Interview Transcript

Let’s fast-forward to 2014/2015 when you have Grab Car and Grab Taxi, how do you drive loyalty with the different types of drives you have?

When it comes to the loyalty, one thing that I already mentioned before is people drive for money. You want them to be loyal to you, there’s no real thing as loyalty in this business. They’re not going to die for you, they’re only going to work for money. What we use is we have to maintain a good income for them. We as a platform need to make sure that in one trip it’s really worth driving for them, or it’s got to be dynamic, like a short trip or long trip. In general, in average earning per day, it should be enough for them to maintain their daily earning expectations. Apart from the money side, then we need to give them a good community. Good community means you being a good listener. At the first stage of launching Grab Taxi in the market, we are trying to dominate the market by one-way communication. We give you money, you just drive. That’s it. It’s like lack of human touch, lack of relationship between the driver who is the backbone of the platform and the platform itself. I tried to create a community by using social media platforms. The first one that we used is Facebook. Actually, it’s the second one. The first one was Line group chat. Are you familiar with Line chat? Line chat is very popular in Thailand that people are using Line. Line is uncontrollable. You cannot control who is going to be in the group, who is adding who in the group, who’s saying what in the group. You cannot control the content. We’re looking for a better way for content management on this, which is Facebook group. At that time, Facebook page is similar.

You cannot prevent people to like your page. Facebook group is a closed group. You can search the group from the list, but you cannot automatically join, you need to be approved. We give questions to screen people to come into the group. The group is a space for the people to complain. At that time, there are no ears for the driver from the platform to hear about their pain and their needs, or their improvements that they request. I’m trying to create the space where they can throw everything in one place. Then developers or whoever are involved just go there and collect the feedback. Facebook group is not like a Facebook account. If they post, it’s going to go to the world. It’s not actually in the group. We can contain the impact. We can contain the damage, as well as we can remedy them, the person who needs help. That’s why we decided to use Facebook group. Then we started to expand that Facebook group into other activities, something like conditions program. We get the compliments from the customer or the users who use the service and they get impressed by the driver.

We announce that compliment in the group to everyone. People are more engaged to the group. They are becoming somebody in the group because they get to be announced. They get to be in the news and then we’re starting to do some CSR activities, like take them to the beach and get rid of some trash. Very traditional activity but something to get them to be on the news. We collaborate with the other external organizations that already provide the activity. We bring the driver to join them. They need audience, they have the activity, but they need audience. We just fulfilled that. It’s a win/win situation. We’re both, the organization and the platform, we both get the news out in the market. We use the news to announce back into a Facebook group to put people to be recognized. That’s one thing. Another thing is we use a clear path of career path. When I say this, I have to say that we’re not hiring these drivers as our own employee because they are the users in the platform. What we give them is, we give them a title. A title that means nothing to the outsiders, like non-Grab driver, but among Grab driver itself they become a VIP. We call a driver VIP and then if you can grow into CS VIP, which is a super VIP. We give them a career to grow. That’s how they want to convert their time to contribute into complete trip for the business and then to maintain in the platform and then to grow to be in the top and maintain to be at the top. That’s how we’re trying to create loyalty on the drivers’ side.

What does it mean to be a super VIP?

We segregate them in some few criteria, which is the number of trips that they have to make a month. The number of the average rating that they need to get from the customer and then the number of complaints that they should not exceed the limit from the customer. Then if you contribute more, then you are upgraded yourself from a normal member to be a VIP member. When you contribute even more than VIP, then you become a super VIP. When you become both, later one, we are adding special benefits, like signature benefits from Grab to them. Like they can get free tire car change. They need to buy a new tire, so they get a higher discount from SVIP and smaller discount for VIP and no discount for non-VIP. Something like that. It comes with non-monetary benefit.

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