February 24, 2016

A Revolution in Roadside Assistance!

You’re going to need us.

You’re going to need us. Apologies in advance, but eventually you’re going to find yourself with a flat tire, or trapped in your garage with a dead battery. Question is what’s your next move: dial around and wait for an auto club servicer to queue you up and get to you in a two-hour window? Or embrace the modern, simpler, faster way turn a bad day better: Urgent.ly.

Welcome to our public outpost where we’ll be talking about what we’re doing next, when we’re doing it and how it’s gonna make things great for anyone with a vehicle and for the folks looking to help them. At Urgent.ly (m.urgent.ly in your mobile browser and in the iPhone app store) we’re redefining the “assistance” in Roadside Assistance. It’s not just that we’re adding the “on demand” element, where we eliminate the need to dial and wait for a call center to track down help. We’re turning your phone into a remote control so at a glance your can see the nearest help, ping them with a tap and watch as they make their way to your door. Wow! We’ve been told by customers it’s kind of fun, actually, watching help arrive. We’ve heard “wow!” more than once - kind of like viewing Dick Tracy’s watch.  But I digress - the important thing is Urgent.ly’s taking the guesswork out of an otherwise lousy situation. No more waiting and wondering if and when a tow truck will arrive; everything is visible on your “remote.” By taking realtime data points including location of both the customer and service providers (within a tight radius), and feeding them to our proprietary matching engine we’re able make a connection in seconds and have help on the way in minutes. And that help comes from towing and roadside assistance professionals with whom we’ve developed personal relationships - not some anonymous contractors. The folks we’re working with are partners in Urgent.ly’s success – each is evaluated based on performance and reputation, along with a strong desire to be part of the modern way people expect to get things they need: through interaction with mobile Web and iPhone apps.

To do all that we’re equipping our partners (right now in the DC region, soon the whole country), with a mobile app beacon that instantly alerts them when a request comes in: “Help, my battery’s dead!.”  Next is a bit of competition for who grabs the request first. A minute later the customer is alerted “I’m on my way and will be there in 15 minutes.”  What’s next: We’ll be getting into more details on the Urgent.ly business, our nationwide rollout (sign up to be alerted when we reach your town!), and a bit about our adventures in helping people all over to fix a jam in a jiff. Thanks for following along, and while we hope you don’t need us anytime soon, we urgently urge you to remember our name when you do!