Tire giant Goodyears new 24-hour towing-service mobile application caters to stranded motorists who, empowered by being connected, demand fast roadside assistance.
Motorists who download the TOW365 app can receive round-the-clock towing to a nearby participating Goodyear tire and service center. No sign-up or membership fee is required and payment is made only when a vehicle is towed.
The goal of TOW365 is to help consumers get back on the road quickly and safely in the event of a vehicle breakdown with the help of Goodyear Tire & Service Network retailers, said Justin Metz, public relations and communications specialist at Goodyear, Akron, OH.
The TOW365 app simplifies the process by directly connecting drivers to towing assistance and providing the dispatcher with the vehicle's location, he said.
The app is an example of how the travel and transportation sectors have become one of the fastest adopters of mobile technology.
Customers who need towing assistance also can call 1-877-GYR4TOW to arrange a tow to the nearest participating Goodyear tire and service center.
The TOW365 app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
In addition to instantly connecting drivers with towing assistance, the app can also provide information on a vehicle's current location.
Once the vehicle has been towed, the tow fee is paid directly to the tire and service outlet dealer. There is no need to arrange payment with a tow truck driver.
The program covers all cars, light trucks, and SUVs at $39.99 for tows up to 10 miles. Tows over 10 miles cost $59.99, with an additional cost of $3.75 per mile for tows of more than 20 miles. Towing rates are the same, regardless of the day or time of call.
The app describes Goodyears tow rates as significantly lower than regular retail tow rates.
Although Goodyear was founded in 1898, the company is no stranger to mobile marketing. In the past few years, it has launched a mobile Web portal for its corporate print magazine Goodyear Go, and has conducted a mobile campaign to raise awareness in male drivers interested in premium-quality winter tires (see story).
Mr. Metz said the app was introduced with ease-of-use in mind.
Using the TOW365 app streamlines the towing process, he said.
There are no phone numbers to remember, and your vehicle information and location can be instantly provided to a dispatcher.
The app allows Goodyear to provide consumers with a needed service while driving traffic to its tire and service network retailers.
The apps rollout coincides with the arrival of the high-travel Independence Day holiday weekend in the United States.
Motorists using Goodyear's service pay only when they have a tow.
The idea is very customer centric, said Sheryl Kingstone, research director for Boston-based consulting firm Yankee Group. However, many customers already have AAA. If AAA doesn't keep up, this could persuade customers that prefer a mobile first experience to switch.
Again the goal is to look across the journey to add value, she said. It doesn't matter how old or new the company is. All companies must be agile and adapt.
Michael Barris is staff reporter with Mobile Marketer, New York.
Michael Barris is staff reporter on Mobile Marketer and Mobile Commerce Daily, New York.