Carrier billing in Asia: 2018 market report by Fortumo

Carrier billing in Western Europe: 2018 market report by Fortumo

This market report gives an overview of the digital ecosystem and direct carrier billing landscape in South-East Asia. From the digital ecosystem perspective, the countries profiled can be categorized into three:

  • Mature, developed countries with a smaller growth curve: Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan
  • Steadily growing markets: Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam
  • Emerging markets with lower starting base and higher growth: Cambodia, Myanmar, Pakistan

The digital ecosystem of the Asia Pacific region is booming. Among other news over the past year, the following stories from Asia have caught our eye: SVOD services are estimated to reach 1.8 billion subscribers this year; Amazon Prime has recently expanded into India and Tencent is looking to dominate the e-sports and livestreaming scenes.

At the same time, service providers face a challenge in monetization: traditional payment method (bank cards) ownership is extremely low and marketing channels used in mature Western countries are not efficient. Streaming services are increasingly relying on telco bundling for growth in the region and carrier billing is used to collect payments from users.

In the report, we have brought out demographic information, data on payment access and user spend behaviour with carrier billing. These indicators should be useful to digital service providers in assessing the potential of launching telco partnerships in the region. Fortumo can support in getting these partnerships off the ground through our turnkey payment solutions and Trident Bundling Platform covering all the countries profiled.

Leave your contact details below and access the report on Asia immediately!

IBC Show 2018: helping OTT-s and telcos ramp up their bundle partnerships

IBC Show 2018: helping OTT-s and telcos ramp up their bundle partnerships

Our September events calendar highlight will be IBC Show, one of the biggest digital media conferences in the world. Fortumo will be attending the event from September 17th to 18th, so let us know if you want to meet up.

Why are we going to the IBC Show? IBC itself recently outlined our reason for attendance in an article on bundling and telco partnerships. Telcos are looking to grow revenue through new business lines, while streaming services are looking to grow their user base through telco channels, both of which can be achieved through bundling.

Digital-telco partnerships are here to stay and those who manage to execute their deals faster are more likely to succeed. Fortumo cuts down on the work needed for both parties through our Trident Bundling Platform which supports bundles with telcos and TV providers, as well as content reselling. We help telcos and digital service providers focus on their core business by taking care of the heavy lifting.

Interested in finding out more about how Trident can help accelerate your bundle launches? Let’s meet up at IBC.

Carrier billing deployment tracker: August 2018

Our carrier billing deployment tracker provides a quarterly overview of carrier billing and bundling launches by the biggest digital media companies across the world. Where have Facebook, Apple, Google, Spotify, Netflix, Riot Games and Amazon been active recently?

Below is the full overview of bundling and carrier billing deployments of these merchants in key countries of each region. Click for a bigger version: Carrier billing deployment tracker: August 2018

What to do when a bundle campaign runs out?

What to do when a bundle campaign runs out?

Bundling is an effective way for digital service providers to acquire new users. For telcos, it provides an opportunity to upsell to their subscribers and lure people over from competitors. Both sides win from bundling because service providers gain access to free marketing while telcos have an additional perk for pitching consumers to buy more telecommunications services.

However, the effects of bundling campaigns are limited. The bundling offer is available for a limited time and the discount on the digital service also has a fixed duration. In case of a 6-month campaign where users get discounted access for 12 months, promotional opportunities come to an end after 18 months.

While carrier billing continues to generate revenue indefinitely, bundling has a limited impact whereas the effort with negotiations, launching and promotions are similar. Telcos also need to put in additional effort in retaining the customers to achieve a positive ROI. This means a critical question has to be answered before starting bundling activities. What happens when the promotion ends?

Most major telcos already have bundling campaigns running: VOD offers are today active in 80+ countries and music streaming offers in 60+ countries. With these ongoing deals, it makes sense to plan follow-up campaigns for two reasons:

  • The effort required for follow-up campaigns is significantly smaller since there is already a framework agreement in place and technical integration is done
  • There are always more users to engage: not everyone participates in the first campaign, some churn out before converting and the competitors’ user base can be targeted

Assessing bundling campaigns should be based on key performance indicators (KPI-s) set up before the launch of the campaign. These indicators can be used to gain an understanding of whether the telco offering and digital service discount are aligned:

  • % of existing, eligible subscriber base participating in the campaign
  • % uplift of new subscribers acquired from competing telcos
  • % of churn from eligible users before positive ROI is attained

If the bundle campaign meets or exceeds KPI-s, it’s worth running it with a similar setup again after some time. Underperforming KPI-s indicate that one of the two value propositions (telco product offered or discount on the digital content) is not aligned with customer expectations. Now both sides have several different options to consider:

  • Telcos can change the product bundled with the digital service
  • Telcos can change the target audience (e.g. prepaid, postpaid, corporate)
  • Digital service providers can change the discount given (e.g. 3 months instead of 6 months)
  • Digital service providers launch a bundle campaign with another telco

Because different digital services appeal to different audiences and the subscriber base of each telco is somewhat different, for both parties it’s more useful to run shorter-duration campaigns with a larger number of partners. This creates a faster feedback loop and helps better understand what customers want.

