How telecommunication companies can succeed in the B2B market

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Telecommunication companies have long focused on capturing the evolving consumer market as the usage of mobile phone became almost universal and they sold TV, broadband and other data services to customers who are employed and who are at home.

They gave very less attention to the B2B(business-to- business) market, where the margins were thinner and revenues were smaller. Now, the telecommunication companies are widening their focus to business-to- business, where the growth is expected to enhance faster than the consumer telecom business. According to the expectations of forecasters, the consumer market continues to evolve at 0.6 percent annually.

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The business-to- business market which incorporates everything starting from home offices to very large enterprises could evolve at 2.6 percent, mostly because of demand for addressable IT services and mobile data. Learning how to utilize this opportunity will be a huge challenge for few organizations as they have not provided their business-to- business groups with adequate resources and have placed too low responsibility for these units in the company. When such organisations look after the business opportunity, they impart their efforts very often with the multiple projects, without noticing opportunities in their core connectivity business. But, they can develop this revenue by making a change if they refocus their strategy depending on the below principles.

Understanding customers better and mold the services and products to meet their needs

Telecommunication companies must adapt their offerings to provide effective services and products to midsize and small businesses besides larger corporate customers. For instance, the most significant requirements of a plumber on the go throughout the day would probably be large amount of data and the capability to swiftly replace a lost or damaged phone. For a small law company, data security and recovery may be highly important. In any case, the owners of small businesses expect better and faster service than the regular customers who are calling in to the service center or standing next to them in the store.

Reflect B2B focus in organizational structure and talent allocation

The B2B team must get their appropriate share of top talent and report high enough in the company to define the importance of division, with representation on executive committee

Invest in future-proof commercial and technological capabilities

Telecommunication companies(telcos) must develop their skills in the technology domains they choose to specialize in. Few telcos must partner with or acquire other firms in order to attract the right capabilities. The training to sales forces should be given to sell bundles that solve the business problems of customers, rather than individual services or products that may be highly susceptible to price comparisons.

Learn how to market and sell in the digital age

Nowadays, the customers are better informed than before, about the offers from their own telecommunication companies as well as from the competitors. They even expect shorter sales cycles. Most of the telcos must develop new skills such as a ‘smart view’ of customers that includes predictive analysis of the purchases of customers depending on their activities.

Improve through customer feedback loops continuously

As in the consumer market, the customer feedback loops are a strong tool to enhance operations, customer loyalty and frontline behaviors. Nevertheless, B2B environments can be highly critical as customer may actually be a collection of people, including decision makers, users and those who pay the bills. Telcos must measure customer satisfaction with individual episodes to develop a picture of the entire health of the relationship.

Some telecommunication companies will take more time than others to adapt their strategies and organizations to make the effective use of opportunity in B2B services. On the other hand, the appetites of their business customers for telecom and IT services evolve daily, as their progressing digital businesses need data analysis, machine-to-machine communication, tighter security, more storage, greater mobility and more. The ones who wait for a very long time to look beyond their consumer may miss the opportunity.    

-By Savaram Ravindra  

The author is presently working as a Content Contributor at Mindmajix.com. His previous professional experience includes Programmer Analyst at Cognizant Technology Solutions. He holds a Masters degree in Nanotechnology from VIT University. He can be contacted at [email protected] LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/savaram-ravindra-48064641,Twitter: https://twitter.com/s11ravindra

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