Why Mobile Marketers Need a Carrier Billing Solution

DigiWorld Partners invited Wister, one of our trusted partners, to share their knowledge on the place of direct carrier billing in mobile marketing. Here, you can read the highlights of this conversation and apply them to your marketing strategy.

Marketers today put a high premium on mobile traffic. More consumers are connected to the world through mobile devices, so it’s become a huge platform for marketing, yet there remain so many unknowns. The most important aspect of any mobile marketing strategy is being able to monetize traffic. For companies trying to launch products overseas, this goal only becomes trickier.

An effective strategy in monetizing traffic is capitalizing on impulse buys, meaning you can’t give your consumers too much time to consider their purchase. Worldwide, that instant payment comes from direct carrier billing. For this reason, Joey Gabra, the managing director of Wister, an international mobile services provider headquartered in Paris, urges marketers to have a plan for direct carrier billing.

The Global Significance of Carrier Billing

Direct carrier billing, or what’s sometimes known as direct operator billing, is often overlooked in North America. However, on a global scale, this payment method is massive. Research firm Analysys Mason predicted that carrier billing will provide telecoms worldwide with more than $12 billion in revenue in 2022. Juniper Research forecasts that the the value of digital content billed directly through carriers in Europe will reach more than $7.1 billion (or 5.2 billion Euros) in 2017.

Gabra explains that credit cards aren’t as prevalent in other parts of the world, which is why direct carrier billing is a more popular payment method in certain countries. It’s also especially important for consumers in emerging markets who may not have the Internet or computer access to use other types of payments.

Technology for carrier billing has expanded for these reasons. What was once a way for consumers to buy ringtones has become a one-click payment avenue for all sorts of products on different devices and consoles. Because it doesn’t require credit or debit card information from customers and creates one-time passwords for authentication, it’s also considered safer than other billing methods.

Carrier billing sounds like the obvious choice for anyone trying to market on a global scale, but there are downsides. The biggest complaints against it are that obtaining authorization from each individual mobile carrier is a tedious process and payment cycles can last up to 120 days. That’s not a great plan for businesses that are trying to get off the ground and in need of cash flow.

The Various Solutions
So what are companies to do? Clearly it’s not ideal to look for a carrier billing solution on your own. It’s a long, risky process that can take up to six months per carrier.

Luckily, there are solutions that can give a business access to these mobile carrier connections without having to do all the complicated legwork. These services can also help you get paid regularly, which mobile carriers often cannot do.

Gabra’s company, Wister, does just that, but he encourages companies to do their own research and make informed decisions about the services they choose to partner with. That’s why Wister created Mobademics.com – an educational resource for everything mobile.

Now that this billing method has become so intrinsic to successful mobile marketing, there are a rising number of global payment companies out there that marketers need to learn about.

To learn more about Wister and carrier billing solutions, please watch our interview with Joey Gabra.


Nigel Williams

Nigel Williams has been working with affiliate networks and ad technology since 2005. He has driven millions of dollars in sales and leads for many of the worlds most popular brands.

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