Car rental services are fiercely competitive. You need to let consumers know exactly who you are and what helps you to stand out from the crowd quickly and effectively, whether you have great cars, increased availability or ease of access to consumers, or better prices than other car rental services in the area. Proper marketing can help you stand out from the crowd, spread brand awareness, and bring more customers to your business. Advertising consistently is crucial to developing and establishing brand awareness so that your customers will think of you when they need a rental, regardless of whether you have the capacity to rent out more vehicles at the time. These tips can help your business stand out.
1. Choose Your Service Niche
As a car rental business, it's crucial for you to decide who you want your business to reach and build your brand according to that specific audience. Some car rental brands choose to focus on corporate clients who are traveling for business and need readily available, reasonably-priced vehicles in their target destinations. Others may focus on micro-niches, including luxury cars, vintage cars, or offering unlimited miles to customers who may be traveling a long distance.
Your target audience and the specific services you have to offer can make a huge difference in your marketing. These will impact who you want to reach, how you want to reach them, and what type of advertising will create the best response. Your niche may even impact where you can most effectively reach your target market. By starting with that niche, you can develop a highly effective branding strategy.
Your niche also determines the type of service your customers expect. If you offer luxury car brands, for example, your customers may expect a much higher standard of customer service, complete with representatives willing and eager to go the extra mile for them. Providing that exceptional service is crucial to retaining customers. Meeting that expected standard and keeping existing clients is much more cost-effective than bringing in new ones, especially if you focus on a niche where consumers are likely to rent cars on a regular basis.
2. Set Up A Loyalty Program
In addition to providing that high standard of customer service to all of your clients, offer incentives that will help bring them back to your business. Consider developing a loyalty program that will help ensure customer satisfaction and reward your core customers. Even minor rewards, like small discounts or free upgrades, can help consumers see the value in choosing your business over your competitors.
Loyalty programs aren’t limited to customers, either. You may also want to consider partnering with insurance companies or mechanics, who likely know when consumers are in need of a rental car, for them to give referrals. Offering those businesses a referral bonus can help significantly increase the number of consumers who will find out about your business and partner with your brand.
3. Punch Up Your Digital Marketing Efforts
Digital marketing is one of the most effective strategies for getting your name out there. Through your digital marketing efforts, you can increase awareness of your business and your brand. It will help you reach people while they’re researching car rentals for an extended trip, in addition to times when people quickly need a rental car.
Focusing on mobile marketing, in particular, is a crucial way to reach people while they’re searching for ways to get a car, like when they're sitting at a car repair shop learning their repairs will take longer than they expected. Social media and PPC ads are a great way to get your name out there and make it likely that consumers will see your ads during those crucial moments.
4. Share Your Knowledge
In addition to spreading awareness of your brand, it’s important to increase the likelihood customers will think of your brand when they need a rental car. To accomplish this, consider setting up a blog or sending out an email newsletter with automotive news or tips for driving safely. That will raise your search ranking as you provide clear, helpful advice to consumers and bring more traffic to your website. While keywords are crucial, make sure your content is providing valuable information that will genuinely help consumers with their driving habits or car rental efforts.
As you continue to provide high-quality information, including driving tips or safety competitions, you will help raise awareness of your brand and build consumer trust in it. When they need to rent a car, they will be more likely to trust and choose your brand.
5. Keep Track Of Your Competitors
The car rental industry is highly competitive and tracking what your Portland competitors are doing can make it easier to position yourself differently to attract your unique customers. It will help you learn what advantages they have compared to what you have, as well as where you fit within the broader competitive landscape.
Tracking your competitors and how they're managing their car rental marketing efforts can also prevent you from missing out on opportunities. It will help you find out if your competitors are engaging in marketing opportunities that you aren't. Or connecting with your customers in a way that you haven't achieved. That information could make it easier for you to shape your marketing campaigns.
Marketing a car rental business is an ongoing effort. You want your brand to be noticed when consumers need it and be available when they're ready to rent a car. By developing a solid plan, you can help your brand stand apart from the competition.