Affinitas Marketing Solutions - CASE STUDIES

Business to Consumer
Cable TV/Telecom/Internet Industry
Sales Support – Customer Provisioning and Upsell

Client: Regional provider of consumer Cable TV, Phone, and Internet services

Situation: Client provides cable TV, phone and Internet service to consumers in a major U.S. metropolitan market. Client’s internal operations do not have the capacity to effectively support Direct Sales Reps (DSR’s) and technicians operating in the field when these team members are attempting to provision customer sales in real-time. Specifically:
  • Direct Sales Reps: DSR’s visit prospects in new residential neighborhoods to discuss and promote Client services, and to offer services that will meet prospects’ specific needs. Upon gaining interest from the prospect, DSR’s contact Client internal customer care team to provision the sale. However, DSR’s frequently waited on hold for up to twenty minutes for an available agent, thus creating customer frustration and resulting in many lost sales.

  • Technicians: Field technicians performing a new customer install or trouble call frequently need to speak with Client internal customer care when customers want to add or change services during the visit. Like the DSR’s, the technicians also frequently waited on hold for up to twenty minutes for an available agent, thus creating customer frustration and resulting in lost sales. In addition, technicians’ schedules for the rest of the day and the week were impacted, thus creating inefficiency in their process and delays in their schedules.

Solution: Affinitas proposed:
  • Moving the field sales support function to an Affinitas call center and staffing the function with a team of veteran agents with experience in the cable industry. These agents would act as an extension of the client’s field representatives and provide real-time sales support and provisioning. In addition, they could supplement the field representatives’ sales efforts through consultative selling based on their knowledge of Client products and services.

  • Utilizing an existing real-time link between Affinitas and the client billing/provisioning system. Affinitas was already connected to the system on behalf of another Client market, was experienced in working within this system, and was familiar with Client’s suite of services.

  • Staffing in sufficient capacity to meet client’s call handling requirements.

Affinitas selected a pool of veteran agents, trained them in the requirements of the program, established system connectivity, and began taking calls within 24 hours. Four thousand calls were received in the first week of the program, and call volume has remained roughly steady at that level for the last year. Performance details are as follows:

  • Average speed of answer (ASA) goal was 30 to 60 seconds. Affinitas has consistently answered all calls at an ASA of 39 to 43 seconds.

  • Service level goal was 75% of calls answered within 30 seconds. Affinitas service level has ranged from 76.6% to 78.5% of calls answered within 30 seconds.

  • Call abandonment goal was maximum of 5% of calls offered. Affinitas abandonment rate has averaged approximately 5.9%, but has been at or better than goal for several individual months. Average is expected to be at goal for remainder of 2010 based on adjustments to scheduling and staffing based on 2010 call volumes to date.

  • Affinitas agents have been successful in working as an extension of the Client field representatives and providing real-time support for them by setting up new service in the billing system, performing credit checks, taking payment over the phone, performing third party verification for phone service, looking up appropriate promo offers, and working with customers to build a plan that fits their specific budget or usage needs and patterns.

  • Client has reported that since beginning the program with Affinitas, average RGU’s generated from DSR sales have increased nearly 15%.

  • Based on the success experienced within the first month of activity, a second Affinitas facility was trained as an overflow resource in the event that call volumes increased. This facility also performed so well that it was rolled out as a full time resource in a shared environment with the original Affinitas facility.

  • Client recently asked Affinitas to perform outbound calling to sales leads generated from its affiliate partners in an effort to promote bundled services to new customer prospects.
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