SAN FRANCISCO –
Pulsar AI is a conversion automation tool that allows car dealerships to automate lead engagement by autonomously contacting, engaging, qualifying and following up with any lead “via natural, automated two-way conversations.”
In a news release, the company said that in response to challenges auto dealers are facing because of the coronavirus pandemic, it is offering its product to any U.S. dealer free of charge until June 30.
The company seeks to help dealers who spend a great deal of time answering e-mails and texts from potential customers.
Pulsar says it integrates with the dealership’s existing CRM, inventory management and DMS systems to answer every specific question that customers ask and follow up until they are engaged.
“So for example, if someone has a question, like ‘Is this car light blue or dark blue?’ their technology can answer that,” a communications representative told Auto Remarketing in an interview.
She continued, “Does this car have a sunroof or not? This technology can answer that.”
Pulsar says it automatically schedules customer appointments and test drives in the dealership CRM.
That feature, the company adds, is crucial during the current time of crisis when many dealers must fulfill test drives at customers’ homes.
Pulsar says it uses machine learning and natural language processing to improve the car buying and selling process for the dealership and the customer.
The company says one of its customers recently saw an immediate 22% increase in customer engagement and a 23% increase in the conversion of internet leads. Pulsar secured 26% of the total appointments at that dealership, and overall, 14% of customers came to the store with zero human involvement. Pulsar answered them, engaged them and brought them to the dealership.
In this challenging economic environment because of the coronavirus, Pulsar says its technology can help dealerships with processing 100% of all internet leads. That allows those dealerships to redeploy all or most of their BDC department, or business development center.
Pulsar said it will also provide dealerships with reengagement campaigns for previously lost leads at no cost to dealers through June.
Pulsar co-founder and chief operating officer Sopo Chkoidze told Auto Remarketing that the main reason the company decided to make its platform free for dealers through June is to “help them not go out of business.”
“We want them to still operate in this challenging time, because we do know that there is still demand for buying the vehicle,” Chkoidze said.
Chkoidze continued, “People are still researching different companies, different dealerships, different cars. Basically, there still is demand, but dealerships’ offices are closed.”
Pulsar founder and chief executive officer Dachi Choladze provided additional insight to Auto Remarketing on how the product works, first noting that the company started out in 2016 gearing toward financial companies before more recently expanding its services to auto dealers.
The company performed some lead engagement work for online marketplace, Shift, and Choladze said Pulsar created a model for Shift in which Pulsar’s AI answered 98.7% of customer questions or inquiries correctly.
He explained that when a customer inquiry comes to a dealer over the Web, Pulsar also receives the inquiry and replies back to the customer with a specific answer.
Choladze provided additional question examples, such as whether the vehicle has been involved in accidents, the number of previous owners of the vehicle, or whether the vehicle is a four-wheel-drive.
“We are able to answer all of those specific questions immediately,” Choladze said.
Choladze continued, “And then we have a call to action in our e-mails where we reach out to them, asking them would you like to schedule an appointment, what’s the best number to reach you, or would you like to schedule a test drive. We have this two-way conversation with the customer.”
Once the customer agrees on an appointment time, Pulsar schedules it automatically in the CRM and notifies the dealer. Choladze said many dealers do not process all of their leads because of lack of resources.
“So that is what we do, and that is an opportunity for cutting costs and being able to process leads with no human power,” Choladze said.