Thirty years ago, the car was king. A lot has changed since then, and people increasingly see the value in environmentally friendlier micro-mobility transit options. All you have to do is follow the money – by 2030, according to McKinsey, the shared mobility sector will have generated $1 trillion in spending.
All this means that micro-mobility is a serious business, and like all serious businesses, they have to think about marketing themselves. We've pulled together some of the most creative, fun, and effective shared mobility marketing campaigns out there. See what companies are doing, how they're addressing their audiences, and get inspired for your own campaigns.
- Lime - break up with your ride
Mobility vehicles: electric scooters, e-bikes, e-mopeds
Campaign geography: US, UK, Germany
About the campaign:
Lime, a micromobility company present in 150 cities in 30 countries, launched their “Break up with your ride” campaign in the summer of 2022, offering car owners incentives up to $3,500 in value to stop using their cars for a certain amount of time and choose shared mobility options instead.
They highlighted several of the downsides of using cars – ranging from environmental factors to sitting in traffic – to convince the drivers of a need for a break. The subtext, while not explicitly states, was that shared mobility is better for the environment and also eliminates many headaches associated with car ownership.
Lime timed the campaign to coincide with Earth Day, and drivers were able to pledge a certain amount of time that they would go car-free. Participants were able to win Lime merch, gift cards, an electric bike, and Lime rides up to $3,500 in value.
Why we love it:
Many shared mobility users are already carless. That's why shared vehicles are an attractive service – it helps them get around. What makes this campaign particularly effective is that they're going after a new segment – car owners. By tying it to Earth Day and positioning the “breakup” as an environmental act of kindness, they're able to tap into car owners' altruism and concern for the environment, rather than trying to sell them on shared mobility. Thus, the use of Lime's e-vehicles is seen as simply a nice side effect – a win-win for both.
This campaign has proven to be so successful, that we’re seeing the same concept applied by other micromobility services like Bolt’s “Break up to break free” campaign.
- Bolt - the first scooter for cats
Mobility vehicles: e-scooters, ride-hailing, car sharing
Campaign geography: global
About the campaign:
The branding team at Bolt, the Estonian-based micromobility service, saw a recurring trend – of street cats enjoying relaxing on their scooters' base (many photos being shared by Bolt users), which is black and warms up under the sun. They jumped on the observation, and put together a cardboard scratching post that looks just like a bolt scooter, complete with scratch pads and comfy cushions for optimal feline lounging.
The process was documented and shared on social channels – ranging from a series of photos on Linkedin to a video on TikTok. The posts have generated considerable engagement, the Linkedin post has over 2,000 responses and the TikTok has over 291,000 views – currently their most viewed video on their platform (the average views being around 5-6k). Their post includes a post scriptum message and link to a local Estonian animal shelter with cats looking for new homes.
Why we love it:
It's just a bit of good fun! Who doesn't love a wholesome campaign that has no explicit sales or profit motives, and with fun photos of cats, no less.
This is a masterful use of client-generated content (the cat photos), and the fun of going the extra mile, constructing a cat scratching post. The inclusion of a CTA (call to action) to support the local animal shelter gives the fun post a deeper, socially responsible message, and by repurposing the content for various social platforms they're able to spread their message to their users and demonstrate their brand values as well.
- Uber - Keep Ukraine Moving
Mobility vehicles: ride-hailing
Campaign geography: global
About the campaign:
In response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, a country in which Uber was present, Ukrainian Uber drivers started to use the app to help evacuate citizens in need. Uber stepped up to support these initiatives – opening up the platform for global donations to buy much-needed ambulances, and Uber itself committed to match donations up to $1M.
Within the scope of the campaign, Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Tomin documented some of the drivers making the perilous journeys to evacuate stranded Ukrainians, and published the series on Youtube.
The results of the campaign include over 100,000 trips and $5M in donations from global Uber users. Uber is involved in transporting key support personnel and transporting, evacuating, and conserving artwork and archives.
