Operations

New Operators Got Business Spunk

Michael Campos
Posted on September 26, 2011
Rusty Berlint and Tammy Tomlinson of Stone Oak Limousine have found great success in advertising with Google.
Rusty Berlint and Tammy Tomlinson of Stone Oak Limousine have found great success in advertising with Google.

Rusty Berlint and Tammy Tomlinson of Stone Oak Limousine have found great success in advertising with Google.

Rusty Berlint and Tammy Tomlinson of Stone Oak Limousine have found great success in advertising with Google.
Rusty Berlint and Tammy Tomlinson of Stone Oak Limousine have found great success in advertising with Google.
 

WHAT THEY DID BEFORE: Rusty Berlint, co-owner of Stone Oak Limousine, is a general contractor, and Tammy Tomlinson, also co-owner, works in the hotel and resort industry.

WHY THEY GOT INTO THE BUSINESS
: "Tammy and I saw a need for a  high-quality limousine and corporate transportation service in our area, and with the economy in the state it's in, we felt it was a wise business decision to seek an alternative venture," Berlint says. "Our plans are not to be the biggest limousine company in San Antonio, but to be the one that provides unprecedented service."

START-UP COSTS AND METHODS: About $140,000 for the purchase of vehicles, website creation, marketing materials, communication equipment, and vehicle storage. "After making the decision to create this company, we began looking for vehicles while at the same time building our website and researching the industry," Berlint says.

BEST MARKETING STRATEGY: Berlint and Tomlinson have been successful with Internet marketing and marketing to major hotels and corporations in the region. They will be launching a new marketing campaign soon.

BIGGEST MISTAKES: "I believe we could've done a better job in choosing a good auto maintenance provider," Berlint says. "And we also made some early mistakes with our website design, but the problem has been corrected."

BIGGEST SUCCESS: "We have had great success advertising with Google," Berlint says.

UNIQUE APPROACHES TO CUSTOMER SERVICE: "Good service begins with the initial call for a quote," Berlint says. "We make it a point to provide a quick quote and accommodate the client in any way we can. If a customer is comfortable and impressed with your phone presentation, they are more likely to retain your services."

ADVICE TO OTHER NEW OPERATORS: Establish affiliate relationships with limo companies you trust in order to give and receive overflow. And, "hiring chauffeurs as opposed to drivers is a wise move for many reasons."

FUTURE PLANS: Enlarging the fleet and expanding to a new office that will accommodate it, more marketing and networking, and reaching out to small cities in the area.

 


 

Fast Facts about Stone Oak Limousine

Location: San Antonio, Texas
Founded: April 2011
Owners: Rusty Berlint and Tammy Tomlinson
Main service region: San Antonio and surrounding areas
Fleet size: 5
Vehicle types: Escalade ESV, Mercedes CUV, Cadillac DTS 10-pax, Lincoln Town Car 6-pax, Hummer stretch 20-pax
Employees: one office manager; chauffeurs are sub-contractors
Annual revenue/sales: $140,000, est.
Website: www.stoneoaklimousine.com
Information: (210) 683-5035

Related Topics: New Operator, small-fleet operators, Texas operators

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