Lancer Insurance
Friday, May 24, 2024

On Tuesday, April 16, the Illinois Limousine & Bus Association (ILLBA) presented the latest edition of their ongoing Coffee With ILLBA webinar series. Free to operators from around the globe and held via Zoom, these late-morning sessions offer education and guest speakers on various topics facing the industry. Moderated by Executive Director Paula DeBiasi of Chicago Coachworks, this month’s topic was Let’s Go Global! Build and Maintain a Worldwide Affiliate Network.

ILLBAILLBA Executive Director Paula DeBiasi

After greeting those in attendance, DeBiasi started things off by welcoming a panel of truly global operators to sound off on the topic. Richard de Krijger of DMC Limousines (Netherlands), Myles Flood of LFL Worldwide Chauffeur Services (Ireland), and Amy Yan of AmyExpress (Asia) were all on board to discuss what it takes to develop a network, work with one another, and best serve customers.

Richard de KrijgerRichard de Krijger of DMC Limousines (Netherlands)

The first topic examined dealt with marketing and what’s the most effective way to sell services worldwide. Each of the panelists discussed the importance of marketing to executive assistants, particularly with corporate work. Next, the conversation veered into the topic of service levels and what affiliates should expect from one another. While Flood cited the importance of having up-to-date software technology, De Krijger said that the best way to develop partnerships is to meet in person at tradeshows. Yan, however, recommended focusing on quality and making sure that chauffeurs are well-dressed and well-trained.

Amy YanAmy Yan of AmyExpress (Asia)

Also discussed were the various challenges faced by affiliates operating worldwide. The most notable problem debated was that of time zones and issues of pickups with flight arrivals. The panelists all urged operators and clients to concentrate on when the plane is arriving—as opposed to departure—as this can lead to confusion when crossing multiple time zones.

Finally, the group communicated the benefits of using shared software platforms and other technology. Expressing his frustration with affiliates who still send direct texts to chauffeurs demanding status updates, de Krijger pointed out that this practice can be eliminated by using GNet or similar platforms. Flood also said that Facebook groups are invaluable for developing affiliate partnerships, as you can get a good look at who’s who in various worldwide markets.

Operators who missed the webinar can catch it on YouTube by clicking here.

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