Etisalat Nigeria introduces permission-based mobile advertising to over thirteen million customers using Alcatel-Lucent’s Optism(tm)

Mobile subscribers in Nigeria can ‘opt-in’ to receive advertising messages and marketing offers from the brands they value the most

August 14, 2012

Mobile subscribers in Nigeria can ‘opt-in’ to receive advertising messages and marketing offers from the brands they value the most

Etisalat Nigeria, the fastest growing and most innovative mobile service provider in Nigeria, today announced the launch of a permission- and preference-based mobile advertising service, in collaboration with Alcatel-Lucent (Euronext Paris and NYSE: ALU).

Etisalat Nigeria is to deploy Alcatel-Lucent’s Optism, the software-based mobile marketing solution which allows subscribers to share their interests and preferences with their mobile operator and ‘opt-in’ to receive personalized, relevant advertising and special offers on their mobile phones from their favorite brands.

On behalf of Etisalat Nigeria, Alcatel-Lucent has created a local ecosystem made up of key players in the advertising value chain (including advertisers, brands and media agencies), while positioning Etisalat Nigeria as the enabler of interactive dialogues with a large group of mobile phone users with very detailed consumer profiles. Because Optism is a fully hosted, full-service solution, it provides a fast, efficient go-to-market with a low cost of entry.

During a limited initial launch in the beginning of 2012, more than 800,000 subscribers opted in to participate in the service. Etisalat Nigeria has seen very impressive results from all of the Optism-supported campaigns that have run to date. What is noticeable, is not just the high degree of engagement and interaction that the audience has with the promotional messages but also that the campaigns have all successfully driven high levels of quantifiable actions – levels way in excess of those seen via other digital channels:

  • In line with its mission statement to “[…] delivering superior enjoyment and brightening all social occasions”, Nigerian Breweries promoted their “Star” beer brand by inviting a well-targeted audience of males between 18 and 25 years old to be part of a series of music concerts – called “Star Trek”. With a response rate of more than 30%, and a click-through rate of almost 9%, the campaign created an avenue to reinforce the brand’s spirit of fun.
  • Coca-Cola offered an ‘Open and Win’ campaign which encouraged people to look under bottle caps for a code which they would then text to see if they had won free airtime. Participants were also encouraged to forward the campaign link to friends – adding a viral, social media element. The campaign had an almost 35% response rate among the 18-25 age group, a highly desirable target audience for beverage companies, and a 6.5% click-through rate.
  • Sprite offered a ’Triple Slam’ campaign focused on basketball, dance and music – key interests for young people. The focus of the campaign was not to win a prize but to get people to show the world their talents and to ’like’ Sprite on Facebook. In this campaign, there was a 22% response rate and an 18% click-through rate to the Sprite Facebook page.
  • The British Council ran an effective two-month campaign to encourage young people to study in the UK and used the chance to win a tablet PC as an enticement. The campaign had a response rate of almost 40%, and a click-through rate of more than 20% – pre-registering people for an education exhibition about studying in the UK.

Chief Commercial Officer of Etisalat Nigeria, Wael Ammar said: “Optism is enabling us to achieve a number of exciting and important objectives. First, we are bringing the power of permission-based mobile advertising to the Nigerian market with our EasyAdz service. This simply means that we will provide customers with advertising content relevant to their specific locations and choices. We are also providing a large and highly profiled audience base for brands and advertisers as well as creating an avenue to connect with our most important asset – our growing base of over thirteen million subscribers.”

Amr El-Leithy, head of Alcatel-Lucent’s business in the Middle East & Africa: “We are very enthusiastic to again be working with the Etisalat group to bring a more personalized and compelling experience to their customers. After a successful launch of Optism in the UAE it is extremely gratifying to have another member of the group choose our solution for permission-based mobile marketing. We see this as a solid endorsement of the way we are meeting expectations.”