Click here to close now.


Microsoft Cloud Authors: Jayaram Krishnaswamy, Elizabeth White, Andreas Grabner, Jim Kaskade, Pat Romanski

Blog Feed Post

Revealed: The Fragility of UK Mobile Customer Loyalty

WDS study finds nearly 40% of UK mobile subscribers at risk of churn in the next 12 months; only 12% truly loyal

Mobile World Congress 2013, Barcelona, Spain, Monday 25th February 2013: The first 'authentic' audit of loyalty among UK mobile subscribers, released today by WDS, A Xerox Company, has worrying implications for mobile operators. The WDS 2013 Mobile Loyalty Audit, integrating new survey data from research specialist TNS, reveals that 38% of UK subscribers are considering leaving their mobile operator in the coming 12 months. The audit also finds that only 12% of customers show the level of loyalty required to protect them from competitive offers and service disruptions.

For the first time, the WDS 2013 Mobile Loyalty Audit uses "stress-tests" to show the impact of real-world disruptions on a customer's propensity to churn and deliver a realistic view of the level of loyalty that exists in the UK. When stress-tested, the audit found customers' positive sentiment towards not switching could be easily reversed, for example:

What if…your current mobile operator increased prices by 10%?

  • 67% of customers who were previously unlikely to switch would now consider leaving.

  • 14% of them would switch immediately without further consideration.

  • 57% of highly satisfied customers would also consider switching, 13% would leave without further consideration.

What if…another operator could reduce your monthly tariff by 10%?

  • Only 34% of customers who were previously unlikely to switch could guarantee that they wouldn't leave for this saving.

What if…there was a privacy breach?

  • 85% of those that said they were unlikely to switch would now consider leaving.

  • 42% of them would switch immediately without further consideration.

  • 39% of highly satisfied customers would switch immediately.

The study suggests that the number of customers at risk of churn could be underestimated by operators. Additionally, many existing measures of loyalty, such as customer satisfaction and Net Promoter Score (NPS), often deliver overly simplistic and potentially misleading results. For example, the WDS audit found that 17% of customers currently considered a "switch-risk" are actually highly satisfied with their mobile operator. Likewise, 15% were NPS Promoters.

It also showed that one fifth of all customers staying with their current operator this year are doing so not through any sense of loyalty, but because they feel that "all mobile operators are the same" and that there is no benefit in switching.

"We've been measuring loyalty in a vacuum; assigning valuable retention budget based on customer sentiment and an out-of-date notion of what loyalty actually is," says Tim Deluca-Smith, Vice President of Marketing at WDS. "A customer might say that he is satisfied or that he has no intention of switching, but how does that sentiment change when there's a network outage or his monthly tariff increases? Loyalty means more than just a customer's intent to repurchase - this is only as good as the next handset subsidy or price discount. True loyalty creates customers that are forgiving when things go wrong and resistant to competitive offers."

The WDS Loyalty Audit also debunks some of the common myths around customer churn. In particular that customers switch primarily because of price, availability of devices or network coverage. Across each of these, the majority of at-risk customers were actually satisfied with their current operator's performance. Just 25% thought they got poor value for money, 21% that network coverage was poor and 13% that availability of devices was inadequate.

Instead, it seems operators are failing to create a feeling of "value" and "reward" among many of their customers. Over 40% of those at risk of switching felt they weren't valued or rewarded. In fact the data shows that if a customer doesn't feel valued they are more than twice as likely to become a switch-risk.

The study concludes with many positive take-aways for mobile operators looking to better manage customer loyalty. In particular the study emphatically shows how some service elements are more influential in building, or damaging, loyalty than others.

  • While a single interaction with customer support is relatively benign in its loyalty influence, customers that have to contact customer support more than once in a six-month period are twice as likely to be a switch-risk.

  • Getting any kind of care interaction right is critical. A customer who rates the performance of customer care as "Excellent" is nearly four times more likely to be secured beyond 12 months than someone who rates the experience as "Poor".

