Detailing business makes mark

Mark Cook has been in the detailing industry for 25 years, and for the last 11 of them, he’s been based here in Louisa as owner of Foxbrook Auto Detailing.

“I love the detailing industry,” he said. “I like the variety that comes with working for yourself.”

The sign of success for Cook was straightforward.

“I knew the business was standing on its own when we started booking out two to three weeks [in advance],” he said.

Foxbrook offers customers a variety of detailing options, both for the interior and exterior of customers’ vehicles. They also offer detailing for boats and have recently begun expanding into aircraft detailing. 

The main thing that has helped the business find success is the word-of-mouth referrals customers have given to each other.

“We have one customer that we do a lot of work for who also helps us with referrals to new aircraft customers,” Cook said. “This is helping us build our aircraft business, including servicing more airports. That market is important to us because this customer gives a great testimony to our high-quality work.”

In Cook’s experience, though, success can be determined as much by how you expand as how you don’t.

“The challenge of running a business is knowing when to expand and when to simplify,” he said. “It’s a hard balance and you have to be willing to make the difficult decisions to keep your business strong.”

The best advice Cook is able to offer new business owners looking to come to Louisa is patience and trust in local referrals.

“Louisa is great at word-of-mouth referring,” he said. “Louisa residents support local businesses really well. If you have high quality and honest business practices it will be recognized by our community.”

He also suggests finding ways to work with businesses that offer complementary services.

“Cross-industry marketing is important,” he said.

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