Although the world has largely ground to a halt during the extraordinary spring of 2020, there is one sector that continues to forge ahead.
As with all large-scale crises, Covid-19 has created an urgent global need for innovation. As entire populations clamour for answers, an award-winning Irish tech firm is helping mobile operators to communicate more effectively with their customers, generating eye-catching engagement rates and results.
As most mobile phone operators would admit, it’s a struggle to attract the attention of customers. Most rely on standard SMS, email or push notifications which tend not to hit their mark, typically delivering an engagement rate in the region of 1-2%.
Dublin-based mAdme provides a customer experience platform that gives mobile operators a proprietary messaging channel to engage with subscribers. The platform overlays rich content including images and video directly on phone screens, without the need for customers to go into an app or notification tray.
The interactive format, combined with real-time, usage-triggered delivery, is significantly bumping up engagement rates for messages sent via the mAdme platform. At a time when connecting with customers has never been more vital, the company is attracting worldwide interest.
20% engagement rate
“Engagement rate is our key metric, it’s how we measure success,” says Dave Manzor, VP (Product) of mAdme Technologies. “We’re seeing engagement rates of up to 20% for messages sent on our channel versus other channels like SMS and email.
“Because of the scale and effectiveness of the platform, we can reach huge numbers of people with very clear messaging,” says Manzor. “This is proving very beneficial during the current crisis, when it’s critical that correct information is disseminated as quickly as possible.”
During the COVID-19 crisis, mobile operators have leveraged the platform in various ways including issuing WHO guidelines around handwashing and other safety precautions, thanking healthcare professionals, and reminding customers about lockdown rules.
“We’ve also seen operators use the software for COVID-related business messages including providing free data or removing data caps,” says mAdme’s Dave Manzor. “It’s also been deployed to help manage the load on under-pressure call centres, for example by encouraging people to use self-care channels for things like topping up credit.”
250 million views
The biggest success story to date came in India where operator Reliance Jio issued a rallying cry to customers: “Corona Haarega, India Jeetega” (Corona will lose, India will win). The campaign, displayed to Jio subscribers once a day (at the end of any call) and linked to Covid-19 awareness information including a symptoms-checker, racked up a staggering 250 million views.
Manzor says that scaling up to match the growth of Jio in India remains one of the biggest challenges that mAdme has overcome, where they grew from zero to 100 million subscribers in just five months. Today, new clients can be onboarded and operational within a matter of days; once the company’s SDK is embedded in an app, it can be pushed out to end-users immediately.
The role of mAdme’s software during the Covid-19 crisis has, unsurprisingly, piqued the interest of other industries including the health sector.
“It’s early stages but yes, we have offered our technology to a number of health institutions to see if we can help,” says Dave Manzor. “We’re working with them to see how the platform can be integrated to get critical messages out to the people that need them most.”
Away from health matters, meanwhile, mAdme is also focussing on improving mobile operators’ customer care offering, especially around the calling experience.
“We’ve developed a new experience in the phone dialler that directs callers to the information they’re looking for,” says Manzor. “This is having a massively positive impact for operators because it reduces the number of calls they need to service in their call centres, but also benefits the caller who can get what they need without having to wait on hold.”
Operators are also using the platform – backed by powerful profiling, segmentation and analytics tools – to improve customer engagement in other ways including bill payment, ‘voice of the customer’ feedback and network outage alerts, for example during hurricane season (the Caribbean is a key market).
Established in 2013, mAdme is among the fastest-growing tech companies in Ireland with a veritable stack of awards on the mantelpiece including the Deloitte Fast 50 2018 Disruptive Technology award, in association with Facebook. Dave Manzor is emphatic about what is driving growth.
Disrupting through innovation
“Innovation and R&D are absolutely at the core of everything we do,” he says. “When you’re a small player from Ireland selling to a global market, you need to be innovating in every aspect of the company from your technology through to your business models. We’re disrupting some very well-established industries and we couldn’t do that without continuous innovation.
“From an R&D perspective, we’re building software to meet the needs of the market,” he goes on. “Every line of code we write, we make sure it’s adding value for all our customers and we have a really exciting technology roadmap that will enable us to continue adding value well into the future.
“We’re also active in the IP space with a number of patents applications on the go,” Manzor says. “The first of these was successfully granted just last month, which was very pleasing and further proof that what we’re doing is genuinely innovative.”