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BLOG | JUL 1, 2020
3 Strategies Telcos Can Use to Thrive

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Jess Warrington
Jess Warrington

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Industry trends & insights
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The ways and channels in which the world communicates and stays productive is rapidly evolving. And as a telco operator, you may be feeling the need to reevaluate how you deliver your core services to keep up with these shifts in norms.

In this dynamic and tumultuous time for communications, most telcos have been able to successfully meet increased bandwidth demand on their networks, which has risen by 30% to 40% during the pandemic, according to a recent Fierce Telecom article.

In the current environment, you’ll need to calibrate a new equilibrium to build your recurring revenue streams, and find innovative new solutions to overcome the challenges telcos face today—while still delivering business-critical services to your customers.

It’s important to note that the companies that have achieved the greatest success in today’s business environment were further along in their digital transformation journey, noted by a 650 Group analyst in a Fierce Telecom article. The companies that had embraced digitization and automation and could adapt to contactless service have pulled ahead of the others.

It’s clear then that to continue to be successful, your telco business must adapt—fast. If you invest wisely and develop or onboard suitable offerings that simultaneously answer consumer demand and support tech innovation, you can grow your footprint, open your business up to new streams of revenue and ultimately drive increased average revenue per user (ARPU).

For telcos that fail to adapt, extinction could be imminent as they will find themselves threatened by new, agile service providers that are smaller yet rapidly growing. In this dynamic and ultra-competitive environment, it’s important to take the right steps to help your business thrive now and in the future. Here are three strategies to help you do just that, along with some additional ways to help you boost profitability in any market environment.

Lean in on your B2B services

Historically, most global telcos have prioritized capturing growth in the once-burgeoning consumer segment. However, the massively saturated mobile markets, price competition and reduced margins are putting B2C markets under intense pressure.

In stark contrast, the ever-increasing demand of small business and enterprise clients for end-to-end information and communication (ICT) services represents a notable growth opportunity. In particular, demand for IT services is gaining momentum as more businesses go the digital route.

Another factor to consider is customer churn. According to Aspect’s Consumer Experience Index Report, the telco industry experienced a high churn rate of 21% in 2018. However, Bain and Company reported that because demand has increased—some countries have experienced growth of 70% or more in network traffic in March 2020—the churn rate is likely to fall significantly during the pandemic.

However, it’s always a smart move for telcos to distinguish themselves from competitors by providing differentiated services to add more value to their customers now and in the future. Taking this approach will decrease the customer churn rate in any economic environment.

Diversify your product offerings

So, how can your telco business diversify its product portfolio? It starts with expanding your core offerings to enter new markets. Many telcos have already extended their portfolio to include IT products, solutions and services, either organically or through acquisitions and mergers, but they have often failed to fully integrate and leverage the combined hybrid portfolios.

The ever-demanding end user is looking for the latest and most innovative solutions to keep their teams productive, collaborative and secure. In addition to using advanced voice, text and data services to decrease customer churn, your telco business will need to offer a more robust catalog of business solutions that go above and beyond. For example, adding a broader range of products can drive more SIM card sales. As a case in point, T-Mobile is attaching IBM MaaS360 to manage and secure devices.

It’s important to equip your sales teams with a full suite of products that are core to your business customers’ operations. This will create more value in the market and help your telco business thrive during upturns and downswings in the economy. No matter what you offer, the goal is the same: Make sure you can provide more businesses with essential services.

Increase profitability in any market environment

Here are some additional ways to ensure your profitability continues to increase in any type of market, both in the short and long term:

  • Transform your B2B buying experience to subscription-based selling to support increased SaaS demands and enable upsell and cross-sell motions

  • Ramp up digital delivery of solutions and services to adjust for remote selling and buying now and in the future

  • Drive operational efficiencies through automation to ensure your profits are scaling as your revenue grows

Having an automated, intelligent business platform will be essential to free up valuable resources that can drive growth for your business on all fronts.

Deliver better customer service

Another way to keep your business accelerating under any market condition is to keep your customers happy. Responsive customer service will continue to make or break companies' reputations and bottom lines. How telcos handle service disruptions and customer dissatisfaction will play an even greater role in loyalty—or the lack thereof. Customers expect a swift response, whether they tag the company accounts on social media or engage through a live chat with customer service.

Improving customer service and decreasing customer churn requires your organization to offer easily accessible and helpful support to customers in all situations (in addition to providing multiple solutions). Investing in secure solutions that allow you to reduce overhead and reallocate resources and capital to activities and efforts that enhance customer service will be the order of the day.

As you start taking the steps needed to implement these necessary changes, CloudBlue is here to help. But no matter where you are in your journey, you can reach us at together@cloudblue.com to answer any questions you may have.

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