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A Look at Zong’s Campaigns: Online Marketing’s .


•Zong is the first international brand launched by China Mobile in Pakistan in April 2008. The brand automatically gained a following of 6 million subscribers in the first year of operations. The success should be attributed to the packages that they have offered to the masses. •However, although the packages were excellently designed to meet the target market of the company, it would not have been that successful, if the marketing was not strategically planned out and executed. •Zong advertisements were usually either print adverts or television commercials, before they hit the internet. •Seeing as to how successfully this telecom company has taken competition head on with the other giants like Mobilink, Warid, Ufone and Telenor is an important step to understanding how important it is to understand market, and how to spread the message across to the masses.


Pre - Zong Era.


•Before Zong came into being, the telecom advertisements were mostly consisted of dancing celebrities and it concentrated less on what the package was all about. The slogans were sung repetitively, but that’s about it. Exploring the internet masses was out of question, and the target market was usually the high class folk. For example, Warid and Mobilink started the Blackberry services for the business class.


Enter Zong.


As Zong entered the market, the first thing that people noted different was the type of ads that were shown on the television. There was a new face for almost all the commercials. The protagonist will talk about: •The package being offered •The problem that existing telecommunication customers have to go through •How the package is the answer to the problem For example, the commercial about unlimited SMS for Rs. 3 everyday, it talked about how little people could SMS and it cost so much for a regular daily SMS package, and how for just Rs. 3 (+ tax) we can say it all. The print ads showed how Zong was different from its competitors, again sticking to the no celebrity rule for there ads, and explaining all the advantages of their packages. Using simple graphics and text, they were able to show people that they meant business. The billboards were seen by almost everyone passing by, all information readable. Simple it all seems. But it takes more than just doing what everyone else is to get subscribers.


Zong Online.


•Despite being able to succeed through just by differences in TVCs and print ads, Zong still wanted to increase their subscribers’ base. Obviously people were getting more and more busy with their lives and watching television and reading newspapers was sometimes hard to do. Zong realized that despite busy lives, people still used the internet more frequently. Thus Zong started to launch their advertisements online. •Internet usage has become a very integral part of our society. People go for news updates immediately when something goes wrong. People talk with their relatives abroad through internet. People also use the internet to enjoy themselves. It has become a source for entertainment, business and education. Even all businesses have their official websites now. •Although Zong had its own website, that itself is not enough to generate subscribers if people were told to go online through commercials and print ads. To ease out accessibility of internet usage, the company had to bring their battalions to the internet as well. Several flash and picture advertisements were posted on the famous websites of Pakistan. These were strategically chosen as there were more Pakistani users going to those websites frequently. Pro Pakistani is a famous blog website with more than 1000 fans on its Face book fan page. News websites like Jang, Nawaiwaqt, The News, The Nation, Dawn and Geo TV are viewed by many internet users daily to get updates on current events. These websites are updated almost as soon as an event take place and people immediately go online to read more. •These types of websites ensure that the users see the advertisements being shown. For the months of May and June 2009 the reports on click rates show how successful this has been. •Total impressions show how many ads were shown on all the websites that they were placed on. Average click rate shows how successful each campaign was. A good click rate would be greater than or equal to 0.50. The average click rate for all the campaigns put together including their


Report Fields Creative Group 789

Report Metrics Total Impressions

Total Clicks Recorded

Average Click Rate

306,055

1,771

0.50

5,784,629

33,349

0.65

Face book

237,021

1,033

0.40

Handset

217,721

777

0.34

Happy Hour

681,715

2,631

0.33

IDD

33,047

197

1.43

MNP

297,920

1,551

0.44

Post Paid

819,685

11,603

3.81

SMS Buddy Chat

331,717

1,314

0.34

1,727,796

12,114

0.65

BYN

SMS-Email


•Default impressions is 0.62, without defaults equals to 0.89. Both above 0.50 so it means it is making good progress and this is just for the months of May and June. •Another thing to note is that all these packages were very intelligent packages. The telecom newbie understood the needs and wants of the subscribers and were able to deliver it. But to actually get it through, they used the internet as well as the traditional advertisement methods to entice new subscribers. For example, SMS-Email was a package that allowed users to send emails via SMS’s. This would mean that people could still work while they are on the move and away from the internet. •The package IDD Bundle allows prepaid users to call anywhere around the world, with interesting packages like 125 minutes for Rs. 200 (+ tax). This received an average click rate of 1.43. However, this campaign was closed off soon. •Post Paid received the best average click rate (3.81). Next to that the best campaign despite its click rate of 0.65, was the BYN (Book Your Number).


User Engagement.


•Despite being the third ranked click rate on the report metrics, BYN was one campaign that worked the best. This was because it included user engagement, where users would get on the website to choose their favorite numbers, and checking its availability. •Users frequently got on the website to look for numbers that they wanted and it quickly caught fire and spread. People liked the idea of paying nothing for the SIM for a special number, which usually cost a lot sometimes Rs. 5000, sometimes even Rs. 200,000. •This engagement brought success to this campaign and it is by far Zong’s most popular offer.


So What Did We Learn?


•Plain and simple, it takes innovation, and a lot of subscribers, to be successful. Going online was a smart move, and engaging the subscribers and prospective subscribers was an excellent move. This increased the popularity of Zong. •Going where the masses is going and spreading their word through what people are getting into is something many people want to try out, but Zong did it. The success of how it worked shows pretty well through the number of subscribers that they have now accumulated.



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