According to a recent study, the car rental industry is expected to record a compound annual growth rate of over 10% this year. The government has also worked smart to come up with policies and marketing strategies that are geared towards increasing the number of foreign visitors to the country. This is a plus for new and existing car rental agencies as they will enjoy a reliable flow of clients in 2017 and beyond. However, they will need to market their services to the target audience to get the best results.
Here are tips on how to market your car rental agency in Singapore.
Partner with Travel Agencies
Forming partnerships with travel agencies both local and international will position your car agency for success. The travel agencies will recommend your company to their clients, and this will, in turn, boost your turnover. To sustain the partnership, ensure that you offer quality services to the customers consistently as well as excellent customer service.
Foreign tourists and Singaporeans use the internet as their primary source of information. Therefore, giving your car rental agency a voice online by investing in a quality website will greatly help to tap into the lucrative online community. Hire a professional SEO copywriter to create the content then consider contracting a Singapore digital marketing firm to popularize the business on social media and other online platforms.
Embrace Mobile Applications
We Singaporeans love using mobile applications to place orders and access services remotely. As new technologies are developed, it is expected that the number of people who will acquire mobile gadgets such as smartphone will increase tremendously. You can grow your car rental agency by making your services more accessible to this audience using a mobile application. Ideally, the application should be devoid of clutter and user-friendly.
Finally, delegate the role of social media marketing to a select team of experts to ensure that your agency continues to engage with the target audience on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other platforms. Such sites are ideal for popularizing upcoming events and offers to the customers.
Focus on Your Brand
With a 10% plus annual increase in Singapore’s car rental services, the competition within car rental agencies is much more likely to become fierce as time goes by. Therefore, if you are going to compete with others in this industry, you will need to determine how you are going to get your fair share of this new business.
Fortunately, there are many different ways to make sure that you are geared up and ready for this increase. One of the most important is focusing on creating a strong, easily recognisable brand for consumers in Singapore. This is one of the best ways to make sure that your present and potential customers are looking to your company for the rental car services that they need. For instance, your brand must be unique so that it will be perceived as the car rental agency of choice. This is especially the case when you want your target audiences’ buying decision to be determined by brand superiority instead of only the price that your competitors offer.
Additionally, if you want to make sure your company is chosen over your competitors’, you will need to solidify your brand by focusing on the fleet of rental cars available, both foreign and domestic. You will need to make sure that your customers understand the superior quality of your services, especially as it relates to other rental car agencies. Your brand strategy should also focus on the high tech systems available that can help them with renting a car from virtually any place in the Singapore area.
Focus on Your Marketing Campaigns to Target Current Customers
It is also important to remember that catering to current customers is much easier to do than attracting new customers to your business. For instance, if you are a well established rental car agency that has been in business for many years, you should focus your marketing campaigns on promoting higher quality services to your current customers. You can achieve these objectives by offering a loyalty program for people who are repeat renters. You should also make sure that you are providing higher quality customer support. For local Singapore business owners, you may want to offer a B2B transportation solution that will assist them in solving some of their most difficult renter problems.
Poll your customers to see what they want. Even though you may already have a good idea of what your customers want and need, you can always look for areas of improvement. Typically, by talking to your customers, you will have an opportunity to discover areas of your service that you can either re-engineer or replace altogether. Either way, when your customers are heard and pleased, you can have their business for a lifetime. For instance, if your business is located near a popular hotel chain, you may want to provide a specialty drop-off rental car service for tourists when they check out.
Focus in On Providing Superior Customer Support
Customer service is a big part of any rental car agency’s success or failure. So, you must pay close attention to this operation in order for your agency to run smoothly. Even when complaints are made, you should have procedures and processes in place that can easily turn an unhappy customer into your biggest fan. For instance, if your customer has a maintenance repair problem while on the road, you need a procedure in place that will get them back on the road in minutes and not hours. Also, because the customer wants to know what is going on during their wait time, your customer service rep must be able to supply the information that they need without having to ask.
Additionally, if you want to make sure that your customer support team is equipped with all of the information that they need to satisfy their customers, it is important that you create an added value system that is cost-effective to implement. For instance, to build and support the claims of the brand, the customer support agent must be free to make certain decisions that go above and beyond. One of the most important things is ensuring the customer receives an immediate solution that will not only help them to become loyal customers but also share their good experiences with others.
Utilise Cost Effective Promotions. Don’t Advertise, Use Marketing Instead
If you are like most other rental car agencies, you have a budgeted amount that has already been allocated for promoting your business. Since there are limits on the amount that you can spend, it is important that you use cost-effective strategies to get your message to your target audience. While advertising is considered to be one of the most common and traditional ways of reaching your target audience, it is not always the best medium to use. Specifically since ads on TV, newspapers and other face to face communications can be very costly, and not a practical solution in certain situations. For example, promoting rental car agencies services on TV may not be practical if the ads are too expensive to pay for.
On the other hand, if you want to save money and be effective at the same time, use marketing promotions. For example, you can communicate your brand by sending emails to your current customers to offer discount rates and special services during certain periods of the year. You can also measure the response rates to see if your messages are clear or need to be changed to target a new audience (i.e. ages 18-29 vs 30 to 40.).
Recognise Your Customers
If you want to be seen as an industry leader, do not forget to recognise your customers. Aside from providing loyalty programs, you need to create other ways to show appreciation to the customers that are loyal to your brand. For example, you may want to give your major clients an excellence award. These awards are great tools for building brand awareness, while also encouraging other clients to aspire to receive this type of achievement.
Your Car Rental Agency Should Create & Drive Change
As previously referenced, competition in this industry will become more aggressive as time goes by. So your car rental agency must be ready for your competitors to turn up the heat with a variety of different promotions for their company.
To avoid being left behind, you need to make sure that you have a well laid out plan that can give you an edge. One in specific is to place your competitors in a defensive position instead of on the offense. Simply stated, your car rental agency’s promotions should create and drive the change that happens in your local and surrounding areas. For instance, the car rental agency is not stagnant but a very fast paced business to those who are in this business. So, you must be ready with effective marketing campaigns that will make you a market leader instead of a car rental agency that reacts to the pricing that others set.
Having said that, if you want to establish a successful solid business for the future, you need to offer unique, promotional offers instead of mimicking the ads of others.