Proving the old maxim that it’s better to show rather than tell, consumers are more likely to switch to a 4G network if they’re given a demonstration about how much better it works for them.
While many wireless companies are content to tout having the fastest download speeds and top capabilities, most consumers aren’t knowledgeable enough on their own to translate those speeds into the real-world, says David Ronen, vice president of product, at Israel-based contextual marketing agency Pontis, whose clients include O2, Telefonica and Vodaphone in several markets.
“They don’t understand what [4G] is. It’s a new technology for some people, it works very well, but they’re not sure they need it,’” Ronen tells Marketing Daily. “‘Do I need a faster Internet? I don’t know how many megabytes I need. [But] I do know what I need to watch a video clip.”
Instead, operators should be looking for what Pontis calls “the 4G moment,” which is a time or situation in which upgrading to a 4G network would make a clear difference. Offering someone to watch a live sporting event over a 4G network as a trial would be a good opportunity to showcase the difference a faster network could bring, he says.
“It’s not about the technology. It’s about what the customer can do with it,” Ronen says. “The best thing you can do is to let them enjoy something they care about.”
Wireless operators also need to make the offer seamless. Customers will not be proactive and contact their providers for more information or 4G trials, Ronen says. (Indeed, he says he avoids making a call to his own provider “at all costs.”) Instead, they should consider making offers of 4G trials seamless and transparent, such as offering a 30-day upgrade to 4G service and use of 4G-optimized apps.
“It needs to be relevant for the the customer, and it needs to be effortless for the customer,” he says.
And once the trial is over, the customer may be willing to pay more for the upgraded service, Ronen says. “Once you get it, you are unwilling to let it go. High-speed Internet is the perfect analogy for this,” he says. “At the very least, they’ve understood the difference. Now it’s something they can understand.”