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Building a Driver App

Goal  To better suit passengers' and drivers' needs, Lyft needed to split its app into two — and achieve nearly 100% adoption. 

Role  I served as the lead writer on naming, UX, and marketing content.

Results We quickly achieved 80% adoption, and continued to grow.

 
 

Until 2017, features for both drivers and passengers got cozy in the same Lyft app. Great for adoption, not so great for little things like product design and the app's size. We decided to split the Lyft app into two—a major undertaking.

If Lyft drivers didn't adopt their new standalone app, they wouldn't be able to make money on the road, and Lyft would be undersupplied, leaving passengers stranded. Our driver audience also tends not to be very tech-savvy or speak English as their first language. "You can download the app over data instead of wifi" wouldn't quite click. 

I stepped up to the plate as lead writer for the entire project, pulling from my prior experience as a driver-facing, knowledge base, and product writer. While nearly every team at Lyft contributed in some way, I worked most closely with the lead Product Marketing Manager, Product Manager, and Designer to complete: 

  • A naming exercise, including user testing and usage guidelines for the chosen name

  • In-app alerts for the passenger, driver, and beta apps

  • Go-to-market plan communications, including emails, blog posts, texts, and push notifications

The launch went off without a hitch, thanks to the project leads' rock-solid planning and communication. Over 80% of drivers quickly downloaded the new app, and the team had a robust plan in place to convert the remaining 20% through additional sends and incentives.