Dear ORANGE, time you gave subscribers the real deal

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I really did not care for Orange before today. Now, read this; “ Integrated telecommunications solutions provider Orange has earmarked 2015 for further subscriber acquisition and the overall growth of its business.” So I thought to myself, finally, someone discovered Safaricom’s hoodoo….and that must be Orange!

Until I read on and found out the reason Orange telecommunications company would think for a minute this will increase subscriber base or rather have it take over from the telco reigning master. Well, apparently, Orange has acquired 17 vehicles from VAELL (Vehicle and Equipment Leasing Limited), an independent leasing house with presence in six countries across the region, and the leasing company expressed gratitude saying the impressive performance over the period between January and October 2014 was a reflection of a strategy that focused on growing the voice mass market offering and solidifying the business’ mobile and corporate data position in the market.

So, the long-term partnership with the vehicle leasing firm and the company will seek to expand this partnership as a means of managing its operational cost by passing on intermediate services of vehicle maintenance to VAELL.

Pretty sure you are lost here. I was lost same way when I received the piece of information meant to be good news for our readers or rather Orange subscribers and potential ones. First off dear Orange, the public is not interested to know when you lease, hire or buy cars. Really that is not news to write home about. We would be glad to know you are rolling out Orange mashinani, cheaper Orange products, Orange saidia project maybe? and what not. I mean, we are looking forward to better headlines than you talking about 17 leased cars that VAELL will maintain. (Nothing against VAELL)

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It is great that you have signed a partnership with the independent leasing house but the telecommunications industry is currently intense and looking out for its subscribers in more practical and beneficial ways. Trust me when I buy your modem or airtime scratch card I don’t really care how it got to the outlet. I care about my coin; how worthy? I care about my service; is it good? And that keeps subscribers going. Value for my money.

I am aware CAK endorsed you as the telco with the highest subscriber growth over a three month period. Congratulations are in order, but do you know what subscribers don’t care about? That. Remember when schools introduced a formula of embracing the weaklings by  keeping records of the most improved in the school and one would come from a D with 30 points to a D+ with 33 points and get paraded by the academic head who would force the rest of the school to clap? That is how I feel about that endorsement. Did that student impact the class or school  in any way? But just because that category had to have records, bogus performance was welcome anyway.

Away from that, Orange telco has come a long way, I would hate to see it choke to death like YU did and at some point, I feel they should try and find out what ‘ juju’ safaricom has on it’s subscribers even with their ridiculous prices/ rates and services.  Here are some factors care for;

Sensible Mobile Money platform

This is the day and age many individuals care for money in their phone more than they do for that in their bank accounts which they can access through their phones anyway. First, in layman language, mobile money possibly means money at hand, money I wouldn’t have to struggle in order to access it. Money I can access anywhere, anytime as long as I have the mediums to get me there; agents and ATMs. I still wonder whether Orange operates a mobile money platform. It has been long since I saw any and if I have landed on any, it must have been an Orange shop in the CBD which is obvious. You wouldn’t expect to find loui vuitton in a Bata shop right? So, here is my point dear Orange, I will be happy to read news of you expanding Mobile money agents or maybe the day I get news you have shut down mobile money since you could not serve right. Go hard or go home!

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Wide network reach

Very aware even the leading telco in the country doesn’t satisfy the regulation body in terms of network reach. This however, is not an excuse for you to lag behind. How about we have you as first to saftisfy the regulator and subscribers as well? See, this is what we want to hear about! Great reach and accessibility both data-wise and voice call-wise. How the services will get to me? Again I won’t care if you hired a car, jet or whatever.

Great call rates

Forget the infamous advert ‘Did you Know’ that only applies to peak rates which every telco goes all the way to please subscribers with some giving free minutes to keep us on the network.  If you invested on good network rates, we would be more than happy and trust me that would earn you more subscriber base. Rates is one of the renowned way to lure subscribers as long as it is economic conscious, you have them on board!

Affordable products and services

We are talking modems, phones, tablets, customer care and all that would fall under products and services. Aside from network accessibility, subscribers are in dire need of affordable products and services that sound right economy-wise. If you will talk about how cheap your product is and how good your services are (currently not. Top in companies with poor customer service).

MASHINANI something

Have you seen how Safaricom has given subscribers something to chew on? Mashinani this mashinani that. Power provision services, school upgrade projects, chama endorsements, youth training, startup endorsements and the list goes on and on. I am not asking you to copy-paste what other telcos have been up to, I just think you should get in touch with subscribers and let them know you care even if you probably don’t.  such projects would matter to the public other than leasing cars.

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