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RE-SEARCH PROJECT

ON
MARKETING STRATEGIES OF AIRTEL
SUBMITTED UNDER FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENT
FOR THE AWARD OF THE DEGREE OF
BACHELOR OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION (BBA)

(2010-2013)
UNDER THE SUPERVISION OF:
MR. ASHUTOSH SHARMA

SUBMITTED BY:
Devender Datyal
Roll No-105032465451

RAYAT INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT


RAILMAJRA (S.B.S NAGAR)

CERTIFICATE

This is to certify that Devender Datyal , has completed his final re-search
project title A STUDY ON MARKETING STRATEGIES OF
AIRTEL under my supervision to the best of my knowledge and belief &
this is his original work and is of the standard expected of BBA.

MR. ASHUTOSH SHARMA


Lecturer
Rayat Institute of Management

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

I feel privileged to express my deep sense of gratitude to my


respected guide Mr Ashutosh Sharma without his able guidance ,
cooperation

and

supervision

the

re-search

could

not

taken

its

present form.
I will be failing in my pursuit , if I dont mention the moral and
financial assistance of my parents.
I also acknowledge the support provided to me by the people in
the market.
I

acknowledge

the help

rendered

to

me

by

the

teachers

Management department , friends and respondents.

Devender Datyal

of

PREFACE

This work is essentially the result of final year project, which is


mandatory to be taken on the

fulfillment of the BBA course . The

topic selected is Marketing Strategies of Airtel.


The re-search project aims at understanding the Marketing strategies at
Airtel and its impact on the perception of

Airtel Cellular Services.

Research has demonstrated conclusively that it is far more costly


to win a new customer than it is to maintain an existing one. And
there is no better way to retain a customer than to exceed his
expectations. For this purpose it is essential to know the level of
customer

satisfaction.

measurement

of

The

customer

focus

of

satisfaction

my
level

research
for

the

was

the

services

provided by Bharti Airtel.


In spite of the best endeavors the re-search project is not a work
of excellence as its student match record and understand the
business activities and practical aspects of business by applying
theoretical knowledge and concept.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

1.

INTRODUCTION

06

1.1

TELECOMMUNICATION MARKET IN INDIA

07

1.2

GSM MARKET IN INDIA

11

INTRODUCTION TO AIRTEL

24

2.1.

TARIFF STRUCTURE

42

2.2.

PROMOTIONAL STRATEGY

51

2.3.

MARKET SITUATION

53

2.4.

COMPETITIVE SITUATION

54

2.5.

MARKETING STRATEGY ADAPTED BY BHARTI

63

3.

RE-VIEW OF LITERATURE

72

4.

RE-SEARCH METHODOLOGY

79

4.1.

OBJECTIVES

80

4.2.

RE-SEARCH METHODOLOGY

81

4.3.

LIMITATIONS

82

5.

DATA ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION

83

6.

SWOT ANALYSIS

91

2.

7.

CONCLUSION

94

RECOMMENDATIONS

95

ANNEXURE

96

8.1.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

97

8.2.

QUESTIONAIRE

98

7.1.

8.

INTRODUCTION

TELECOMMUNICATION MARKET IN INDIA

The

Indian

connections

telecommunications
is the fifth

Network

with

largest in the world

250m

telephone

and is the second

largest among the emerging economies of Asia. Today it is the


fastest

growing

market

in

the

world

and

represents

unique

opportunities for UK companies in the stagnant global scenario.


Tele-density, which was languishing at 2% in 1999, has shown an
impressive jump to 9.5% in 2006 and 10.5% in 2007 and is set to
increase to

20% in the next five years beating the Govt. target

by

years.

three

Accordingly,

India

requires

incremental

investments of USD 20-25 bln for the next five years.


Private

operators

have

made

mobile

telephony

the

fastest

growing (over 164% p.a.) in India. With more than 33 million


users (both CDMA and GSM), wireless is the principal growth
engine of the Indian telecom industry. Given the current growth
trends, cellular connections in India will surpass fixed line by late
2004/early

2005.

Intense

competition

between

the

four

main

private groups - Bharti, Vodafone, Tata and Reliance and with the
State

sector

incumbents-BSNL

and

MTNL

has

brought

significant drop in tariffs. There has been almost 74% in cell

about

phone charges, 70% in ILD calls and 25% drop in NLD charges, resulting
in a boom time for the consumers.
The Government has played a key enabling role by deregulating and
liberalising the industry, ushering in competition and paving the way for
growth. While there were regulatory irregularities earlier, resulting in
litigation, these have all been addressed now. Customs duties on hardware
and mobile handsets have been reduced from 14 percent to 5 percent.
The

Indian

Ministries

government
to

Communication

speed

has
up

merged
reforms

Convergence

Bill

the
and

to

IT

and

decision

enable

the

Telecom
on

the

common

regulation of the Internet, broadcasting and telecoms will be taken


after the new Government assumes responsibilities in may this year. An
independent

regulatory

body

(TRAI)

and

dispute settlement body

(TDSAT) is fully functional.

INDIAN CELLULAR MARKET


The Bharti Group, which operates in

23 circles, continues to be

the country's largest cellular operator, with 50 lakh subscribers.


BSNL, which operates in 22 circles, has a subscriber base of 37
lakh

subscribers.

Thus

BSNL

stands

second

largest

cellular

operator in terms of subscriber base at the end of the fiscal

ending March 31, 2007, displacing Vodafone from the second position.
Vodafone,

which

operates in

only

eighteen circles,

is the third

largest operator with a subscriber base of 32 lakh. Unlike fellow


public sector undertaking, MTNL, which operates in Mumbai and
Delhi,

BSNL has been a very aggressive

player in the

market.

"Cellular operators who expected BSNL to go the MTNL way,


were taken

by

surprise and

did not take

effective

steps

to

counter it, till it was too late in the day," said a telecom analyst.
Belying

fears of a slowdown

in cellular subscriber acquisitions,

the cell club has reported a 7.92% growth, the highest growth in
any month so far, during March 2005. Year-on-year, the cellular
subscriber

base

in

the

country

has

almost

doubled

in

March

2005, and is expanding at the rate of 25% per year thereafter.


The cellular subscriber club expanded by 21.31 lakh last month.
This is much higher than 5.9 lakh subscribers added in February
2005 and 2.13 lakh in January 2005. Idea, which operates in
Seven circles, is the fourth largest operator with a subscriber
base
across

of

17.80

four

lakh,

circles.

higher
The

than

subscriber

BPL's

11.31

numbers

per

lakh

subscribers

operator

drop

sharply with the sixth largest operator, Spice Communications,


having a subscriber base of 9.40 lakh, followed by Reliance

Telecom's

8.9 lakh subscribers. MTNL is the ninth largest

operator, with a base of 8.32 lakh subscribers.


While the subscriber base-jumped by 3.38% to 44.39 lakh in the
metros,

subscriber

base

of

category

A circles

of

Maharashtra,

Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu jumped by


10.18

% to reach 43.64 lakh. Category B circles of Kerala,

Punjab,

Haryana,

Uttar

Pradesh

(West),

Uttar

Pradesh

(East),

Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal recorded a jump of


10.69%, with a total base of 33.74 lakh subscribers. Circle C has
reported 12.74 % growth with subscriber numbers jumping to
5.08 lakh.
Among

the metros, while

higher than the

Mumbai added

1,63,180 subscribers,

1,58,646 added by Delhi, the Capital's cellular

subscriber base of over 80 lakh is still higher than Mumbai's


66.89 lakh. While the cellular industry has been on roll for the first
three quarters of the previous financial year with an average of 16.75 lakh
monthly additions in the third quarter, the first two months of 2007 had
seen the growth slowing down.

10

GSM MARKET IN INDIA


Regional Interest Groups - GSM India

With a population of around 1.1 billion growing at roughly 1.7 per


cent a year,

India is potentially

one of the most exciting GSM

markets in the world. After two rather difficult years, the past 12
months
fruition.

have

seen

Much

of

the

region's

this

promise

success

can

beginning
be

to

come

to

to

the

attributed

stabilization of the licensing and regulatory environment.

India's

telecommunications

have

undergone

steady

liberalization since 1994 when the Indian government first


sought

private

investment

in

the

sector.

More

significant

liberalization followed in 1996 with the licensing of new local


fixed line and mobile service providers. However, it has been the

11

government's New Telecom Policy (1999) that has had the most radical
impact on the development of GSM services. 'The policy's mission
statement is 'affordable communications for all',
commitment

to

creating

modern

and

There is a genuine

efficient communications

infrastructure that takes account of the convergence of telecom, IT


and media. In addition, the policy places significant emphasis on greater
competition for both fixed and mobile services.'

