This is about Marketing practices of organizations which have large captive databases but do not discriminate who they sell what to, relevant or irritating.
Does it bother you that your telecom operator keeps sending you texts as to what package you should buy and how that would benefit you? Most likely that almost all telecom users would answer in the affirmative to that one! Any time of the day or night, your phone ‘beeps’ and another ‘helpful suggestion’ arrives…. Half the time, you just press the delete button, once you have checked the sender ID. Have you ever wondered why these companies do it at such relentless and irritating frequency?
Well, the answer is most of the time, they can’t help it…. An unrelenting push for revenue forces their hand in exploring any and all avenues of promotion available to them. And what better way than to trawl their own captive databases and bombard them with messages? Add to the mix the pesky tele-callers and autodialers and you get a headache inducing barrage of promotional advice. That in a nutshell, makes up Marketing practices by Telecom Companies!
What should these organisations do to spare their consumers this pain? Help has been at hand for a number of years now and few smart organisations have embraced them as well. Software programs have come into the market which can sift through millions of data fields and make segments with common denominators. Predictive applications can foretell trends and future behavior, based on which these organisations can then tailor make products to suit these current needs and favorably direct future purchase and usage patterns. A big side effect to this seemingly capital intensive exercise is that customers are pleased that their operator is now giving them options which are relevant, and not irritating them unnecessarily.
For example, X-Fone observes customer Mr.Y receives a lot of incoming calls from overseas and specifically from a specific country. This fact would not jump out at them during routine monitoring as incoming calls are usually not chargeable. The Customer Usage Analysis software would specifically be analyzing customer behavior and would then group such customers together and throw up the result to the Marketing user. Accordingly, the user then identifies a product which offers deep discount on outgoing call rates to that country and promotes these packs to those customers, hoping the hitherto high call rates to that country was preventing outgoing calls there. Research shows that in most cases almost 30% adoption happens from these segmented target bases, compared to a measly 0.5% to 1% adoption rates on the earlier mass bombardment promotion patterns. Add to that the heightened customer satisfaction and reverse customer irritation, you have a sure winner in your hands!
All this begs a BIG question, why doesn’t every organisation who are into mass marketing adopt these policies if it is so easy? The truth is, it is neither easy nor cheap. Acquiring these software licences it is an extremely costly affair and you also need to have operators to conduct and monitor these activities, product managers to constantly design and modify their offerings and generate incremental revenues. Also the cost of these promotion channels like SMS, Telecalling, Autodialer etc. add to the overall cost, and thus many opt for the cheaper option of just promoting everything to everybody!
But like everything else in a developing and maturing world, hope floats…. More and more organisations are shopping around for such solutions, resulting in increased competition among software developers to develop more such softwares, detailed capabilities and reduced costs. Digital Marketing is the big thing now, customer footsteps are closely followed and patterns noted, only relevant promotions sent to the users.
So, it is prudent to expect that day is not far away, when you and I will only be told what we need as per what we have been indicating by our usage, and not random flooding of our inboxes!
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