Avis budget group email marketing

How a shift in email strategy drove audience engagement


Avis Budget Group (ABG) is a leading global provider of mobility solutions, operating three of the most recognized brands in the industry: Avis, Budget and Zipcar. Driving innovative change for more than 70 years, the organization currently has 11,000 locations spanning 180 countries.


ABG needed a reliable agency partner to create promotional emails for their Avis and Budget rental car brands. With new offers and deals regularly becoming available to both business and consumer audiences, executing quick creative turnaround times was especially crucial.


Strategy, Content Strategy, Email Design & Development, Copywriting, Email Analysis & Reporting, Content (Design, Copywriting)




Transcending our initial production role, Rhythm championed a more strategic approach to email communications.

In addition to offer-driven messaging, we created informative and meaningful content that helped Avis and Budget significantly improve engagement and build stronger customer connections.

Driving Results

With our strategic guidance and creative execution, Avis and Budget experienced significant increases in email open and engagement rates.


Increase in email open rates


Increase in email engagement

What’s The Deal?

In an industry that relies heavily upon offers, discounts and deals, promotional emails have long been a useful tool for Avis and Budget.

From the start, Rhythm helped to enhance the visual design of ABG’s emails and fine-tune the messaging.

Discounting The Brand

While promotional emails have their place, it’s important to give customers something more. When only presented with offers and discounts, audiences will naturally become accustomed to waiting for bigger and better deals. In the long run, the brand becomes unimportant and the offer is all that matters.

In ABG’s case, discounting the brand had resulted in emails with declining open and click-thru rates.

Rhythm suggested a different route.

Segmenting The Audience

We discovered that ABG was sending their emails to one giant audience list, regardless of prior individual engagement. Instead, Rhythm’s strategy team encouraged them to segment their email audience into distinct categories, enabling more targeted and timely communications.

As an example, depending on historical email engagement with Avis and Budget, recipients began receiving emails on either a weekly, monthly or quarterly basis. Those who had not opened emails for 6 months or more were placed onto their own list to be directly re-engaged with unique messaging.

Offering More Than Offers

To remind key audiences that Avis and Budget have more to offer than just offers, we started by creating a series of travel-focused email campaigns that were informative, helpful and entertaining.

From essential road trips to classic travel games for longer journeys, these emails provided both leisure and business audiences with something different—and gave them new reasons to open and engage with Avis and Budget emails in the future.

Reaching Out With Humor

Beyond creating more meaningful content, we also spearheaded re-engagement campaigns to connect with customers who hadn’t opened Avis or Budget emails in 6 months or more.

By reaching out to these individuals in humorous ways, we succeeded in improving open and click-thru rates.

Shining the Light on Dark Mode

One of the latest challenges for email marketers has been the arrival of “dark mode”, which swaps the typical white background and black text on emails for a predominantly dark background with contrasting text and graphics. The aesthetic promises less light emission and increased comfort when viewing devices at night — but it also disrupts existing email designs.

Rhythm helped Avis and Budget stay ahead of the curve by creating emails that tackled the challenge head on and enabled both brands to navigate around the issue.

Testing, Testing, One-Two

Rhythm also analyzed over 100 tests that took place over 12 months to gauge the performance of email subject lines, send times, content focus, CTAs and more.

Our findings helped guide the creation of new email messaging that better resonated with ABG’s different audiences.