Competition in the mobile sector has already had a visible impact


on prices with calls currently costing less than 9 cents per minute. This
means that service costs have fallen by 60 per cent since the first GSM
networks became live in

1995. It also helps explain why a recent

Telecom Asia survey revealed that more than 70 per cent of Indian
mobile subscribers felt that prices were now at a reasonable level.
One of the challenges facing GSM operators in India is the
diversity of the coverage regions

-from remote rural regions to

some of the most densely populated metropolitan areas in the


world. India has more than 40 networks, which cover the seven
largest cities, over
depth

of

coverage

7000 towns and several Lacs villages. Such


has

required

enormous

investment

India's operators. It is estimated that more than Rs200 billion

12

from

had been invested in India's GSM industry by mid-2000, a figure that is


set to be supplemented by a further Rs. 300 billion over the next five
years.

The good news is that subscriber growth is beginning to look


healthy.

With

India's

low

PC

penetration

and

high

average

Internet usage -at 14-20 hours a month per user it is comparable


to the US

-the market for mobile data and m-commerce looks

extremely promising. WAP services have already been launched


in the subcontinent and the first GPRS networks are in the
process of being rolled out. In the year ahead, GSM India will
work with its members to realise the potential of early packet
services in anticipation of the award of 3GSM licences.

India fastest growing GSM mart


India is expected to have 145 million GSM (global system for
mobile communications) customers by 2007-08 compared to 26
million

subscribers

as on

March

2005,

according

to the

Global

Mobile Suppliers Association. "For GSM, India is a success story.


It is one of the fastest growing markets with its subscriber base
doubling in 2005. At this pace, the target of 150 million
subscribers by 2007-2008 is definitely achievable," Alan Hadden,
president of GSA, said at a news conference in New Delhi.

13

Globally, the GSM market reached 1 billion users in February


2005, he said, adding GSM accounted for 80 per cent of the new
subscriber growth in 2005."Almost every Latin American operator
has chosen GSM. In North America GSM growth is bigger than
CDMA (code division multiple access)," he said. Commenting on
the raging debate over GSM versus CDMA in mobile services
arena, Hadden said: "GSM is the world's most successful mobile
standard with over 1 billion users, and is an open mobile
standard. It also supports automatic international roaming, which is a
major contributor to business plans."

Indias GSM mobile firms revenue up 30 pct


Indias

private

telecoms

firms

offering

GSM-based

mobile

services reported a 24 percent rise in revenue in the year to


March 2007 but said future growth rates could slow because of
heavy

taxes

on

the

nascent

industry.

Although

Indias

mobile

sector is the worlds fastest growing major wireless market, it is


amongst

the

highest

taxed

carriers pay as much as

industries

in

the

country.

Mobile

25 percent of their revenue as licence

fee, spectrum charges and other taxes. The Cellular Operators


Association of India (COAI) said revenue for fiscal 2003/04 stood
at

83.08 billion rupees

($1.86 billion) compared with

64 billion

rupees a year earlier. According to T.V. Ramachandran, director

14

general at COAI,

These revenue growth rates cannot be

maintained unless there is a concerted effort by the government to cut


excessive levies and allow sharing of infrastructure

But the potential to do much better exists as there is still huge


demand in the sector. Ramachandran said the sector was still
losing money but declined to elaborate.

Sales jumped because

of a doubling of the GSM (Global System of Mobile


Communications)

user

base

as

more

people

entered

the

flourishing market thanks to one of the lowest call rates in the


world. But the monthly average revenue per user, a key measure
of profitability, declined 17.4 percent to 432 rupees in the fourth
quarter compared with
cut

in

tariffs

and

Growth

slowing,

included

the

state-run

firms

player,

and

523 rupees in the first quarter due to a


excessive

demand

financial
Bharat

Mahanagar

said. There are

competition

untapped:

performance
Sanchar

and

Nigam

Telephone

150 million

The

among
association

the
Ltd,

Nigam

companies.

GSM-user
the
Ltd,

has
base

not
of

second-ranked
Ramachandran

GSM customers and more than

96

million users of the rival CDMA-based mobile services in the


country.
The pace of growth in monthly additions is slowing after just 1.25
million users took up the service in April compared with

15

1.9 million in the previous month and

1.63 million in February.

Ramachandran blamed the slowdown on a majority of small GSM


operators being unable to expand networks into rural swathes where
demand remained largely untapped.
Our

surpluses

expansion

and

are

not

enough

to

cover

financing

charges

on

costs

of

network

We

are

making

loans.

money only to cover operating expenses, he said. Carriers are


now

subsidising

handset

costs

to

woo

users

into

the

underpenetrated industry forecast to have more than 250 million


customers

by

2007.

Roughly

three

percent

of

Indians

own

mobile phone compared with about 20 percent in China. About a


dozen firms such as Bharti Airtel Ltd, 28 percent owned by
Singapore Telecommunications, Reliance Infocomm Ltd and the Indian
GSM-unit

of

Vodafone

group

sector.

16

battle

in

the

hotly competitive

DOES GSM HAVE THE EDGE?

GSM operators are not the only ones who are worried about the rapid
strides made by CDMA mobile players Reliance Infocomm and Tata
Indicom in the Indian cellular market?
The GSM suppliers

- both handset and equipment

- who

incidentally also have their other foot firmly placed in the CDMA pie, are
beginning to lose some sleep over what was earlier termed as `niche
and `minuscule data carriage market by the operators
Apart from the strong success of the two CDMA operators whose
networks are based on code division multiple access (CDMA), the
miserable showing of the four global standard for mobile (GSM)

17

based networks that launched general packet radio service (GPRS)


service for data connectivity in last three years, has the vendors worried.
Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) now believes

that

even

though India will primarily remain a voice traffic-led market in next


two-three years, the data traffic component will grow by 25-30 per
cent, an optimism that its trying to make GSM operators feel as well.

THE CDMA CHALLENGE


CDMA players had launched their services with CDMA 2000

1X-

based networks, which can give hi-speed, always-on connectivity


to the Internet, and other data services. GSM operators, on the
other hand, have had to migrate from the frustrating experience
of WAP (wireless application protocol) to GPRS, which has not
18

significantly improved the subscribers experience of surfing the Net


on/from mobile.
The

top

brass

of

GSA,

an

organisation

comprising

Nokia,

Siemens, Ericsson, Alcatel and Lucent Technologies - met on


Tuesday in the capital to persuade the operators to adopt EDGE (Enhanced
Data rates for GSM Evolution) and leave GPRS behind as a dream gone
sour.
Only Airtel, Vodafone, BPL Mobile and Idea Cellular had launched
GPRS, but the data transfer speeds of GPRS have been abysmal.
The field trials gave a speed of around

54 kbps, but the actual

speeds have not exceeded 14-18 kbps, a major reason why GPRS
growth has been so slow. As against the total GSM cellular base
of 5.61 crore, the country has between 2,80,000 lakh GPRS users
only. In

comparison,

the

two

CDMA operators

have

about

120

lakh connections. All these sets are data compliant. Though no


figures are available as to how many use these for data services,
the figure is believed to be respectable as a percentage ratio for
CDMA.

Bharti is almost there


But first, the EDGE! Bharti Cellular is close to commercially
launching its EDGE service in Delhi and Mumbai by end May or
early June, sources said. The company was the first to conduct
field trials in November with its equipment supplier Ericsson. Idea

19

too held EDGE field trials in February this year with its vendor Nokia.
Vodafone and BPL are yet to hold the trials. The two companies
would eventually migrate to EDGE, but perhaps after seeing the response
to Bhartis service.

EDGE holds the promise of delivering data speeds of around 170180 kbps (as against the theoretical speed of around 380 kbps) which, if
achieved,

promises

the

launch

of

many

data applications. The

scalable cost of migrating from GPRS to EDGE is not too high and mainly
comprises software upgrades in case of a modern network such as Bharti
and Hutch, claimed chairman of GSA India chapter Rakesh Malik.

Will GSM maintain its headstart?


At the GSM Evolution Forum held in New Delhi, GSA president
Alan Hadden predicted that GSM growth will far outstrip CDMA as
was happening globally. He felt India could have as many as 200
million GSM subscribers by

2007-2008, up from nine million in

December 2004. According to GSA, there are over 1.1 billion


GSM subscribers worldwide as against 250 million CDMA
customers.

The

revenue

of

top

25

global

operators

averages 18 per cent and 22 of these operators run GSM

20

from

data

networks. Overall, there are 76 operators in 50 countries that have


committed to deploy EDGE.
Almost every country has a GSM-based network and even those
US operators, which operated on now-defunct TDMA technology,
were migrating gradually to GSM, not CDMA, pointed out Hadden
at the GSM Evolution Forum. The Forum is a global GSA program
to assist the operators for evolution to third generation (3G)
technologies. People are using their phones for much more than voice.
Fifteen networks have commercially launched EDGE as it can run 3G
like services in the existing spectrum for the operators without
needing a 3G license. Even the migration to a full-fledged 3G level of
Wideband CDMA (WCDMA) will be smooth with EDGE, said Hadden.
Besides, the automatic roaming provided by GSM networks in
almost 200 countries is a power that CDMA doesnt give you. We
know for sure that almost 20-25 per cent of the revenue for
some GSM operators comes from roaming customers, he added.
But CDMA is no pushover with Korea and Philippines as the
shining jewels in its crown. The first CDMA 2000 1X was
commercially deployed in October 2000.

