HONG KONG: A/B testing, experiential and a heavy focus on localization helped Uber grow its brand presence aggressively from nine cars serving Hong Kong to more than 10,000 in just two years.

Kenneth She, Uber's Head of Operations for Hong Kong, outlined to the recent ClickZ conference held in Hong Kong how A/B testing to locally optimize its marketing has been "the core" to the ride-hailing app's expansion in the city. (For more , read Warc's exclusive report: Uber goes big with A/B testing, localization and experiential marketing.)

Thus, Uber A/B tests its product and campaigns in Hong Kong more than 20 times a week, adding up to more than 1000 A/B tests annually – in both Cantonese and English.

As part of its brand awareness efforts, Uber used its massive amount of data on Hong Kong's travel behaviours to activate rider bases in untapped suburbs. Once new riders took advantage of a free ride, Uber delved into data on their subsequent behaviour and used it to shape personalised marketing efforts.

"For example, how many people have stopped taking a ride after the campaign? How many have increased their trips per week after the campaign? Have these people started to have more trips during peak hours? Then we're able to target email and promotions according to the analysis that we've done. And all of these are based on geo-targeting," She said.

The company is also delivering experiential campaigns in the city, including recent promotions involving Pokémon Go, as well as a partnership that delivered new Xiaomi phones on demand via its app and sold 500 notepads in a two mile Uber journey.

Brand partnerships with an experiential emphasis will be a priority for Uber moving forward.

"We're increasingly focusing on how to partner with companies, how to grow their business, how to grow their business with our business, and how to make the whole thing more fun," She said.

Data sourced from Warc