Virgin Media O2 upgrades its lifecycle model

Virgin Media O2, a top Cisco Gold and CX Specialized Partner, accelerates technology adoption and increases renewals with Cisco.

Story highlights

  • At the peak of the pandemic in 2020, the Virgin Media O2’s renewals team looked to enhance its lifecycle model.
  • To achieve this goal, Virgin Media O2 signed up to be an early adopter of Cisco’s Partner Lifecycle Acceleration (PLA) program.
  • In a couple of months, the partner has made strong progress in accelerating customer adoption and time to value.

Virgin Media O2 Business combines the UK’s largest mobile network with a broadband network, providing 49.3 million UK connections across broadband, mobile, TV and home phone.

A top Cisco Gold and CX Specialized Partner, Virgin Media O2 Business supports public sector and businesses of all sizes with a wide array of technologies, solutions, and services, including managed connectivity services, security, data insight, 5G private networks and cloud solutions, and more. 

The business opportunity 

At the peak of the pandemic in 2020, the Virgin Media O2’s renewals team was looking to optimize its lifecycle business model and increase technology adoption and renewals. The organization aimed to enhance its capabilities and resources to interact with customers at scale and effectively, expanding its footprint into the account base and generating recurring revenue growth.

To achieve this strategic goal, Virgin Media O2 signed up to be one of the early adopters of Cisco’s Partner Lifecycle Acceleration (PLA) program. The organization found in the program the opportunity to deliver value to customers more quickly and proactively and refine their processes and team performance.

Part of Cisco’s Customer Success portfolio, the program helps partners scale their customer success practice, maximize adoption coverage, and increase revenue retention through tools, data-driven insights, training, and expert resources. 

Among the program’s key features, there is the Lifecycle Advantage (LCA) platform, which offers co-branded digital e-mail journeys, and access to telemetry and actionable data through the Success Program Insights (SPI). With a combination of automation and analytics, the LCA and SPI allow partners to engage customers with the right message at the right time throughout their lifecycle – with no cost to the partners. 

By harnessing the power of telemetry, predictive data and a programmatic model, this program lessens the administrative burden for partners, freeing up their time to focus on strategy, innovation, and customer experience. 

“The access to real-time analytics in a single pane of glass helps us monitor each phase of the lifecycle and link technology to business outcomes”, says Jen Downes, Cisco Vendor and Customer Experience Lead at Virgin Media O2. “From the start, Cisco’s program has allowed us to gain agility and have even more meaningful conversations with our customers”. 

Accelerating the customers’ technology adoption 

Since joining the program in May, Virgin Media O2 has been at full steam in leveraging the program’s capabilities across the four success programs available in the Partner Lifecycle Acceleration program: DNAC, ACI, Intersight and AMP. 

For each of these technologies, Cisco has a framework to track, measure and assess use, adoption, and renewals through a set of indicators, such as customer health score, CSM (Customer Success Manager) assignments and renewal risks. 

The first steps that Virgin Media O2 took within the program were to obtain the customers’ digital consent and establish a methodology and cadence with the extended teams. 

“Once we gained our customers’ permission to access their estate, we reviewed our Cisco’s installed base thoroughly with CSMs, solution architects, the engineering community, and other internal groups. This foundational work allowed us to identify opportunities and build a holistic and solid action plan together”, comments Jen Downes. 

Encouraging a close cross-collaboration early in the process cemented a common vision and goals, and a “one team” mindset. As we ramp up our customer success practice, we’re finding regular check-ins with Cisco incredibly valuable to keep everyone updated and drive action.

– Andrew Halliwell, Partner and Product Director at Virgin Media O2.

Virgin Media O2 has been making strong strides in accelerating customer adoption and time to value. With the support of the Cisco CX team, the partner has doubled its total Adopt+ rate. This indicator combines the number of use cases with a high likelihood of renewal, as they move from the purchase to adopt stage (and beyond). The stages of the lifecycle are illustrated in Cisco’s CX racetrack image below.

In a couple of months, the CSM coverage increased from 31% to 100% and the telemetry activation rose from 56% to 72%. The customer health score also improved, showing that customers are realizing the value of their technology investments.

Bridging the customer touchpoints across the lifecycle 

In addition to improving the customer’s post-purchase experience, the Virgin Media O2’s CX and renewal teams are leveraging the insights and learnings to optimize its sales motions and internal alignment.  

“We are creating solid use cases and demonstrating the business outcomes to our pre-sales and account managers”, mentions Jen Downes. “This feedback loop motion has been helping our sales force to enhance their customer relationships and better position the value of the solutions for prospecting, cross-sell and up-sell”. 

The partnership between Cisco and Virgin Media O2 continues to yield positive results and build momentum toward a profitable recurring revenue growth. By advancing its customer success practice, Virgin Media O2 is reimagining not only the connectivity across the UK, but a sustainable, end-to-end lifecycle business model that delivers value to customers. 

Industry: Mass media and telecommunications

Company size: 18,000 employees

Location: London, UK

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