Top 5 lessons marketers can learn from Uber

Getting from A-B has never been easier! Starting out as a simple idea to an everyday problem, Uber addressed the needs of many commuters. Easily accessible, cheap and convenient transport to get you where you need to go. Since its inception in 2008, Uber has experienced exponential growth globally. Although the company’s route has had many bumps along the way, Uber is now an established household name. But what makes this company a great case study for marketers in 2021?

1. How are we seen?

A quick google search about Uber and you’re sure to find bags of negative press. Strong misconduct accusations from across the globe, shared stories via social media and endless litigation, almost completely derailed the rideshare company’s reputation. So what changed? Well, in short, everything from the top down! Changes to leadership, customer safety and ultimately accountability allowed Uber to slowly begin it’s rebuild. Lessons learnt over the finer details and regular reviews of customer perceptions are poignant lessons. As marketers, we think we may understand our customer’s needs but understanding their perception of our brand can be equally as valuable.  

2. Accessibility in the palm of your hand

Glued to your smartphone? I’m sure most of us are guilty of not giving situations our full attention. As smartphones have increased in popularity and accessibility, so have their countless functions. From shopping to talking to distant friends, these little gadgets are sure to be found in your pockets (unless you are reading this on your mobile at the moment). Uber has exploited this rise by adapting its approach to customers. Better safety features, updated offers from local cab firms and convenient cashless payment makes Uber an ideal app. These subtle and often unnoticed changes have supported Uber as our go to reliable travel companion. Without being mobile friendly and accessible it is clear that we are missing a trick! Taking time to understand how customers, at all stages of your funnel, interact with your company is invaluable. Seemingly simple, these should be core components of any marketing strategy.

3. A Powerful and Diverse Marketing Strategy

Uber makes a brilliant case for a diverse marketing strategy. But isn’t that obvious and simple? As marketers, we don’t need to be preached to about integrating multiple avenues of marketing communications, but we could garner some key lessons from Uber.

  • Making the most of early adopters: For new products or brands this is a great way to create testimonials, a loyal base of customers and onboard influencers. Uber and others have a great track record of this starting out approach.
  • Referral and Loyalty: Love a company and want something back? No problem! Uber executes brilliantly on codes and money off future rides for spreading the word about their product.
  • Keeping it local: Employing different marketing tactics depending on location and the audience they are targeting. For example, differentiating approaches for cities with higher congestion through two wheel options.
  • Partnerships: Long and short term partnerships can be mutually beneficial. Uber has demonstrated this brilliantly with their Hilton Loyalty program for hotel guests and customers

4. Same brand, different products

 Whether it’s Branson, at Virgin or Jobs, at Apple, different products under the same branding is nothing new. Uber has showcased this with Uber branded products. By utilising their transport models and careful targeting strategies, Uber has successfully built UberEats. A fast and reliable competitor to others, UberEats is a clever variation on its core product. Additionally, Uber Air, Uber Freight and Uber for Business are sure signs the company isn’t slowing down. The key takeaways here (particularly as we come clear of the pandemic) are that well constructed products can help your brand reach new customers.If only a small venture for your established brand, there has never been a better time to try that new product.  Even if only a thought to the future, meals delivered by drone would be pretty cool.

5. Diving into the Data

Masses of transport data may be more specific to Uber, but analytics are never far away from us marketers. Importantly, we know there are a great number of metrics to help us to see what is going on. However, being able to understand what’s going is where we find the true value of analytics. Uber teaches that using all the data possible to make connections may seem laborious but is often a missed opportunity. Refining the usefulness of your collected data and how you interpret it may be a great place to discover untapped growth potential

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