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Word Count: 579
The European Commission had declared that all member states would have to open their markets and guarantee competition in the telephone markets by January 1998 But the pressure for business interests made the European Commission anticipated the cellular telephony which started in 1994 However some liberalization was subject to interpretation by the countries involved The state-owned TIM had had a monopoly over the Italian telecommunications market until that time But the market changed when the Omnitel started to sell cellular service in 1995 Omnitel focused on the market in Italy because cellular penetration was 75 by the first quarter of 1996 and it expected to increase to 228 by 2000 Omnitel charged a monthly fee for its costumers and created some calls plans The customers were complaining about the minimum monthly fee but the strategy was to get high-quality customers Any cut in the monthly fee would make customers just buy the phone and hold on to it without making any calls therefore attracting low-end customers Omnitel acquire new customers offering attractive handset subsidies to customers who sign a contract for a year or two TIMs strategy before the entrance of Omnitel was to have exclusive dealers all over Italy that was about 1500 But after the Omnitels entrance TIM became more aggressive in acquiring these dealers TIMs marketing strategy was to make the cellular phone as a status symbol making the Italian society willing to buy However TIM planned to launch its first prepaid card in September 1996 This strategy would allow TIM to target low-end customers who were not qualified to subscription service because of their irregular sources of income or their low credit history Omnitel came up with a new proposal focusing in achieve greater penetration by creating customers loyalty The new marketing strategy was called LIBERO LIBERO which means free in Italian had as a mean goal give the idea of free monthly fee Eliminating the fee not only the number
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