Luxury Coach & Transportation

February 2019

Magazine for the professional limousine, charter and tour industry.

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LUXURY COACH & TRANSPORTATION FEBRUARY 2019 23 as "Leave out" or "Unsubscribe." If you use a program like Constant Contact or MailChimp, they will force you into compliance. You can segregate your targets so they receive only marketing material relative to their unique group, or you can send out a cross marketing piece to your entire database. Take note if you buy a list of email addresses (commonly available for sale) and you have an excessive amount of bounce- backs (undeliverable) or opt-outs, your account will be frozen for sending spam. ese programs also allow you to track who opened your emails and who clicked on links within your email, which indicates a level of interest in the piece. ese statistics can help you refine your targets and specific market- ing messages. What Is Your Message? Let's face it: To the average person, a bus is a bus. ey don't know if it's new or old. It's a commodity to consum- ers. But it's really not, and you need to clarify that in your marketing mes- sages. People don't know why they should choose one company over an- other. Service is where we differentiate ourselves. e experience we provide is the way to distinguish your com- pany and your marketing must convey that message, not a message that you have buses. People crave change and specifically improvement. What have you implemented that differs from what everyone else is doing? Do you offer online quotes? Do you offer Wi-Fi with individual choices of movies? ose are potential marketing points. Paint a picture of your service quality with your marketing. Message Consistency Marketing is not something you do. It's something you are. Marketing is a cul- ture. It requires the buy-in of everyone on your staff. It's about telling the story and conveying an image. It's about being something different than your competitor. Good marketing requires a consistent message delivered by your drivers, salespeople, and even your wash crew. e overall thrust should be: "is is what we deliver and this is who we are." You want satisfied cus- tomers in photos and testimonials on your social media and websites. at will be your lasting image. — Jim@LCTmag.com barely remember, Novell, which had the computer networking market cornered until it rested upon its laurels and was bypassed. Marketing to previous customers on a forever basis keeps your company name in what is called "top-of-mind awareness." When the clients hear your company name, they feel they know you. Memory Matters Technology has changed the way we retain information. Back in the day, you could store hundreds of phone numbers in your head. Today, you might remem- ber your spouse and mother, but you probably don't know the number of your five closest friends. You probably throw most of your snail mail away because you know anything you are looking for is available online. is is why drip marketing is so important to keep your name in front of potential clients so they think of you when they have a need. Slow And Steady Targets Marketing is much different than adver- tising. A typical ad campaign might of- fer a special offer for a limited time, and the goal is to get plenty of sales in that period. at's a tiny component of an overall marketing plan. e key to suc- cessful marketing is to keep potential clients exposed to your company name. ose would include retirees looking for casino trips, schools, weddings, churches, sports fans, concertgoers, conventions, and businesses. e mar- keting message can't be the same for all groups. Businesses looking for exciting employee outings would likely toss out marketing material targeted towards wedding transportation and assume you cater to the wedding industry and not corporate group travel. ey will likely ignore all your future messages. Email Campaigns Email marketing is perfectly legal as often as you want within some guide- lines. ose guidelines include having a physical address and people must be able to opt-out with the click of a button or a reply with a phrase such ness. is is important in determining where to spend your marketing dollars in the future. Calls today can be gener- ated by Facebook ads, Google searches, review sites, or direct referrals. ey can come from travel agents special- izing in group travel, or destination management companies (DMCs). It's important to know where to invest your marketing dollars. An often overlooked lead source is passengers on your buses. Do you have brochures or other marketing materials in your vehicles? Chances are passengers trav- eling with you today travel with other motorcoach groups. e person who placed the order is one out of perhaps 50 or more passengers who could be- come customers. Passengers very likely don't even know your company name unless you market to them while you have a captive audience. Harnessing Technology Riddell elaborated on a concept bor- rowed from the airline industry: Your passengers are captive. Depending on the duration of the trip, they might want to watch a movie or use the internet without chewing up their data plan. You can offer free Wi-Fi or even movie streaming, but you make the passenger complete a form with their email address to gain access to the Wi- Fi. is allows you to add them to your database for future marketing. Riddell places great value in drip marketing. "ere is power in staying in touch with the people who have experienced our product," Riddell said. One-Time Customers Riddell cautioned against believing you have created a lifelong customer simply because they used you one time and all went well. Instead, you must continue to market to previous pas- sengers. If you think about a company such as Nike, you know they spend billions advertising and have created such popularity it's considered trendy to have a Nike "swoosh" logo on your shoes or apparel, so they keep advertis- ing. Compare that to a company we People crave change and specifically improvement. What have you implemented that differs from what everyone else is doing?

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