Monday April 27, 2009

Youth market vital for DiGi


Telco’s youth division focuses on segment with great potential

DiGi.COM Bhd unit DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd sees the youth segment as an important part of its business given that more than half of Malaysians are below 24 years old.

“Considering that the Malaysian population is so young, this segment will grow with us and we need to be sure that we stay relevant,” said head of youth segment marketing Nikki Lee.

Other telecommunication companies were also pursuing this segment given its growth potential, she said, adding that the stiff competition would lead to more options for users.

DiGi’s youth marketing division was set up less than three years ago.

While Lee declined to divulge the number of DiGi’s subscribers in this segment, she said the trend was “healthy.”

“The fact that we’re putting more emphasis (on this) gives you an idea where it is heading. We will always have new users entering the market as well as switches (from other networks),” she told StarBiz in an interview.

The youth segment is unique because it is technologically driven and savvy.

“We call them the digital native because adopting technology comes natural to them. A young child can intuitively access information and get content on his mobile,” Lee said, adding that this segment was heavy voice and data users.

Marketers thus have to be aware of the “hot buttons” in the different lifestyle areas, like gaming, sports and music.

“For example, every youngster IM (instant messaging) each other these days. That’s why we launched the Windows Live Messenger, which has garnered tremendous response,” Lee said.

Mindful of music being an important part of a youth’s lifestyle, DiGi launched in January The Music Store including Music Telegram, which allows users to buy tracks and share them with others.

Lee and her team has just concluded a successful showcase event on April 11 featuring American Idol runner-up David Archuleta that was attended by about 6,000 people.

“Archuleta resonates with our brand very well. He’s accessible, approachable and grounded – similar to the DiGi brand. For a showcase event, it’s quite an exceptional turnout,” she said.

She added that DiGi stayed relevant to the younger generation by providing “unique experiences and content”.

“For example, Yvette Chan, our 19-year-old winner of Archuleta’s Entourage competition, will remember the experience for a long time,” she said.

DiGi is currently running for the third year its Read, Action, Play (RAP) programme nationwide.

Lee said RAP aimed to promote English as a fun language and facilitate the developmental process of primary school children.

“We’ve seen how the children became more confident in using the language and cultivated an interest to improve the fluency,” she said.

The programme includes workshops led by actress Nell Ng who provides training on acting.

“Nurturing talent or creativity is the type of programme we want to bring to this segment. The fun element is to make it memorable for the children,” Lee said, adding that the value lay in DiGi’s competitive mobile tariffs.

“Ultimately, we want to build a brand that the youth can relate to and that resonates with their own lifestyle,” she added.

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