Where are the operators turned to the subscriber in Russia?


Serious passions flared up around a seemingly simple question: which side are mobile operators facing their users. As my American friend says, periodically visiting Moscow and other cities of Russia, using the communication services of our operators, “you here, frankly speaking, are too hungry and do not understand your happiness”. And the question is not that the connection costs a penny for him, but that it is of high quality, mobile Internet is fast, with good coverage in different places. A look from the outside at familiar, everyday things picks out some moments that are blurred, do not seem important.

It’s hard for me to imagine my life without a mobile connection, and I think you will support me in this. Psychologists say that a modern person, having forgotten the phone at home, feels naked, he lacks this little thing. Most, regardless of business, return for a forgotten phone. But the loss of a phone becomes a disaster, causing panic and headaches.

Literally everyone uses the services of operators. Old and young, poor and rich, which is a good illustration of the availability of communication for the inhabitants of the country. I will not tire of repeating that communication in the country is of high quality and affordable, and accessible to everyone without exception. The competition in the market is such that operators offer solutions for every taste, wallet size and are constantly competing with each other. At the same time, our requests are growing every year, the size of the consumed traffic is increasing, for example, this year alone it has grown by an average of 60% for the average citizen of the country. And if you look at the “heavy” subscribers, the traffic has grown two to three times.

Life is so dynamic that it is sometimes difficult to imagine the changes that have happened to us in recent years. Remember how we watched movies online, for this we came home, downloaded them to a computer. Few people could have thought that you can download a movie to your phone. The traffic was expensive, the speed was low. The advent of fourth-generation networks changed everything overnight, now people don’t think about where to download a movie. They can start watching it on a smartphone, at home switch to watching it on TV and at the same time download it again, no data transfer between devices is required. It is possible, but not required at all. This is a part of life for many of us, and there are hundreds of such examples. It is taken for granted that the same data transfer is inexpensive, calls are available, operators do not fight three skins for these services. A lively, very competitive market in which operators are constantly trying to improve the quality of their services, to come up with something new. And this clearly contradicts the stereotypes that arose a long time ago that operators are turned to the subscriber in the wrong place. Unfortunately, consumer extremism and the lack of a real assessment of the services received often replace an adequate analysis of what the buyer buys from the operator. And in many ways it has become a sign of the times.

Where are the operators turned to the subscriber in Russia?

I will give an example not entirely from this area, but it characterizes well the psychology of a small group of people. As you know, Cyberpunk 2077 has become a bestseller, selling in millions of copies for all gaming platforms, positive reviews before, without understatement, the game is considered the best in a decade. The only problem is that this game does not have the best graphics on old consoles, and, for example, Sony decided to temporarily limit sales, as well as return money to those who bought the game and were disappointed in it. A clear, transparent move is a step towards buyers and players. In this situation, Sony can only be praised, there can be no discrepancies here, right?

It is all the more surprising to read the outraged responses of those who requested a refund from Sony, received money, but found that the previously purchased game had disappeared from the library and could not be played. Sincere indignation, rage against Sony, which acted inhumanly! But such consumer extremism is demonstrated by a small number of people, but they are well heard on the Internet, they are noticeable.

Why am I citing a popular game as an example, and not any tariff plan from operators? The answer is obvious – the game is much more expensive, for some it may be 3-6 months of using a SIM-card at least. But something similar happens around operators every day, people claim that they are being deceived, communication services are too expensive and everything is very bad! Is this assessment of operators’ services adequate? Definitely not, since it is far from reality as never before.

In Russia, operators’ loyalty to their customers is reaching a fundamentally different level; customer focus is often unparalleled in the world. The promised payments became a habit when the operator ran out of money in the account, and you forgot to put it in or did not set up automatic replenishment of the account. Is this service popular or not? Definitely popular, and often used.

Why is it important for an operator that you can always use communication services, even with a certain credit of confidence? Someone will answer that this was done in order not to lose the client. There may be some truth in this, but this is the very customer orientation that should be able to receive the service. Even in the case when he himself did not have time to pay, he forgot about it. People with a high organization of processes in life and work, of course, cannot understand how you can forget to pay the bill if you are constantly warned about this, informed in various available ways – in the application, SMS, and so on. But I know from myself that sometimes you get so immersed in business that it completely flies out of my head, so I have automatic payment enabled and the rules for such a payment have been set up.

Someone has mistrust and reluctance to link a card, set up an automatic payment. Operators here, too, allow you to use the services, even when you have a minus on your account, you can correspond in instant messengers on many tariff plans. Why is this done? Yes, so that you do not remain without communication, as this is important.

The child has one of the tariffs in the “No overpayments” line from “MegaFon”, he chose the tariff independently and according to a set of parameters, but the main thing was that at school his friends had the same operator. One of the advantages that are important for children is that even with a negative balance, it is possible to use instant messengers. Just a few days ago, for the entire line of these tariffs, another opportunity was added, all on-net calls do not consume the package of included minutes (which is good!), And calls are valid within the network and with a negative balance. And this is great news not only for children, but also for everyone who forgets to top up their balance in time. Can you guess how many people like that? This is about 40% of all subscribers of the operator.

And the question here is not that people do not have money, as they often try to imagine and say that they live in debt. Not! The question is, the loyalty of the operators allows you to do this. You are not disconnected at the moment, you stay in touch, you can call. And it is comfortable for you, you do not need to give up everything to pay for communication services when you are caught by this attack. In practice, this means that you always have time to stop if you are by car, or drive to your office / home, where you can pay your bills. Exactly the same story about children, they are not cut off from the world, they can make and receive calls. Cool? Certainly. And it just works by default, which shows the operator’s loyalty to their customers.

For operators, subscribers who are always in touch is also good. People get less stressful situations, understand that they can count on a connection, and are confident about it. Is not it?

And here is the time to say that we really got drunk and take it for granted that operators come up with all sorts of options so that we are in touch. Their intent here is simple and clear, you need to make sure that the subscriber uses the services always and everywhere. It seems that they make money on it, but the example of free voice calls proves that this is not so – it is impossible to make money on what is free. We are simply given the opportunity to use communications not even on credit, but completely free of charge. And this is already a story of loyalty, which goes to another level, when calls within the same MegaFon are not counted in any way, they are completely free. Loyalty is what is important for operators, because it will not be difficult to switch from one company to another while maintaining the number, it is not such a difficult operation for the subscriber. And what comes to the fore is the focus on the client, the creation of a comfortable environment for him, in which he can feel protected. And I can see how the industry has changed in recent years, the fact that it turned to face the client is beyond doubt.

At the same time, you can see the groans of the “oppressed”, eternally dissatisfied and running around the market in search of imaginary benefits. Against the background of the cost of communication services, these searches for benefits look at least strange – they spend so much time on them in order to ultimately win 100 rubles from strength. This is not a smart economy, but just an attempt to imagine that your efforts have brought some kind of result. But the fact is that the result is scanty.

What is it all about? Competition in the market of mobile operators exists, and it leads to the fact that each player tries to be as loyal to his subscribers as possible, and at the same time to show everyone that he is. And this moves customer focus to another level, brings the operator-client relationship to another plane. There is no bondage, attachment to a specific tariff or operator, everyone is free to choose what he likes, and the operators are well aware of this. You can choose the place where you feel comfortable and well. But if such a place does not exist, is it possible that the problem is not in the operators, but in something else? Do you think mobile operators in Russia are making efforts to be better, or are they not doing anything for this? Share your impressions and observations.


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