Why we love it:
While micromobility businesses are just that – businesses – Uber demonstrated leadership in a time of crisis, mobilizing their resources in order to support Ukrainians in times of need and generating support using their global platform.
Transportation is undeniably a part of critical infrastructure, and Uber was able to play a major role in making sure that their systems, which were already in place could be made use of. While the campaign was not profit-driven, it showed the brand's humanity, a value that likely won't be forgotten by many who have been impacted by the war in Ukraine.
- Turo - Find your drive
Mobility vehicles: car sharing
Geography: USA, UK, Australia
About the campaign:
Turo's “Find Your Drive” campaign highlights the unique pairing between person and car, matching a car's colour and “vibe” with a correspondingly dressed individual. The subtext communicates that your choice of vehicle is a direct embodiment of a person's style. Turo, which lets users choose from various vehicles (including fun, funky, and exclusive models), is saying that there is something that will suit everyone.
Why we love it:
The campaign is clever in its simplicity – no massive production budgets were required to convey the main message, which in this case is that whatever your personality and preference, there will be a car for hire that you’ll love.
These images could be repurposed for a variety of platforms, ranging from billboards to online content. The diversity in people photographed ensured that the campaign spoke to a diverse array of people, thus accessing a wider audience.
- Lime - sh*tty scooters
Mobility vehicles: electric scooters, e-bikes, e-mopeds
Campaign geography: London, Paris
About the campaign:
While electric scooter use is on the rise, they remain a point of contention in some cities more than in others. To address this concern, Lime created a series of print adverts showcasing some of the main negative opinions regarding electric scooters, with some of the posters reading “Sh*tty scooters!”, “Scooters really p*ss me off” and “These scooters are such a f*cking pain”.
The goal was to show the community that they were listening and that they were doing something to discourage bad behaviour, while also hoping to educate the public, their users, on respectful scooter use in the city.
Why we love it:
This campaign is eye-catching and makes waves thanks to its shock-value. More than that, it is also a simple yet highly effective way to address the concerns of society-at-large, while also subconsciously teaching their riders about scooter etiquette.
- Felyx mopeds – #felyxgreenfavorites and #felyxhotspots
Mobility vehicles: e-mopeds
Campaign geography: Rotterdam
About the campaign:
Felyx, an e-moped sharing platform present in The Netherlands and Belgium, launched a social media campaign making use of hashtags to showcase the places you can go with Felyx mopeds. Two hashtag campaigns have been launched, one being #FelyxGreenFavorites, the other #Felyxhotspots.
They hosted photoshoots to create a series of images demonstrating interesting destinations within a moped’s ride, as well as different ways to live a greener lifestyle by using Felyx mopeds – from enjoying nature to visiting plant shops.
Why we love it:
The social campaign simultaneously gives people ideas as to how to use the mopeds, and by combining it with environmental messages, they increase eco-conscious individuals’ likelihood of remembering to choose Felyx over other mobility options. By providing a variety of destinations, they’re able to get their users’ creative juices flowing, and thus boosting demand for their services. What’s more is that this is an incredibly simple campaign to execute, and provides social media content – something your brand requires anyway.
Shared mobility marketing campaigns can be as unique as your brand
These examples show us that there are no rules when it comes to shared mobility marketing campaigns. Simple is often impactful, and the campaigns don't always have to be profit-driven. You can use your campaigns to promote your brand values and personality, thus attracting clients that are on the same wavelength. In the end, they'll become your most loyal customers.
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Is it a good time to start a car-sharing business? Absolutely.
The car-sharing market is booming – it's estimated to grow 20% every year and reach a $20 billion market value by 2032. That's nearly a sevenfold increase from 2022's $2.9 billion valuation.
Despite app-based vehicle sharing being a relatively new entrant in the mobility ecosystem, it has exploded in popularity. People have been quick to pick up on its convenience and ease of use, especially in urban centers where maintaining a private vehicle grows increasingly costly and bothersome.
This spells an opportunity for entrepreneurs keen to answer real mobility demand.
But what is car-sharing and how does it work? What does the business model look like? And what are the first steps for getting started?
Find the answers below.
