This September Meteor will lose its identity to eir completing its years’ long immersion into the company. Meteor, founded in 2001, was acquired by eir in 2005, but for the past twelve years the subsidiary was allowed to keep its brand name as it continues to manage its customer base of 750,000 mobile users. eir claims that the change should mean nothing for the customer as for them everything would be the same except the name of their mobile service provider.
“We have adopted a single brand strategy. You can get your bundle from eir, your broadband from eir, your TV from eir and mobile from eir.”
Paul Bradley, a spokesman for eir
Critics are skeptical of eir’s move, but the CEO of the company wards off any doubts and expresses strong faith in his company’s decision: “This decision reflects the confidence we have in the eir brand,” said Richard Moat, the company’s chief executive.
eir, previously known has Eircom, has some 1.1 m customers between its subsidiaries eir and Meteor. Ever since its acquisition of Meteor the company has spent a significant amount of money in advertising and marketing the brand. The group believes that it is in company’s best interest to unify its effort for one brand rather than promoting two different brands that offer similar services.
“By focusing on a single mobile brand and reducing the duplication of supporting two brands, we can offer better value and increased innovation.”
Although the companies were providing many similar services, Meteor is considered as youth- brand or pre-paid customer brand. As we could see in their ads. Goos3D compiled a list of Top 5 Meteor’s ads for you, if you feel nostalgic. By merging the brands, the company attempts to improve Meteor’s image and would increase eir’s market share as one big mobile services giant.
“Kill a brand and keep the customer,” is a popular slogan in the business world. Businesses spend trillion of dollars in promoting and advertising multiple- brands, and according to an estimate the corporation generates 80% of their profits from 20% of their brands. Business strategist believes that is sometimes to the company’s benefit to erasing a brand and milk the profits. In the given scenario, there could be many reasons why eir is erasing it Meteor brand.
eir has pumped millions of dollars in promoting Meteor. It has sponsored many events including the Meteor Choice Awards. Expanding Meteor and eir means that the company has to fund and manage to separate ad campaigns and which would have cost the company twice the amount that can be spent on the expansion of one brand.
The group has some 84 retail stores which include Meteor stores, eir stores and dual branded stores. All these stores will be consolidated under one brand name, eir, which will reduce the company’s over heads: utilities, employees’ salaries and the cost of employee’s uniform.
The company is already in the process of launching its new campaign “Let’s make possible,” and feels relief from having to manage and fund one campaign instead of two.
Sometimes having two different brands can confuse customers. Having one brand clarifies any doubts that the customers may have the quality of two different brands. It is easier for the customer mix-up two different brands by the same company. This happened to Merc when it merged with Chrysler; a lot of Merc loyal customers felt that the Merc quality was compromised and sneered at the Chrysler’s technology. The advantage of having one brand is that it sends out one single message and creates one unified image in the clients’ minds.
Increased Market share
In 2006, Meteor’s market share was 16% and was considered the third mobile phone provider. It was increasing its hold on the mobile market to the extent that big giants like Vodafone and O2 were feeling a little threatened. Eircom has a market share of 49% for fixed voice lines and with Meteor and eir mobile services companies combine, it will become the third largest mobile services provider in the Ireland. By merging Meteor with Eircom, eir will emerge as a stronger brand with higher market share.
By consolidating its services the group aims to provide all the broadband and mobile services at one place. By doing so, the company will not only expand its target market and market share, but it will also increase customer loyalty.