Solve a customer’s problem profitabily

Back in 95, I joined the RAC’s marketing department based in Bristol and shortly afterwards I led the development of their early web marketing strategy. At the time, only a few UK corporates had a website and most largely consisted of 4 or 5 pages of brochureware. We launched a new RAC e-commerce website which was a core part of the new brand positioning: ‘The Future In Motion’ designed to help motorists get from A to B. The website pioneered route planning and live traffic information as well as a hotel finder. One of the areas I wanted to include was a Car Park Finder

Find me a parking space

The original 1996 idea was to enable motorists to pre-book car parking spaces online. However, the major UK car operators didn’t have adequate IT systems at the time (& I suspect this hasn’t changed) to make this possible and I dropped the idea.

However, 14 years on, I recently found a site called Park At My House that helps car parking space buyers meet sellers. It offers buyers the chance to find parking spaces at lower costs than national car park operators. It offers sellers i.e. people with an empty drive the opportunity to make some money from selling the parking space.

I used the site for the first time yesterday to find and book my parking space in London. The website simply handled administration and payment and today I had no problem finding a parking space because one had ‘my name on it’.

I wish I had considered individuals providing car park spaces rather than national car park companies 14 years ago!

Remember… web marketing is about solving customers’ problems profitabily.