  • Basic network hygiene factors remain vital. 73% of respondents who rated network coverage as "Excellent" are unlikely to switch.

  • Retention budget can be better deployed and many expensive rewards programs are not working. Their value is unproven in creating long-term loyalty and 82% of customers felt they weren't adequately rewarded through existing programs.

"Building trust, developing a sense of value and sustaining strong customer service are fundamental to securing long-term loyalty; especially given the level of parity that exists between operators' pricing strategies and network performance," concludes Deluca-Smith. "Satisfaction alone is no longer enough, in fact it's become little more than a cost of doing business. The WDS Loyalty Audit shows that only 12% of UK customers have the level of loyalty we deem necessary to insulate them from competitive offers and service failures. Understanding who these customers are will help operators to better understand the customers at risk and deploy retention programs that build a more emotional and resilient tie between customer and brand."


To download the full report:

UK Loyalty infographic:

About WDS
WDS, A Xerox Company, is a leading provider of Customer Experience Management (CEM) solutions to the wireless industry.

Our goal is to help wireless brands deliver a more consistent, differentiated and profitable customer experience, shifting attention away from 'managing' customer experience problems and towards mitigating failures that we know have the potential to increase costs and damage end-user loyalty and profitability

We achieve this by embedding a CEM platform across the "customer lifecycle", from retail through technical support and returns management. This platform powers the solutions that we deploy at key end-user touch-points (retail, on-device, on-line and contact center) with the knowledge needed to dynamically manage how end-users buy, explore, use and maintain their wireless products and services.

It's this ability to help our wireless customers identify preventable issues, improve future products and services and build long-term, profitable relationships with end-users that means many of the world's most recognizable wireless brands now trust the outsourcing of their customer experience to WDS.

To find out more, please visit

Media Contacts:
Tim Deluca-Smith, Vice President, Marketing, WDS
+44 7957 311189, [email protected]

Paul Nolan/ Rufus Jay, CCgroup
+44 7717 723 440/ +44 7760 322 050, [email protected]

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By RealWire News Distribution

