OLA Tapping All Possible Opportunity Through Effective Email Marketing

4 Min Read. |

olaAbout Ola Cabs  

Ola is India’s most popular mobile App for personal transportation. Ola cabs, started in January 2011 by two IIT alumnis Bhavish Aggarwal and Ankit Bhati. At present Ola cabs car rentals services are available across multiple tier 1 and tier 2 cities in India.

Business Objective

Ola cabs felicitate point-to-point services within a city across multiple rental options and hour-based car rental services or outstation travel. It makes use of a platform to ensure suitable, transparent and quick service fulfillment for the customer.

Strategy Adopted

Ola Cabs provides cab-booking services to customers but it does not own any cabs. Every driver on the Ola cab app is an entrepreneur on itself. They bring own car on to the platform. Ola takes a commission of 15 to 20 percent over all revenue that drivers make through the platform.

Ola Cabs  customer  pay  through Cash or Ola money (cashless  payment) by offering an in-app prepaid wallet which will allow customers to recharge their account through a credit card. Ola Cabs earns credit from each booking they send to driver partners. Ola Cabs allows customers to book on its website and even via a telephone number too. Ola App enables one touche ‘Taxi’ booking with ability to track a ride and share ride detail.

Ola cab adopted  email marketing strategy to engage customer

Last week when my friend was planning a trip to Mathura with  family, he was looking for various cab options as he didn’t want to drive. While doing so he just checks the Ola App for “Outstation” option. However, due to absence of enough information about the “Outstation” option on the app he didn’t make the booking, minutes after that, he received an email.



The email had detail explanation on how the “Outstation” option work. (Image credit – Marketing emails from OLA).  Now, that is called relevant email marketing.

Ola Cabs had launched an SMS and email marketing campaign targeting users and drivers. 
Similarly sometime back for few days my husband went to book Ola cab to go to the market but at last moments he used to abort the booking as the minimum was Rs. 100 for 4 km and the NCR49 code was not working any more. This time around he received another email from Ola that said, 50% discount on the ride if he book a cab in next 30 minute. (Image credit – Marketing emails from OLA) He immediately made a booking. This is another splendid example of how engaging with customers and relevant email can be of great help.

OLA3Result Achieved 

The effectiveness of email marketing increases significantly if it is well targeted. Customers don’t unsubscribe emails if they are assured that they will keep receiving relevant emails. As long as you keep sending such emails, they will be interested in your email and will remain your subscribers. No doubt, sender score which is an important factor of email deliverability is very high (>95) for every IPs through which OLA sends email.

But everything was not always well for OLA. While its prime focus was increasing its customer base, re-engaging was still a difficult thing. They understood it pretty early in the game that to be successful, they were required to encourage repeat customers to make multiple bookings. That was the time when they hired an agency, Nudgespot. They provided OLA with their insights on customer engagement which made email marketing much more specific and relevant. There was more than 100% increase in customers re-using OLA within a week. This is definitely a morale boosting number for any company.


Email Marketing is all about building relationships with customers. The way you do that is by giving them what they are looking for.

References – senderscore.org, nudgespot.com and digitialdefynd.com

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