That anger Kenyans had against Safaricom’s Maisha ni MPESA Tu was from a misunderstanding

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Maisha ni MPESA Tu
  • 4 months ago
  • Posted: July 11, 2018 at 7:06 pm

When Safaricom announced Maisha Ni MPESA Tu promotion, nothing really happened. Then Kenyans got alerted that the promotion had a surprise component – a surprise where if and when an MPESA user had reached a weekly target allocated to him/her, he or she would get a reward. And Kenyans were really surprised … as the reward was nothing other than 10MB data, or 8 shillings worth of airtime.

The Miasha Ni MPESA Tu surprises went further than surprising Kenyans, it made them angry, and the anger was spewed all over social media. I almost joined the angry mob then the news of James Njagi Waweru winning an apartment from the promotion put things in perspective.

The surprise rewards Kenyans get by reaching their weekly competition is but a very small component of the promotion. Though small, it is a component designed to ensure every MPESA user who has been registered into the Maisha Ni MPESA Tu competition is also a winner – even though the win is, well, negligible. This is opposed to other competitions where the only winners are those who win the grand, monthly, weekly, or daily prizes as the rest, who are always the majority, salivate. This majority are normally told to try their luck next time. However, this time around the majority can have the 10MBs or 8 shillings every week to help them leak their lips and taste how sweet a win is.

I am not sure if the above explanation of the surprise makes it clear – but the point is the Maisha Ni MPESA Tu promotion is aimed at encouraging the use of MPESA, where those who Receive MPESA, Send MPESA, make Bank to M-PESA transactions/ Bank to Sacco, perform Paybill transactions, Buy Goods via Lipa Na MPESA, and undertake International Money Transfer(IMT) are rewarded 10 points for every 100 shillings transacted for transactions that are above 100 shillings. Those who accumulate most points stand “higher chances of winning an Apartment and Cash Prizes”. The points accumulated, even after being redeemed for the weekly surprise data and airtime rewards, still remain valid for in the competition hence can still win you an apartment or part of the cash prizes on offer.

The surprise rewards shouldn’t, therefore, have angered Kenyans. The reason Kenyans got angry might be because they consider the free 8 shillings or the free 10MBs as tiny breadcrumbs a parent would give a crying kid. Would it have been better if Safaricom offered bigger rewards? Of course. Probably what Safaricom could have done would be to allow people accumulate the free airtime/data over the 9 weeks period, to be redeemed when the airtime amount or data size makes sense. For example, if one were to accumulate 10MBs per week, then at the end of the promotion he or she would have accumulated 900MBs, a sizeable amount of data that would allow someone to enjoy some trending YouTube videos.

Even if the explanation provided in this article doesn’t calm you down, note that the surprise rewards Safaricom has been asking Maisha Ni MPESA Tu subscribers are nothing but tiny breadcrumbs a parent would give a crying kid. This then should encourage you to transact more on MPESA so as to stand a chance to win:

  • One of the six remaining houses
  • Part of the over Sh110 million worth in daily and weekly cash prizes, and/or
  • Part of the over Sh100 million worth of data, SMS and airtime prizes – which of course come in form of the surprise data bundles or airtime rewards.

The beauty of Maisha Ni MPESA Tu is that the promotion has been divided into regions, which in turn has given you a higher psychological probability of winning. James Njagi Waweru, for instance, has already represented the Nairobi Region, so we know the remaining apartments will be won by Kenyans from other regions. If you are one of those from these other regions, then as said before, continue doing those MPESA transactions, because as  Paul commented elsewhere in regards to the win by James, you might be the next lucky winner.

What is your opinion on the topic?
Odipo Riaga
Managing Editor at KachTech Analytics Ltd
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Odipo Riaga is a Technology Blogger interested in emerging tech such as VR and AR, AI, Life Extension, Exponential Biotech, Immortality, Cyborgs and many others.
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