Articles - Written by Arthur Hughes - 0 Comments
Reactivating Lost Cellular Phone Customers
12% — No longer needed the service
18% — Company no longer pays the bill
24% — Moved out of the coverage area
34% — Switched to the competition
12% — Other reasons.
- BellSouth did something that upset me.
- BellSouth wouldn’t issue a credit ($0.50) for a dropped call
- BellSouth gave free phones to new subscribers, but not to me
- BellSouth wouldn’t give me the current (free air) promotion
- I’m under contract with the other guys
- I moved and didn’t see the offer
- I lost the card they sent me.
- An active marketing database. The entire BellSouth effort was possible only because they maintained a database of current and former subscribers. They were able to do ad-hoc queries which enabled them to understand what their customers were doing and thinking, and to use this knowledge in planning their marketing strategy.
- Surveys and Focus Groups. Calling former customers, and setting up the focus groups was an excellent idea, which paid off in increased knowledge.
- Timing of the offer. Once BellSouth learned the secret of making the offer in the 11th month, the answer seems obvious. But it wasn’t obvious at all when they started.
- Testing on a small scale. How many companies with a million customers begin with a test mailing to 3,500? Not many. The bigger you are, the more likely you are to waste money on large-scale tests which often fail.
- Putting themselves in the customer’s shoes. The result of the testing was a genuine understanding of the customer’s thinking. Figuring out that the 11th month was the right month, knowing what offer to make, learning that dropped calls were important, all contributed to the success of the effort.Drawing intelligent conclusions based on financial analysis. Too many marketers would approach the reactivation problem with a single mass mailing. BellSouth didn’t do that at all. Each effort was carefully studied and measured. From what they learned, they tried to get inside the heads of the lapsed subscribers so as to figure out what they were thinking. The combination of the right offer, at the right time, based on careful testing, is certainly the hallmark of database marketing at its best.Arthur Middleton Hughes is Vice President of The Database Marketing Institute that does research and consulting for e-mail and database marketing companies. He would love to hear about your problems. Perhaps he could help. He can be reached at Arthur.firstname.lastname@example.org or 954 767 4558. His new book Strategic Database Marketing 4th Edition is due out from McGraw-Hill in 2011.
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