We recognize the impact that roadside can have on consumer brand perception and loyalty, so it is critical to maintain a tight feedback loop on the consumer experience. While the data about an event certainly tells part of the story, the most powerful tool we can use is the direct feedback from our consumers.
We are serious about our mission to help drivers get their days back on track after a breakdown. By fulfilling this promise we not only make a meaningful difference for drivers who are having a truly bad day, we also help our insurance and automotive clients build customer loyalty. We regularly conduct research with consumers to keep a pulse on the market, inform our product strategy, and support our clients’ marketing efforts. To help us understand how consumers respond to breakdowns, we surveyed several hundred drivers to tell us about their experience during a recent roadside event.
Based on consumer research we have found that consumers who use sponsored roadside support have a great affinity to their roadside provider. In fact, this can have a dramatic impact on NPS even for consumers who don’t take advantage of the benefit.
At Agero, we take pride in leveraging our network and systems to support consumers on the side of the road. We recognize that we have an opportunity to not just service but also delight our consumers, turning this unexpected and unfortunate event, into a loyalty building event for our clients. We regularly survey consumers to better understand their experience. Based on this data across millions of dispatches, we are able to establish a few actions that insurance and automotive roadside programs can take to help improve the experience of consumers.
At Agero, we recognize that it is critical to stay up to date with trends and technologies that impact roadside. One area of rapid change is the electric vehicle market. We have been carefully researching and analyzing this space in order to determine how to best to support it from a roadside perspective with a keen eye on maximizing the customer experience. The biggest challenge both in the adoption of electric vehicles and in roadside support is managing range anxiety and out-of-charge events.
At Agero we support some of the biggest brands in insurance and automotive and deliver peace of mind to more than 115 million consumers through roadside assistance programs. We take this responsibility seriously, and in order to do this well, we need to keep a pulse on what consumers expect and need in roadside. To this end, we regularly conduct comprehensive consumer research. Here are some of the key learnings from our most recent research:
With the season of road trips upon us as we head into the Memorial Day holiday - an increasingly busy road travel weekend - millions of Americans will be packing up their bags, their kids and their cars to head out on their first hurrah of the season.
But driver beware: despite the nice weather, late spring and early summer includes some of the highest risk travel months according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Based on our analysis of over 3.3 million client roadside service dispatches during the summer months over each of the last few years, we’re offering drivers a few tips for making their first summer journey a success rather than a disaster:
- Beware of overheating. You’re about 50% more likely to need roadside assistance for overheating in summer than in the winter, so don’t forget to check your coolant before you head out… particularly if you’re driving in the mountainous states (WY, ID, UT, WV, MT and CO), where our data shows the most calls for assistance with this issue.
- Check your battery. Northeasterners, you’ll more likely need a jump-start than the rest of the country, so check that battery and make sure electrical accessories, like chargers, are powered down and unplugged when you shut off your vehicle.
- Keep up to date on services. Want to feel the wind in your hair? Before you take the convertible that’s been sitting in the driveway for the last 6 months out for a spin, make sure you get it serviced – a majority of roadside requests cite vehicles as inoperable.
- Fuel up, charge up. If you’re in California, don’t forget to fuel up, and fuel up often – whether that’s with gas or electricity. Drivers in the Golden State are the most likely to call for assistance after running out of gas and second most likely to need an EV charge (behind Hawaii).
- Stay aware of surroundings. The good news? There’s little chance of you needing roadside help due to vandalism. That said, always put away valuables or take them with you when you leave your car unattended.
- Be sure to plan ahead. High volume traffic means delays and the temptation to take detours or backroads. Determine your potential routes before leaving the house and if you need to use your phone, pull over in a safe area before doing so. In a recent study, we found the top 10% of drivers that manipulate their phones (e.g., sending texts, or fiddling with GPS) are eight times more likely to crash than the bottom 10%.
Remember, if you need a tow, or simple roadside assistance such as a tire change, call your insurance carrier (if you have roadside coverage), or the contact number for your vehicle manufacturer’s roadside program.
*Data reflective of Agero client geographic footprint.
Just ten days ago, Punxsutawney Phil neglected to see his shadow and predicted an early spring. Days later, unseasonably warm temperatures permeated throughout the country, hot on the heels of the late January polar vortex weather pattern that caused near-record lows across the U.S. Can we count on Phil to bring spring soon? Perhaps, but more likely, our bouncing temperatures are indicative of a typically raucous late-winter season.
By combining Agero’s Accident Scene Management (ASM) processes with Agero’s Driver360® smartphone-based automatic crash detection algorithms, insurers are able to save up to $3 Billion of unnecessary costs while also improving the policyholder experience. In fact, this was the theme of a keynote address that Luis Quiroga, our VP of Product Strategy and Marketing, and I gave at the TU Automotive Connected Car Insurance show in Chicago this fall.
As countless new innovative disruptions extend to nearly every corner of our economy, now is the time for many industries, roadside services included, to transform themselves and fully embrace the digital business model. These disruptions—such as mobile apps à la Uber that provide instant response through easy-to-use technology—result in more competition, provide new choices and offer even greater convenience for clients and consumers, but pose a serious threat to those companies that fail to adapt.