RCS Business Messaging: 3 steps to revenues
In the previous blog post, we discussed the need for a new interactive digital channel to consumers for Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) companies. In this blog post, aimed at service providers, we will discuss how to get there by targeting brands to your customers, achieving great customer experiences, and increasing the revenues.
When considering RCS Business Messaging, look at it as a marketing project not an infrastructure investment. By looking at it as a marketing project I mean start small and grow quickly with demand, but most importantly start now. To achieve that, here are three steps:
Create a small project organization, based on competence and drive.
Many times, creating a small and relatively independent project organization with a clear target makes the impossible possible. The project organization should be around 3–5 people and have a “can do” and “want to do” mentality as well as creativity. From a competence/skills point of view, the group should be heterogenous, and when I say “project organization” I mean that these people will sit together in, for example, a conference room for the duration of the project.
Short-list three brands to target.
What would be the target brands? Most, if not all, brands will benefit significantly from RCS Business Messaging. So, decide who to target initially?
Here is the time when analytical people usually will sit down and draw boxes labeled with phrases such as “strategic impact,” “revenue growth,” “existing relations,” “investment cost,” and so on. I would like to challenge that structural way of working. Here, I think there are two things that matter more, which you should focus on:
- Brands that genuinely believe that digital interactions/chatbots will be the key customer interaction and revenue driver going forward
- Brands that have a product that physically makes the consumer active when interacting
The second bullet above probably serves some explanation. The thing we want to achieve here is a consumer experience that makes a campaign go viral: viral by inviting others and viral by others wondering what you are doing.
Decide who the brands campaign should target.
Next, who should you target? The definition of a strong brand is that its purchase is habituated, as discussed by Nir Eyal in his book Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products. Translated, this means the brands campaign should do the following:
- Focus on increasing profitability on existing customers (more revenue per customer and lower cost per sales).
- Create new habits/behaviors. This part is where RCS Business Messaging together with chatbots and augmented reality (AR) will revolutionize the FMCG industry. Creating new habits/behaviors was discussed in a previous blog post about design-driven innovation: Voice is not noise: re-inventing voice service.
According to Nir Eyal, there are four components for manufacturing habits:
- Reputation and experience/variable reward
And these four components can create a habit loop, which means recurrent sales and that is what we all want to achieve.
Let’s look at an example. At Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona we had a RCS Business Messaging demo with an eyewear application. So, how do you create a habit loop for the eyewear brand?
Triggers: People want to know other people’s opinion. Not just whether something is good or bad, but rather what is good, what is not so good under what condition, and so on. With a digital application, consumers can send video messages and upload videos to ask for comments.
Actions: When people see others in public looking in their smartphones and moving their head around (because they are testing different eyewear by using an AR application), they get curious, they want to know, and they want to try.
Investment: Consumers get involved at the eyewear site and invest substantially more time than before. Every now and then when a new model comes out (sunglasses or prescription glasses), they will ask for comments and their friends will comment and ask for comments in return. They invest time and get committed.
Reward: You increase your social reach and with your present community, you increase the topics discussed and commented on.
Outcome for brands
The outcome for brands can, of course, be quantified. In the picture below, you find three different perspectives:
Which of the above three perspectives will be the prime focus will depend on the type of business and what the brand wants to achieve. Personally, I like the first perspective the most: share of wallet.
One example of the revenue growth aspect (both in terms of share of wallet and share of wallets) was highlighted by Subway’s CMO at MWC Americas 2018. Subway US had a 50%+ lift in sales through RCS business messaging. Why? The answer was that people respond better to pictures and people respond better to conversation.
Is there any CMO out there who would not go for this? Use the simple straightforward process outlined here and just get going. If you need more information, contact me.
Outcome for Service Providers
Let’s first look at this picture from GSMA’s Messaging as a Platform (MaaP) report.
According to GSMA, RCS business messaging will be a 90 billion USD opportunity in 2021. The A2P SMS revenues are estimated to be 60 billion USD. The interesting thing about this figure is that today, a lot of the revenues for SMS A2P messaging propagates all the way down to bottom line. So, this is not “just” for the top line; it is even more important for your bottom line.
When I say “revenue opportunity,” I would like to emphasize the word “opportunity.” Much of the revenue might very well fall into the hands of other players unless you act now. Act by building the market, focusing on brands that satisfy the criteria mentioned above, and driving the project with a dedicated sales force complemented with the right partners.
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