Already, 81 operators have launched 77 CDMA 2000 1X networks


whereas nine have launched services based on 1xEV-DO

21

platform across Asia, the Americas and Europe. At least, 16 new


1X and six

1xEV-DO networks are scheduled to be deployed in

2004, according to CDMA Development Group. EV-DO and EV-DV


are the next level of evolution on the CDMA

2000

1X platform,

capable of delivering services comparable to 3G WCDMA.

Where are the models?


What will matter a lot in this war will be the availability of EDGE
compliant

handsets

at

affordable

rates.

While

the

two

CDMA

operators have been giving out handsets that can give hi-speed
data transfer, same has not been the case with GSM. Even now,
GPRS

handsets

have

not

become

commonplace

and

GPRS

feature is found only in mid and high-end segment handsets.

End sum game


When the networks deploy EDGE, subscribers can expect the delivery
of advanced mobile services such as easy downloading of video and
music clips, full multimedia messaging, besides high-speed Internet and
e-mail access, provided their handset supports all this.
But the real cruncher will be the migration at a later stage to 3G
technologies such as WCDMA, EV-DO or EV-DA as and when the
government decides what to do with the 3G licences. WCDMA for

22

example promises delivery of a phenomenal 2 megabytes per second


(mbps), equivalent to what a leased line in many middle level corporates
gives.

More importantly, WCDMA will spawn a whole new range of full motion
audio-video applications, including video telephony. GSM lobby may
continue to remain gung ho over the future of their technologies over
that boosted by the American firms Qualcomm and Motorola, but Indian
market could well throw an interesting scenario that industry experts
will do well to watch. In the coming months, Reliance plans to offer
its CDMA subscribers much more than what GSM players intend to
deliver through their EDGE for their subscribers.

Who

succeeds

in

this battle

for

mobile

customers eyeballs

is

most difficult to predict. A Korea and Japan may not be waiting to


happen in India, but India will probably be more like the Chinese
market with both standards co-existing. For now, GSM rules!

23

INTRODUCTION
TO

24

Airtel (Bharti Airtel Ltd.)

Bharti Airtel Limited was incorporated on July

7, 1995 for

promoting

services.

investments

in

telecommunications

Its

subsidiaries operate telecom services across India. Bharti Airtel is


India's

leading

private

sector

provider

of

telecommunications

services based on a strong customer base consisting of 261million


total across 20 countries out of which 186.9million are from India
at

the

end

of

august 2012.

Airtel comes to us from Bharti Airtel Limited - a part of the


biggest

private

integrated

telecom

conglomerate,

Enterprises. Bharti provides a range of telecom services, which

25

Bharti

include Cellular, Basic, Internet and recently introduced National Long


Distance. Bharti also manufactures and exports telephone terminals and
cordless

phones.

Apart

from

being

the

largest manufacturer of

telephone instruments in India, it is also the first company to export its


products to the USA. Bharti has also put its footsteps into Insurance and
Retail segment in collaboration with Multi- National giants. Bharti is
the leading cellular service provider, with a footprint in 23 states
covering all four metros and more than 50 million satisfied customers.

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28

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live TV and download full songs on you phone. To get Airtel Live!
settings on your phone, SMS 'Live' to 56465 and save the settings
that you receive as your preferred connection. Airtel Live! Portal can
be accessed from you GPRS enabled phone, by sending a SMS 'FUN' to
56465.
Airtel Live! Voice Services:

Just Dial 56465, and name the

service. For e.g. say ring tones to download your favorite ring tones.
You can also choose a variety of content options like Live Cricket
Commentary, latest National / International News, Movie Reviews or
Stock Market Updates.
Airtel Live! SIM Services: Access loads of fun content and
exciting services like cricket, stocks, on your phone at the touch
of a few buttons with Airtel Live! SIM based Services on your SIM
card menu. To download new services on your Airtel SIM, choose
the

"What's

new"

option

under

the

"Airtel

services"

menu.

Airtel Live! SMS Services: You can enjoy a host of services by


sending a keyword as an SMS to 56465! Choose Astrology /

30

Horoscope, Cricket, Bollywood / Hollywood / Indi Pop Ring tones. In case


you need assistance SMS, Help to 56465.

31

Hello Tunes
Tired of that boring old tring tring on your phone? Well now
when a friend calls, you can make them groove to the hottest
new tracks burning up the music charts with Hello Tunes from
Airtel! You get a wide choice of songs in the Popular & New
Arrivals categories that are updated regularly. What's more you
can directly call the number for your kind of music, e.g. call
678005 for English New and

678001 for Hindi New. This would

directly take you to your favorite artist's Hello Tunes listing.

Copy a Hello Tune


Get the tune you want, all you have to do is call 55055 and follow
the simple voice instructions to copy your favorite Hello Tunes. Once
inside the copy feature, just key in the 10-digit Airtel mobile number
you want to copy the Hello Tune from and you get the same Hello Tune
assigned to your number.

Gift a Hello Tune


Forget gifting chocolates, flowers and greeting cards. Say it with
a song instead! Gift a Hello Tune to that special someone. Just
call 55055 and choose the song that you want to gift. Follow the
simple voice instructions and key in the 10-digit Airtel mobile
number that you want to gift the Hello Tune to. You will get an
SMS notification upon successful receipt of that gift.
32

Buy Music - Airtel Music Shops


Buying your favorite Hello Tune or Ring tone is as simple as
recharging your phone with talk time. Simply walk into your nearest
Airtel Shop and walk out with your favorite song. Choose from Bollywood
Hits to Indipop Remixes, Hard Rock to Gujrati Garba, Bhajans to Jazz,
Bhangra Beats to foot tapping Tamil Hits from a list of more than 18000
songs.

Reach us Anytime Anywhere


In case you need assistance, dial '121' - our toll-free number,
accessible from

anywhere

in the country,

even

while roaming.

You can also send us an SMS to 121 or mail us at


121@airtelindia.com.
*In case of email, mention your mobile no. like, 9810012345, in the
subject of the mail for a quicker response.

Airtel Postpaid
Airtel welcomes you to a vibrant world of unlimited opportunities. More
exciting, innovative yet simple new ways to communicate, just when
you want to, not just through words but ideas, emotions and
feelings. To give you the unlimited freedom to reach out to your special
people in your special way.

33

Easy Billing
Enjoy a host of rich features only with Airtel e-bill. Register free
on My Airtel section and view your monthly bill with call details
for last three months. Sort your calls between personal and
official or analyze your usage, at the click of a button. To change
your tariff plan call our IVR at 121 and leave a request.

Easy Payment Options. Anytime Anywhere


You can choose from a host of convenient payment options only with
Airtel.

Walk

into

any Airtel

relationship

centre

and

make your

payments by cash or credit card. Drop a cheque at any of the drop boxes
for making payments or simply log on to My Airtel section and pay
instantly through your credit card. You can also opt for easy payment
options like:

Standing Instructions
You can give us standing instructions to debit your credit card account
for your monthly Airtel bills. All you have to do is fill the Standing
Instruction Form and mail, fax it to us or drop it any of our relationship
centres.

34

Electronic Clearing System


Fill an ECS form and mail, fax it to us or drop it any of our
relationship centres to directly debit your bank account for your monthly
Airtel bill.

Pay while roaming


Airtel

has

introduced

'Anywhere

payment'

that

offers

you

the

convenience of making payments while you roam. Walk in to any


Airtel

Relationship

Centre

in

the

country,

make

payments

by

cash or credit card and enjoy uninterrupted Airtel Services.

Credit limit
Your pre-set credit limit mentioned on your monthly bill helps
you keep your mobile charges in control, keeps track of your
usage

and

ensures

that

your

mobile

phone

is

not

misused.

Should you exceed your credit limit, you will be informed via a
voice or a non-voice message to make an interim payment and
reduce your account balance below your credit limit. You may
also

choose

to

pay

us

an

additional

refundable

deposit

to

enhance your credit limit or opt for our convenient payment


method of Credit Card Standing instruction
use of ECS facility.

35

.You can also make

Strong Network Coverage


Enjoy complete clarity when calling with Airtel .It offers you world class
technology and unbreakable network coverage that spans over 23 circles
across the country.

Long Distance Calling Facility


Call long distance calls in India and Overseas with STD / ISD facility
on your Airtel phone.

Widest Roaming - National and International


Airtel's roaming service allows you to stay connected and use your
mobile phone to make or receive calls from almost
anywhere in India and also over 160 countries, abroad.

GPRS - Roaming
Use Airtel Postpaid's GPRS services, while roaming, to access the internet
and office mails (eg. BlackBerry services), from almost anywhere in India
and abroad.

Say it. In more than just words, with Services from Airtel
Airtel brings you a wide range of Services that will change the
way you communicate. Try them and discover a whole new world of fun
and excitement.

36

Call management Services


Call waiting, call hold, call divert and Caller Line Identification
Presentation, help you do more with your Airtel Postpaid
connection!

