Thought leadership

Some interesting and frankly hard-hard hitting new research in this week’s newsletter accusing TV subscription brands of being their own ‘worst enemy’ when it comes to how they  abusing and losing customers.

The new study findings highlight that while brands obsess about the problem of ‘churn’ they only have themselves to blame for customers cancelling their subscriptions. Respondents are left rejected and ignored by OTT brands that prioritise winning new customers instead of building valuable relationships with existing ones. In addition, brands often avoid customer communication completely for fear of alerting consumers to the fact they are being billed for a service they may have grown tired of, and that futile efforts to retain customers only truly start when they request to cancel.

The ‘Psychology of a Subscriber’ research has highlighted the need for brands to do more to listen, understand, and engage with customers throughout the entire journey. Learning what makes each individual subscriber tick and responding appropriately – from the moment they join, through the power struggle over billing, and even the pain of cancellation – is essential to the long-term strategy of reducing churn and building positive, long-term relationships with subscribers.

Report author and Director of QualiProjects, Jennifer Whittaker, said: “A lack of focus during the early stages of the customer journey means loyal subscribers can feel rejected by brands, and that they are not getting enough value. It’s disheartening for loyal subscribers to see favouritism shown to new customers who have not yet spent any money with the brand. When brands avoid loyal subscribers due to a fear of losing them if they are reminded too overtly of their monthly spend, they are unconsciously sabotaging what could have been a healthy relationship.”

Speaking about the findings, Bhavesh Vaghela, CEO of Singula Decisions, said: “Brands spend a huge amount of time and effort building predictive models and using analytics to identify potential churners and understand why they are leaving – but what they often don’t consider is that they’re the biggest part of the problem! By the time a subscriber has requested to leave, the damage has been done. To reduce churn, brands must change their mindset; efforts to build a long-term, happy relationship must start at the beginning, not a short burst at the end to try and save a customer that’s cancelling.”

The issues and challenges thrown up by this research will be examined in detail at our upcoming flagship Virtual Customer Engagement Summit in December. Look forward to welcoming you there.

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