Tilden offers `Peace of Mind’

This month, Tilden Interrent introduced a branded insurance package comprising three optional insurance products: non-deductible coverage for loss or damage to the car, personal accident coverage and personal effects insurance.The package, dubbed 'Peace of Mind,' sells for about $12.95 depending on...

This month, Tilden Interrent introduced a branded insurance package comprising three optional insurance products: non-deductible coverage for loss or damage to the car, personal accident coverage and personal effects insurance.

The package, dubbed ‘Peace of Mind,’ sells for about $12.95 depending on where in the country the car is being rented.

Consumers can still buy the products separately, or not at all, but by choosing the package they will shave about $3 off what it would cost to make the purchases individually.

Tilden Chairman Walter Tilden says the company developed the package after realizing it had the opportunity, by shifting insurance accounts to a new insurer, to bundle its optional insurance coverage into a branded product, and, at the same time, pass a saving on to its customers.

Peace of Mind is the latest in a series of aggressive marketing initiatives launched by Tilden in the past two years.

These include joining Air Miles, entering an international marketing partnership called Interrent with three foreign rental firms, launching Privilege Membership, a customer loyalty program, and introducing a 24-hour roadside-assistance program.

Most recently, the privately held company, which operates 400 rental outlets across Canada, unveiled a corporate repositioning effort known as ‘Drive Something Better.’

The strategy, supported by an ad campaign developed by Tilden’s Toronto ad agency Franklin Dallas, is intended to create a more up-market image for the Tilden name.

Walter Tilden says the initiatives are all part of Tilden’s drive to gain an edge in an increasingly cutthroat industry.

Tilden says that before the flurry of marketing activity, ‘we were going sideways, as I think the whole industry was.’

There are four major car rental companies in Canada in addition to Tilden – Budget Rent a Car, Aviscar, Hertz Rent A Car and Thrifty Car Rental.

Industry observers suggest that, as competition continues to force prices down and costs continue to rise, there might not be enough business to go around.

But based on its reported 15% sales increase in 1993 over 1992, Tilden appears to be better than holding its own.

Tilden says his company’s projected 1993 revenues are $150, about $22.5 million more than last year.

And that, he says, was accomplished at a time when fierce competition brought about an average per-transaction price decrease of 10%.