How to Generate Funding for a Supercar Rental Agency

Bet you haven’t heard this title before? Generating business funding or sponsorships for a potential supercar rental agency, how can you do it, well we are going to talk to someone who did exactly this, He’s going to explain how he did it, where he is now, where he was and more importantly what you need to get started, it’s not what you think it might be. So without further ado I’ll let our writer take this over.

Aston Martin

Funding a Supercar Rental Agency

Hi everyone, as Tom mentioned this is a relatively interesting topic that I thought people would be interested in hearing. I’ll start by giving some information about myself. I own 2 supercar rental websites, both of which generate approximately 50-100 enquiries a month.

I’m going to start with the story of how I got rejected by 12 banks and investors. You’ve probably heard all of this before, the business owner with a good idea goes to a bank and tries to get a loan, he gets rejected and the business gets put on the back-burner, he continues to work but he can’t do much without the funding. Well this was me but I was committed. I got rejected by approximately 12 banks and investors before securing a loan for £75,000 to purchase 3 supercars to add to our fleet.

The reason why I was eventually accepted and the requirements I think your audience will find interesting. It wasn’t down to good credit or how much I had invested into the business myself, it was based on 2 things, I had a house and I was “more experienced” which is a kind way of saying I was older than when I first applied, although banks will never never ever admit to this, they tend to shy away from lending to very young individuals, especially when they are trying to get £75,000 to buy supercars! Can you imagine the looks I got, well I did get those very looks. What turned all these no’s into yes eventually was the commitment I showed to my business. I had 3 models in my fleet already when I was applying for this loan.

I also explained that we were having to turn customers away and raise prices because we simply didn’t have enough of a fleet. A £75,000 loan across 20 years is approximately £300 a month. That’s 1 day per month renting 1 of our new fleet that the loan would allow us to buy 3 supercars…. The maths was there I just need to show the commitment. In 2010 I decided to do this by working like a monster to scrape together enough money to buy another supercar, this meant I could now have approximately £6,000 in earnings most months. Although that doesn’t sound like much more than £4.5, it makes a huge difference for 2 reasons. The 1st is now subconsciously they weren’t investing £75k for a 50% stake, the value was lower as it was 3 supercars vs my 4. And secondly the £6k per month meant I had turnovers of £6 x 12 = £72,000. Pretty much equal to the loan I was asking for. This meant that people knew if everything went to sh*t I was still making enough to pay 10% of the loan off per year, meaning I could pay it off inside 10 years, not nearer 20. That’s another big psychological factor.

The grind that lasted about 8 months, working stupid hours (10-12 hour days) almost every day meant I was able to afford my next supercar, which lead to generating the loan, which now means I have a fleet of 18 supercars across 2 brands. It’s the compound affect in action. Grind for as long as you need to grind! Just get it done.

The Most Useful Marketing Advice – Small Businesses Listen Up

Return On InvestmentOkay I’m not going to give you some long introduction as I think the title was enough, but what you need to know is that small businesses should be doing active marketing! Whatever type you decide if your business is quiet, you need to do more, its a difficult situation to be in as sales = more cash flow for more marketing, but you have to be willing to make a loss to make a longer term gain, that’s basic business! Alright without further ado the most useful marketing advice:

Focus on: Return On Investment Marketing Methods.

If you didn’t already know ROI or return on investment was initially introduced as a financial trading term (as it sounds) it discusses the potential ROI for a particular stock or trade, usually with a time element to the trade. For example a trade might make a 20% ROI in 6 months, which would be seen as really good in most financial trading agencies. The ROI weighed against the risk associated would lead to a decision to either purchase the stock or avoid the trade.

In the marketing world

ROIIn the marketing world ROI is more commonly referred to as how effective a particular marketing angle or advertising campaign will be. The higher the DIRECT ROI, generally the most successful the marketing campaign will be. You can see this frequently in online advertising with Adwords for example or in lesser businesses simply offering the “up-sell” when you are in a purchasing decision. Either way calculating ROI can be difficult but its extremely important. We will look at a few marketing campaigns and talk about the issues and why you should focus on ROI when making a decision whether to go ahead or not.

Remember: Although ROI is extremely important it is not everything. The brand recognition you gain from a certain marketing method could be priceless in the long run but might not make any sales in the short term, always factor brand recognition into your marketing budget decisions.

For example if we take TV advertising to start with, have you ever considered getting a TV ad? Probably not unless you are a large corporation, this is because there is no need, you think your customers wouldn’t convert well with an advert, great that’s the first step in ROI marketing, this is seeing and visualising what will work for your business. Every niche and industry is different so I cannot give you guides and data on what will work for you, you can do as much market research, listen to a number of experts and look through a ton of data but if you don’t feel like a marketing method will work for you, then don’t bother getting it!

Social Media Marketing IdeasIf we next look at online marketing – Let’s say Google adwords for example, we know that people aren’t going to scroll to page 2 on Google, so why not pay Google a proportion to get people to click on your site? Easy! Well maybe not. ROI can be calculated quite easily on the face of it. If you convert 5% of your visitors and make £10 profit per visitor, then you can’t pay more than £0.50 per click. (50p x 20 = £10.) But you also have to factor in the LIFETIME value of a customer. This is the difficult bit. Generally you should be willing to make a slight loss to generate long term customers, in the longer term (and as your business grows) this will lead to much more profit!

