Can Intelligent Data Fuel Next-Generation Telco Revenues?

Contextual, relevant data is intelligent data.

The integration of network and back-office data with front-office CRM applications and other information sources can empower CSPs with a 360-degree view of their customers’ needs and their business. Rather than simply having Big Data, CSPs will have intelligent data that sheds light on the lifetime value of each individual customer, along with their preferences, usage habits and more. Gathering this knowledge together, operators can effectively sell, design and launch complicated enterprise service orders, help marketing roll out more personalized campaigns and capitalize on other business opportunities.

OSS/BSS consolidation will only get CSPs halfway there though. Customer data might be centralized, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to leverage. Even when marketing and technology departments have consolidated data, that doesn’t mean the information is being used to support one another’s respective priorities. CMOs, CIOs and CTOs should all work together on shared campaigns. A customer experiencing connectivity issues or trying to download a movie on 3G won’t care about a top-up offer that arrives two hours late.

So once data is centralized, the next step is to build a responsive and agile environment.

SDNing the Right Message

There’s a lot of excitement in the air about software-defined networks (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV). Excitement… and investment. SNS Research estimates that investments in both SDN and NFV will reach around $5 billion by 2020. Most CSPs are hoping that these technologies can drive down both CAPEX and OPEX costs. Aside from cost reduction, however, there’s another important potential advantage to deploying SDN: agility.

Service from CSPs has to become context-aware. Mobile phones are no longer just talking and texting devices – they’re everything devices and everywhere devices. Consumers are using their phones for a vast array of different functions in a vast array of different environments. The mother shopping for clothes in a store and researching similar clothes on her phone at the same time is going to need a much different message than the teen who’s hunkered down for the night and watching “Game of Thrones” on his tablet.

Contextual, relevant data is intelligent data. SDN creates a network environment that can help achieve that goal, allowing for OSS/BSS to be more responsive than ever before. Without the constraints of physical hardware, networks can instantaneously adjust and adapt to a customer’s needs, while CMOs and CIOs/CTOs can analyze the constantly streaming sources of data that can unlock new revenue opportunities.

Of course, creating the environment that enables this kind of intelligent data is one thing. But reacting to it is quite another – which is why CSPs have also started to seriously think about automation.

If SDN and NFV can build the right environment for intelligent data, automation and analytics are the tools that CSPs need to integrate into their OSS/BSS to benefit from those investments. The Vanson Bourne-conducted research found that awareness is high amongst CMOs and CIOs/CTOs when it comes to the benefits of automated support systems:

    • 62 percent believe customer experience management would benefit
    • 60 percent believe quality of service management would benefit
    • 58 percent believe operations would benefit
    • 44 percent believe sales & marketing would benefit
    • 40 percent believe charging & billing would benefit

    In short, automation is seen as a high-value tool that could assist nearly every department in some capacity. This again goes back to leveraging consolidated OSS/BSS and data. By deploying automation in an SDN environment, marketing can create contextually relevant messages that build brand loyalty and communicate with customers in real time. Operations can ensure a seamless deployment of new services. Sales can present a new opportunity to a customer at exactly the right stage in the customer lifecycle. The opportunities here are virtually limitless, given that any offer could be amplified with strategic partnerships.


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