Acquiring customers is one thing. Retaining them is another. Telecommunications companies today cannot expect to remain competitive without a growing base of loyal customers who continue to buy their products and services over time.
In a market where high customer churn rates are unfortunately commonplace, telecom companies need to figure out exactly what customers want — this is the first step toward improving your offerings and giving people a reason to stick with your brand over time.
Smooth Customer Service
Few things drive customers away from telecoms providers like experiencing repeated issues — and feeling like it’s difficult to reach customer service teams to get them solved.
Think of it this way: Just one instance of a customer getting frustrated having to navigate a long, complicated phone menu to reach a “real person” can sour that customer’s ultimate opinion of the company — perhaps even to the extent they’ll choose another provider when their contract is up.
As CMS Wire cites, a recent research study on the Digital Customer Experience (DCX) found that effective DCX can improve customer happiness, reduce costs and increase revenue. The DCX projects with the largest return on investment included:
- Customer-facing digital channels
- Automated customer-facing workflows
- Mobile-enabled customer interactions
So, telecoms companies absolutely must optimize their approach to customer service by providing flexible options for asking questions, seeking help and troubleshooting issues as they arise.
But there’s an even more proactive approach to optimizing customer service — one that occurs before people even have to reach out to customer service teams about a difficulty they’ve encountered. And that is troubleshooting, or preventing, those issues.
Some organizations are using data analytics to go way above and beyond in the customer service department — like British Telecom (BT), which partnered with analytics provider ThoughtSpot to infuse their customer portals with intuitive BI tools anyone at home can use to discover insights about their billing and usage anytime.
Better Prevention & Troubleshooting of Issues
Optimizing your company’s customer service experience is an important start. But the even more proactive option is to understand the issues people are having quickly and thoroughly enough to troubleshoot them immediately — or, ideally, prevent them from occurring altogether.
This means turning to the data to understand every step of the customer experience: What issues are people encountering, where in the funnel and why? Advanced data analytics platforms can provide employees across telecoms companies self-service access to data insights in seconds.
For instance, a marketing manager could use advanced marketing analytics to drill down into the nature of customer complaints. Taking note of these patterns is invaluable when it comes to figuring out how to circumvent problems before they exist — or fix existing problems as soon as possible.
When advanced data analytics are infused into company portals and shared workflows, everyone within a company can dig into data to find actionable insights. This ability for ad hoc analysis — coupled with the fact that artificial intelligence algorithms can also automatically pull insights that might have otherwise been missed — can help telecoms today improve their customer experience so as to improve retention rates and drive revenue.
Network Quality Where It Counts
As one telecoms expert writes for Forbes, “Many tools for testing network quality were designed for the era of voice and text, not high-speed Internet.”
Yes, it’s absolutely important to make sure customers have a cell signal; the technical basics will always be crucial to customer experience. But the shift toward video and high-speed internet have paved the way for new questions to take priority — like, “Am I having fun watching this video or feeling impatient and frustrated?”
The performance metrics of yesteryear are incapable of providing an accurate picture of the customer experience today; especially as it pertains to high-speed streaming and downloads. Network quality means more than the ability to make phone calls and send texts; it’s about figuring out what customers are prioritizing today and providing it well.
Customers want speedy and accessible customer service experiences, fewer usage issues and network quality where it counts — which requires telecoms to get a firm grasp on data and update how they’re measuring performance.