Harnessing the Customer: How Telco Companies Are Benefiting from Big Data

By Vianney Alcantara, Solutions Engineer, Datameer

The way customers communicate with one another has drastically evolved over the years.  Especially when it comes to recommending specific products and services.

Today, various sites publish customer reviews, both the good and bad, for the rest of the world to peruse. These reviews can have serious effects on brand image. While these sites make managing the customer variable crucial for success, it also opens up the door for opportunities to better understand the customer journey.

Previously, the customer variable has been ignored or omitted due to the complexity surrounding its analysis. Not only are there multiple pre-existing data points related to customer interactions, but the emergence of new data sources such as social media influencers, surveys, and customer complaints, have further complicated analysis. Adding to the complexity of this new data is the fact that it is largely unstructured, and thus hard to extract and analyze.

But now, Telco companies are implementing process changes to analyze this unstructured data and better understand customers. The analysis and interpretation of customer data is responsible for Telco success stories and has provided tangible benefits to marketing, services, network operations, quality assurance, and other departments. Without a doubt, the adoption of a modern big data architecture that allows businesses to ingest data and obtain insights from new and pre-existing data sources, regardless of its structure, is crucial to achieving greater customerunderstanding.

The successful application of analytics has helped Telco companies:


· Improve customer interactions and lower the overall cost of customer service

· Analyze customer events generated in the network to reduce customer churn

· Better understand customers’ actual behavior within different viewing segments to enhance product offerings

· Correlate customer usage and demographics to improve network capacity planning

All of these applications of big data share a common denominator — the customer. Telco companies now possess the tools to understand who their customers are, how they use their services, what they do in the network and how they interact with other services such at over-the-top (OTT) services. Ultimately, the customer is the variable that has helped these companies reach a higher level of success in a world dominated by greater transparency from online reviews.

With modern big data architectures, it is now possible to generate a more holistic understanding of the entire customer experience. Having this information on hand will ultimately allow Telco companies to spend less time deciphering inscrutable riddles surrounding customer variables, and more time making data-driven business decisions