounts for these variables by bringing visibility into the equation and an understanding of where the audiences really are, as well as opportunities and potential. “We want to make that decision-making process a little smarter, more effective and faster,” Chernofsky said.

A Shinier Clean
Competitiveness and wanting to come out with something new for their family of customers and distributors was what led to Qual Chem coming up with its newest product. But first they had to figure out what was needed in the marketplace — and decided on a top package product. 

The chemists created a product fortified by graphene called Luminaura Nano Hex. The addition of graphene meant faster release of water drops, reduction of spotting, increased reflectivity and extended life.

Interestingly, they used their customers for feedback and blind trials. Qual Chem set up different formulas for them to try and grade, based on different metrics. That data was then used when Qual Chem created and released the final formula, said Ryan Molenelli, vice president of sales. “We partner with our customers more than just selling to our customers,” he said.

Customer Relationship Management Tools
While membership has been a growth driver, there is a huge part of the car wash business that isn’t membership-related, said Austin Esecson, CEO and co-founder of Rinsed: The Car Wash CRM. That is where Rinsed comes in. Their program can gather customer profiles and data not only from members, but from non-members, as well. The data is collected at the POS, with a phone number being the most common.

The goal is to collect information from these retail (non-member) customers so car wash owners/operators can message them with targeted communications and encourage them to become members. 

“This is the biggest expansion to our project since we launched,” Esecson said, and it came about because they saw a need: “How do we cultivate a relationship with people who are using the wash but are not members?”

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