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Next-generation customer analytics enable mobile carriers to make sense of—and profit from—a treasure trove of big data.
Current analytics and marketing practices are falling short in helping telecommunications companies combat churn and declining revenue per user. Big data, accessible in real time, presents new ways to reverse the slide and boost profitability. The benefits of big data and next-generation analytics, however, are more expansive than improved customer relationship management.
In particular, mobile carriers are in a prime position to monetize rich supplies of customer information—while being mindful of legal and privacy issues. As data assets are transformed into new revenue streams, next-generation analytics will become integral to high performance.
This external point of view looks at the evolution of customer analytics in the telecommunications industry (and in particular in the wireless segment); the importance of a 360 degree view of the customer that incorporates a variety of internal and external data; and the holistic set of capabilities required to help turn big data into insights that can improve customer relationships and hold the promise for new sources of revenue.
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Today’s customers have a seemingly endless supply of information at their fingertips. Smartphones, for example, enable much faster access to brand, product and price-comparison information. As a result, companies in multiple industries are having difficulty attracting and retaining customers. Accenture’s 2011 global consumer survey shows that switching, or churn, is particularly high in the communications industry. Consumers in emerging markets are more likely to switch brands than those in mature markets.
The big problem for mobile carriers is the vast amount of detail about new behaviors is largely opaque to them. With voice usage, they could track call length, who’s calling whom and more, but the data sphere remains unknown terrain. Visibility into customer behavior is declining as the data sphere eclipses the voice sphere.
Opportunities are appearing due to the plethora of big data and advanced analytics. New tools provide detailed clickstream usage in real time by location. It’s as if an immense sphere of data has suddenly been removed from a dark shadow and exposed in the full detail to the light of day.
Operators hold a treasure trove of customer-behavior data, and there is gold in big data. Next-generation analytics can help mobile operators mine and refine the value of this new economic asset. The race is on to collect as many details as possible and mobile network operators are in a prime position to know the most.
Mobile operators need to see this as a crucial time of opportunity. Operators are in prime position to win the battle for customers and create additional revenue streams. Information services evolve at great speed, and the winners typically are those that are fastest to market. The most innovative mobile network operators will begin now to find ways to turn big data into big assets. The wealth of new information assets will lead to next-generation customer service, new products and even entirely new business models aligned with high performance.
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May 1, 2012
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