How Avis Budget Is Using Social Media

Avis is increasing its social media efforts in the United Kingdom by adding a loyalty program for customers who check in to Avis depots using geolocation technology, according to

Avis has begun working with Topguest, a service that rewards users when they check into locations by creating a Topguest account and linking it to their Facebook Places and Foursquare accounts. Users then receive a discount voucher code via the Topguest service when they check in at Avis locations.

Avis has used social networking technologies for several years. The blog, launched more than four years ago, is a place for customers and Avis staff to discuss positive and negative issues that have come up when people have rented vehicles.

Eighteen months ago, the company added a Twitter feed that acts as a bulletin board and publicizes offers and blog posts. The feed now has about 2,000 followers.

Avis added a Facebook page in August. Called Living for the Weekend, the page focuses on boosting weekend car rentals. The page includes links to a 5 percent discount for car rentals.

Avis customers using Topguest currently receive a 10 percent discount on their next vehicle rental, but the reward scheme will be expanded to more sophisticated offers early next year.

Other potential incentives include discounts on additional items¾such as sat-nav units¾ car upgrades on the day of rental or free additional drivers.

Avis might eventually be able to create special offers tailored to particular rental locations.

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