listen up

How would you fix it: Sprint/nextel

Reading Time: 2 minutes

So a few weeks ago i posted some questions regarding the newspaper industry, and how to fix it. I think I have some solid ideas, that I will post later. But that post got me thinking. A new series of blog posts, on what would you do to fix a company or industry. Could be a fun exercise in creativity. 
So today I ask: If Sprint came to you for marketing / business help,

How would you fix Sprint?


sprint-logo
Sprint has been bleeding customers for just about 2 years now. Loosing customers by the millions every quarter. They are now just under 48 million subscribers (from their once 60+ mil). 
Is it a marketing issue? Technology issue? cool phones issue? or just service?
I think Sprints current pricing is quite amazing. I have sprint, and love all the features i get, for cheap prices. We have 2 full data lines, GPS, TV, Radio, unlimited text, IM, and 1600 minutes for $130. Comparatively, I would pay about $240 for the same services with verizion. So i dont think its pricing. 
Will the Palm Pre release this june even help? Are people still wowed by anything palm makes? Or will it take the iphone moving to sprint?
I personally think the issue can be solved by several moves.

  1. get as many hot phones as possible. Palm pre, but also be on the forefront of upcoming phones (assuming a manufacturer will allow any exclusivity to a minor player in the market)
  2. Offer the best customer service and pricing out there. Call customers to ask how things are going, offer upgrade discounts, and freebies to top paying customers
  3. create a referral rewards program. Send a friend to sprint, and get $20 off your bill. Send 5 friends get a new Palm Pre free (with a new 2 contract *Wink*wink*)
  4. Continue to market the added value of sprint services over others (they are currently doing this quite well, but the ads are still pretty young)
  5. Follow apples model of mac vs PC commercials, and hype Sprints ease of use, and cool features, like free GPS, and turn by turn directions on smart phones included with data (verizon charges $10 a month extra for this). 
  6. Get some big names to talk about sprint & sprint exclusive phones
  7. Hype the heck out of being the first 4g network. people want speed. Show them. side by side comparison tests. Offer free speed tests in store or at large events. “Test your 3g vs Sprints 4g”. Show people that you are faster, and cheaper. 
  8. Continue to expand network coverage.

Thats all i have. What about you, What would you do to change sprint?