With cross-selling strategies gaining momentum in the telecom market, the time is ripe for telco organizations to draw on their vast store of existing customer statistics to hone in on, cater to, and anticipate their customers’ needs. With access to years of data on customer behavior and preferences, telco companies can create insightful customer profiles and enable finely-tuned cross-selling offers. Technological advances in automated data collection, management, storage, and analysis make this complex data now easier to use.
But it will take an ability to adapt to change, along with a healthy dose of courage and vision, for industry leaders to take the heat off new customer acquisition – which has for many years formed the backbone of telco’s sales strategy – and refocus their efforts on building deeper brand relationships with existing customers. Improving the customer experience and garnering customer loyalty – which is currently at a low – are part of this effort. According to a Bain & Company analysis of the U.S. telecommunications industry, “up to 60% of customers split their services across multiple providers for mobile phone, landline, TV, and internet services. For one telecom provider, convincing just 10% of those customers to switch one service from a competitor was worth up to $480 million in incremental annual revenue.”
Bain’s research helps prove that cross-selling offers some great advantages. Among the most important: increased customer dependence on the provider, which in turn reduces churn rates. For an industry often characterized by high volatility, this is no small benefit. A long-term commitment to a provider is hard-won and easily lost. But the more services a customer subscribes to, the more ties he or she has to that provider, and the more disruptive and strenuous it is to go with someone new.
Ultimately, cross-selling is designed to work in favor of the customer. As Steve Jobs said, “people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” Generally, customers purchase products and services to solve a problem or to fill a need. Cross-selling done right provides customers with the best solution to a problem that may otherwise seem very difficult to solve.
The key – and the major challenge – to any transition or campaign, of course, is to do it right. For telco organizations facing a steady rise in online sales, doing it right may mean prioritizing the real, live people in customer service. Those employees could well serve as brand ambassadors, and your best shot at establishing a positive personal relationship with an existing customer. This is where using data to anticipate individual customer needs and identify untapped opportunities comes in. The role customer service plays in the success or failure of cross-selling can’t be overstated.
To learn best practices for increasing customer engagement and raising the average revenue per user (ARPU), please watch the replay of our webinar, Increasing Telco Customer Engagement through Cross-Selling.
– Using sales intelligence to create customer profiles
– Identifying high-potential customers
– Leveraging predictive analytics for cross-selling
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