Advertisement is the language of marketing efforts. Marketers use this language to communicate with their target market. And here comes the concept of exposure, when you talk about advertisement. Exposure of particular advertisement occurs when anyone encounters with that advertisement. The more encounter the more exposure for that advertisement. Marketers want to increase their advertisement exposure as much as possible. Captive advertising is the most popular concept to ensure advertisements’ exposure to desired target markets. Captive advertising is advertising that one cannot escape from. From the name you can understand that target markets are held captive when they are exposed to the advertisements.
For example, Ads on golf carts are inescapable while golfing, short of walking the whole game. Ads on grocery store carts are inescapable since the carts are necessary for the majority of shoppers, and will be seen on other carts regardless of whether or not you have one. Ads of Hotels and restaurants on Magazines given in Airways. When you are on plane you may have nothing to do. So you have to read those magazines and you will be exposed to hotel advertisements when you do so.
In Bangladesh, captive advertisement strategy are mostly applied by mobile operators. To be more specific, Airtel and Banglalink applies this technique the most. This practice was started by Warid Telecom Bangladesh. Warid used to send two or three messages daily to its subscribers as a form of Direct message. After purchasing Warid Telecom, Bharti Airtel re-branded it as Airtel Bangladesh. Even after re-branding, Airtel kept on practicing captive advertisement strategy. Earlier it use to send two or three messages per day and now it sends more than 4 messages in a day. And now Banglalink have started using captive advertisement strategy and everyday it sends at least one message to its subscribers.
Though captive advertisement is very useful for mobile operators and other marketers to create more exposure of their advertisement and promotion, it has always been treated as irritation by the subscribers. As a subscriber of Both Airtel and Banglalink, let me share my experience of last few days. I woke up hearing my cell phone’s message alert tone instead of the Alarm. I received two messages at noon, one at evening and another one when I was about to eat my dinner.
Airtel abusing the captive advertisement strategy. Marketing department of Airtel thinks they are achieving more exposure by sending more message to its subscribers. But they don’t consider that subscriber may ignore the messages when they are irritated. Thus their objective to get more exposure is not achieved.
One of the basic concept of marketing is to understand customers’ needs and demands. As a customer our need and demand to Airtel is to stop sending spam messages. But unfortunately mobile operators more specifically Airtel doesn’t understand that. I wish I could teach Airtel’s marketing department personnel some basic marketing courses.