By: Tim Young
ommunications service providers, particularly in the mobile space, are doing a delicate bit of tightrope-walking as of late. On one hand, the all-you-can-eat model of data usage has proven to be a bit of a disaster, sending usage spiraling out of control and triggering massive backlash when CSPs have to engage in the inevitable dial-back of data usage.
Which leads to the problem that exists on the other hand: bandwidth caps can be jarring for customers, and can end in all sorts of public relations (PR) nightmares for carriers.
Both the unlimited model and the draconian bandwidth cap model run into problems because they make certain assumptions about what consumers want and in what form they want it. But, of course, there is a third way. I touched on this a little in my July issue feature on service tiers, but tiers are only the beginning. There is a universe of possibilities available to CSPs who can find the right formula for making services a touch more personal.
Personalization isn't just a nice-to-have. It can be a useful tool in reducing churn while ALSO addressing problematic user behavior. It's a kinder gentler face for usage tiers and bandwidth throttling. Moreover, itâ€™s a key tool for customer retention once the honeymoon of massive and widespread growth abates.
attention to retaining their customers â€“ particularly those that are loyal and profitable,"says Teresa Cottam, Research and Publications Director at Telesperience, an independent communications IT analyst firm. However, Cottam notes that these efforts are clearly falling short, as customer satisfaction numbers border on the appalling for many carriers. In a recent study, Telesperience, â€śfound 9 out of 10 customers currently feel that their needs are not being met by their operator, and this is creating frustration and churn,â€ť which both translate to discrete costs that are incurred by the CSP in the form of either CRM costs or costs associated with acquiring new customers.