FREE NOW Activates Drivers and Reduces Ride Cancellations With In-App Messages and SMS from Braze

When FREE NOW wanted to increase driver retention and reduce ride cancellations, they accelerated their messaging strategy with Braze, leading to a 47% increase in driver activation, a 4.33% uptick in conversions with customers who attempted to cancel, and a 21% rise in bookings from lapsed users.

FREE NOW is Europe’s Super App for mobility. Next to ride hailing, FREE NOW also offers micro-mobility services such as eScooters, eBikes, eMopeds as well as car sharing. The company is the biggest multi-mobility provider in Europe with over 50 million users in more than 170 cities. FREE NOW aims to make urban mobility easier for passengers, drivers and communities, and to help cities move more freely.

When FREE NOW wanted to move away from one-off campaigns and toward creating automated communications for customers and drivers over a multi-step journey, they knew it was time to enhance their messaging strategy.

That’s when they took Braze for a test drive.

What Drives Drivers and Passengers?

FREE NOW’s key business goals for their messaging makeover were to drive:

  • More ride bookings and completed rides

  • Fewer cancellations

  • More ride supply

FREE NOW already had an incentive program called Quests—a powerful tool to engage drivers with bonus earnings for the trips they take. In each Quest, drivers can track their progress in real time when a bonus is available and are rewarded for completing a specified number of jobs within a certain time period.

However, FREE NOW drivers were unable to choose the type of Quest they’d like best. So, FREE NOW conducted an experiment based on the following question: Would drivers have a higher activation rate if they can choose their own quest?

Using Braze Simple Survey in-app messages (IAMs), which can be used to collect user attributes, insights and preferences, FREE NOW conducted a test, giving a control group of 50% of their drivers a predefined quest that came with an additional incentive and allowing the rest of the audience to choose their own quest.

Another of FREE NOW’s goals was to reduce cancellations from passengers. Using Canvas, the intuitive customer journey tool, FREE NOW tested a triggered in-app message in Italy that targeted relevant customers with custom incentives designed to reduce cancellations in connection with two-week trips.

Finally, FREE NOW tested a targeted email and SMS campaign offering vouchers to customers in France who downloaded the app but haven’t taken trips. To do this, they set up a Canvas and split the audience so the control group received no communications. The treatment group was split so one group would receive the offer via email and the other would receive SMS.

“You can’t make the most of your customer engagement efforts without testing and iteration. With Braze, we have been able to build out a robust experimentation program that looks at how our drivers and passengers respond to different campaigns and incentives. Those findings help us to provide a good experience for every user and improve our engagement and retention rates.”

Thomas Zimmermann
CMO at Free Now

Road Ready Results

After leveraging Braze for their campaigns, FREE NOW saw a 47% uptick in activation rates among drivers with new Quest options offered by IAM. And with better engaged drivers, they were able to provide passengers with increased supply in rides, more availability, shorter trip times and less surge pricing. By enabling their pre-cancellation IAM triggers, FREE NOW incentivizes customers to reconsider canceling rides, leading to a 4.33% boost in conversions among those that received a 30% offer and a 2.4% increase in conversions for those who received targeted incentives. Activating lapsed users with SMS drove a 33% rise in starting sessions and 21% increase in created bookings, which led to increased customer satisfaction and retention.

Final Thoughts

Bringing drivers and passengers together and getting them to the right destination requires great communication and even better timing. For FREE NOW, campaigns powered by Braze that offered incentives for both customers and service providers led to an improved overall user experience and higher conversion and retention rates.

Interested in learning more about how your brand can improve the journey for your customers? Check out how Grubhub keeps diners engaged with personalized emails.