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Vodafone use community titles to improve brand sentiment

The bond of trust between local papers and their audiences gives an effective platform for brands to reach consumers. Vodafone capitalised on this when it embarked on a campaign to win back customer trust following several well-publicised network failures.

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Winning customer confidence

In the study, How Vodafone Australia is earning back trust one conversation at a time, Barbara Messer outlines the serious network problems faced by Vodafone Australia between 2010 -2012.₁₀

The result of these outages had dire consequences for the brand. Net Promoter Scores over the period fell considerably and the business haemorrhaged 1 million customers in 12 months. Kim Clarke, then Vodafone CMO, said in July 2014: “In essence,  we went from being the most to the least trusted telecommunications brand in Australia.”

The trust factor
Vodafone launched a three-step brand program designed to rebuild trust.

  • Address the root cause
  • Know your strengths and leverage them
  • Create an inside-out change program

The first step meant extensive improvements had to be made to the network  and to the way the company interacted with customers.

Once these improvements were made, Vodafone identified five geographic  areas in which service improvements led to significant increases in customer sentiment scores.

 Love hyper-local
Vodafone wanted to build on positive customer sentiment in these areas by promoting its newly improved service to win back market share. It invested in a highly-targeted, hyper-local media mix campaign incorporating local newspapers and outdoor advertising in specific localities

The campaigns announced Vodafone’s new 4G service and its additional coverage with clever, localised messaging.voda bondi_97700010-DC9E-11E3-A27B005056A302E6

The service improvements and subsequent local marketing activities provided strong results.

  • 20 percentage point increase in network sentiment
  • 10 point increase in trust
  • 20 point increase in Net Promoter Scores
  • 20 point increase in positive word of mouth

Brand consideration grew 27 per cent over the course of the  transformation campaign.

Local newspapers played their role by providing Vodafone with a trusted platform that encouraged readers to reappraise the brand after a difficult period.


Source: How Vodafone Australia is earning back trust one conversation at a time. Barbara Messer, ADMA Global Forum, July 2014

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