What is car-sharing and how does it work?
Car-sharing is an app-based mobility service that allows individuals to rent vehicles on a short-term basis. With this service, users gain access to a fleet of vehicles which are typically stationed throughout a city, ensuring that there's always a car conveniently nearby.
The user's journey and benefits of car-sharing
Through an app on their smartphone, users can locate, book, and unlock the closest available vehicle, as well as pay for their journey automatically by adding payment details, thus providing a seamless experience and quick access to a car. Other common benefits for users include not having to worry about fuel or insurance, as those are included in the price.
Cities often encourage the use of shared mobility since it helps decongest streets, free up parking, and minimize the environmental impact of private vehicles on the city. Accordingly, public-private partnerships are common, conferring further benefits for users of this type of shared mobility: free parking, free use of bus lanes, and more.
How does car-sharing work: the business perspective
On the business side of things, the operator is responsible for ensuring that maintenance and logistical tasks for their fleet are taken care of.
This includes regular maintenance tasks, such as vehicle check-ups, repairs, fuel fill-ups, and cleaning. Also, if you have a free-floating model (where users can leave their cars anywhere), the operator should regularly relocate cars to optimal locations for continued user convenience and reliability.
Beyond deploying and maintaining their fleet, operators also oversee the smooth functioning of their mobility app, as well as take care of user verification, namely, ensuring that the people signing up are who they say they are and have valid driver licenses. Of course, like any other business, customer support and other responsibilities tied to running the operation are a given.
The car-sharing business model
So far, we have listed a lot of expenses – maintenance, management, insurance, IT. Add to this salaries, operational overheads, and buying or renting the fleet itself. How do businesses recoup all these expenses and turn a profit?
Note: Since car-sharing businesses operate at scale, they should aim to negotiate lower rates with service providers.
Car-sharing businesses make use of several revenue sources. First and foremost, customers are charged for the time/distance use of the car. Additionally, branding and cross-promotion partnerships (e.g. advertising on the car or the app) are often used to secure additional revenue. It may also be sensible to create membership or loyalty programs to ensure recurring revenue, by offering subscribers added benefits, such as access to premium cars or longer reservation times.
The aim is to have your cars on the road as much as possible, so enterprises typically focus on maximizing vehicle usage and revenue per vehicle. Finding success is about finding balance in a constantly changing landscape – having too few cars may lead to overbooking and dissatisfaction with lack of availability, whereas having too many will lead to inefficient use of resources.
How to start a car-sharing business
As with any business, launching a car-sharing project requires research, investment, development, and strategy. Let's take a look at each in turn.
1. Market research
When exploring opportunities for starting a car-sharing business, numerous factors must be considered.
Audience and demand
Understanding the demographics, preferences, and behaviors of your potential users is crucial. As is determining the level of demand. Some questions you should answer include:
- Who is my target audience – urban commuters, occasional travelers?
- What are their demographics? How should you communicate with them?
- What segment offers the most promise – B2C, B2B?
Identifying who's already operating in your area and why (or why not) can help you get a better grasp of what works and what doesn't. Some questions you should answer include:
- Who are my competitors – other car/ride-sharing businesses, public transportation?
- How can I differentiate my business from others?
- Has any previous similar business failed in this area – why?
Legal and logistical considerations
Determining whether there are any legal/practical barriers to launching your operations is a smart thing to do before you invest too much time and money into your project. Consider:
- What are the legal requirements for operating this type of business in your area?
- How will you handle insurance and liability issues for your fleet?
- How and where will you run your day-to-day operations? If you're thinking about going electric – does the area have the necessary infrastructure?
While answering these questions isn't necessarily a prerequisite for launching your business, dealing with them early on can save you a lot of headaches down the road.
How much capital do you need to launch a car-sharing business?
It depends most on whether you're planning to rent or buy vehicles for your fleet. While renting is more accessible in the short term, it will take a sizable bite out of your profit. Owning your vehicles is typically the preferred option, as this offers price stability, long-term cost efficiency, freedom of operations, and other benefits.
