Uber’s attempt to reclaim popularity after price rises

In this posting from the LinkedIn Agency Influencer program, Mo Works' Samantha Tran argues that the taxi-hailing app is too ingrained in our lives for us to give up on it.

If your name is Sam or some variation of Sam – like mine and many hundreds of thousands of Australians is – then you’ve already heard about Uber’s latest marketing tactic. Come to think of it, you probably have seen it floating around even if your name isn’t Sam.

It’s a damn smart campaign and one that has done particularly well with the support of social media.

We can’t credit everything to the marketing geniuses at Uber. My own initial experience with a similar tactic actually runs back to Boost Juice. Boost Juice still runs their What’s Your Name Game, which they have spent years refining and re-circulating. In the current iteration, you can visit their website, and they’ll capture your data, and you could claim a free Boost Juice on a chosen day of the year.

The difference with Uber’s campaign is its social focus. Within four hours of the campaign going live, not only had I registered myself thanks to the direct email marketing newsletter I had received from Uber, but I had six different friends tag me in Uber’s post or send me the link to register.

Funnily enough, one of them even suggested the campaign is perfect for my LinkedIn content.

The campaign offers all variations of Sam (Samantha, Samson, Samuel, Sammy, Samira – whatever the variation may be) up to $20 of credit towards an Uber ride every day for a week between the 21st of August to the 27th of August 2017. You just have to register your details on their landing page and download the app before the 18th of August.

By connecting back with their regular users, and enlisting “Sambassadors”, Uber is going to make thousands of Sam’s happier and proud to talk about Uber and their experience to their friends.

Mo Works’ Samantha Tram

The campaign has all the necessities: a really well-defined target audience, a unique aspect and hook that gets people talking, data capturing for future use, a clear way to calculate return on investment. And a budget to set it all off.

If you’ve followed Uber’s journey, you’ll know that their current profitability is questionable. It’s rumoured that fares would have to quadruple (source) for the company to prevent its own demise.

My personal opinion is that their heads are definitely screwed on right. They’re converting the masses into regular users with their clever marketing campaigns, and once people have shifted away from traditional taxis to Ubers, I imagine they’ll be able to continue to increase their prices because at that stage people simply won’t be able to remember they have other options.

It’s just like UberEATS. It was all fine and dandy and super exciting that we could have a trusted brand deliver to us. Then they introduced the $5 booking fee, and there was an obvious uproar. But you know what? People still use it.

Don’t get me wrong, besides cheaper fares there are other benefits to Uber – the main one being an improved customer journey. They’ve successfully identified the pain point of getting out the wallet, and physically having to pay up at the end of each trip. They’ve recruited and vetted safe cars and safe drivers. Plus, some Uber drivers are bona fide legends. You can view proof of that below.

Who knows? Maybe getting all the Sam’s onto the platform will be enough to skew profits…

Now if Uber could just extend the campaign to UberEATS please.

Samantha Tran is a business development executive for Mo Works 

This article is part of the LinkedIn Agency Influencer program. See more from the program by clicking on the banner below.


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