The Internet is changing. At least, the Internet as it is understood by large-scale companies and corporations from many different sectors (the banking and insurance sectors, or mobile phone companies).
They are all realising that the Internet will become ? if it is not already ? the main channel for communicating with and relating to their clients.
There are two – quite obvious – reasons for this:
- The Internet means using more costly channels like an active presence to perform a more commercially pre-active task.
- The Internet is the panacea for microsegmentation and the customisation of offers which will allow us to increase and improve our client ARPU (average revenue per user).
But to reach this stage, we need to turn our clients into online clients. This is no mean task because, to achieve this, we need to offer our clients (almost) the same kind of operations that we can perform from our actual offices, and the user experience must be exquisite.
But is that enough? or should we give the client a little push to register on our webpage?
4 clearly-effective proposals:
- Offline delivery of online incentive. In the store or branch, give a discount coupon with a discount or incentive for online registration or even force registration then and there seems like a good idea. Buying an iPod in an Apple store and receiving an e-mail shortly afterwards on the Blackberry giving us free song downloads for registering with the iTunes service produces a very powerful communicative effect.
- Reminder in all online contacts. Align all the channels and having a constant reminder from our branches and call centre of the benefits of performing the operation or query over the Internet (with internal incentives) may help to change habits.
- Online registration with incentives. Providing an incentive for registration from the actual web page with a draw or gift makes a lot of sense. How valuable is communicative closeness with an online client and the reduction of the costs of communications for a mobile phone client? Can?t we invest this value (or part of it) in offering clear incentives to register online? There is an overall lack of aggressiveness in this sense. Probably because the area responsible for the webpage does not have much margin of action in this type of policy. But we are sure that it won?t be long before it does.
Movistar invites us to take part in a draw for 100 iPodTouch, just for registering on its Client Channel.
- Exclusive online offers. We surfers are starting to get used to the idea that the Internet needs to be a more efficient channel, because service costs are a lot lower and so we should get large discounts and exclusive offers if products or services are purchased online. Although it may lead to clear conflicts between channels, we will be seeing more and more lines like ?for online purchases only?.
Example of Vodafone?s promotion of online top-ups.