To get a ballpark estimate for the starting investment, you should add up the total price of cars (EUR 12,000-20,000 per vehicle), insurance, car-sharing software procurement and maintenance, as well as expected operational overhead for getting started. It may also be wise to put aside some funds for unexpected expenses such as repairs.
3. Development and launch strategy
Securing the vehicles and necessary permits can take a while, and you should account for this. During this time, you should put your plans into practice. Establish maintenance protocols and logistical plans for efficient fleet management. Implement user verification processes and responsive customer support for a secure and positive user experience.
As to the IT infrastructure, you can save a lot of resources by choosing a white-label IT solution to power your app and dramatically accelerate your time-to-market. Platforms like ATOM Mobility can equip your business with the app you need – all you have to do is customize it.
Speaking of customization, don't forget about branding. Create a compelling brand identity and plan for targeted launch and marketing campaigns to generate awareness the moment your business is ready for its first customers.
Your car-sharing business journey starts here
Now you know how to start a business in this industry – entering this thriving market demands a blend of user-centric strategies and astute business decisions. But the key to success is reliable partners that can guide you in the right direction.
Get in touch with ATOM Mobility to discover how you can power your new enterprise the smart way.
The shared mobility industry has experienced significant growth and transformation in 2023, with various segments such as ride-sharing, vehicle rental, and micro-mobility witnessing substantial changes.
From the rise of ride-hailing services to the increasing popularity of shared vehicles, the industry's landscape is evolving rapidly. This article presents 32 key statistics from 2023 that provide valuable insights into the current state and future prospects of the shared mobility sector, offering a comprehensive overview for industry stakeholders and observers.
General – Shared mobility industry
The global shared mobility market is expanding rapidly, projecting a substantial increase in revenues and ridership. By 2030, it is poised to double its share of urban transport journeys from 2023. Additionally, the number of individuals earning from shared mobility services is forecasted to rise notably.
In Europe, shared vehicle services demonstrate considerable growth, with an increase in multi-mobility users. At the same time, European cities are the strictest shared micromobility regulators, limiting the number of operators and implementing various rules.
- The shared mobility market worldwide revenue was projected to reach US$1.43T in 2023. Statista
- Shared mobility is expected to make up 7% of all urban transport journeys globally by 2030, up from 3% in 2023. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- The global shared mobility market size is expected to grow at a CAGR of 41.65% from 2023 until 2030. Shared Mobility Market Analysis Report
- More than nine million people were estimated to earn an income from shared mobility services in 2023, and the number is forecasted to grow to 16M by 2030. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- In the shared vehicles market, the number of users is expected to amount to 5.09B users by 2027. Statista
- The average revenue per user (ARPU) was expected to amount to US$180.90 in 2023. Statista
- In global comparison, most revenue from shared mobility is generated in China (US$358B in 2023). Statista
- Africa has the strongest income growth from shared mobility services: jobs are expected to increase by 113% from 2023 to 2030. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- Ride-hailing drivers typically earn above the minimum wage in Europe (+37% in Berlin and +91% in Tallinn) and above the wages for jobs with comparable skill levels in Africa (up to +130% in South Africa and Nigeria). Shared Mobility's Global Impact
Europe & UK
- There is a significant growth in the use of shared vehicle services, with a 221% increase recorded. Free Now report
- The number of multi-mobility users has also grown by 27%. Free Now report
- Comparing Q3 2022 and Q3 2023, shared mobility ridership is up 1%, and fleets are down 2%, meaning Total Vehicle Distance (TVD) slightly improved across the board. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Out of 32 European authorities that regulate shared micromobility operations, more than two-thirds have implemented rules on geofencing (26), parking (25), removal or repositioning of vehicles (25), fleet size limits (24), and fleet rebalancing and redistribution (22). POLIS report on How European Cities are regulating Shared Micromobility
- Around half of the European authorities limit the number of operators, demand insurance, set speed limits, specify conditions for vehicles and their maintenance, and have instructions for the end of operations. POLIS report on How European Cities are regulating Shared Micromobility
- Juniper Research has ranked Berlin as the leading smart city in Europe in 2023 thanks to its mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) app Jelbi, which incorporates public and private transport. Other cities in the European top five are London, Barcelona, Rome and Madrid. Cities Today
Shared car ridership has increased significantly, with notable upward trends in Q3 2023. The global ride-hailing market is also projected to witness substantial growth, with increased user numbers and an uptick in popularity over taxis in the United States. In Europe, German cities, led by Berlin, continue to dominate in total shared car ridership.