If initial campaign results with one telco are underwhelming, digital service providers can launch their second campaign with another telco and one year later, a different campaign can be attempted again with the first telco. The same goes for telcos, who can shuffle around different digital services and conduct multiple bundling campaigns in parallel (e.g by targeting prepaid users with one bundle and postpaid with another).

Digital content bundling with telcos is still quite young, which means best practices on how to go about it are not fully outlined. However, as with most other digital marketing activities, there is no reason to put all your eggs in one basket. Instead, the best results are achieved through testing, rapid iterations and trying out multiple channel partners in a scalable manner.

Fortumo’s Trident Bundling Platform gives digital service providers and telcos the capability to accelerate the launch of their bundle campaigns. The platform needs to be integrated only once, gives access to bundling with all other companies already connected to the platform and follow-up campaigns do not require any additional development. If you want to reduce the time it takes to get your bundle deals up and running, get in touch.

How can telcos leverage the digital ticketing segment for growth?

How can telcos leverage the digital ticketing segment for growth?

The future of telcos is full of uncertainties. OTT-s are the new, cooler (and cheaper!) kids on the block who have rapidly taken over many basic communication services. Telcos are facing a significant decrease in their basic communication service revenues. There is a drop as much as 30 percent in SMS messaging, 20 percent in international voice, and 15 percent in roaming. Over the next decade, the spending on traditional communication services will likely drop by 36 percent. The shift also impacts other telco services. For example, broadband TV is losing revenue to streaming services like Netflix.

Repositioning the business model

For telcos, this creates an opportunity to reposition and rethink their entire role in communication systems. Telcos are not so much communication service providers any more, rather they operate as the main infrastructure that allows many companies to deliver content to subscribers for communication. At the same time smartphones and affordable mobile data plans are driving the growth in digital services. Mobiles already account for more than 70% of digital media time. This opens up a variety of monetization options, but it also requires experimental or even radical approaches.

One way is for telcos to transform themselves into connectivity, lifestyle and entertainment hubs for their subscribers, harnessing their wealth of data about user stickiness and engagement. Data is the „oil of the digital economy“ and is essential to understanding consumer preferences.

Instead of traditional B2B and B2C models, innovative B2B2C business models are the norm of the future. This model creates innovative bundles that have potential for synergy. Telcos should consider working closely with content owners, while delivering the maximum value for the consumer. It's already happening for data-intensive content services on the Internet. For instance, 3 UK offers free bundled access to The Times and The Sunday Times with its mobile broadband connections. Some telcos networks are offering free data for partner services like streaming music apps (e.g. Spotify or Apple Music) with no data charges.

While some content providers might accept lower payouts and legacy technologies, accommodating for next generation services requires a step up. Expecting best technical terms for quality customer experience is not the whim of a niche segment. Rather it's one of the prerequisites for future telco growth. In terms of mobile payments, telcos also have to watch out for credit card giants (e.g. VISA; MasterCard) and aim their commercial efforts accordingly. To thrive, they will need to strategically define and aggressively pursue growth areas.

Ticketing segment

One example of a quickly growing segment is online ticketing providers. Mobile tickets are increasingly replacing physical tickets for sports and cultural events. The same is true for public transportation tickets. It is predicted, that by 2020 already 90% of all transportation transactions will not involve the use of a paper ticket. Seamless transport ticketing becomes especially relevant in the light of global urbanization trends and large metropolitan areas.

Event venue ticketing processes have witnessed a paradigm shift. People don't book tickets at the counter any more but prefer to book them in advance from the comfort of one’s home. Global online event ticketing market size is expected to reach USD 67.99 billion by 2025, exhibiting a 4.8% CAGR during the forecast period. The global online movie ticketing services market is expected to grow even more in upcoming years – 14,6% annually. Event organizers are continuously putting in efforts to come up with an advanced and upgraded solutions to offer maximal comfort and benefit to consumers.

Mobile ticket sales are one of the major upcoming trends in the global ticket market. It’s better to be in the forefront of change and strategically pursue new trends and markets rather than lag behind and have a competitor seize the opportunity. Fortumo provides both telcos and ticketing companies with a turnkey platform to grow their sales. Interested in finding out more? Get in touch.

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