Project Everest

[Proposed Experiment]: Malawi - Texting Communication Experiment - February, 2019

Lean Phase: Channel

Assumption: Sending texts manually to all existing customers on the payment plan will improve relationships with customers and generate a more efficient communication system. The content of the texts will initially be payment reminders and then, when we have the capacity, we will also include balance updates and confirmation texts. These texts will help customers to make their repayments in a more timely manner and will provide more confidence regarding this payment channel.

Time Box: 4 months (March-July 2019) This is an experiment that will be monitored throughout the absence in country.

Success Metrics:

1) Repayment rate %

  • % of customers that have received our messages
  • % of customers understand the messages they receive from us
  • % of customers have found the new communication to have been effective (equivalent to % of customers filling out the survey).

Success Point: The repayment rate increases, and we see an increase in transfers made following texts being sent out. 50% of customers are able to comprehend all messages received from PEV and believe that communication has improved. 75% of customers have been receiving all communications.

Green Light: Proceed with manual texting communication system and design and implement an automated messaging system.***

Orange Light Point: We see no change in repayment rate. 30-50% of customers are able to comprehend all messages received from PEV and believe that communication has improved. 50-75% of customers have been receiving all communications.

Orange Light: Re-evaluate the content and volume of the messages being sent to customers. Adjust each variable and determine which change has a positive impact on customer response.

Failure Point: The repayment rate decreases. Less than 30% of customers are able to comprehend all messages being received and believe that communication has improved. Less than 50% of customers have been receiving all communications.

Red Light: Conduct further research into customers’ preferred communication channels and gain a deeper understanding of their needs and wants. Adjust the communication channel accordingly.

Experiment Build

The purpose of this experiment is to test the manual texting communication strategy. Through surveying existing customers we will analyse how the new CRM communication system has delivered compared to the previous 6 months.

1) Text all existing customers on the payment plan using the platform MightyText, including payment reminders (see MightyText SOP).

2) Design questions to establish if the customers are receiving all key messages

3) Design questions to identify if they are able to understand the messages

4) Design questions to test if they have viewed this new service positively

5) Combine questions into one survey with risk profiling questions (here)

6) Visit existing customers on the payment plan and conduct survey

7) Create a more succinct survey to be communicated via USSD (maximum survey time limit of 2 minutes).

8) If the results are negative, adapt the content and volume of messages based on feedback, and re-conduct the communication survey. If the results are positive, continue with the same content and volume of messages.

The length of this experiment is long, requiring constant monitoring and periodic updates of payments. We must consider that many of our customers may be on a payment plan that should have expired by now. Thus, when prompted by messages, they may be “catching-up” on their debts and sending irregular transfers with varying amounts.

The understanding we have developed over Summer is that there is less disposable income. This may be a factor that is affecting repayment rates, as well as communication, so we may see an increase in repayments over the harvest months. This increase (if it occurs) may not be related to increased communications.

The nature of using MightyText as a messaging platform limits the level of tailoring we can have in the messages we send, because the messages are manually input. However, over time we want to re-establish our CRM functionalities with Zoho and Twillio. With these functionalities, we will be able to send information to our customers, with messages about balance, confirmation texts etc. This may see an improvement in repayment rate. 

***There are currently some bugs with the system that was created in January, and it would not be a useful way to spend the month of February, given that we have a very small team, trying to correct these bugs. When these bugs are fixed by someone with a better understanding of the system’s technicalities, we will want to migrate the experiment onto better platforms.

edited on 25th February 2019, 19:02 by Kurt Michl

Kurt Michl 5 months ago

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