Zimmer, CEO of Lyft has unveiled yet another innovative marketing tool to cement their share in an increasingly competitive market.
John Zimmer, CEO of Lyft, a ride shading application that he introduced last year that allows lift seekers to request a driver immediately and get a ride anywhere, has taken the next step in increasing decreasing the company’s market share through the introduction of a happy hour.
Just a few months ago Lyft totally revamped their method of earning payments from passengers, doing away with the slightly ponderous method of requesting donations and instead presenting the passenger with a more enticing rate under the label of “Prime Time Tips”.
Now John Zimmer has upset his major rival in the ride sharing business, Uber, by introducing what he describes as a happy hour, during which time passengers can travel for considerably reduced fares, sometimes as much as half, during the hours of the day which have been identified by Lyft as being chronic periods of slow demand.
Lyft will be introducing their happy-hour pricing to all rider sharers from next week onwards.
Discussing the change in pricing policy in a recent interview John Zimmer confessed that as the company began to recognize a settled picture in their pricing policy began to realize that one of the problems with the “surge pricing” policy that they had instigated was that it had begun to develop a definite trait towards rising prices, with those participating in the scheme not always enjoying a reasonable return for the time that they had made available to pick up passengers.
With the introduction of the happy hour scheme, Lyft’s are sure that they will be able to draw in more customers when demand is low, typically between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., with demand began to pick up again around 5 p.m. During these periods when there are fewer passengers around, fares are now going to be dropping at rates between 10% and 50%, which Zimmer hopes will help drivers book more fares.
Zimmer went on to point out that Lyft’s tarriffs will need to be significantly higher during the “prime time, ” hours when there are generally more ride requests than drivers available to take them up, what’s going on to add that, at Lyft, the highest possible prime-time fare is set at a level of 200% the normal rate.
“With the introduction of happy hour, Lyft will be the most affordable option for passengers over any 24 hour period, ” Zimmer summed up.
John Zimmer graduated at Cornell University School of Hotel Administration. It was during his time at Cornell that Zimmer began to see the advantages of a rideshare program when he was looking for rides home during college breaks school breaks, where he recalls seeing all of these empty seats.
After completing college, John began his professional career working as an analyst in the real estate finance department at Lehman Brothers in New York City, having the good sense or good timing to leave the brokerage company three months before they declared bankruptcy
In the meantime John Zimmer had hooked up with Logan Green who was working on a ridesharing concept similar to the one which had interested Zimmer in his student days.
In 2007, Green and Zimmer launched the first version of the rideshare program at Cornell University, which in the space of six months, had succeeded in signing up 20% of the entire student body.
By April 2012, before being sold to Enterprise Holdings of St. Louis, Zimride had succeeded in putting together close to 30, 000 car pools, whose users had travelled over 100 million miles along the way, saving more than $50 million in the process.