It’s clear from the wealth of data available that there is huge untapped potential in the SME and enterprise market. The trouble is that an understanding of this opportunity doesn’t translate into a programme for action. Confronted with a wide range of options, too many mobile service providers opt for a big bang, high-risk approach that reduces their chances of success. They need to take action, but to do so with the least risk to their business. What should they do?
Analysing market potential and relevant data is, of course, of huge importance for helping to identify promising opportunities. At some point though, decisions have to be taken. Many mobile service providers have reviewed and understood the potential afforded by enterprise and SME markets – but, equally, many are unsure how they can play a role.
Until recently, many have simply offered dedicated service bundles – that is, a combination of voice, messaging and data, with a contract and device. But, BYOD makes devices less compelling (and a drain on costs), and bundles are simply composed of existing offers repacked for business users. In other words, there’s little extra value.
A true enterprise strategy demands more. It needs decisions to be taken about focus and then the willingness to implement the tactics required for success. There are many approaches that can be taken that can offer high value and create more enduring customer relationships, including:
· Enhanced connectivity with performance guarantees and SLA-backed metrics
· Value added services, such as Mobile UC, Mobile Call Recording and others
· Focus on specific verticals, such as healthcare or finance
· Focus on specific horizontals, such as SME, micro businesses or other segments
· Offering SaaS products, such as hosted security and storage
· Focus on Fixed-mobile convergence
All or a combination of the above are viable approaches but what matters is to select the approach that is most suitable for existing capabilities and the specific market served. It’s essential to avoid plans which go too far beyond existing capabilities and lead into unfamiliar territory. It’s a mistake to jump too far into the unknown – and such a leap is likely to increase the risk of failure, which could place the programme in jeopardy.
In our experience, simple, incremental steps work best. We’ve helped many operators build a comprehensive enterprise strategy but all have started by building on existing strengths and then adding new capabilities. For example, if there are existing, business specific bundles, then the easiest option is to add a further service option, such as a single incoming number and work groups to more effectively coordinate calls to a business between the employees.
The addition of other related functions, such as presence or absence then becomes much easier. Rather than a big bang, a step-by-step approach allows business customers to familiarise themselves with new offer while preparing for new functionality that can enhance stickiness.
This helps overcome difficulties in selling brand new service capabilities – an essential consideration – and provides a more graceful evolution path to richer offers. Most mobile service providers we meet are trying to determine the right enterprise strategy for them but too many opt for a revolutionary approach, which has much higher risks. It’s far easier, cheaper and less risky to start by leveraging existing capabilities and then build on these to extend the portfolio available to existing and potential customers.
If you want to know how to do this, quickly and easily, then why not talk to us? We’ll share our experience and show you how different mobile service providers have embarked on a successful journey to a richer, stickier enterprise offer.