Telstra CEO: Customer advocacy is top strategic growth priority

David Thodey shares list of initiatives aimed at personalising customer engagement, as well as rising digital interactions

Telstra CEO, David Thodey
Telstra CEO, David Thodey

Telstra’s chief executive has flagged customer advocacy as the group’s highest strategic priority and highlighted a range of initiatives driven in the name of personalising services during its annual general meeting.

Telstra CEO, David Thodey, said customer advocacy is one of its three strategy pillars and a core growth driver for the business. He noted 11 million customer surveys, at an average of 30,000 daily, were conducted in the past financial year, with feedback used to improve services.

Other initiatives details over the last 12 months include call centre operators now giving customer their name and contact details at the end of each call to make it easier for follow-up with the same support individual. Field technicians are also leaving a calling card after installing new or repairing existing services.

In stores, new post-paid mobile customers now receive a phone call from the consultant that served them within 48 hours of purchase as part of Telstra’s onboarding program.

“Customer advocacy is our highest priority and we see it as not just serving our customers better, but providing such great service that they are willing to be advocates for Telstra,” Thodey said. “We are committed to building Telstra into a business that has the customer at the centre of every decision, every action, every opportunity, every day.”

Thodey then discussed the need to continue lifting the telco’s game in the online services space. As a way of highlighting the importance of digital channels in customer advocacy, he pointed out Telstra currently has 1.5 million page views on its Telstra.com website daily, and 6 million unique visits online per month. The telco also engages in 200,000 online chat sessions monthly, and has 1.7 million customers using its 24 x 7 mobile app to manage accounts and services online.

In addition, 90,000 personalised emails and SMS confirmations are sent to customers every day, and 360,000 customers have signed up to Telstra’s 12-month old StayConnected mobile phone service. The telco also claims it helped 220,000 customers via the Telstra Platinum technical support service, which launched in November last year.

“There is no doubt this trend towards online services will continue to grow and we will continue to invest in our digital capabilities,” Thodey continued. “However, we will always give our customers the choice of how they wise to interact with us – in person, on the phone or online.”

In his financial results presentation in August, Thodey stated Telstra’s efforts around customer advocacy saw an its Net Promoter Score (NPS) record an aggregated improvement of three points over the 2014 financial year, as well as reduced customer churn.

Telstra reported total income of $26.3 billion for the year to 30 June 2014, a rise of 6.1 per cent year-on-year. EBITDA reached $11.1bn, while net profits lifted 14.6 per cent to $4.3bn.

Across the board, the group added nearly 1 million new domestic retail mobile customers and now has 16 million retail mobile services in Australia. Over the past three years, Telstra has added almost 4 million new retail mobile services, Thodey said.

“These results were underpinned by our commitment to provide our customers with the best connectivity on Australia’s leading network,” he added.

More on Telstra’s customer engagement and digital strategy

Signup to CMO’s email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+: google.com/+CmoAu

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

Conversations over a cuppa with CMO: Microsoft's Pip Arthur

​In this latest episode of our conversations over a cuppa with CMO, we catch up with the delightful Pip Arthur, Microsoft Australia's chief marketing officer and communications director, to talk about thinking differently, delivering on B2B connection in the crisis, brand purpose and marketing transformation.

More Videos

Hey there! Very interesting article, thank you for your input! I found particularly interesting the part where you mentioned that certain...

Martin Valovič

Companies don’t have policies to disrupt traditional business models: Forrester’s McQuivey

Read more

I too am regularly surprised at how little care a large swathe of consumers take over the sharing and use of their personal data. As a m...

Catherine Stenson

Have customers really changed? - Marketing edge - CMO Australia

Read more

The biggest concern is the lack of awareness among marketers and the most important thing is the transparency and consent.

Joe Hawks

Data privacy 2021: What should be front and centre for the CMO right now

Read more

Thanks for giving these awesome suggestions. It's very in-depth and informative!sell property online

Joe Hawks

The new rules of Millennial marketing in 2021

Read more

In these tough times finding an earning opportunity that can be weaved into your lifestyle is hard. Doordash fits the bill nicely until y...

Fred Lawrence

DoorDash launches in Australia

Read more

Blog Posts

Highlights of 2020 deliver necessity for Circular Economies

The lessons emerging from a year like 2020 are what make the highlights, not necessarily what we gained. One of these is renewed emphasis on sustainability, and by this, I mean complete circular sustainability.

Katja Forbes

Managing director of Designit, Australia and New Zealand

Have customers really changed?

The past 12 months have been a confronting time for marketers, with each week seemingly bringing a new challenge. Some of the more notable impacts have been customer-centric, driven by shifting priorities, new consumption habits and expectation transfer.

Emilie Tan

Marketing strategist, Alpha Digital

Cultivating engaging content in Account-based Marketing (ABM)

ABM has been the buzzword in digital marketing for a while now, but I feel many companies are yet to really harness its power. The most important elements of ABM are to: Identify the right accounts; listen to these tracked accounts; and hyper-personalise your content to these accounts to truly engage them. It’s this third step where most companies struggle.

Joana Inch

Co-founder and head of digital, Hat Media Australia

Sign in