Conference call
You can hold a teleconference with 5 people simultaneously with Call
Conferencing service from Airtel. In fact, you can set up a conference
even when the other five are using a landline phone. To know more, call
customer service at 121.

Missed call alert


A missed call alert is a SMS that you will receive for all the calls that
you missed. The SMS will detail the CLI and the time when the call was
made. To activate, dial *135*2# then press the call button and wait for
the request to be completed.

Voice Mail
When your handset is switched off, or youre too busy to answer the
phone, Airtel Voicemail will answer your calls and record a message.
The best part is that there's no extra monthly cost for setting up
Voicemail - you just pay for the phone call when you use the service.

37

SMS (Short Messaging Service)


Send messages quickly and easily, using text, if it's too noisy to talk or
you don't have much time. It's the way to Share those interesting oneliners, important reminders and rib-tickling jokes, with anyone, anytime,
anywhere in the world.

Subscription Alerts
Get regular alerts on news, jokes, business, health and films on your
Airtel

mobile

phone

with

Subscription

Services.

SMS <SUB

NEWS> for News, <SUB JOKE> for Jokes, <SUB BIZ> for Business
News, <SUB SPO> for Sports Alerts & <SUB VAASTU> for Vaastu tips to
3333.

MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service):


Jazz up your messages with pictures, images and video clippings, with
MMS from Airtel! To activate MMS on your phone, SMS 'MMS' to
56465 and save service settings.

Airtel Live!
Make your mobile the most happening entertainment destination with
Airtel Live! Airtel brings you the latest in entertainment and information
services, right on your phone!

38

Airtel Live! WAP Services: Download the latest ringtones, games,


wallpapers, videos and much more. You can also get news clips, watch
live TV and download full songs on you phone! To get Airtel Live!
settings on your phone SMS 'Live' to 56465 and save the settings
that you receive as your preferred connection. Airtel Live! Portal can
be accessed from you GPRS enabled phone, by sending a SMS 'FUN' to
56465.
Airtel Live! Voice Services: Just Dial 56465 and say the name
of the service. For e.g. say Ring tones to download your
favourite

ring tones. You

can also choose a variety of content

options like Live Cricket Commentary, latest National /


International News, Movie Reviews or Stock Market Updates.
Airtel Live! SIM Services: Access loads of fun content and
exciting services like cricket, stocks, on your phone at the touch
of a few buttons with Airtel Live! SIM based Services on your SIM
card menu. To download new services on your Airtel SIM, choose
the "What's new" option under the "Airtel services" menu.
Airtel Live! SMS Services: You can enjoy a host of services by sending
a keyword as an SMS to 56465 ! Choose Astrology / Horoscope,
Cricket, Bollywood / Hollywood / Indi Pop Ring tones. In case you need
assistance SMS Help to 56465.

39

GPRS (General Packet Radio Services)


Log on to the internet, with GPRS that allows data transmission at a
higher speed. Access e-mails and internet across Airtel's pan-India
presence using 'Mobile Office' with your phone or a phone and laptop
both.

Get the EDGE


Browse the internet on your mobile phone with Airtel's EDGE services.
Enjoy live TV, enhanced WAP experience and Airtel Data Cards on our
high speed network.

Hello Tunes
Tired of that boring old tring tring on your phone? Well now
when a friend calls, you can make them groove to the hottest
new tracks burning up the music charts with Hello Tunes from
Airtel! You get a wide choice of songs in the Popular & New
Arrivals categories that are updated regularly. What's more, you
can directly call the number for your kind of music, e.g. call
678005 for English New and 678001 for Hindi New. This would
directly take you to your favourite artist's Hello Tunes listing.

40

Copy a Hello Tunes


Like a tune you want, all you have to do is call 55055 and follow the
simple voice instructions to copy your favourite Hello Tunes. Once
inside the copy feature, just key in the 10-digit Airtel mobile
number you want to copy the Hello Tune from and you get the same
Hello Tune assigned to your number.

Gift a Hello Tunes


Forget gifting chocolates, flowers and greeting cards. Say it with a song
instead! Gift a Hello Tune to that special someone. Just call 55055 and
choose the song that you want to gift. Follow the simple

voice

instructions and key in the 10-digit Airtel mobile number that you
want to gift the Hello Tune to. You will get an SMS notification upon
successful receipt of that gift.

Buy Music - Airtel Music Shops


Buying your favourite Hello Tune or Ringtone is as simple as
recharging your phone with talktime. Simply walk into your nearest
Airtel Shop and walk out with your favourite song. Choose from
Bollywood Hits to Indipop Remixes, Hard Rock to Gujrati

Garba,

Bhajans to Jazz, Bhangra Beats to foot tapping Tamil Hits from a list of
more than 18000 songs.

41

Reach us, Anytime Anywhere


In

case

you

need

assistance,

dial

'121'

our

toll-free

number,

accessible from anywhere in the country, even while roaming. *In case of
email, mention your mobile no. like 9810012345 in the subject of the
mail for a quicker response.

TARIFFSTRUCTURE

Airtel

Prepaid Ready Cellular Card and Recharge Cards are available, all
over the city at over retail outlets including 24-hour outlets. Airtel Prepaid
Ready Cellular Card and Recharge Cards are available, all over the city at
over

retail

outlets

hour outlets.

42

including

24-

Airtel Prepaid Regular


449
SUK
Pulse Rate
Price of Pack (Rs.)
Free Airtime on Pack (Rs.)
Incoming Calls (Rs.)

LOCAL RATES (Rs./min)


STD RATES (Rs./min)

60 sec
Rs.449
Nil
Free while in home network
Airtel

GSM / CDMA
(10 Digit)

Landline / WLL

Rs.1.20

Rs.2.00

Rs.2.40

Rs.2.75

Rs.2.75

Rs.2.75

ISD (Rs./min)
USA, Canada, Europe (Fixed
Line), Australia, Singapore,
Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia,
Indonesia, New Zealand.
Gulf, Europe (Mobile), SAARC
countries, Africa & Rest of the
world
Cuba, Sao Tome & Principe,
Guinea Bissau, Diego Garcia,
Nauru, Solomon Islands,
Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Tuvalu,
Tokelau, Norfolk Island,
Sakhalin

Rs.6.40

Rs.9.20

Rs.40.00

SMS (Rs.)
Local
National
International

Rs.1.20
Rs.2.00
Rs.5.00

Other Details
*Rs 50 Local Airtel-Airtel Mobile talktime per month for 6 months
*First month Airtel-Airtel credit within 72hrs of activation
*The SMS charge as applicable is per 160 characters
* Validity- 24 months.

43

POSTPAID
Airtel Postpaid allows you to choose from a variety of affordable talk
plans, convenient payment options and host of rich features. So get set to
enjoy a world of limitless possibilities!

Reference Tariff Packages (RTP)


ON TIME CHARGES
Activation Charges
Membership Fee
Security Deposit
MONTHLY CHARGES (FIXED)
Bill plan Charge
Monthly Rental
Clip
MONTHLY CHARGES (OPTIONAL)
Clip

Rs. 250
Rs. 250
NA
Rs. 524
Rs. 444
Rs. 150
NA
Rs. 99
Airtel

GSM

/ Landline /

CDMA
Local Rates
STD RATES
50 - 200 Km
200 - 500 Km
500 + Km
ISD
USA,

Canda,

Austalia,

Rs. 1.99

Europe

Singapore,

(Fixed
Hong

Line), Rs. 7.20


Kong,

Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, new


Zealand
Gulf, Europe
(Mobile), SAARC
Countries,

Africa

&

Rest

of

Rs 9.99

the

world
Cuba,

Sao

tome

&

Principle, Rs. 40.00

Guinea Bissau,

44

Rs 1.99

Rs 1.99

Cook

Island,

Tuvalu,

Tokelau,

Norfolk Island, Sakhalin


SMS
Local
National
International
Value Added Services (Rs.)

Rs. 1.00
Rs. 2.00
Rs. 5.00
Rs. 3.00

Airtel One Standard 150


ONE TIME CHARGES
Activation Charges
Membership Fee

Rs 250
Rs 250

(Converts

into

security

after 24 months)
Security Deposit
NA
MONTHLY CHARGES (FIXED)
Rs. 150
Bill Plan Charge
Rs. 50
Monthly Rental
Rs. 150
Clip
NA
MONTHLY CHARGES (OPTIONAL)
Clip
Rs. 50
Bissau, Diego Garcia, Nauru,
Solomon
Islands,

Islands,
Tuvalu,

Vanuatu,
Tokelau,

Cook
Norfolk

Island, Sakhalin
SMS
Local
National
Intentional
VAS
This

Rs 1.00
Rs 2.00
Rs. 5.00
Rs. 3.00

Bill Plan is also available under Advance Rental of Rs. 799

for 2 years. Local Pack Airtel to other local mobiles (non Airtel) At Rs 1
/ min

Monthly rental Rs 25 per months/STD Pack

45

Airtel to other mobiles (non Airtel) & fixed lines nos. at Rs 2 / min.

