It’s only been a few days since the recent round of rumors peg Deutsche Telekom looking into acquisition of Sprint and yet, another option has presented itself. Unfortunately, though this option has a much less positive spin than the acquisition of the third and fourth place wireless players in the US would have. Coming on the heels of the T-mobile UK merger with Orange in the UK, the two big shareholders for Deutsche Telekom are beginning to shift their attention to the US brand. While this story may be a premature for any real/serious concern, it does show that T-mobile USA needs to step their game up, NOW. The key factor here is seemingly mid 2010; the timeframe set the German Government and Blackstone private equity group, the two major shareholders of Deutsche Telekom to turn around their American division. At that point, if T-mobile has not made a turnaround in its business, that strategic decisions would be forced by the shareholders. However, at this point it needs to be made clear that any options that might be considered to transform the T-mobile USA unit are not on the table.
Information Week and Engadget
Obviously T-mobile USA needs to step up their game now and that means moving beyond Android, moving beyond the MobileMakeover and really beginning a surge of marketing toward striking down competitor advantages or for that matter, highlighting their failings. Here are some suggestions that T-mobile should take heed of…
1) AT&T has a crappy 3G network right now, Sprint is just losing customers even on free beer night, highlight the strength of your uncongested 3G network
2) You still have a better value, show it in more creative ways than billshrink.com
3) Show myfaves more, the competition is matching it, remind people that you have it AND with more minutes
4) Verizon has a stigma of being more expensive, even if they really equal pricing to AT&T, either way, show that you are less expensive and have equally good customer service
5) JD power awards are nothing to shy away from, if car companies can advertise with them, so can you
6) Customers can bring a phone to the network unlocked, let that be known even if they aren’t 3G offerings yet, unlocked is still a powerful incentive for first adopters who spend money on data
7) I’m not thinking of anything else right now, brain fried but I’ll be watching the comments for suggestions!