Big data initiatives, based on well planned strategies, are set to lead the revenue growth and improved profitability that operator core services are currently lacking. This is nothing new. But it’s not only about new revenues, more importantly it’s about reinventing how they do business and exploit their “new oil”: data.
The development of new business models and the extensions to new markets like advertising and business insights represent, in my opinion, not only a mandatory transformation but also a significant high margin revenue opportunity.
By combining network information with subscriber profiles, operators have in their hands unique insights that allow real time service delivery and supply operational business knowledge, which can be used to improve customer experience and relationships and also help other businesses act upon their customer insights.
There are two areas in particular which have significant potential: improving advertising effectiveness and leveraging specific business insights.
How to make advertising more effective
According to recent global market research conducted by Nokia, consumers experience frustration when “targeted” ads are just not relevant: more than 1 out of 3 respondents claim that they want to receive ads when they are relevant to their needs, and nearly every second respondent would be willing to receive more mobile ads in exchange for a reward. Operators can take advantage of this opportunity by generating analytics that can be used by advertisers to better address their potential customers and avoid irrelevant and intrusive ads, whether they’re part of a mobile advertising campaign or appearing in real-time digital billboards (You can read more about Nokia Ad Analytics here and Advertisers’ appetite for operator data set in Global Telecom’s Business Magazine, Nov/Dec 2015 , pg 64).
Another opportunity would be to establish a unique channel that combines personalized messaging capabilities (typical of one-to-one channels like email) with broad visibility (typical of top-of-the-funnel channel like display advertising). For example, combine a technology that creates new ad space in the form of a pop-under (in nearly any mobile web browsing session) with a user friendly graphical interface to makes it easy for users to interact with the operator. Then add analytics and you’ve created a direct channel for mobile inventory and for managing mobile user accounts! Subscribers can choose to opt in/out anytime, they can allow/deny what type of data can be used to improve relevance and, above all, they can take full control over their mobile accounts and connectivity experience in real-time. Users can explore new services, buy additional data plans and unsubscribe from undesired promotions with a click from the web browsing window.
There’s big business in crowd dynamics
Business insights is the second opportunity area, where Nokia is bringing exciting new applications for big data and analytics to several industries, such as retail and tourism.
Now, imagine you are the marketing manager of shopping mall and you see a decline in business volume. Traditional methods to gain insight on what is happening would typically aim at identifying the scope of the mall trading area, the frequency and duration of customer visits, and how the data compares to the mall’s competitors. And this would essentially be based on telephone and in-person surveys. Believe it or not, I was asked to provide my postal code at the store checkout twice during the last few days, and I was even using my customer loyalty card?!
Using anonymized network location data on a mass scale would provide much better location and actionable insight. Imagine taking advantage of a map featuring the visitor density to the mall based on their area of residence and how it changes over time. You can identify areas where marketing efforts could be increased and if there are any competing areas between shopping centers, which could benefit from more targeted efforts. The effectiveness of marketing strategies would increase dramatically if they factored in such insight.
Stay tuned to learn more about how Nokia can extract business intelligence from anonymized population mobility analytics and unlock the business potential of the connected world. Currently our solution is being piloted with operators and partners in several markets and we will get back to you on our crowd dynamics analytics capability and data marketplace eco-system soon.
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