- Shared car ridership has grown by 22% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- The car-sharing market size was worth USD 2.9B in 2022 and is estimated to showcase around 20% CAGR from 2023 to 2032. Global Market Insights
- The biggest increase of car ridership in Europe in 2023 happened in Riga, thanks to the emergence of Bolt Drive. Antwerp saw the 2nd most growth due to the introduction of Miles Mobility Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- German cities continue to dominate the rankings for total ridership per city. In Berlin, there are 30% more shared cars on the streets than in 2022. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- The ride-hailing market worldwide is projected to grow by 6.97% (2023-2028), resulting in a market volume of US$215.70B in 2028. Statista
- Ride-hailing services were anticipated to hit a record number of users in 2023, with an additional 6.6M users in the US, representing a 10.1% increase and finally recouping its pandemic-era losses. Insider Intelligence
- In the United States, ride-hailing is reported to be used more frequently than taxis, with around a fifth of respondents being occasional users of ride-sharing services. Statista
Electric scooters and mopeds
Electric scooter (e-scooter) ridership has declined, although it remains the predominant shared mobility choice, constituting 42% of total ridership. Moped ridership in Europe has similarly decreased, influenced by exits of key market players.
E-scooters have emerged as an environmentally friendly alternative, with 10% of rides directly replacing car journeys. Citizen referendums in Paris and evolving regulations in Amsterdam reflect the dynamic landscape of the electric scooter and moped market.
- E-scooter ridership has fallen by 14% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023. That said, scooters are still the most popular shared mobility transport mode, with 42% total ridership. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Moped ridership in Europe has fallen by 28% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023 due to the departure of some players in key markets. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Electric scooter usage patterns show 10% of rides directly replace car journeys. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- Thus, e-scooters have contributed to a reduction of up to 120M car-kilometers traveled, helping to reduce car-related emissions by an estimated 30,000 tons of CO2e. Shared Mobility's Global Impact
- On 2 April 2023, Paris held a referendum on shared e-scooters, and 90% of voters gave their vote against renewing the contract of three shared micromobility companies to operate around 5,000 e-scooters each. CNBC
- In Amsterdam, moped ridership has grown by 22% despite new regulations on helmets being brought into effect. Q2 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
The global bike-sharing market shows significant growth. In Europe, station-based bikes have increased in popularity. Dockless bikes experienced an impressive surge as well, following the 2023 scooter ban in Paris. Overall, bike fleets and ridership are expanding across major European cities, contributing to a robust Trips/Vehicle/Day (TVD) ratio.
- The global bike-sharing market is projected to reach US$12.68 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 10.71% from 2023 to 2027. Statista
- Station-based bike ridership in Europe has grown by 11% from Q3 2022 to Q3 2023. Station-based bikes are the second most popular shared mobility transport mode, with 30% total ridership. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- After the 2023 scooter ban in Paris, dockless bikes have boomed 144%. Dockless bike ridership more than doubled YoY in September (x2.5) and October 2023 (x2.3). Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
- Fleets and ridership are growing across Europe, especially in cities like Paris, London,Copenhagen and Antwerp. The combined TVD of dockless and station-based bikes is a very healthy 2.9. Q3 2023 European Shared Mobility Index
Rolling into 2024
The shared mobility market continues to expand. With ride-sharing and micro-mobility playing pivotal roles, the future of shared mobility appears promising. The insights gathered from these statistics are crucial for understanding the shared mobility market's trajectory and its implications for the broader transportation ecosystem.
Let's make 2024 a year of shared mobility!