Using personalized videos to explain telecom bills to customers

Telecom operators have recently made a major push in offering personalized services to their customers, primarily in an effort to retain customers and reduce churn. Customer churn is caused by many factors including bill shock and a lack of customer service satisfaction, two points that Idomoo, a personalized video company, has been trying to address in the telecom industry.



Telecom operators have recently made a major push in offering personalized services to their customers, primarily in an effort to retain customers and reduce churn. Customer churn is caused by many factors including bill shock and a lack of customer service satisfaction, two points that Idomoo, a personalized video company, has been trying to address in the telecom industry.


In an effort to demonstrate the effectiveness of a personalized video, Idomoo conducted a case study with a multiple service operator (MSO) in Europe.  This specific MSO sent a personalized video via email explaining the first bill to new customers in a country in Europe. The video explained when the subscriber would be billed for each month, as well as described where each charge in the bill came from.


According to the case study, there was a 100% increased conversion rate in signing up for a self-server area, which was displayed at the end of each video.  There was also a 30% immediate reduction in service center calls


“That means they understood the charges and they didn’t even bother to call the call center,” says Udy Ravid, director of product management at Idomoo. Phone calls made by customers to call centers cost about $8-10 per call for the company.  “When you are talking 30% of a large customer base it’s really a big saving.”


Of those sent the personalized video, 33% continued to browse website after watching the video.


After reviewing the results of the case study, the MSO extended the personalized video to another six countries in Europe. Compared to standard telecom industry statistics, the personalized video provided a larger open rate and click-through rate in all the countries.


Compared to an open rate of 20-29% with standard emails; personalized video emails had an open rate of 50-65%.  Of the emails opened, the personal video email had a 34-42% click-through rate, compared with just 9% for standard emails.


According to Ravid, the significant part about this case study is that it reduces the confusion many customers face over their first bill. Many times, a customer will receive their first bill expecting a certain amount, but the bill is usually higher due to such factors as pro-rate charges.


“If you register in the middle of the month [the bill] might be covering a few more days, as well as that month.  People are just not getting that,” says Ravid. “They were promised it would be $100 dollars and it’s always $120-$130.  So they wanted to do something to fix that.”


The personalized video can be used for other customer interactions, such as offering an upgrade when customers exceed internet minutes.


The cost of distributing a personalized video is broken into two categories: a one-time setup cost and cost per each generated movie.  According to Ravid, the one-time setup cost, which is paid to the studio, depends on the provider (studio, freelancer, etc), length of the video, and the style (2D, 3D etc.).


“As a rough indication, a one minute movie is usually somewhere between $25-50K,” says Ravid. “Alternatively, we can use a movie that was already created and only add a cost of the technical setup.”


The cost for each generated, personalized video is scale based, which means the more movies created the lower the price.  “The price is usually less than a dollar per movie (multiplied by the number of customers), and there are also other business models we can apply for creating a ‘yearly communication plan’ of few movies, etc,” says Ravid.


Although the personalized videos work for certain customer situations, according to Ravid, that does not been it is the right tool for every customer communication problem.


“For cases in which you do not have personalized data (e.g. acquisition, when you don’t know about the potential customer), or personalization isn’t necessary (e.g. educating about device features), personalized videos are not the best choice,” says Ravid. “Similarly, using it for promotions that are constantly changing would not be cost-effective as you’ll need to keep creating new movies.”


According to Ravid, Idomoo is now conducting trials with many large carriers in the U.S. in Europe, as well as using personalized videos in other industries including insurance, finance and utilities.