Many formal car hire company operators are often found miserable and unhappy because their business stinks but in fact this is just part of their problem. On a much deeper level many of these operators shouldn’t have been in business to begin with because many of them made major mistakes owing to inexperience and a sheer lack of knowledge. Unrealistic expectations is what usually caused them the most trouble because they made catastrophic mistakes during their early days.
In order to run a car hire company successfully you should start with building a strong foundation. The decisions you make today will set the tone and set the structure of your operation for the next few years. So, if you want to get started on the right foot take a look at some sound advice below.
A formal car hire business is in no way glamorous. The business mostly entails taking people to and from the airport, wedding, parties and functions. You’ll need to be comfortable with bereaved family members when attending a funeral, cleaning up the car after teenagers have enjoyed their night in it, and paying for maintenance. Just getting into this business because you had a great time riding in a limousine is not a good idea. This is the most basic service business and so things are unlike as it is assumed not fun and games.
Market it first
One of the most common mistakes made by newbie operators is that they purchase a dozen vehicles without doing even a single day of marketing. They simply think that people will flock to them because they just posted a fancy board on top of their business center. Ideally, the number of vehicles you purchase should be based on demand which is a direct result of your marketing efforts. As you start to grow any excess runs can easily be outsourced to other operators whom you network with.
Always start small
You shouldn’t buy a dozen hummer stretch limousines, buses, and Mercedes Benz to start off with even if you have the extra cash. All these vehicles should be purchased after you’ve worked on building brand identity and have begun to receive a steady stream of revenue. These limousines are just the icing on the cake. Start your formal car hire with a used Town Car and a simple 120”. As you start to learn more about the business and naturally expand you can build a fleet.
Niche marketing is one buzzword that you should steer clear of in this business. In addition to just traditional weddings, proms, funerals and airport runs you should take on anything else that your limousines can handle. It would be a mistake to just market your business to the wedding industry or funeral homes. Plus you should aim to ensure that your fleet works seven days a week. It is OK to start with single service gigs but over a period of time you’ll want to establish a diverse variety of steady accounts.
Get a consultant onboard
People who do not have extensive industry experience should hire a consultant. Since your startup capital is going to be limited, getting a consultant will help you save money. A consultant will offer you advice on fleet, operations, software, payroll, marketing, chauffeurs and dispatch.
Opt not to compete on price
If you just compete on price then your business is bound to suffer a painful death. Cutting your rates means that you’re losing proposition because gypsies will tend to go lower. Because there is no way for you to compete against an operator who does not have insurance or license. Many limousine hire companies go down under because often their pricing does not match the overhead they pay.
The one way you can succeed in the formal car hire industry is to ensure that your services does not suck. You need to use unique marketing and gimmicking techniques to get ahead of the game. Being good by offering great customer service, prompt delivery, and being well dressed can take you a long way. But to begin with you need to correctly execute your startup plan to ensure long term process.
Martin john has been a consultant for a leading formal/wedding car hire companie DB Limos Sydney for over two decades. He has seen many companies ride the high waves and often falter because they made the wrong move. So, he not only runs his own business but also helps other businessmen succeed by providing them with consultation and mentoring.