As the rail industry prepares to enter a period of transformation with larger populations, technological disruption and a commitment to fighting climate change, rail companies will be fighting for market share.
Passenger rail is facing competition from companies like Uber and Lyft, along with bus companies which are offering rock-bottom rates and free wifi onboard. Freight rail will need to work hard to remain competitive in a world where Tesla has just released the all-electric Tesla Semi which is more cost-effective than diesel trucks and trains.
With these outside pressures, it’s easy to see why rail companies might be concerned about scaling over the next five years. Here are some ways rail companies can grow their market share:
Create a Culture of Innovation
We've seen it time and time again- companies that are hesitant to embrace technology and fail to be innovative are the ones that are left behind. Look at companies like Blockbuster, Kodak, Borders Books, Blackberry. All failed to innovate while competitors turned to DVDs, video streaming, digital photos, e-readers, and touchscreen phones.
In the rail industry, creating a culture of innovation is about hiring employees that are future-focused and embracing technologies like artificial intelligence, biotechnology, IoT, material science, and more.
Focus on Cost-Efficiencies
As passengers expect cheaper tickets and operating costs continue to rise, rail companies hoping to grow their market share will need to focus on being as cost-efficient as possible. This will mean they can be more focused on scaling and growing their business and implementing new technology.
One way to reduce operational costs is to switch to more efficient power sources. Diesel prices continue to fluctuate wildly, and non-renewable resources will only become more expensive as they become more difficult to extract. By switching to hybrid and renewable resources, rail companies can reduce reliance on the grid while cutting costs.
Create Passenger Convenience
These days, passengers expect their rail journey to be seamless from start to finish. That includes e-tickets, face scanning, wifi connectivity, faster journey times, smart cards, and personalised marketing through the use of big data. For many rail companies, this will also involve building better infrastructure and considering how to streamline the entire commuter experience- from the time passengers leave their front door until the time they arrive at their destination.
Rail companies need to be completely passenger-focused if they hope to avoid losing market share to their competitors.
Grow a Corporate Conscience
Consumers are increasingly wanting to know if the companies they use are good corporate citizens. Businesses with a corporate conscience focus on sustainable practices, care for their communities, and give to the less fortunate. Now is the time to consider whether your rail company is establishing a positive relationship customers by demonstrating activism and charitable affiliations.
These activities will set rail companies apart from competitors, and motivate like-minded passengers to use their services.
Consumers are more savvy and knowledgeable than they’ve ever been before. That means it’s crucial for rail companies to differentiate themselves. The tips above will help your company stand out from the crowd, so you can grow your market share in the next five years and avoid being left behind.
If you’re hoping to grow your market share, get in touch today to learn how our power solutions can help you gain a competitive edge.