Brand is neither something tangible, nor is it something physical. Yet brand has an entire persona that defines a company, person or even a country.
Brands exist in the hearts and minds of people. If you think of a brand, what comes as the first image of a service or product after seeing or hearing the name of the identified sponsor is actually the ‘brand’ and how it evolves around your life.
When you think of a brand locally in Pakistan, there are a few which stands out like Khaadi, Tapal, Gul Ahmed, etc. It takes years of efforts and focus to build a strong brand that has built brand equity and market presence.
PTCL as a brand has been recognized and declared recently as the ‘Fastest Growing Brand in Pakistan’ by Brand Finance, which is the world’s leading brand evaluation company. This was announced at World Mobile Congress 2018 in Barcelona. This is indeed a cause for celebration while to many it came as an astonishing achievement as there are many other competitive local brands in Pakistan.
If you look closer, winning this specific award is not on outcome of one “big idea” or one outstanding advertising campaign. In fact, it is a collective effort of multi-pronged persistent efforts that was witnessed last year starting from grassroots level to top corporate echelons. These efforts include association of the brand with national sports, transformation of exchanges project, marketing and communication focus, CSR activities, national & international partnerships, training and development of human resource and improved customer services.
Transformation of Exchanges program was the tangible effort in which fiber optic, cables replacement and most importantly, transformation of more than 100 exchanges are included, which cater almost 50 percent of PTCL’s clients. So where 100 is a huge number, its snowball effect actually reaches entire Pakistan. Launch of CharJi in Khyber Pakhtoon Khawah, Balochistan and AJK, along with major cities in Punjab and Sindh, enabled customers to enjoy high Speed 4G network in these areas, where no one had imagined to have such facility and that certainly built the brand presence in the minds of the customers.
Marketing and communication efforts are another success factor contributing to the success of the brand. These efforts included sponsorship for hockey revival in the country, in which international hockey returned to Pakistan after 10 years, National Cricket team collaboration in T-20 series with New Zealand, sponsorship of Islamabad United in the 2nd and 3rd edition of PSL, partnering with FC Barcelona 2017 for football followers. Not only that, PTCL is also seen supporting disabled cricket in Pakistan.
In addition to the tangible deliverables, PTCL also expanded its circle of influence through multiple corporate social development initiatives and community mobilization activities. Nationwide Blood Donation Drive was the flag bearer of these activities, in which a record of collecting 9,726 pints of blood was donated. Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign in collaboration with Pink Ribbon was another impactful initiative which brought the brand closer to the hearts of Pakistani masses. Fully financed Hajj for a large number of staff was also perceived as a positive step as an employer.
Customer services and compliant redressal system are absolutely the backbone of any service industry. PTCL also took initiative to revamp1218 (Bara Athara) helpline. This helpline has amalgamated all customer related information, order booking and support services on a unique number 1218, which serves as one window solution for all its customers.
National and international partnership ventures are another area where aggressive marketing tactics are deployed. These initiatives were must for PTCL to bring itself updated with contemporary global technological advancements. Organizations like Telenor, Zong, IBM, Microsoft and Netflix are companies who have signed up with PTCL recently under various collaborations.
All the collaborative efforts witnessed a remarkable growth of PTCL brand and clearly shows their potential in years to come.