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Great data from the coffee promotion

As a reminder, a few weeks ago, we offered a $5 Starbucks credit to any AT&T or Verizon customer that calculated how much they would save by switching to Ting. To get an accurate calculation, we asked them to enter their account credentials and we scraped the relevant information directly from their last three bills.

Beyond the thousands of participants that are now seriously questioning their current cellphone contracts, a huge benefit of this promotion is that it gave us some unassailable data on potential Ting savings.

When people populate the savings calculator themselves, the inputs can be unreliable. People guess at what they think they use rather than checking their actual usage on their bills. They wrongly enter what is included on their plans, not how much they actually needed (used). And they rarely enter data from more than one monthly bill.

But when we scrape the information ourselves, we know the bills and the usage are accurate.

So here were the results:

92% of participants would see some savings in their monthly bills
87% would save more than $350 over two years (enough to get a Nexus 5)
82% would save more than $600 over two years (enough to get an S4, HTC One or Moto X)

I should point out that this is actually perfectly consistent with the “98%” number that we boast from the Validas research. That 98% included a remarkable result for small businesses. 100% of the 18,000+ accounts with over 10 devices included in that research would save on their monthly bills with Ting. (That number frankly made me uncomfortable. 100%?! But that was the result. Apparently, small businesses just get reamed with line fees and other inefficiencies on traditional plans.) It appears none of the coffee promotion participants had over 10 devices on their accounts. So it makes sense that the percent saving with Ting would fall a bit below the 98%.

I am also always compelled to reiterate that calculations using actual recent usage do not necessarily represent just how much people could save by switching to Ting. Those who are on unlimited plans will have usage that reflects that they couldn’t care less what their usage is. When people switch to Ting and have the opportunity to save a ton of money, they find simple ways to reduce their usage without sacrificing their mobile experience. They switch to Wifi when it’s available. They cache music. They hold off on viewing unnecessary videos and photos remotely. We project savings based on people bringing their exact current usage to Ting but the real life savings from real life behavior changes are consistently much greater.

So the coffee promotion provided some great validation and a 2014 priority for the Ting marketing team.

The validation…an overwhelming majority of people would save money by switching to Ting.
The priority…we need to get small businesses to start participating in this discussion.