Monthly rental Rs 75 per month/Special offer for Airtel Telephone service customers for

availing Airtel Mobile services


If you already have Airtel Telephone service, you can buy a new
Airtel Mobile connection under Airtel One Standard 150 Plan.

Benefits:

Non security deposit.

No membership / activation fee

Enjoy calls to your Airtel fixed line no. at just 50 P / min.

Monthly rent of Rs 25 for reduced call rates to your Airtel

fixed

line has been waived off for 1 year.

For details, call us 516-12345


Advance Rental benefits (1year scheme)
Pay an advance rent of Rs 499 and enjoy Airtel One Standard
150 plan at Zero monthly rental for one year.
Advance rental of Rs 499 gives you a rental discount of Rs 150
every month for the next 2 months. All other options and
charges are as per the existing Airtel One Standard 150 Plan.

46

Airtel one Standard 299


ONE TIME CHARGES
Activation Charges
Membership Fee

Rs 250
Rs 250

(Converts into security

after 24 months)
NA
Rs 299
Rs. 150
Rs. 299
NA

Security Deposit
MONTHLY CHARGES (FIXED)
Bill Plan Charge
Monthly Rental
Clip
MONTHLY CHARGES (OPTIONAL)
Clip
Rs. 50
Airtel

GSM

/ Landline /

CDMA (10 WLL


LOCAL RATES
STD RATES
50-200Km
200 - 500 Km
500 + Km
ISD
USA,

Canda,

Austalia,

Europe

Singapore,

(Fixed
Hong

Africa

&

Rest

Rs. 1.00

Rs. 2.00
Rs. 2.00
Rs. 2.00

Rs. 2.40
Rs. 2.40
Rs. 2.40

Rs. 2.40
Rs. 2.40
Rs. 2.40

Line), Rs. 7.20


Kong,

Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, new


Zealand
Gulf, Europe
(Mobile), SAARC
Countries,

Re. 1.00

Digit)
Rs. 1.00

of

Rs 9.99

the

world
Cuba,
Guinea

Sao

tome

Bissau,

&
Diego

Principle,

Rs. 40.00

Garcia,

Nauru, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu,


Cook Island, Tuvalu, Tokelau,
Norfolk Island, Sakhalin
SMS
Local
National

Rs. 1.00
Rs. 2.00

47

International
Value Added Services (Rs.)

Rs. 5.00
Rs. 3.00

You also enjoy 25 FREE local mobile to mobile SMS

48

Senior Citizen Plan


ONE TIME CHARGES
Activation Charges
Membership Fee

Rs. 250
Rs. 250

Security Deposit
MONTHLY CHARGES (FIXED)
Bill Plan Charge
Monthly Rental
Clip
Cuba, Sao Tome & Principle,
Guinea

Bissau,

Diego

(Concerts into

deposit after 24 months)


NA
Rs. 150
Rs. 51
Rs. 99
NA

Garcia,

Nauru, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Cook


Islands,

Tuvalu,

Tokelau, Norfolk

Island, Sakhalin
SMS
Local
National
International
VAS

Rs. 1.50
Rs. 2.00
Rs. 5.00
Rs. 3.00

49

security

With senior citizen plan you can take 3 Friends and Family numbers:

Airtel to Airtel (1local no.) - Rs. 0.5 / min.

Airtel to Airtel (1 STD no.) - Rs 1.5 / min

ISD calls to US / Canada / South East Asia / Australia / New Zealand) -

Rs. 9.99 / min

You also get FREE alert subscription worth Rs 30 / alert or 3 months


on:

News

Astrology

Health Tips

The SMS charges as applicable is per 160 Characters.

50

PROMOTIONAL STRATEGY
Airtel to Touch Tomorrow with a new brand vision
The Bharti Mobile promoted AirTel cellular service will go in for
repositioning

of

its

brand

image.

The

new

brand

ethos

is

portrayed in two distinct fashions - the tag line "Touch


Tomorrow", which underscores the leading theme for the new brand
vision, followed by "The Good Life", which underscores a more caring,
more customer centric organization. Aimed at reengineering its image as
just simply a cellular service provider to an all out information
communications services provider, Touch Tomorrow

is

meant

to

embrace the new generation of mobile communication services and the


changing scope of customer needs and aspirations that come along with it
The new communication is about a new dimension in the cellular
category that goes beyond the Internet, SMS, roaming, IVRS, etc
but which engulfs the whole gamut of wireless digital broadband
services that will constitute tomorrows cellular services. The new
campaign is in two phases - the first of which will communicate
overall brand philosophy and the second products and services.
According to Mr. Jagdish Kini, Chief Operating Officer, Bharti
Mobile Limited, Karnataka "We are adopting a new brand-

51

platform - Touch Tomorrow - not only to reflect our corporate ethos


but also business strategy".
The new identity will have the logo in Red, Black and White colours
along with lower case typography to convey warmth. AirTel

will

incorporate the latest branding in all of its communication and


will soon be going in for an enhanced promotional drive to establish
the brand's presence.

LIFE TIME PLAN


PRE-PAID card users need not worry anymore about recharging
their coupons every month. Company has launched a plan that
allows users to take a pre-paid connection with lifetime validity
for a one time payment of Rs. 999. Subscribers availing
themselves of this scheme will also get full talk time for the
recharge coupon they purchase and also have the option to buy
Taiwanese manufactured Bird mobile handsets for as low as Rs.
1,399.
The

move

is

aimed

at

stopping

the

churn in

the

pre-paid

subscriber base. Once a subscriber takes this plan, he will always


be an Airtel subscriber whether the mobile is being used or not.

52

MARKET SITUATION

At the time of launch


The first mover in the market was Airtel which launched its services
in Delhi in Aug 1995 (Informal launch).

Essar Cellphone followed by

launching its services informally in Oct 95.

At this point of time, the

market was at a nascent stage, awareness level was low and both
operators independently tried to spread awareness and educate the
people
Once

the

networks

were

commercially

launched,

it

became

number game with a multitude of schemes being offered to woo


customers

Initially

the

cellphone

was

perceived

as

status

symbol and utility took a back seat The target segment in Delhi
were

corporate

and

the

high

income

group.

capacity installed was for 1.5 lakh subscribers.

The

average

This coupled with

the steep license fee paid to DOT put pressure on the operators
to break-even by rapidly expanding their markets.

In the first

two years, this led to a number of schemes being offered and


prices crashing.

53

COMPETITIVE SITUATION
Airtel

launched

its

services

before

Essar

and

skimmed

the

market picking up the bulk of the high usage premium clients.


This is a very competitive industry with the two companies
differentiating either on value-added services or price.

Airtel is

perceived as the high quality provider and has a premium image.


Essar, on the other hand, is perceived as the lower end service
provider.

Airtel positions itself as the market leader on the basis

of the number of subscribers.

Essar is trying to counter this by

emphasising on the reach of its network and the quality of its


service.

However, Essar is somewhat not been very successful

largely due to the inconsistency in advertising


To promote themselves, both the players have been dependent on tactical
advertising However, they have restrained from using comparative
advertising Hoardings have been a very popular medium for carrying
the advertisements Airtel has also been advertising on television using
the Bharti Telecom name.

SALES DEPARTMENT AND STRATEGY


A. Major Accounts (Direct Channel)
Handles corporate (named and famed) accounts

Forecasting of sales

Mapping the accounts


Providing after sales support to the subscribers.

54

Maintaining call reports for records.


Providing Feedback to the marketing department regarding
the requirement of the market.
B. IDC (indirect Channel)
Handling distribution
Maintaining records and level check of the channel partner
Liaisoning between the channel partner and the company.
Target achievement
Training the executives of the channel
C. Distribution Support
1.

Logistics
Monitor handset and SIM card requirements of
channel partners and co-ordinate with stores.
Settle areas of concerns such as incentive claims of
channel partners.

2.

Rental
Provide cellular services (SIM cards) on rent.
Provide cellular phones on rent
Useful for people visiting Delhi for a short interval.

3.

Telesales
Call customers and generate sales lead.
Follow up with the customers, if they need any assistance

55

Pass on the sales lead to the channel department.


Audit

Consultant to the AirTel showrooms.


Monitor the operations at the AirTel distribution outlets
Organize training.
5.

Retail
Locate shops to open retail counters.
Monitor the retail counters.

MARKET SEGMENTATION
Segmentation is beneficial because of better predictability of the
target

consumer

group,

minimization

of

risk

exposure,

better

ability to fine-tune a product / service to the requirement of


target buyer and the resultant ease in designing a proper designing
marketing mix strategy In this case segmentation is on the bade of income.
In evaluating different market segments the company looks at
two factors The overall attractiveness of the segments and the
company's

objectives

&

resources

The

present

market

for

Cellular phones, pagers and conventional phones is as follows

Cellular Phones
Pager
Conventional
Phones

Premium
Upper Lower
X
X
X
X
X
X

56

Middle
Economy
Upper Lower Upper Lower
X
X
X
X
X
X
-

X Market Segment Targeted

TARGET MARKET SEGMENT


Airtel

has

rationale

targeted
behind

the

it

is

premium
that

only

and

upper

those

middle

segments

targeted who value time and have the paying capacity.

class.

