Cityscoot automates and personalizes SMS alerts for riders

Robin NICHOLS

4 min reading time

Banner with Cityscoot logo and quote from CTO

Cityscoot saves time and ensures reliable service by automating real-time SMS alerts to scooter riders

Who is Cityscoot?

Founded in 2013, Cityscoot provides self-service, electric scooters for rent in Paris.  Their mission is to create a more pleasant city environment by reducing traffic and noise pollution, while giving Parisians the chance to enjoy the outdoors.  A rider can locate, unlock and start a rental period for a scooter using Cityscoot’s mobile app.  When they’re done, they simply need to park it in a public space authorized for motorized two-wheelers in the Cityscoot Zone.Photo of Cityscoot employeesFor their service to function smoothly, Cityscoot needs to keep their clients up to date with their latest news, as well as information about their rental period and costs.  Although they could have opted to use push notifications via their mobile app, they decided that SMS was a more reliable way to make sure their important messages got read.

The challenge: automate and personalize transactional SMS for riders

The API integration was extremely simple, quick to implement, and it works very well.”

Blaise Rabaud, CTO at Cityscoot

“Before we used CALLR, we would send our SMS alerts manually,” explained Blaise Rabaud, CTO at Cityscoot. “This method was much too time-consuming and repetitive for our team – plus, we couldn’t send our texts as ‘Cityscoot,’ but had to use our own cellphone numbers.”  They went looking for an automated SMS technology, and discovered CALLR through Autolib, a similar service to Cityscoot but for car rentals.  “We were reassured to see CALLR working with someone well-known in our industry, so we tried them out,” explained Blaise.

“The API integration was extremely simple, quick to implement, and it works very well,” added Blaise. Today, Cityscoot sends anywhere from 1 to 100 SMS alerts to their riders each day via CALLR. They use these notifications to keep users up to date, like informing them of best practices for using their app.  They also remind a rider to end their rental period and avoid extra fees if they detect they’ve left a scooter immobile for a long time.  When a client receives an SMS, they see it as being sent by ‘Cityscoot,’ not a 10-digit French cellphone number. Messages also automatically include the rider’s first name, creating a more personalized experience for the customer.

Cityscoot decides to expand their use of CALLR for faster deliverability

In our industry, notifications need to arrive in a matter of seconds, not minutes – especially since our clients are billed by the minute.”

Blaise Rabaud, CTO at Cityscoot

“We’re really happy with CALLR’s service, so last month, we expanded our usage,” added Blaise.  He explained: “We’d been using other providers in addition to CALLR to send various kinds of SMS notifications, but we’d been having trouble with them – SMS were taking up to 10 minutes to be delivered.  In our industry, notifications need to arrive in a matter of seconds, not minutes – especially since our clients are billed by the minute.” Cityscoot decided to move all SMS activity to CALLR to ensure rapid, reliable service for their customers.  This includes automatically notifying all riders by SMS that their rental period has ended – including length of rental time and cost – as well as notifications to confirm a rental cancellation. Cityscoot has already sent more than 50,000 SMS with CALLR.

 The next step: SMS to work with third parties

Blaise also plans to make use of CALLR to centralize their communication with third parties. “Today, our system isn’t optimal – we use too many different tools to communicate with our partners.  We need to consolidate and make the process smoother.” He plans to use SMS via CALLR to make it quick and simple for scooter repair companies, for example, to coordinate a meeting.

Automated, contextualized and personalized notification system

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