Big Data offers big potential for telecom vendors. According to a recent Tech Republic article, survey data from 2014 found that 75 percent of “new” subscribers to wireless carriers actually come from other providers that haven’t properly addressed their needs. The biggest need? Service issues that are resolved the first time—annual customer churn rates fluctuate between 10 and 67 percent based on this problem alone.
But tapping into Big Data could mean a shorter path between issue identification, resolution, and ultimately customer loyalty—provided telecommunications firms aren’t afraid to spend.
On The Rise
Reporting on a recent Infonetics Research survey, RCR Wireless notes that telecom providers “are expected to divert more spending toward Big Data and analytics solutions in an attempt to better understand and manage customer interactions.”
And while many providers have some familiarity with analytics tools as a way to monetize their consumer base, Shira Lavine—directing analyst for service and enablement at Infonetics — says that telecom companies are now interested “in a wider range of analytics use cases, including identifying next-best-action marketing opportunities, ascertaining a subscriber’s relative profitability, and enabling variable charging based on factors such as network conditions and customer value.”
In other words, there’s a shift away from analytics as a way to simply monetize customers—now, long-term value is the primary concern.
Better Signal Strength
Of course, there’s often a gap between the potential benefits of Big Data tools and actionable results. This is especially true when it comes to measuring and defining relationships between variables that are inherently outward-facing since human beings don’t always react the same way in identical circumstances. Different people may choose opposite paths when confronted by the same service scenario, and the same person may pick a new course of action based on variables beyond a company’s control.
To make best use of analytics tools, therefore, telecom providers must be choosy about where they spend and what results they look to measure. For example, it’s critical for providers to invest in event-driven analytics, which can analyze data in real time and produce useable results.
Why? Because it only takes one poor interaction with service personnel to dramatically increase the chance of customer churn. In addition, communications companies can’t afford to wait when it comes to analytics spend—if other providers start doing customer service right, average is no longer par for the course.
Telecom companies are poised to spend more on Big Data analytics; choosing the right solution could mean the difference between dropped contracts and long-term loyalty.