The

should

be

It Is also

planning to target the business tourists during their stay in the


capital
About 60% of the clientele are top executives of corporate houses.
About 15% are foreign organisations and the rest are professionals and
small businessmen.

During the introduction stage there was intense

pressure to get consumers across to hook up with their brand, because


getting them to switch brand loyalty later would be hard
So far Airtel marketers have been concentrating totally on the business
executive class but now that the basic viable volumes has beer) built up
and prices have declined to a certain extent they are planning to
venture further a field.

POSITIONING
The product is sought to be positioned as a business efficiency
tool. a lifestyle revolution and a status symbol The emphasis is to
remove misconception that the cellphone is an expensive means

57

of communication and drive home the point that the cellphone is actually
a day-to-day utility

PRODUCT POLICY AND PLANNING


The product or service is the heart of the marketing mix. Without
a product or a service customers' needs cannot be satisfied.
The basic product promise by Airtel is mobility.
marketing

strategy

is to

be a first

Airtel's main

mover all the time.

It

has

recognised the significance of making the first move-- because in the field
of Communication

&

Information

Technology

changes occur at a

tremendous pace.
Effective product segmentation has to be carried on continuously
because basic services
become

expected

can be and will

component

of

the

be copied
product.

and in time

Airtel

seeks

to

carry out this segmentation through provision of new information


services and making new facilities available.

The product policy

and planning depends on the stage of the product life cycle.


present

the

cellular

stage.

Since,

the

phone
premium

market
segment

has

reached

is

nearing

the

At

maturity

saturation

company targeting the upper middle and middle-middle class.

the
In

order to do so Airtel is trying to optimise the price performance


package by offering suitable "product bundling".

58

This

involves

the

selection

of

the

suitable

hardware

(handset) and its software (its services.) with reasonable


price in order to deliver
to

its

customers.

maximum

price

performance

In addition, it offers free Airtime

services and other concessions to make the prices and


thus the product more attractive.

It has also opened a

24 hours customer service.


Only price doesn't serve as an effective differentiator,
value
added services become the effective differentiator.

The "Value Added Services" provided from


Airtel are:1). Voice Mail service
This system is similar to the answering machine - if the
user

is

not able to answer a call for some reason the caller can
leave
messages in the voice mail box which can be later
retrieved

by

the user

2) Short Message Service


The short message service is like a two-way pager.
gives

It

an

option of sending and receiving text messages directly


from

one

mobile phone to another without the intervention of an


operator.

3) Mobile Fax 1 Data Service

59

This service helps the subscriber to send and receive Faxes, access Email, download computer files from other systems and remotely log on to
another computer and surf the Internet.

4) Cash Card
The cash card is a pre-paid and pre-activated card which
allows the buyers to buy air time in advance.
requires

is

the payment of an initial amount.

All it

This is a

useful service for people who travel to Delhi often and


those who want to control the expenses on their calls.
5) Caller ID
Displays

calling

person's

number.

6) Outgoing call restriction


To prevent or limit outgoing calls, for example, in peak hours. Also
possible to exclude one or several countries, or any geographical
region, to permit only local calls, or to limit the outgoing calls to a
listed number.
7)

Call forward

Incoming calls can be forwarded to another fixed or mobile phone.


Besides these some other services provided by Airtel are
conferencing, Call Broadcast et cetera.

60

- Call

It is in the operators

-Interest that they not only get many

subscribers

get

frequently.

but

also

them

to

use

the

mobile

facility

In the early stages getting increases to subscribe may be

easier than getting them to talk since they will find it costlier to use
the mobile phone as compared to a conventional phone [if is believed that
initially
8)

cellphones

would

be

used

buy]

Roaming Facility

Roaming facility is available while the subscriber is travelling. The


billing is done in the home network (Delhi). Roaming facility is available
manually* as well as semi-automatically.

Once a subscriber is In any

other city or country, where a GSM network is available, simply insert the
SIM card of the local operator Into your handset and start talking.
*

Manual Roaming means a separate SIM card is provided for


each city

**

Semi automatic roaming means one card has the facility


for different cities.

AIRTEL'S MARKETING ORIENTATION.


Since this is a high-involvement expensive product, the service provider
has to fully take care of the customers.
a)

They take personal responsibility to "get" the answer for any


problem faced by the customer

61

b)

They

anticipate

customers'

problems

and

take

pro-active

steps to prevent them


c)

They give answers to the questions & requests, quickly &


efficiently.

d)

They have a positive tone & manner while interacting with


customers.

e)

They end the interaction on a positive or a humorous notemaking the last 30 seconds count.

Airtel realises that attracting people 'Is easy but converting them into loyal
customers is hard, hence emphasis is on maintaining a 'Smiling and a
Friendly Atmosphere' to please and retain the customer.

PRICE AND PRICING POLICY


AIRTEL has

realised

that

the

Indian

market

is

price

sensitive.

Therefore it care of the has come up with various innovative tariff


schemes to take needs of different category of customersGenerally, the
cellular services are more expensive than the land line based telephone
services.

This is due to the reason that the operating

companies

required to pay a fee to the government for using airtime.

62

are

MARKETING STRATEGY
ADOPTED BY BHARTI
Bharti has spent a considerable amount on advertising its mobile phone
service, Airtel.

Besides print advertising, the company had put up large

no of hoardings and kiosks in and around Delhi. The objective behind


designing a promotion campaign for the Airtel services is to promote
the brand awareness and to build brand preferences.

It is trying to set up a thematic campaign to build a stronger


brand equity for Airtel.

Since the cellular phone category itself is

too restricted, also the fact that a Cellular phone is a high


involvement
differentiator.
deal.

product,

price

doesn't

qualify

as

an

effective

The image of the service provider counts a great

Given the Cell phone category, it is the network efficiency

and the quality of service that becomes important.

What now

the buyer is looking at is to get the optimum price-performance


package. This also serves as an effective differentiator
Brand awareness is
preference

through

spread through
brand

stature.

the' campaigns and brand


Airtel's

campaign

in

the

capital began with a series of 'teaser' hoardings across the city,'


bearing just the company's name and without explaining what
Airtel was.

In the next phase the campaign associated Airtel with

Cellular only thereafter was the Bharti Cellular connection


63

brought up. Vans with Airtel logos roamed the city, handing out
brochures about

the company and its services to all consumers.

About 50,000 direct callers were sent out.

When the name was

well

the

entrenched

in

the

Delhiitess

mind,

began to focus on the utility of Cellphone.

Airtel

campaign

In the first four

months alone Airtei's advertisement spend exceeded Rs. 4


crores.
As of today the awareness level Is 60% unaided.

This implies that if

potential or knowledgeable consumers are asked to name a Cellular phone


service provider that is on the top of his/her mind 60% of them would
name Airtel. As for aided it -is 100% (by giving clues and hints etc.).
Brand strength of a product or the health of a brand is measured by the
percentage score of the brand on the above aided and the unaided tests.
The figures show that Airtel is a healthy and a thriving brand.
Every company has a goal, which might comprise a sales target and a
game plan with due regard to Its competitor.

Airtel 's campaign

strategy is designed keeping in mind its marketing strategy. The tone,


tenor and the stance of the visual ads are designed to convey the image
of a market leader in terms of its market share.

It tries to portray the

image of being a "first mover every time" and that of a "market leader".

64

The status of the product in terms of its life cycle has just reached
the maturity stage in India. It is still on the rising part of the product life
cycle curve in the maturity stage.
The diagram on the left hand side shows the percentage of the users
classified into heavy, medium and low categories.

The right hand side

shows the revenue share earned from the three types of users.
Airtel, keeping in mind the importance of the customer retention,
values

its

heavy

service innovation.

users

the

most

and

constantly

indulges

But, since heavy users comprise only

in

15

20% of the population the other segment cannot be neglected.


The population which has just realised the importance of cellular
phones has to be roped in.

It is for this reason that the service

provider offers a plethora of incentives and discounts.

Concerts

like the "Freedom concert" are being organised by Airtel in order


to promote sales.
mind.

The media channel is chosen with economy in

The target segment is not very concrete but, there is an

attempt to focus on those who can afford. The print


advertisements and hoarding are placed in those strategic areas
which most likely to catch the attention of those who need a
cellular phone.
1

higher)

is

The product promise (which might cost different


an

important

variable

in

audience.

65

determining

the

target

Besides this, other promotional strategies that Airtel has adopted are :-.

(i)

People who have booked Airtel services have been treated


to exclusive premiers of blockbuster movies. Airtel has tied up with
Lufthansa to offer customer bonus miles on the German airlines
frequent flier's programs.

(ii)

There

have

campaigns,

been
pre

educational
launch

advertisements,
promotional

campaigns,

advertisements,

congratulatory
advertise-ments,

attacking

tactical advertisements.

66

image
launch

advertisements,
advertisements and

DISTRIBUTION
Company

Franchisee

Distributor

Dealers

Dealer

Customer

Customer

The- company whose operations are concentrated in and around


Delhi.

