New Book Highlights How Enterprise Holdings Builds Brand Loyalty
According to marketing and customer service expert Kirk Kazanjian, building a successful company today means creating "an unbreakable bond of loyalty between your customers and employees." Now, his latest book Driving Loyalty: Turning Every Customer and Employee Into a Raving Fan for Your Brand reveals how to do just that.
Kazanjian's book delves into the guiding principles that have propelled Enterprise Holdings to its position as one of the world's largest family-owned companies, with $15.4 billion in annual revenues and a global fleet of more than 1.3 million vehicles. The company's regional subsidiaries operate the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car brands, and include car rental and car-sharing services, commercial truck rental, corporate fleet management and retail car sales. Not only does this extensive network provide a unique and competitive advantage, but so does its financial strength, with the company having the lowest debt-to-equity ratio and only investment-grade rating in the U.S. car rental industry.
In Kazanjian's view, a major factor behind this growth and success is that the Taylor family of St. Louis has never lost sight of a simple and fundamental business philosophy: take care of customers and employees first, and growth and profits will follow. The Taylors have owned and operated the company since it was founded with only seven cars in 1957.
Kazanjian's first book about Enterprise, Exceeding Customer Expectations, was published in early 2007. Later that same year, the Taylors made the largest acquisition in car rental history when they purchased the National and Alamo brands. Driving Loyalty updates the Enterprise story and chronicles how the company met the challenge of integrating and differentiating three distinct car rental brands, especially during one of the biggest economic downturns in U.S. history. Today, the entire Enterprise Holdings brand portfolio is generating some of the highest customer satisfaction scores in the company's history.
Sustainable Business Practices
In a chapter titled "Build a Sustainable Business," Kazanjian explores the positive impact of sustainable business practices on attracting and keeping customers. As a family-owned business, Enterprise is uncommonly in tune with the need to operate for the long term with the next generation in mind, continuously balancing the interests of customers, employees and the parts of the world touched by its business. This approach aligns with Kazanjian's observation that consumers increasingly look to support businesses that operate against a triple bottom line of economic, environmental and social performance.
For companies like Enterprise, sustainability can be a powerful source of brand loyalty:
"....So what does sustainability have to do with driving customer loyalty? A lot, as it turns out. Today's customers have a strong interest in doing business with companies committed to sustainability ... To meet customer demand, and demonstrate its commitment to bringing alternative technology to the rental car market, Enterprise has increased the number of hybrid and electric vehicles in its fleet. 'Ensuring that the passenger vehicle remains acceptable and economically viable to society is a huge part of our drive toward sustainability,' says CEO Andy Taylor. 'We know that investing in new technologies now will create value for us, our customers, and the community in the future. In fact more than half of our entire fleet consists of fuel efficient vehicles.'"
-from Driving Loyalty by Kirk Kazanjian, Crown Business, a Division of Random House, Inc. 2013
Enterprise views public reporting on its sustainability activities as a critical part of building strong and enduring relationships with customers and communities around the world. The company is one of only a handful of major travel companies to document its efforts in a sustainability report that is verified by the Global Reporting Initiative a non-profit organization that has pioneered a comprehensive Sustainability Reporting Framework enabling all organizations to measure and report their economic, environmental, social and governance performance.
"We always try to take the long-term view," said Enterprise Holdings President and Chief Operating Officer Pam Nicholson. "Our goal is to keep operating our business in ways that take the sustainability concept further, driving environmental improvements, enhancing the automotive value chain, and helping people and communities move forward."
Driving Loyalty, published by Crown Business, a division of Random House, Inc., is available now in bookstores throughout the U.S.
About Enterprise Holdings
Enterprise Holdings and its affiliate Enterprise Fleet Management together offer a total transportation solution. Combined, these businesses accounted for $15.4 billion in revenue and operated 1.3 million vehicles throughout the world in fiscal 2012. Enterprise Holdings, through its regional subsidiaries, operates the largest fleet of vehicles in the world through a global network of more than 8,200 airport and neighborhood locations under the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental, and Alamo Rent A Car brands. Its affiliate, Enterprise Fleet Management, provides full-service fleet management to companies and organizations with small- to medium-sized fleets. Other transportation services marketed under the Enterprise brand name include Enterprise CarShare, Enterprise Rideshare, Enterprise Car Sales and Enterprise Commercial Trucks. Enterprise Holdings is the largest car rental company in the world as measured by revenue, fleet and employees. Enterprise Holdings' annual revenues also place it near the top of the travel industry, exceeding all other rental car companies, and most airlines, cruise lines, hotels, tour operators and online travel agencies.