Push-based Customer Communications

An interesting idea that can emerge is the ability to let a business communicate effectively with its customers (present or future) via push-based channels. After all, it is customers that generate the revenue. This is what Google enables a business to do – get new customers to a website. Google does it for businesses that have an online presence. But it does nothing for businesses that may not have an online presence – and that is one of the opportunities that we can tap into. It can also work well as an awareness spreading tool.

Here is how it would work. A Customer is identified by an Address — either an email ID or a mobile number. These two may or may not be linked. The customer address (email ID, mobile number) may also have certain Attributes linked with it. In addition, a customer can also be given an opportunity to enhance their profile. <any such Customer Addresses make up a Database. A database can be created for a business in one of four ways: existing DB (semi-opt-in), future DB (built around opt-in), dynamic DB (built via queries run on a set of Addresses), media DB (like MyToday SMS).

Communication to this database happens primarily via Push-based channels — email and SMS. This is perhaps the biggest change in India in the past five years. Today, over 350 million Indians have mobile phones and 75 million Indians have email addresses — both these numbers are many times what the equivalent numbers were in 2004.

The key question: how to make this Push-based Customer Communications a reality? This is one business that could scale well globally, with India being the first market.

88 thoughts on “Push-based Customer Communications

  1. Push will work only if we know the characteristics (interests) of the email or mobile number.

    This is where twitter like social network or linkedin kind of professional network can come into play along with google master for the push market.

    Another area i can think of is db at naukri and mytoday joining together for professional related push…OR yellow pages with mytoday for business oriented push.

  2. Mr. Jain – Honestly, this is what I was waiting to read on your blog. I became regular on this blog coz of all these things that you use to talk on your blog but then you got dragged a bit (I know and respect your political sentiments, but a separate blog for all the political awareness would have done the trick) Anyways, coming back to today’s post – Don’t you think Mginger is already doing it? They have a data base of Mobile nos. and they are linking the non-online business with consumers like us. It sometimes gives updates for various things that I don’t even now exist in my city, Just a running thought 🙂

  3. What about customer privacy? That’s one thing that’s blithely ignored in India-make the mistake of filling up your number at a form (I did at MusicWorld once) and be bombarded with promotional SMSes unto eternity with no way of stopping them. The mobile provider says they can’t do anything about it either.
    Any such push system should have a clear and easy opt out policy.
    At the end of the day, as a consumer- I do NOT want to be pestered via cellphone by businesses trying to peddle stuff. If I want something I’ll look it up on the net, read a dozen reviews and then decide what and where to buy.

  4. Mr. jain can you tell me how bulk sms companies get mobile numbers data. either from mobile phone operator or trai.

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