Users of telecom services in Nigeria are missing out on enjoying attractive offers from their telecom providers in 2016, as has been the tradition in past years, MetroBusinessnews reports.
Telecom operators in Nigeria, who by the end of November in previous years, had started different advertising campaigns, offering free gifts, setting up competitions with attractive prizes, organising exhibitions and end of year concerts with foreign music artistes, have gone quiet this year,our findings show.
This has taken out some of the excitement from the festive season for many Nigerians who look forward to such promotions from the telecommunication companies.
In 2013, MTN offered customers free smartphones, 50percent discount on pay monthly plans and 50 percent on mobile Internet monthly fees for Christmas. While in December 2014, the network provider took Fuji legend, Adewale Ayuba to thrill subscribers in Osogbo, Ibadan and Abeokuta.
“This year, we are not planning on organising any yuletide season concerts or bonanzas because it has been a very tough year; so many budgets have been cut. However, we are continuing with or normal offers such as the MTN yafun yafun promo and the rest, to reward customers,” Funso Aina, Public Relations Manager, MTN Nigeria said.
Last year, Globacom organised a mega musical concert which took Nigeria’s A-list artistes, including Wizkid, Flavour, Burna boy, Wande Coal, Reekado Banks and others to eleven locations across the country, including Ikeja, Ikorodu, Egbeda, Surulere and Victoria Island in Lagos; Ibadan; Port Harcourt; Abeokuta; Ijebu Ode; Benin and Abuja.
According to Glo, the musical festival was organised during the festive period to reward its loyal customers who used up to N2,000 and above within one month.
Our sources at Globacom say; “We did not plan any special promos or concerts for Christmas and we don’t plan on giving any gifts to customers but what we have going on now, is the Glo Campus Storm, where we are currently taking music stars to university campuses to entertain and offer students cheaper calls and data packages. It has been running for a while now, but it is not specially designed for the festive period.”
In the same vein, Etisalat is yet to reveal campaigns, jingles, adverts or press releases on plans for special end of year concerts or promotions.
Olusola Teniola, President, Association of Telecommunications Companies of Nigeria (ATCON) told BusinessDay in a telephone interview, that; “The cost of doing business in the economic climate has resulted in a corresponding pressure on all service providers in the telecommunications industry.
“With various costs already increasing in line with inflation, currently at 18.6 percent, this means that everyone is cost conscious and being strategic in items that relate to cost of sales expenditure,” Teniola said.
According to him, 2016 has been a very tough year on Nigeria’s economy and to the telecoms operators, who in previous years earned huge amounts of profit and could afford to fly in foreign celebrities for elaborate end of year parties.
In November 2013, MTN organised an ultimate wonder promo, where it offered the first place winner, an airplane or N64 million, which the winner took instead. Other telecommunications providers have also in previous years, sponsored entertainment concerts, flying in foreign musical artistes to perform at Christmas shows.
Industry analysts say that with the current recession, most telecommunications service providers are cutting spending budgets due to thinning margins.
The industry, which experts say, has the potential to take the country’s economy back to recovery, has this year been hit by different challenges, including a high cost and scarcity of foreign exchange and sanctions from the regulator.
Although Adebayo Shittu, Minister of Communications, said that Information Communication Technology and Telecommunications are the only sectors in the country to have recorded a positive growth in the first quarter of 2016, stakeholders say the increased market share could be tied to the major shift in revenue of mobile telecoms operators from voice to data service provision and the increased demand for data, which delivers more speed, efficiency and variety of service via the Internet of things (IoT).