It

27 Franchisees and

15 Distributors- They also have

'instant access cash card counters- Each franchises or distributor


can have any number of dealers under him as long as the person
is approved by the Airtel authority.

Each franchises has to invest

Rupees Ten Lakhs. to obtain a franchise and should employ an


officer recruited by Airtel.
the

company

and

This person acts as an liaison between

the franchises.

The

franchises

can

number of dealers as long as their territories do not overlap.

it

any
But

unfortunately Airtel has not been very successful in controlling


territorial overlaps of dealers.

The franchises can carry out his 1

her own promotional strategy. For this the. company contributes

67

75% of the money and the franchises contributes 25% of the money.
The dealers under the franchisee receive the same commission.

The

franchises and the dealer obtain the feedback from the customers and they
are sent through the liaison officer on a day-to-day basis to Airtel.

The

dealer has to invest Rupees. One Lakh as an initial investment.

The

dealer of Airtel are not allowed to provide any other operators' service.
Target set for distributors and the dealers is 100 -150 activations
per month.
promotions

Hence the dealers can also go for their own


like

dealer provides

banners
service

and

discounts

promptly.

The

on

festivals

consumer on

etc.

The

providing

the bill of purchase for the handset and proof of residence has
only to wait an hour before getting connected. The staff of the
dealers and the franchisees are provided

training by the Airtel

personnel.
The complaints encountered by the franchisees and dealers are either
handset being non-functional or the SIM Card not getting activated.
Anything more complicated is referred to the main Airtel office in
Delhi.

68

WHAT DOES AIRTEL OFFER?


With Airtel, the subscriber wouldn't just get a personal phone
that lets him/her be in touch, always, but also gets a host of
benefits that let him/her manage his/her time like never before.
An Airtel subscriber is provided with a Subscriber Identity Module
Card (SIM card) - that is the key to operating his/her cellular
phone. His card activates Airtel cellular services and contains a
complete micro-computer chip with memory to enable one to
enjoy one's cellular phone thoroughly. Each SIM card contains a
PIN code (Personal Identity Number) which may be entered by
one. Just plug your SIM card into your cellular phone, enter the
PIN code and it becomes 'your' personal phone'.

PRODUCT LIFE CYCLE


The pattern of cellphone subscriber growth observed elsewhere in the
world reveals that the growth in the market is Initially slow followed by
a sharp acceleration, but so far that has not happened in India. As
far as the Product Life Cycle is concerned. Indians are at the beginning of
the maturity stage.

69

Introduction

Growth

Maturity

MARKETING OBJECTIVES
Create product

Maximize market

Maximize

awareness and trial

share

whole

profits
defending

market share

Strategies
Product

Offer a basic

Offer value

Increase in

product/

added services

number of

service.

value added
services.

Price

Distribution

Charge cost-

Price to

Price to match

plus

penetrate

or best

market

competitors

Build selective

Build Intensive

Build more

distribution

distribution.

intensive
distribution.

Advertising

Build product

Build

Stress brand

awareness

awareness and

differences and

among early

interest in the

benefits.

adopters and

mass market

dealers.
Sales

Use heavy sales

70

Increase to

Increase to

Promotion

promotion

tobuild and

entice people
to subscribe.

maintain
relationship with
customers

71

encourage
brand - switching

REVIEW
OF
LITERATURE

72

REVIEW OF LITERATURE

"Marketing" is an instructive business domain that serves to


inform and educate target markets about the value and
competitive advantage of a company and its products.
Value is worth derived by the customer from owning and
using the product. Competitive Advantage is a depiction
that the company or its products are each doing something
better than their competition in a way that could benefit the
customer. Marketing is focused on the task of conveying
pertinent company and product related information to specific
customers, and there are a multitude of decisions (strategies)
to be made within the marketing domain regarding what
information to deliver, how much information to deliver, to
whom to deliver, how to deliver, when to deliver, and where
to deliver. Once the decisions are made, there are numerous
ways (tactics) and processes that could be employed in
support of the selected strategies. As Marketing is often
misinterpreted as just advertising or sales, Chris Newton, in
What is marketing? (Marketing Help Online, 2008), defined
marketing as every strategy and decision made in the
following eleven areas :

73

Identifying and quantifying the need in the marketplace.


Identifying and quantifying the target markets.
Identifying the optimum cost effective media online
and offline - to reach the target markets.
Reviewing the priorities of the product offering in your overall
product mix matrix.
Testing different ways of packaging the concepts or products.
Testing to find the optimum pricing strategies.
Developing effective promotional strategies and effective advertising
and supporting collateral, offers, and launch strategies.
Developing and documenting the sales process.
Finding the optimum execution of the sales process through
testing of selling scripts, people selection, supporting collateral, skills
and attitudinal training, tracking, measuring and refining.
Ensuring that sales projections reflect realistic production capacities.
Developing nurture programs to optimize the lifetime value of the
customer The
goal of marketing is to build and maintain a
preference for a company and its products within the target markets.
The goal of any business is to build mutually profitable and
sustainable relationships with its customers. While all business
domains are responsible for accomplishing this goal, the marketing
domain bears a significant share of the responsibility.

Two levels of marketing:

74

Strategic marketing: attempts to determine how an


organization competes against its competitors in a market
place. In particular, it aims at generating a competitive
advantage relative to its competitors.
Operational marketing: executes marketing functions to
attract and keep customers and to maximize the value
derived for them, as well as to satisfy the customer with
prompt services and meeting the customer expectations.
Operational Marketing includes the determination of the
porter's five forces.

4 Ps
In the early 1960s, Professor Neil Borden at Harvard
Business School identified a number of company
performance actions that can influence the consumer
decision to purchase goods or services . Borden suggested
that all those actions of the company represented a
Marketing Mix. Professor E. Jerome McCarthy, also at the
Harvard Business School in the early 1960s, suggested that
the Marketing Mix contained 4 elements: product, price,
place and promotion. In popular usage, "marketing" is the

75

promotion of products, especially advertising and branding.

However, in professional usage the term has a wider


meaning which recognizes that marketing is customercentered. Products are often developed to meet the
desires of groups of customers or even, in some cases, for
specific customers. E. Jerome McCarthy divided marketing
into four general sets of activities. His typology has
become so universally recognized that his four activity sets
, the Four Ps, have passed into the language.

Product:
The product aspects of marketing deal with the specifications of
the actual goods or services, and how it relates to the
end-user's needs and wants. The scope of a product
generally includes supporting

elements such as

warranties, guarantees, and support.

Pricing:
This refers to the process of setting a price for a product,
Including discounts. The price need not be monetary - it
can simply be what is exchanged for the product or
services, e.g. time, energy, psychology or attention.

76

Promotion:
This includes advertising, sales promotion, publicity, and
personal selling, branding and refers to the various methods
of promoting the product, brand, or company.

Placement (or distribution):


Refers to how the product gets to the customer; for example,
point of sale placement or retailing. This fourth P has also
sometimes been called Place, referring to the channel by which a
product or services is sold (e.g. online. retail), which geographic
region or industry, to which segment (young adults, families,
business people), etc. also referring to how the environment in which
the product is sold in can affect sales. These four elements are often
referred to as the marketing mix, which a marketer can use to craft a
marketing plan. The four Ps model is most useful when marketing low
value consumer products. Industrial products, services, high value
consumer products require adjustments to this model. Services
marketing must account for the unique nature of services. Industrial
or B2B marketing must account for the long term contractual
agreements that are typical in supply chain transactions. Relationship
marketing attempts to do this by looking at marketing from a long
term relationship perspective rather than individual transactions. As a
counter to this, Morgan, in Riding the Waves of Change (Jossey-

77

Bass, 1988),suggests that one of the greatest limitations of the 4 Ps


approach "is that it unconsciously emphasizes the insideout view
(looking from the company outwards), whereas the essence of
marketing should be the outsidein approach. Nevertheless, the 4
Ps offer a memorable and workable guide to the major categories of
marketing activity, as well as a framework within which these can be
used.

India's first private operator to make cellular profits has an


aggressive strategy in all areas of fixed and wireless telecoms.
Indian telecom company Bharti enterprises is undertaking a
bold expansion through a series of acquisitions , new network
build and forays into the international arena. It is becoming a
force to compete with the government run Department of
Telecommunications (DoT) and state owned Mahanagar
Telephone Nigam limited(MTNL).

We would like to become a customer driven one-stop-shop


for a range of telecom services ,including fixed line networks,
mobile, internet access and VSATs ( Very Small Aperture
Services )

- Sunil Bharti Mittal


(Group Chairman and MD)

78

RE-SEARCH
METHODOLOGY

79

OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY

Objectives:
To study the importance and development of tele

communication industry in todays scenario.


To understand the various Marketing Strategies which Airtel has
adopted to survive in highly competitive cell phone industry.
To make a comparative study of the major players in Indian
Service Provider.

80

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
The methodology adopted for this project is exploratory in nature
since

there

is

no

hypothesis

that

has

to

be

tested.

