Alamo Rent A Car speeds up digital, social initiatives

ST. LOUIS: Enterprise Holdings' Alamo Rent A Car brand is kicking off a digital word-of-mouth initiative this week and enhancing its social media efforts to raise brand awareness.

ST. LOUIS: Enterprise Holdings' Alamo Rent A Car brand is kicking off a digital word-of-mouth initiative this week and enhancing its social media efforts to raise brand awareness.

The car rental company launched its first national TV ad campaign since 2009 on Monday, and to continue to build brand buzz, it created the “Get to Know Alamo” word-of-mouth effort to engage influencers.

Alamo also revealed an enhanced website this week, as well as its “Deal Retriever” feature, which allows consumers to compare Alamo's car-rental prices online.

“We wanted to find a way to get the word out about the new website, the Deal Retriever, and the ad campaign, and we thought one of the best ways was to leverage digital word-of-mouth and use the influencers' readership to have people test it, talk about it, and see how well it serves their needs,” explained Meghan Maguire, brand publicity manager for the company.

Fleishman-Hillard is working on traditional media outreach, contacting travel, lifestyle, and deal reporters about the initiative. The Omnicom Group agency has been Enterprise Holdings' PR agency partner since 2001, and it has worked with Alamo and National Car Rental since Enterprise acquired the brands in 2007.

Digital agency 360i, which Alamo has worked with for the past three years, is working on the word-of-mouth campaign.

For the next six weeks, 15 key bloggers and social media influencers in the car-rental space will write about the Deal Retriever, the new website, and the company's “Alamo Insider” loyalty program.

Pinterest will also be a large part of the brand's social media efforts, said Maguire. Alamo will soon launch a Pinterest contest for consumers called “Pin Your Happy Place,” which will encourage consumers to envision their next vacation.

“We thought this would be a really good way to test the waters and see if our target market of families and people who make travel arrangements, which are more often than not moms, is there and active,” added Maguire.

Alamo is also enlisting the help of influencers for the social media contest, having them ask readers to create their own “happy place” board with a piece of Alamo branded content for a chance to win a travel pack, she said. The prize will include travel items, such as a digital camera.

Alamo will also leverage its presence on Facebook, where it has more than 130,000 fans, to spread the word about the campaign and the brand's new online tools.

This story was updated on January 23 to correct information about the Pinterest portion of the campaign. It was also corrected on January 24 to clarify the company's price-comparison tool.

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