Author: Jessica Lamore
Lamore Marketing's client, Victory Info Services, was featured in this issue of The CCA Voice with 4 Tips to Build Loyalty Through Mobile Apps, written by Mark Burns, VP of Business Development and General Manger of Victory.
4 Tips to Build Loyalty Through Mobile Apps
Wireless carriers spend billions of dollars each year on marketing campaigns to obtain new subscribers, yet only a fraction of that is spent on strategies to retain them. Although all wireless carriers recognize the importance of customer loyalty and increased lifetime revenue per subscriber, very few take advantage of the unique opportunity to build rapport with subscribers through the very same devices and service they are providing. Ironically, even in the communications industry, the challenge lies in communication itself.
Why is communication a challenge? A mobile device has become one of the most personal items that one owns. In fact, according to Pew Research Center, 83 percent of 18-29 years olds go to bed with theirs. However, because of the device is so accessible, it can also feel intrusive. The question becomes: How do you communicate with your customers regularly through their mobile devices without violating their personal space? The answer: Let them come to you!
Apps work, and it is for that reason the mobile app industry is growing exponentially with currently over a million apps in the market. Not only does a well-designed app help build relationships and loyalty with users, it opens doors to opportunities to offer more to customers. Let’s look at some tips for creating an app.
- Gather Data on Subscribers
One of the reasons many subscribers choose Tier 2 and 3 wireless providers is the personalization they receive. Many consumers are willing to participate in surveys if told the reward is improved services, promotions, and personalized features relative to their interests. Gathering data on subscribers’ lifestyle choices should be a top priority in every carrier’s marketing plan. And, a simple “Happy Birthday” message can do wonders.
- Partner Up to Offer More
By using the collected data, carriers can partner with local businesses to offer deals relevant to the subscriber’s interests. Working with local health clubs, restaurants and other businesses can give subscribers a unique, personalized service not offered by any other provider, and also give the carrier an opportunity for revenue sharing.
- Provide Valuable Content
Every time the user opens the branded app, they are being exposed to the carrier’s brand. Therefore, it is smart to include a variety of features in the app to encourage subscribers to use it more frequently and for longer durations. Features can include:
- Deals. For example, before Mother’s day carriers can partner up with a local florist to offer deals to subscribers with a one-click ordering system loaded on the app. The “Featured Deals” icon changes with whatever is relevant at the time.
- Local Content. Over half of searches conducted on mobile devices are from users looking for local businesses (78 percent of those searches result in a purchase, and 73% of those purchases are made in-store, according to the 2014 Local Search Study from Neustar Localeze). Make it easier for your subscribers to find what they’re looking for by listing local businesses directly on the app.
Medical Apps. With overcrowded health care facilities and extended wait times, more and more people are looking for an alternative to the doctor’s office. A recent policy brief on mobile health by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, published in the Health Affairs journal, predicts by 2018, “half of the 3.4 billion mobile device users worldwide will download a health app.”
Roadside Assistance. With roadside on your branded app, subscribers can easily connect directly to their roadside provider.
- Get Subscribers to Use it
Preload your app on the home screen of all devices for new activations and upgrades. For existing customers, offer incentives like “download our new app and be automatically entered in a drawing to win…”.
In conclusion, recognize the value of apps not just for the app itself, but for the communications channel it creates and the image of your company it perpetuates. Your strategy is multi-pronged, with equal focus on adding new customers as well as delivering apps that can connect all customers to your company on a regular basis. That fosters the rapport necessary to serve lifetime customers.