The

conclusions have been drawn by exploratory research work.


There have been two sources of information collected:

a) Primary Sources
I have met retailers of the Airtel of the company and have been able to
get first hand information regarding the product, its features and the
buying patterns of the product. Their input has been valuable.

b) Secondary Sources
Secondary source has played a vital role to play in this report. A good
amount of data has been collected from various published articles and
reports found in magazines and journals. Another vital source has been
the Internet and particularly the companies own website.

Selection of sample
A sample of 60 respondents out of which 20 are retailers and 40
are the consumers.

81

LIMITATIONS

Every

attempt

will

be

taken

to

obtain

the

error

free

and

meaningful result but as nothing in this world is 100% perfect I believe


that there will still the chance for error on account of following
limitations(1)

Respondents unavailability.

(2)

Time pressure and fatigue on the part of respondents and


interviewer.

(3)

Courtesy bias.

82

DATA
ANALYSIS
AND
INTERPRETATION
83

DATA ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION


1. Do you believe that India is potentially one of the most
exciting mobile service providers in the world?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes
4
4
4
4

No
1
1
1
1

As according to the above table 16 (80%) out of the total 20


interviewed people in all the above four specified Indian mobile service
providers are of belief that India is potentially one of the most exciting
mobile service providers in the world, whereas some 4 (20%) of them
do not agree to this view.

No

Yes

AirTel Vodafone

10
Idea

84

12
BSNL

14

16

18

2. Do you find that the governments telecom policy has had


the most radical impact on the development of mobile
service providers?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes
4
3
3
5

No
1
2
2
--

As according to the above table 15 (75%) out of the total 20


interviewed people in all the above four specified Indian mobile
service providers find that the governments telecom policy has
had

the

most

radical

impact

on

the

development

of

mobile

service providers, whereas some 5 (25%) of them deny this.

5
4.5
4
3.5

AirTel

Vodafone

2.5

Idea

BSNL

1.5
1
0.5
0
Yes

No

85

3. Do you believe that one of the challenges facing mobile


operators

in

India

is

the

diversity

of

the

coverage

regions?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes
2
3
3
2

No
3
2
2
3

As according to the above table 10 (50%) out of the total 20


interviewed people in the mobile service providers are of belief that one
of the challenges facing mobile operations in India is the diversify of the
coverage regions, whereas interestingly another 10 (50%) of them deny
this.

3
2.5
2

AirTel
Vodafone

1.5

Idea
BSNL

1
0.5
0
Yes

No

86

4. To what extent, does

you

find

that

mobile service

providers is a very complex standard?


Company

To some extent

To great extent

Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

(1-5)
3
2
2
3

(6-10)
2
3
3
2

As according to the above table 10 (50%) out of the total 20


interviewed people in all the above four major the mobile service
providers in Indian Cellular industry find only to some extent that GSM is
a very complex standard, whereas the another 10 (50%) respondents find
to great extent that mobile service providers is a very complex standard.

3
2.5
2

AirTel
Vodafone

1.5

Idea

BSNL

0.5
0
To some extent

To great extent

87

CONSUMER LEVEL
1. Do you believe that mobile service providers comes close
to fulfilling the requirements for a personal communication
system?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes
9
8
8
5

No
1
2
2
5

As the above shows 30 (75%) out of total 40 respondents are of the belief
that mobile service providers comes close to fulfilling the requirements
for a personal communication system, whereas 10 (25%) of them are in no
way to this belief.

3
2
No

2
2

BSNL
Idea
Vodafone

AirTel
3

Yes

3
3

88

2. Do you find that mobile service providers as the most


exciting and satisfying mobile standard?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes
9
7
8
8

No
1
3
2
2

As the above shows 32 (80%) out of total 40 respondents find that


mobile service providers as the most exciting and satisfying mobile
standard, whereas the remaining 8 (10%) respondents deny this.

No

Yes

10

15
Airtel

Vodafone

20
Idea

25
BSNL

89

30

35

3.

Do

you

believe that

your service

genuine commitment to creating

provider has

a modern and efficient

communications?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes
10
8
10
8

No
-2
-2

As the above shows 36 (90%) out of total 40 respondents are of


the

belief

that

their

service

providers

have

genuine

commitment to creating a modern and efficient communications whereas


the remaining 4 (10%) respondents deny this.

2
0
No

2
0

BSNL
Idea
Vodafone
8

AirTel
10

Yes

8
10

90

SWOT

ANALYSIS

STRENGTHS
Cost advantage
Current leaders in quality service
Largest distribution network
Ability to constantly innovate
Highly skilled workforce
Entrepreneurial zeal
Airtels increased equity and market cap.

WEAKNESSES
To prove credibility
Price pressures
Need for Government support
Awareness
Sales and Marketing

91

OPPORTUNITIES
To sustain passion and commitment
Airtels

market

share

increasing

at

other

expense. Thus opportunity to wipe it out.

Attain higher value services

Collaborative business needs to be explored

Vertical repeatable solutions.

Low penetration level in rural markets.

THREATS
Foreign investment
Global trends moving from GPS to WLL.
Lack of global parity in telecom tariff

Other competition

92

service

provider

Recommended Marketing Strategies for Airtel

With the entry of multiple new players in the sector and an ever
decreasing ARPU, Airtels marketing team needs to innovate constantly.
In the foreseeable future, the marketing team must emphasize on the
following aspects:

Refrain from using pricing as a marketing tactic. With the ongoing


price war, the price levels have become unsustainable anyways. Any
further aggressive pricing strategies on Airtels part will only do
further damage.

Concentrate on the untapped rural market segment. Airtel should


aggressively increase its network in the rural sector and market itself
before other players enter the market in a big way. The conservative
nature of the typical rural Indian consumer must be kept in mind.
The first mover is bound to get an advantage.

Build strong corporate contacts and offer more benefits for corporate
users. This is going to be the biggest cash generating segment and
Airtel must consolidate its position here. This can be achieved by
entering into tie-ups with various companies.

Providing more useful value added services (VAS). VAS has emerged as
the most important source of revenue for mobile operators. Airtel needs to
further its efforts of providing users the best possible VAS.

Provide special incentives for Airtel - Airtel calls. This is a proven way of
expanding customer base and has been exploited by Reliance
Communication and Tata.

Airtel must differentiate services for consumers with high usage rates by
providing them special band - width such that they do not face increasing
problems like call - drops and network - jams. This can result in a major
source of revenue for Airtel and will do wonders for customer satisfaction
and customer perception of brand quality.

Airtel must ensure that it does not lose its current users to competitors.
This can be ensured by increasing quality of service provided. Decreasing
prices further is not going to help retention of customers and can be a
permanent customer for the company.

93

CONCLUSION

94

CONCLUSION

From above the details I conclude that 70% Airtel users


preferred to remain with Airtel. Also good no. of users who were
willing

to

switch

from

their

respective

subscribers

showed

interest in Airtel. Hence, these statistics imply a bright future for


the company. Also the company is now providing more services
like the door to door services which is you dial the Airtel
customer care and would like to send someone flowers the Airtel
company

delivers

those

flowers

to the

person

concerned.

Also

Airtel is providing free text messaging service and free voice


mail

service.

Call

conferencing

provides.

95

is

also

another

feature

Airtel

ANNEXURE

96

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Bernard J. T. Mallinder. Specification Methodology Applied to


the GSM System. In EUROCON 88, June 2005.

Seshadri Mohan and Ravi Jain. Two User Location Strategies


for

Personal

Communication

Services.

IEEE

Personal

Communications. 1(1), 1994.

Moe Rahnema. Overview of the GSM System and Protocol


Architecture. IEEE Communications Magazine. April 1993.

C. Watson. Radio Equipment for GSM. In D.M. Ballston and


R.C.V Macario, editors, Cellular Radio Systems, Artech House, Boston,
1993.

Robert G. Winch. Telecommunication Transmission Systems.


McGraw-Hill New York, 1993.

Vodafone
Airtel
Idea
BSNL

97

QUESTIONNAIRE
NAME: ____________________________________
ADDRESS: ____________________________________
OCCUPATION: ____________________________________

1. Do you believe that India is potentially one of


the

most

exciting

mobile

service

providers

in

the

world?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes

No

2. Do you find that the governments telecom policy has had


the most radical impact on the development of mobile
service providers?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes

No

3. Do you believe that one of the challenges facing mobile


operators

in

India

is

the

diversity

of

regions?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone

Yes

No

98

the

coverage

Idea
BSNL
4. To what extent, does

you

find

that

mobile service

providers is a very complex standard?


Company

To some extent

To great extent

(1-5)

(6-10)

Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

99

CONSUMER LEVEL
1. Do you believe that mobile service providers comes close
to

fulfilling

the

requirements

for

personal

communication system?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes

No

2. Do you find that mobile service providers as the most


exciting and satisfying mobile standard?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

3.

Do

you

believe that

Yes

No

your service

genuine commitment to creating

provider has

a modern and efficient

communications?
Company
Airtel
Vodafone
Idea
BSNL

Yes

100

No