The Cape Navigator

Seaside Community Newspaper

Bloubergstrand, Milnerton

Customer Unleashes Fury Over Unwanted Auto Service Sticker: Social Media Erupts in Debate

Michael Hawthorne

MILNERTON – In a recent social media storm, Christa Badenhorst took to the Blouberg Community Facebook Group to express her frustration after discovering an auto service centre had placed a sticker on her rear windshield without her consent.

Badenhorst, a resident of the Blouberg community, posted on the group, saying, “Shame on you Steves Auto Clinic Group for putting your branding on my car after a service, without my permission. Who do I invoice for the months free advertising? Who else has fallen prey to this guerilla marketing? Surely this is not right?”

The post garnered significant attention with 95 reactions and 33 comments. Some community members empathized with Badenhorst, while others viewed it as a common practice. Gerhard De Jager commented, “This is completely normal,” and Annuscha Van Dyk, a top contributor in the group, added, “Jip. They all do it.”

Stuart Dotchin clarified that there is a box on the service form/quote that customers can tick to request no sticker on their cars. Timmy Van Minnen suggested invoicing the auto service center for the unintended advertising.

Community members had diverse opinions on the matter. Some, like Once Inalifetime, dismissed it as “First world problems,” while others saw the humor in the situation. Petra Kleinhans pointed out the irony, saying, “Also free advertising here on FB from your car!! Funny.”

Despite the mixed reactions, Gareth Gaz Levey highlighted the potential effectiveness of such marketing tactics: “Clearly it works. You just boosted their exposure exponentially.” Editor’s note: Wait a minute! In a twist of “guerilla marketing”, it seems we’ve unwittingly contributed to their marketing strategy as well. 🤔

Nathan from Steve’s Auto Clinic in Milnerton responded to the controversy, stating, “There was a time when we had the tick box on the job card up to about a year ago, but the job cards were updated, and that tick box was removed. As we have grown and treat our customers as family, we strive to give the best service there is. We won’t mind removing the sticker, even if we have to fetch the car within a reasonable radius to get the sticker removed.”

The incident sparked a broader discussion about the commonality of such practices among auto service centers, with some customers expressing indifference and others sharing similar experiences of promptly removing the stickers themselves.

As the debate continues online, the incident raises questions about the boundaries of marketing strategies and customer expectations, shedding light on the diverse perspectives within the Cape Town community.

Editor’s Note: I don’t think I would mind the Steve’s Auto Clinic Milnerton sticker, because that would mean my vehicle was serviced by one of the best recommended service centres around.


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