Company: Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group
Contact: Keith Adams, Sales & Marketing Manger, New York Metropolitan Area
Location: Tulsa, Okla.
Industry: Retail, B2C
Annual revenue: $1,700,000,000
Number of employees: 8500

Quick Read:

Dollar Rent A Car is one of the top US rental car companies; its parent, Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group (DTG), is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

But many don't know that Dollar is also the nation's fourth-largest parking service. Most of its parking customers are business executives who use the company's frequent-parking programs at 26 airports. Some parking facilities offer benefits such as car washes, oil changes, and replacement wipers.

In late 2006, Dollar's business was slowing at New York's LaGuardia airport. Faced with larger and better-funded competitors, local sales and marketing manager Keith Adams needed a tactical solution. He hired a survey company to develop and imprint a survey on every customer's email receipt.

Adams and his managers used the information from the surveys to pinpoint Dollar's weak points at La Guardia and to quickly collect customer complaints so that he could address their concerns, educating customers about parking procedures when necessary.

The surveys and the related efficiencies gained helped Dollar grow its parking-related business at La Guardia: Revenues grew 24% in 2007.

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