Posts tagged ‘convergys’

Cable Congress eBook: Driving the financial performance of IP services

When next generation IP services first debuted years ago they unleashed tremendous excitement – right up to the point where cable service providers and other service providers had to figure out how to bill for them. At the time, because legacy systems weren’t built to handle connectionless services, providers were forced to bill for IP services at flat rates.

Today, following the development of the Internet Protocol Detail Record (IPDR) standard and its incorporation into DOCSIS, the door has opened to usage-based billing for next generation services. In large part, the rapid advance toward IP profits has been led by the evolution of mediation systems with the capability to leverage the IPDR standard and retrieve data from large IP environments. In this new world, mediation is the strategic enabler for data integration between the network and OSS/BSS systems – and the tap that can open the floodgates on IP service profitability.

However, not all mediation systems are the same. Many in the industry believe that mediation does not always live up to the expectations set by the framers of IPDR. Too often, for example, the job of mediation for IPDR is parsed between different software solutions. Other times, a cable service provider may find itself managing multiple mediation solutions for IP and traditional services. Both scenarios lead to needless complexity, greater inefficiency, higher operating costs and lost profit opportunities. Cable service providers need a standard means of gathering data tied to consumer and commercial bandwidth consumption to support new Internet billing models and to eventually monetize their networks based on type and amount of traffic carried. They should demand a better approach to IPDR mediation that optimizes their investment in next generation networks and services. The hallmarks of such a solution

  • Scalability to handle a greater volume of records as data grows exponentially.
  • Flexibility to support billing and all other BSS functions, and to integrate with other vital disciplines such as business intelligence/predictive analytics, operations management and marketing.
  • Real-time actionable intelligence providing the ability to see into the network, optimize bandwidth management, and monetize every opportunity to drive new revenue streams from convergent IP services.

How Convergys and DigitalRoute are helping cable service providers to manage and monetize bandwidth
Cable service providers need a more advanced approach to BSS that improves bandwidth management and monetization. Together with partners DigitalRoute, Convergys is intensely focused on helping cable service providers leverage advanced BSS to meet these core business objectives and pursue new revenue opportunities.

Jan Karlsson, CEO at DigitalRoute, comments on the rapidly expanding uses for mediation:

“In addition to its familiar role of integrating data across multiple platforms to ensure timely, accurate billing, mediation plays an important part in ensuring efficient bandwidth management. Convergys Active Mediation powered by DigitalRoute, for example, keeps track of bandwidth and how it is used in a specific time period, essentially connecting bandwidth with a specific product and determining the financial value contributed.”

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Cable Congress eBook: Cable customers for life…

Cable customers for life: The smart approach to winning loyalty

In today’s race to win customers, cable companies are trapped in a contest where conventional approaches to resolving churn only put them farther behind the pack. What if it were possible to pull ahead of the competition and stay ahead, building an insurmountable lead in customer loyalty that leaves competitors in the dust?

The shift in how today’s cable market leaders treat customers is marked by a combination of personalization and service – a familiar goal much like the intimacy gained in a door-to-door salesperson’s face-to-face meeting with a customer. But there all similarity ends.

Now the “handshake” that seals the success of customer interactions is largely technology-based. Instead of ‘on the world’s doorsteps’, today’s competitive gateway is the intelligent backoffice, a sophisticated IT infrastructure that masterminds the realtime integration of billing data, business intelligence, predictive analytics and CRM to create an in-the-moment portrait of the customer: a concise view of his or her buying power, history, usage, personal preferences and likelihood to move up the value chain with future purchases.

This infrastructure, commonly called “Smart BSS,” empowers cable companies to “know” each customer and deliver a uniquely satisfying experience based on detailed insights into what has passed in the customer’s relationship with the cable company, and what will most likely come. Even more remarkably, because such systems deliver unprecedented scalability, they can perform the same miracle of intimacy across millions of customers and billions of transactions, responding to service needs proactively – even before the customer is aware of an issue – or creating customized service packages loaded with subtle feature variations defined by an individual’s known likes.

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Love and money

Is an appeal to emotion the key to keeping customers?

Love was in the air at the CTAM Europe EuroSummit in Malta last month.

UPC Broadband’s Doron Hacmon kicked off the event by exhorting cable operators that their key focus should be on making their customers fall in love with their service provider. By delivering on emotional touch-points such as “a feeling of home” or “making life simple” cable operators could win the affection and loyalty of their subscribers, rather than their grudging acceptance.

What price this love? Hacmon cited examples of products that could command a premium over substitutes that failed to deliver the same emotional connection: BMWs, he said, were more expensive than Audis, despite being essentially the same vehicle; Starbucks could charge a 50% premium on similar cups of milky coffee because their shops delivered a ‘feeling of home’ to customers. Apple Macs and iPhones could command double the price of functional, but unloved, Dell PCs and HTC phones and so on.

Cable, he suggested, could repeat the trick by appealing less to self-interested calculation (complex bundled offerings at a discounted price) and more to its ability to cater to customers’ emotional needs (staying at home, eco-consciousness, the desire to connect with others via the web and social media).

Other speakers tipped their hats to the love theme at various points throughout the event. Convergys’ Michelle Nowak said that cable operators needed to “look at their consumers as persons” and argued that “the better you serve your customer, the more they like you”. Industry veteran David Hulbert noted that cable operators had never been good at putting themselves in consumers’ shoes and observed that the key to success was to identify (and market to) to two or three things that were most important to those consumers.

So, as Tina Turner asked, what’s love got to do with it? In response to Hacmon’s presentation, those of a Gradgrind-ish persuasion might ask how this ‘love’ can be measured. They may, after musing further, come up with something along the lines of: “love can’t be measured, but churn can”.

If by ‘love’ we actually mean ‘marketing’ (in its totality), this might give a better sense of what cable operators need to do. This means, above all, attention to detail, responding to customers’ complaints swiftly, and delivering services flexibly in a way that meets the needs of those customers. However, cable operators know all this. It’s a version of a refrain (“We need to do more about customer care”) heard at every cable conference since time immemorial. There is nothing new in industry executives and observers noting cable’s less than perfect record in delivering customer care and its historical focus on technology and infrastructure rather than marketing.

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Become a Cable Congress Sponsor…

Sponsorship and Exhibition Opportunities Now Open

Following the huge success of Cable Congress 2012 which attracted over 850 senior-ranking delegates from over 35 countries representing the cable, content, technology and new media industries, we are delighted to open sponsorship and exhibition opportunities for 2013!

With Cable Congress attracting such a high-level of attendees each year, perception is everything. The Cable Congress team have a number of exclusive-to-one-brand sponsorship opportunities that guarantee maximum visibility and truly separate your brand from the competition.

Below is a list of just some of the sponsorship opportunities currently available:

  • Cable Congress Café Sponsorship
  • Espresso Sponsorship
  • Day 2 Drinks Reception
  • Delegate Networking Tool Sponsor
  • Internet Café Sponsorship
  • Speaker Lounge Sponsorship …

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