The truth is that no matter how much PR you do, if you’re giving people a service that’s below par, you’ll always run around in circles. Yes, you’ll enjoy good business and healthy returns, you may even break the bank while at it, win awards even, but at the end of the day you have to fix the real problem. Short of that, one by one, your customers will get tired of your PR campaigns and eventually abandon your product.
MTN has got some work they need to do to make sure their award-winning Advertising and PR campaigns match the actual services they are delivering. And so do other Telecom Companies in Uganda.
MTN has this interesting and attractive MOMO Nyabo Promo where they’re giving out chunks of cash on Live TV. I use their services frequently (Like most Ugandans) so when I heard about this Promo, I tried to pay a bit of attention. It is very unlikely I’ll win but I like these campaigns all the same so today I tuned in to NBS to see which lucky people would win.
Patrico & Zahara, the presenters, earned their money – they kept me glued. When the phone numbers came up, calls were made to the winners and on each occasion, the network seemed to be a problem. I really did not care much for it because, this is Uganda – shit happens. This was until I heard a guy speak in Ateso.
Then I paid attention.
You see, whenever I hear Ateso, I smile. I get excited. I want to listen to more of it. I want to speak it. I love it so much. So I was happy that some random Etesot was going to win millions.
Sadly, the guy did not seem to hear the presenter(s) and the presenter(s) also had trouble hearing the guy. Basically, the network was a mess. I was bitter that the network was messing up my guy’s phonecall. I wanted the whole country to listen to a bit of Ateso so it was hurting me more than it should have. They tried to call the guy back but the network was still a mess.
I think they’ll still give him the money. (I hope they do).
Imagine, an MTN number calls another MTN number to tell them about their MTN winnings but the network (which is MTN) is a mess. They can’t hear each other. And this is happening on National TV. I know phone calls in Uganda are a problem because 6 out of 10 times you have to yell and ask someone to repeat what they’re saying, we’ve gotten used to this and it seems normal. But it is not! We pay shitloads of money to these Telecom companies to be treated like this.
I think that perhaps if MTN (and all other Telecom Companies) concentrate more on improving their service delivery, cheaper & clearer phone calls, more affordable internet, more manageable Mobile Money charges and so on, all these Advertising & PR games would make a lot more sense.
Right now, these Telecom Companies are doing a good job with Advertising and PR but a not-so-good job actually delivering on their promise which is affordable & quality calls and data. We pay a lot of money but we’re getting a raw deal from Telecom Companies in Uganda – that’s the ugly truth.