Uni-Select: Reinventing the Banner


Linda Donnini, Uni-Select’s VP of National Business Solutions, talks about her company’s new banner program structure.
(Photo: Jack Kazmierski)

Uni-Select’s unique approach to banner programs is revolutionizing the way shops do business.

Uni-Select has reinvented the banner program. Rather than taking a cookie-cutter approach, Uni-Select has given shop owners the privilege of choice, allowing them to decide for themselves how focused or how flexible they want to be.

The inspiration for this radical change came from Linda Donnini, Uni-Select’s VP of National Business Solutions, and her executive team. “We came up with a solution that would satisfy pretty much any need and any profile across the country,” she says.

Banner profiles

In order to satisfy a broad range of needs, Uni-Select identified three different profiles. The first is the individual who has been in business for a long time and is located in a small town. Everyone knows him on a first-name basis; he doesn’t need a brand identity or a big marketing program. All he wants is warranties and rebates. He is not interested in rebranding his store.

The second profile is one that needs more of an ‘a la carte’ approach. “We realized that the shops in this second category are all a bit different from one another,” Donnini explains. “For some, branding might be really important, for others training might be important, and others still might need access to technology or marketing support.”

With such a broad range of needs and wants, Uni-Select decided that shops in this second profile shouldn’t be tied to a specific program. “They want to make their own decisions,” Donnini adds. “That means shops in this second profile are more flexible, and that’s why we make this program ‘a la carte.’ They can keep their own brand or use the Uni-Pro banner—it’s up to them.”

The third profile is the individual who wants a turnkey program with a strong brand. These are the shops owners who look to Uni-Select as the experts, and who trust Uni-Select to show them what a successful shop should look like. “For these individuals the brand is important,” Donnini says, “and they want to feel like they’re part of a network. For this profile we developed a turnkey solution and we built a strong brand, which is Auto-Select — a brand we’ve rolled out across the country.”

As part of the solid Auto-Select brand, these shops are required to live up to certain expectations. “If they’re not willing to brand themselves this way, and offer extended warranties, and stay up-to-date with their training, then this profile is not for them,” Donnini explains.

Shops who are willing to abide by Auto-Select standards set themselves head-and-shoulders above the competition, allowing them to compete head-to-head with today’s modern service providers. In effect, Auto-Select members are in a league of their own.


Since coming into effect in January 2014, the new Uni-Select banner program structure has had phenomenal success. “We’ve managed to convert all our existing customers to the new programs,” Donnini says. “In addition, we signed 360 new participants to our programs since the beginning of 2014. This type of out-of-the-box thinking is what Uni-Select is all about, and it’s how we are maintaining our leadership role.”

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