Organizational strategies for customer retention in the mobile telecommunication sector in Kenya
Many firms have expended much of their resources in customer acquisition and at times ignoring customer retention knowingly or unknowingly. Customers have been seen to comfortably stick to their current suppliers as long as they receive higher perceived value to what they are actually paying for. In Kenya, mobile telecommunication market remains a very fluid area. The existing studies in this area however, have paid little attention to organizational strategies for customer retention. This study therefore was out to investigate strategies for customer retention in the mobile telecommunications sector in Kenya. In particular, the study sought to establish the role of organizational strategy around customer retention in Kenya‟s mobile service providers and to determine how organizational strategy impacts quality of service and enhance customer retention in these firms. A descriptive survey research design was adopted in the study. The research was broadly a qualitative study.An analysis was done on studies that have been conducted in the area according to the objectives. Managerial perspectives into the strategies for customer retention was also examined using quantitative data collected from strategy managers in three mobile service providers (Safaricom, Airtel and Orange Kenya Ltd). Primary data was obtained from strategy managers in the three mobile service providers using a questionnaire designed by the researcher. Secondary data was also obtained from various past studies on customer retention strategies including journals, books, reports and internet sources as well as reports by Communications Authority of Kenya. Quantitative data was analyzed and the output generated in frequencies and percentages while qqualitative data was analysed through content analysis where it was organized into thematic concepts based on objectives of the study. According to the findings, telecommunication companies ought to develop strategies that give their customers a greater value relative to that of competitors to enhance customer retention. Findings also indicated that the quality of service sort by an organizational strategy should be in accordance with what the customer perceives as “quality” to them and not what the organization perceives as “quality” to the customer. Mobile telecommunication companies make efforts to understand customers‟ needs and address them. It was also noted that to achieve customer satisfaction loyalty, all service encounters offer an opportunity to provide superior service quality and distinguish the firm from its competitors. In conclusion, mobile telecommunication companies must ensure that their strategies are perceived as the best by the customers who can otherwise be lost to the rival companies if these rival companies devise a better strategy targeting the same customers. It is imperative for them to ensure that their strategies address the quality of their services in the best interest of their customer. The organizational strategies should lead to satisfactory services/products in the eyes of their customers, for them to reap the benefit of customer retention even in instances where the price could be slightly higher than that of the competitors. The study recommends that mobile service providers should concentrate on meeting the customer‟s expectation and offer more benefits to the customer. They should also endeavour to satisfy their customer through the provision better services than the competitors and not necessarily lower prices than the competitors.