RealWire is a global news release distribution service specialising in the online media. The RealWire approach focuses on delivering relevant content to the receivers of our client's news releases. As we know that it is only through delivering relevance, that influence can ever be achieved.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Nowadays, a large number of sensors and devices are connected to the network. Leading-edge IoT technologies integrate various types of sensor data to create a new value for several business decision scenarios. The transparent cloud is a model of a new IoT emergence service platform. Many service providers store and access various types of sensor data in order to create and find out new business values by integrating such data.
The broad selection of hardware, the rapid evolution of operating systems and the time-to-market for mobile apps has been so rapid that new challenges for developers and engineers arise every day. Security, testing, hosting, and other metrics have to be considered through the process. In his session at Big Data Expo, Walter Maguire, Chief Field Technologist, HP Big Data Group, at Hewlett-Packard, will discuss the challenges faced by developers and a composite Big Data applications builder, focusing on how to help solve the problems that developers are continuously battling.
There are so many tools and techniques for data analytics that even for a data scientist the choices, possible systems, and even the types of data can be daunting. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Harrold, Global CTO for Big Data Solutions for EMC Corporation, will show how to perform a simple, but meaningful analysis of social sentiment data using freely available tools that take only minutes to download and install. Participants will get the download information, scripts, and complete end-to-end walkthrough of the analysis from start to finish. Participants will also be given the pract...
WebRTC: together these advances have created a perfect storm of technologies that are disrupting and transforming classic communications models and ecosystems. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Cary Bran, VP of Innovation and New Ventures at Plantronics and PLT Labs, will provide an overview of this technological shift, including associated business and consumer communications impacts, and opportunities it may enable, complement or entirely transform.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures traffic gets delivered faster, safer, and more reliably than ever.
WebRTC services have already permeated corporate communications in the form of videoconferencing solutions. However, WebRTC has the potential of going beyond and catalyzing a new class of services providing more than calls with capabilities such as mass-scale real-time media broadcasting, enriched and augmented video, person-to-machine and machine-to-machine communications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Luis Lopez, CEO of Kurento, will introduce the technologies required for implementing these ideas and some early experiments performed in the Kurento open source software community in areas ...
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Today air travel is a minefield of delays, hassles and customer disappointment. Airlines struggle to revitalize the experience. GE and M2Mi will demonstrate practical examples of how IoT solutions are helping airlines bring back personalization, reduce trip time and improve reliability. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Shyam Varan Nath, Principal Architect with GE, and Dr. Sarah Cooper, M2Mi's VP Business Development and Engineering, will explore the IoT cloud-based platform technologies driving this change including privacy controls, data transparency and integration of real time context w...
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, will discuss the impact of technology on identity. Should we federate, or not? How should identity be secured? Who owns the identity? How is identity ...
The IoT market is on track to hit $7.1 trillion in 2020. The reality is that only a handful of companies are ready for this massive demand. There are a lot of barriers, paint points, traps, and hidden roadblocks. How can we deal with these issues and challenges? The paradigm has changed. Old-style ad-hoc trial-and-error ways will certainly lead you to the dead end. What is mandatory is an overarching and adaptive approach to effectively handle the rapid changes and exponential growth.
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new data-driven world, marketplaces reign supreme while interoperability, APIs and applications deliver un...
Electric power utilities face relentless pressure on their financial performance, and reducing distribution grid losses is one of the last untapped opportunities to meet their business goals. Combining IoT-enabled sensors and cloud-based data analytics, utilities now are able to find, quantify and reduce losses faster – and with a smaller IT footprint. Solutions exist using Internet-enabled sensors deployed temporarily at strategic locations within the distribution grid to measure actual line loads.
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, will explore the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends and technology requirements that will drive the Internet of Things from hype to reality.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data shows "less than 10 percent of IoT developers are making enough to support a reasonably sized team....
You have your devices and your data, but what about the rest of your Internet of Things story? Two popular classes of technologies that nicely handle the Big Data analytics for Internet of Things are Apache Hadoop and NoSQL. Hadoop is designed for parallelizing analytical work across many servers and is ideal for the massive data volumes you create with IoT devices. NoSQL databases such as Apache HBase are ideal for storing and retrieving IoT data as “time series data.”
Today’s connected world is moving from devices towards things, what this means is that by using increasingly low cost sensors embedded in devices we can create many new use cases. These span across use cases in cities, vehicles, home, offices, factories, retail environments, worksites, health, logistics, and health. These use cases rely on ubiquitous connectivity and generate massive amounts of data at scale. These technologies enable new business opportunities, ways to optimize and automate, along with new ways to engage with users.
The IoT is upon us, but today’s databases, built on 30-year-old math, require multiple platforms to create a single solution. Data demands of the IoT require Big Data systems that can handle ingest, transactions and analytics concurrently adapting to varied situations as they occur, with speed at scale. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chad Jones, chief strategy officer at Deep Information Sciences, will look differently at IoT data so enterprises can fully leverage their IoT potential. He’ll share tips on how to speed up business initiatives, harness Big Data and remain one step ahead by apply...
There will be 20 billion IoT devices connected to the Internet soon. What if we could control these devices with our voice, mind, or gestures? What if we could teach these devices how to talk to each other? What if these devices could learn how to interact with us (and each other) to make our lives better? What if Jarvis was real? How can I gain these super powers? In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Chris Matthieu, co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, will show you!
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
As a company adopts a DevOps approach to software development, what are key things that both the Dev and Ops side of the business must keep in mind to ensure effective continuous delivery? In his session at DevOps Summit, Mark Hydar, Head of DevOps, Ericsson TV Platforms, will share best practices and provide helpful tips for Ops teams to adopt an open line of communication with the development side of the house to ensure success between the two sides.