IRCTC to open itself to advertisers

FOR the first time in its 19 years, will make available its monthly potential audience of 120 million visitors  to advertisers and marketers.

Besides providing greatly improved and intuitive customer support by answering customer queries pertaining to all aspects of IRCTC services, AskDISHA, the world’s first ChatBot as a Service (CaaS), is now the vehicle with which IRCTC, for the first time in its 19 years, will make available its monthly potential audience of 120 million visitors to advertisers and marketers.
Just over seven weeks back, IRCTC.co.in — one of India’s most visited websites that has four million consumers visiting every day — launched AskDISHA. And in the 45 days since its launch, AskDISHA has resolved 2 million queries within split seconds each, and with zero downtime in spite of large concurrent audiences.
Ankush Sabharwal, founder & CEO – CoRover, said, “IRCTC’s AI-driven ChatBot AskDISHA, is hosted on our own technology platform. We are delighted that in just over 45 days, AskDISHA has proven to be extremely popular as a useful, relevant and resilient service with more than two million customer queries from a cross-section of IRCTC customers.”
“AskDISHA will also offer a large and growing captive audience to marketers who are pleased that for the first time in 19 years, IRCTC has decided to open its massive audiences to advertisers through AskDISHA. Already, we have received as many as 10,000 queries for advertising, including from brands in FMCG, Banking, Insurance, e-Commerce and Telecom sectors among others. This is a testimony to the powerful combination of the audiences on IRCTC’s website and the excellent capabilities and deliveries of AskDISHA, which is seen from the numbers.” Sabharwal said.
AskDISHA will help provide a smooth and useful bridge for brands, big and small, national and local, to advertise. “This will help drive the Nation’s growth agenda,” Sabharwal said, adding, “The advertisements could even be contextually targeted for greater usefulness for the end-user, and thereby, higher ROI and impact for advertisers.”
“For advertisers, we have the complete transparent dashboard to track and monitor the ad performance real time,” Sabharwal added.
So far, AskDISHA has resolved two million queries from customers in 186 countries. These were processed in an average of 0.5 seconds each, with 90 per cent accuracy and zero downtime with an average concurrent usage of 10000 active queries.
Sharing information on AskDISHA’s audience profile, Sabharwal said. “Of the two million queries resolved, 66.8 per cent were males and 33.2 per cent were females. 75 per cent of our total users were youth — in the age group of 18-35 years. 42.1 per cent accessed AskDISHA through mobile and 57.1 per cent through the desktop. Close to 40 per cent (39.3 per cent) of the two million users on AskDISHA were new visitors and 60.7 per cent were returning visitors, with each spending an average of two minutes on the ChatBot. There were 1,50,000 instances of feedback received; most of them were positive.”
“An audience of this profile would appeal to all the biggest marketers,” Sabharwal said, adding, “AskDISHA is likely to grow from a text-driven English service to include voice-enabled support soon, and in several regional languages too. Also, AskDISHA is likely to be integrated with the IRCTC Android App soon. Moreover, thanks to AI concepts, AskDISHA will continuously improve its knowledge and therefore, ability to answer newer questions with ever increasing efficiency. Thanks to these, the size of the audience using AskDISHA is expected to grow geometrically.”
“AskDISHA will take the stress out of travel bookings, and we are convinced it will help provide smooth travel experiences to every single Indian and foreign tourist and traveler on the great Indian Railways network,” Sabharwal said.
CoRover, the award-winning company, has created and designed AskDISHA, which it owns and is also hosting on its own technology platform, to deliver enriched customer satisfaction to IRCTC customers by providing quick answers with no hold or wait time. AskDISHA runs on the CoRover platform which is auto-scalable and secure.
CoRover has applied for a patent for ChatBot as a Service (CaaS)™ to be able to roll out such ChatBots on its award-winning platform. “In fact,” Manav Gandotra, COO CoRover, said, “We could even roll out the CoRover ChatBot on any travel network anywhere in the world.”

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