Imagine That

October 29, 2009

wimax google it

I’ve recently been wondering about upgrading my Broadband connection. I currently surf using an O2 mobile broadband dongle that hangs from the side of my laptop. Sometimes it’s my friend; it streams video, downloads at a comfortable speed. Other times, I find myself attaching the extendable chord and trying to position the dongle at whatever awkward angle it will pick up reception. I’ve had discussions around work about it, and fellow mobile broadband owners suffer similar problems. I was in the middle of considering switching to NTL, going on recommendations from my colleagues. But then I was confronted with the recent launch of Wimax, from Imagine Ireland.

I’ve been waiting for months/ years for this to happen. The rusty laptop I work on, and bought 5 years ago, came with an airport card. Its use has been minimal, since I rarely carry it with me to bars and restaurants.

The campaign reads:


“Google it”

Firstly the creative on this reads wrong to me…surely Wimax is the word that should be in quotation marks, while “Google it” is the call to action. On their own facebook page in response to some annoyed customers wanting clarification about pricing Wimax replied.
“…our current outdoor poster campaign (hope you have seen it) – is a clear call to action as to what is ‘WiMax’ (Google It)”

They correct the grammar error themselves.

Secondly, googling Wimax returns a disappointing amount of information about the service. I’m not the only person getting frustrated with this lack of information, a quick look at Facebook show’s a rather irate public (See below).

wimax facebookWhen directed to the Wimax webpage, hosted by Imagine, you are provided with vague information with how much faster and cheaper the new service will be. However exact pricing and plans is not available. According to an Imagine spokesperson they “will announce in the next coming days, both our product packages and our pricing – and of course this will be accompanied by our full terms and conditions. To be 100% clear, we have nothing to hide, we just want to get the right products and packages to suit consumer demand.” This statement was to calm the stream of comments from Facebook fans to replace the vague information with actual costs.

The Media launch screams of prematurity! In the excitement to cause some PR pre Wimax release, they may have caused more damage. While the campaign has caused a lot of interest, the public feedback has been negative because of the lack of information accompanying it. Paul Diskin commented on their facebook homepage that:

“If the advertisement of this service with full media coverage was delayed until the finer points with regard to products , speed and pricing were agreed, don’t you think that there would be more people accepting the service.”

Their campaign was to act as a teaser, get people excited about what’s to come. Instead it acted as a catalyst, to launch complaints, from an extremely price sensitive public. Competition in the broadband sector, and a service like the one Imagine are ‘proposing’ to offer is badly needed in this country, but from a media buyers perspective their campaign launch seemed like a warning to all marketers of the dangers of playing with the public.



One Response to “Imagine That”

  1. Neasa said

    It’s a really interesting point about teasing too early – there is that danger of frustrating the people who could be your most influential advocates. I wonder if it had been an established concept (like a new gaming console) as opposed to a new product, would it have been easier for them?

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