LAS VEGAS — ASA Automotive Systems is expanding the range of digital products available to its customers to include online customer-engagement tools developed by automotive repair services software provider Openbay Inc.
ASA Automotive and Openbay disclosed their partnership during the recent Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show in Las Vegas, where ASA launched a "digital division," designed to help independent tire and auto service dealers attract more online customers and retain them.
The partnership focuses on Openbay's "Otis" platform, an artificial-intelligence-based application designed to serve as a virtual automotive service adviser that interacts with vehicle owners 24/7 and draws on the knowledge and language of a service adviser.
"For tire and automotive service businesses, it's conversations that drive revenue growth," Hasan Askari, executive director of enterprise sales at ASA Automotive, said.
"By automating time-consuming tasks of providing quotes, delivering instant and personalized responses to customers, Openbay Otis will help service teams to save time and increase revenue, along with delivering an experience that meets the needs of the modern-day consumer."
Citing data from Gartner Inc., ASA Automotive said 85% of consumers are expected to engage with a business without interacting with another human being by 2020.
In addition, the research shows 60% of millennials already interact with businesses using virtual messaging platforms, with 70% reporting positive experiences.
Younger millennial and generation Z consumers, who represent over 69 million drivers, expect an instantaneous, personalized connection to their service provider and access to services, specific to their needs, ASA said.
"With the evolving customer journey and more reliance on online information sources and convenience, we plan to help secure a larger market share for our dealers with the Openbay partnership," Mr. Askari noted, adding that ASA expects to continue investing in new digital tools designed to drive consumers to the dealer operation.
Current ASA customers using the firm's TireMaster, TireMaster Enterprise, and TireMaster GTX software will be able to incorporate Openbay Otis and other features of the digital division, the company said. Pricing will depend on which features are selected.
"The automotive service industry has typically lagged other industries for the adoption of leading-edge technologies involved with online customer engagement," Openbay CEO Rob Infantino said.
"Adding the power of Openbay Otis will help dealers grow their automotive service revenue."
This is Openbay's second strategic partnership involving the Otis platform. Earlier it agreed to partner with Tireweb Marketing Pty. Ltd. to incorporate the Otis product into Tireweb's website solutions to provide a more personalized online experience.