Leaflet Marketing - Leafet Distribution3rd we are going to look at direct mail marketing. Personally one of my favourite marketing tactics. We use a leaflet company in London, UK for all our local distributions and drops. Although only on a small scale (5000 units) we get a good ROI as well as a stronger brand recognition, this leads us to belive that the campaign was a success! Design a simple leaflet that explains your main values and reasons why people shold buy from you and you can get straight to distribution. If you have time more than money then feel free to distribute yourself, if you do not then I highly recommend hiring a leaflet distribution agency… Or you could just hire some kid!

Finally SEO, SEO has a bad name for itself, people being scammed and individuals making £20k+ a month, but the truth is if done correctly and effectively Search engine optimisation is THE MOST EFFECTIVE marketing method. Just find yourself a good SEO company and get going, generally you should look for people with experience in your industry, don’t tend to go for someone just because they are close to where you live, that’s the best way to get ripped off. Search for companies who have experience promoting and ranking websites in your industry. Relevance is everything!

There are tons more marketing ideas that don’t require funds you just have to be willing to put the effort in!

Thanks for reading!

Remember to share, comment and I will get back to you in the comments section!

Cheers.

K.

Become A Renewable Energy Powered Business

Renewable energy is all the rage in 2015. The UK government is helping both individuals and businesses switch to renewable sources, including pv solar panels, mainly due to the ease to install as well as the proximity of solar companies. The reasons for this is that a “greener Britain” is good. I mean if we become more eco friendly then David Cameron can go to his G8 Summits and say “look at us, we are eco-powered” and get some great hand shakes from France and other countries who care. But for me and you as small business owners, is it worth the plunge?

solar panels UK

solar panels UK

Well we did some testing and in true Sponsorship advice fashion have some great numbers for you. The first of which is: YES, in the current economic and Government grant situation (if you live in the UK of course) it is 100% worth you converting to solar energy or other renewable energy forms! The reason? Is as always it saves you lots of money on your electricity bill, but more than this, it allows you to qualify for loans, grants and funding from the government more easily….Do I have your attention now? Thought so!

Anyway, aside from the obvious ethical reasons to switch to solar, their are other ones that people always always forget.

The first is your prospects and potential clients! If they see you are helping the envionment and doing everything you can to become more green and environmentally friendly. ALL OTHER THINGS EVEN, they will go with you over a competitor! This is a huge factor for you as its another win-win, new clients and you get to take them away from your direct competition.

The second is that when you come to eventually sell your business, having these is a HUGE asset to you, potential prospects love low-overhead businesses. Would you rather have a business that spends £20,000 a year on energy or one that spends nothing?!

The third is that these are great for marketing. Release a press release about your news solar panels and watch people come to you “because of it”. Most of our customer can either see or know about our panels and it’s also a great way to pick up random visitors to your store or start a conversion with a new potential client.solar energy

Social Media Marketing for Small Businesses

Taking your online promotions to the next level!

Social Media Marketing Ideas

When it comes to digital marketing everyone seems to get a bit crazy. Sure SEO is great and ranking in Google is pretty much the only thing you need when it comes to making a buck. But the fact of the matter is that SEO is not enough any-more, you have to be socially active, not so you can look like a brand or a big business, although that is pretty important too, but instead so you can convert potential clients that check everything (including your facebook page) into paying highly profitable customers!

As was said on: http://hqseo.co.uk/web-design-cardiff/ there is a reason you spent a lot of money on your website design and it wasn’t so you can have a nice place to go when you feel lonely!! It was so you could make some sales and convert potential clients. BUT a very important aspect to remember is that growing online is not just about making a good website and firing as many visitors as you possibly can at it. Instead you also have to tick off the other boxes, such as social media marketing, or you can just cheat by buying the relevant followers, the decision is up to you but be warned that buying twitter followers in the UK at least is highly frowned upon and against the T&Cs of the business. So instead this is what we recommend:

1.) Create active social media accounts – Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Google plus are the most common ones and all you need really.

2.) Grow these accounts – You can do this through 2 ways – the first is advertising, all of the below have platforms you can promote your brand too, facebook is seen as the best with the “Like” metric but followers on Twitter are also pretty good too.

A useful infographic

3.) Keep these people engaged – The best way to keep people engaged on your website is to have free stuff! Do the same with your twitter and facebook profiles, simply offer something that people will want to constantly check your FB page and keep going back and liking what you are posting. This is the way you can grow exponentially.

Below is another good info graphic if you’d like to check it out:

Another Useful Twitter follower infographic

Sponsoring a Local Business – Case Study

In August we decided to run a case study of what happens when we sponsor a business. We decided to choose Bennett Glass, a SASH and stained glass repair man based in Nottingham. He’s a OMG (one man gang) but wanted to scale his online promotions but didn’t have the capability to do it. This was a £1,000 sponsorship and the results speak for themselves, Mr Bennett has now had 5+ responses in August all from the online promotion effort. This means that the promotions would have paid for themselves. Never under estimate the power of online marketing.

HQ SEO Local SEO CardiffThe individuals we hired for this promotions were HQ SEO, a Cardiff based SEO agency with some very good online marketing skills. We used their local seo services for Bennett and a re-design which came to a bargain price of £1000! Seems though Mr Bennett has already had 5 stained glass repair jobs (totally approximately £800), I think the promotions speak for themselves! Best of all, this was a one-time fee, which means he will continue to get business through this promotion effort.

We wanted to make an article on this case study for 2 reasons. The first was to convince people that marketing DOES WORK! No longer can you just rely on your location or reviews/word of mouth to create a successful business. 80% of start ups go broke in the first 2 years because of this exact point, they believe the statement “build it and they will come” Except the problem is they don’t!

Anyway that’s enough of this, its turning into rant territory. My main point is this: investing especially in online marketing is expensive BUT the results are worth it. Find a good company and the results will pay for themselves.