Engagement marketing to attract and keep the right cable customers

Considering the numerous technological advances that have occurred in the past several years, cable companies are in a unique position to thrive. While consumers still love to watch television, they are adopting new methods of enjoying their favorite shows, shows whether it be on tablets or smartphones or accessing alternative content from low cost sources such as Netflix.

Using best-of-breed acquisition marketing tools, these businesses can show consumers that subscribing gives them more than just an opportunity to watch their preferred programming. They can also benefit from added-value offers and loyalty rewards that will engage customers to utilize their products more often, making the relationship that much more meaningful (and profitable!)

Standing out
According to Fast Company, one problem many service providers face in their acquisition marketing efforts is that they aren’t using tactics that make a strong impression. The news provider asserted that because these companies weren’t offering unique, attractive value propositions, consumers kept shopping based on price or convenience alone. For cable companies, many prospective customers compare programming packages and services without the benefit of value add offer that could tip the scale in favor of the company employing them. When businesses impress potential customers with their offerings, those individuals may make choices they might not have otherwise. For instance, many people are willing to take an offering if there is significant and relevant value added to the equation. For cable companies, this tendency can be highly beneficial, especially if they select acquisition marketing tools that are high-value but low-cost to add to their acquisition marketing efforts.

In most customer centric industries, the cost of acquiring customers is typically exponentially higher than the cost of keeping a loyal customer base.  Companies across most verticals are embracing the need to retain customers and get them engaged with their products.

The source noted that in 2012, while loyalty program memberships at telecom and cable companies rose 34 percent, activity rates remained low. This indicates that these businesses were falling short in their efforts to inspire increased usage of their company’s products and services or foster loyalty.

Target Marketing Magazine pointed out that Charter is one strong example of a cable company that has successfully leveraged a loyalty program to stand out to consumers. On its website, the company explains that its “Live It with Charter” initiative allows customers to start earning points as soon as they join, and those points can be redeemed to get loyalty rewards, enter sweepstakes and enjoy other special offers. Target Marketing noted that within just three months, implementing this system resulted in 162,000 sign-ups.

Phil Bellaria, Charter’s vice president of customer loyalty, told the source that Charter has taken a personalization-focused approach to reducing churn and boosting customer experience. Bellaria said that when clients have needed to call customer service twice within 60 days, the cable company takes steps toward not only repairing their service but the relationship as well. Small gestures such as sending these subscribers surprise and delight apology cards have gone over well.

Whether a cable company is looking to get customers to subscribe for the first time, upgrade to a new service, become a loyalty program member or retain services at the end of the promotional period, having the right engagement marketing solutions in place is sure to make a marked difference in the success of those efforts. As long as these companies offer high-value, customized loyalty rewards, they will be able to surmount the many challenges that come with being a service provider competing in a world with multiple consumer options.