Car hire businesses can be highly profitable. It’s a proven business model, but like any business, it can go wrong. There are a million different car hire companies out there, and you’ve got to really think about what sets yours apart. What’s your unique selling point? Because without something special, you’ll eventually fall behind. For example, some companies may focus on providing the most reliable hire service and at cheaper rates than the market baseline level. Other companies choose to differentiate themselves by closing in on a tight niche market such as a premium supercar hire service. We’ve compiled a couple of great ideas and points for staying ahead of the game in the car hire business.
Know the Nuts and Bolts
If you don’t know everything there is to know about your fleet, your customers and your business, how can you hope to improve? Accurately diagnosing and improving your business can only come through fully understanding it. Make it your business to understand what cars your fleet favours, and why. What the major risks and issues are with each element of your business.
Even as a manager, sat at the top of the pile, you should know what every single nut and bolt of your business does, why it does that, and how it could do that better. It’s this obsessive level of attention to detail that can set aside businesses from the rest of the pack.
Constantly and Consistently Strive to Improve
When it comes to running any business, the first thing you should always be focusing on, beyond the standard day-to-day running, is consistent improvement and tweaking. All business can be streamlined and improved, and you should be constantly looking to do just that. Every single little mistake or cost you see within your business is an opportunity to learn, and increase function, autonomy and profit
Always be thinking, is my business model current? Does it meet the needs of the customers today? If not, how can you rearrange it? There are basic questions you need to be asking yourself to make sure you don’t stagnate and find your profits levelling off, with you left scratching your head wondering what happened.
Don’t Neglect Marketing
Physical forms of marketing, such a radio or TV adverts, billboards and magazine adverts have very much had their day. Untargeted marketing has had its go, and while it was passable when it was all we had, it’s got nothing on the power of targeted digital marketing.
Developing an online presence and brand is crucial. Becoming a well-known, respected and authoritative entity in whatever industry you’re in is the absolute crux of digital marketing. This can be achieved through SEM, social media marketing, online advertising and a variety of other forms and techniques of digital marketing. Online digital marketing can be the decisive factor in whether or not you become THE car hire company, or remain just one of the contenders.
A big part of digital marketing is becoming an authority on a particular niche, and without marketing, you can’t hope to achieve that. Even the biggest and most successful car hire companies might not be the dominant, top company online if they fail to do their online marketing properly.
Keep a Tight Grip on the Numbers
It should go without saying really, but you need to understand fully, all the numbers that make up the lifeblood of your company. The companies that succeed the most will be the ones with the most obsessive attitude towards their numbers.
It might be pretty far from an interesting subject, but being aware of how everything is going at a basic level, is pretty key to general success and without this, you’re chancing disaster.
Identify, Promote and Show Love for Your Top Employees
Dale Carnegie has been saying this since the forties. You need to show your employees and workers that they’re appreciated, and they’ll repay you by shouldering more responsibility, rewarding your trust and increasing your businesses profitability.
Remember, you’re paying people generally just above minimum wage, to hire out cars worth tens of thousands. You want people you can trust not to be incompetent and the best way to get these people is to promote from within and incentivise great work. Why would they care about your business, when you’re barely paying them more than you can legally get away with? What’s in it for them?