After a short stint in management consulting, I realized that technology and communication are the future. I joined Amdocs almost 14 years ago as a business analyst and never looked back.
Soon afterward, I moved to the customer business group for EMEA where I handled pre-sales and sales processes. I worked closely with our clients to improve their customer experiences. Along the way, I learned a lot about our clients and their customers’ needs. Today, as head of product management for Amdocs Technology, I oversee all the products in the Amdocs digital suite.
I talk to our clients’ day in and day out. We discuss front-end development and customer experience. We explore new features we want to launch, how we can deploy them effectively, and what we can do to improve them. We can develop anything from a technological perspective. But what we put into the next release, how we manage customer expectations, and how we navigate regulations and security compliance must be in response to a multitude of market factors.
The key to success is to bridge technology and innovation with business objectives: How can we develop products to meet demands and drive profitability?
Shift the focus: What your customers are actually buying
We’re heading into an uncertain economy. To increase profitability, telco operators must understand what people are willing to pay for and pivot to meet the demand. Today’s consumers, especially the younger generations, don’t set their expectations based on who delivers the services. They have their standards and expect providers to meet them where they are.
Moreover, they don’t just compare your services with those in your category. They measure your brand against the experience they get from Amazon and like “hyperscalers”. They want personalized services from everyone, anywhere, at any time.
In the consumers' eyes, telcos aren’t selling devices or connectivity. They’re selling experiences. They must plug into broader consumer trends—not just those specific to communications.
Join the experience conversation
Selling experiences starts with how you reach your customers. Today’s consumers prefer to go online and buy directly from operators. To meet them where they are, you must adopt a digital-first strategy to serve customers via digital channels. That’s why leading providers are investing heavily in their digital infrastructures.
But online channels are only one piece of the puzzle. Consumers expect a fluid and seamless experience, whether they interact with brands online or offline. Therefore, you also need an omnichannel strategy to meet customers’ needs and deliver a personalized experience wherever the interactions may happen.
This consumer trend leads to another challenge: How do you create highly differentiated offers and deliver targeted experiences to meet the needs of increasingly granular and fragmented market segments?
Enable personalized experiences through secondary brands
Many operators, especially in the fragmented EU market, are launching secondary brands (e.g., Vodafone's TalkMobile and Voxi.)
These sub-brands target specific market segments, based on age or level of income, to deliver a relevant experience at lower costs through a digital-first strategy. The service packages are simpler but designed to address specific needs. This strategic approach will gain momentum as 5G technologies enable more possibilities for operators to differentiate their offerings. You can address market segments based on various criteria, such as quality of service (QoS,) bundling, service level agreements (SLA,) and levels of services (e.g., virtual reality, gaming services.)
So how can operators spin out sub-brands quickly and cost-effectively? The concept sounds good, but don’t you need to build the technology to support the different services?
Set the foundation for selling targeted experiences
The good news is that with the right technology as a solid foundation, you can spin off secondary brands quickly and cost-effectively to target specific customer segments. Here at Amdocs, we build the underlying systems and infrastructures that enable operators to launch secondary brands to respond to changing market conditions and consumer demands. Operators can use our technologies to deliver targeted services based on intent, profile information, customer preferences, behavioral analytics, social circles, and more. They can also gather data to understand why customers churn and reach out with new promotions.
Additionally, a robust backend infrastructure is critical for addressing consumers’ concerns over information security and complying with privacy regulations (e.g., GDPR, SOC.) It allows operators to earn customers’ trust through consent and promote the use of data for creating better experiences—a win-win situation.
Personalization and diversification: The keys to staying relevant
Market demand will evolve quickly in the next 3 to 5 years. Nobody knows what consumers may want in 6 months’ time. But providers can set the stage for success by implementing the capabilities and infrastructure they need to launch new brands, introduce innovative features, and create bundles at a drop of a hat to capitalize on all possibilities.
Consumers want a plug-and-play experience that allows them to access services all in one place. As such, the agility to integrate with partners and create ecosystems that enable diverse experiences will be more critical than ever.
These trends bring us back to what fascinates me every day when I go to work: How we distill the complexity of the latest technologies into simple, elegant, and relevant experiences that customers want, expect, and – get excited about!
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