Fully Explained – Idea’s Marketing Strategy with Complete Company Overview

Updated on: Sep 9, 2021

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Idea Cellular Limited (commonly known as Idea and stylized as !dea) was an Indian mobile network operator headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra. As of June 2018, Idea was a pan-India integrated GSM operator with 220.00 million subscribers. 

Marketing is one of the most important functions of a business that engages in promotional activities such as market research and advertising for products or services; especially in today’s context where marketing innovation has accelerated exponentially and adoption of these techniques can be a make or break factor for the companies.

Do you want to know how Idea became so successful in the automotive industry? To answer that question continue to read this well-explained case study on Idea Marketing Strategy that also includes its marketing mix, campaigns, and competitors analysis.

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About Idea


Idea Brand Logo - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE


After acquiring GSM licenses in Gujarat and Maharashtra circles, Idea Cellular was incorporated as Birla Communications Limited in 1995. After a series of name changes as a result of mergers and joint ventures with Grasim Industries, AT&T Corporation, and Tata Group, the company name was changed to Idea Cellular, and the brand Idea was introduced in 2002. 

After AT&T Corporation and Tata Group exited the joint venture in 2004 and 2006, respectively, Idea Cellular became a subsidiary of Aditya Birla Group. Axiata, based in Malaysia, purchased a 20 per cent stake in the company in 2008 for approximately US$2 billion.

Idea Cellular, incorporated as Birla Communications Limited in 1995, changed to Idea Cellular and the brand Idea in 2002 following a few mergers and joint ventures. After the exit of AT&T Corporation and Tata Group from the joint venture in 2004 and 2006 respectively, Idea Cellular became a subsidiary of Aditya Birla Group

Later on Idea Cellular merged with Vodafone India, and the two companies are now known as Vodafone Idea (VI). Vodafone Idea Limited, also known as V!, is an Indian telecommunications company with headquarters in Mumbai and Gandhinagar. It is a pan-India integrated GSM operator that provides services such as 2G, 4G, 4G+, VoLTE, and VoWiFi.


The merger of Vodafone and Idea (V!) 

Vodafone Idea Brand Logo - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

The entry of Jio in the Indian telecom sector in 2016 resulted in a number of mergers and consolidations. In March 2017, it was announced that Idea Cellular and Vodafone India would be merged. In July 2018, the Department of Telecommunications approved the merger. The Vodafone-Idea merger was approved by the National Company Law Tribunal on August 30, 2018. 

On August 31, 2018, the merger was completed, and the newly merged entity was named Vodafone Idea Limited. The merger created India’s largest telecom company, both in terms of subscribers and revenue.

Vodafone Idea Merge - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE


According to the terms of the agreement, the Vodafone Group will own 45.2 per cent of the combined entity, the Aditya Birla Group will own 26 per cent, and the public will own the remaining shares. 

Following the merger, Vodafone and Idea were renamed V!. It was the world’s largest merger of two telecom companies.

According to the terms of the agreement, the Vodafone Group will own 45.2 per cent of the combined entity, the Aditya Birla Group will own 26 per cent, and the public will own the remaining shares. 

Following the merger, Vodafone and Idea were renamed V!. It was the world’s largest merger of two telecom companies. Now that we understand the company well, let’s look into its marketing strategy.


Vodafone Idea Marketing Strategy


The brand has historically positioned itself by emphasizing the consumer experience. From its first tagline, ‘An Idea Can Change Your Life,’ to its most recent, ‘Stay Connected,’ it has positioned itself as a brand that connects people. All of this is still reflected in the company’s newfound identity as V!.

Idea has evolved from a pure telecommunication company to a major player in the communication services industry, offering broadband services, mobile telephony, etc.


S.T.P Marketing Strategy of Vodafone Idea


STP marketing strategy stands for Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning, and it is a three-step model that examines your products or services as well as how you communicate their benefits to specific customer segments.

Idea segments its offerings in mobile network services, enterprise services, and broadband services using a combination of segmentation strategies. It makes use of segmentation based on geography, demographics, and psychographics.

Idea’s various offerings are aimed at different segments of society. As a result, it employs a selective and differentiated targeting strategy.

Idea’s ad campaign has been successful in raising brand awareness among communication service providers all over the world. It employs value-driven positioning strategies.

So, now that we’ve learned about its marketing strategy, let’s dive into its marketing mix in the section below.


Vodafone Idea Marketing Mix


Product, Price, Promotion, Place, Process, People & Physical Evidence are the seven areas of emphasis through which a company promotes its brand or product in the market, and they are referred to as the marketing mix.

So, in the sections that follow, we’ll take a look at Vodafone Idea’s marketing mix strategy.


1. Vodafone Idea Poduct:


Vodafone Idea Product Strategy - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

Idea Cellular, now V!, is one of India’s leading telecom service providers. Its primary product offerings are voice service, mobile Internet, and value-added services.

Prepaid and postpaid voice services are further subdivided.

Post-paid plans begin at a very low cost. V! Cellular is supplemented with various value packs that aid in customer acquisition. Along with post-paid plans, ultimate plans, per-minute plans, per-second plans, and combo plans are integrated. Plans such as start-up kits are very appealing in the prepaid segment, which aids in bringing in new customers.


2. Vodafone Idea Price:

V! Cellular primarily focuses on competitor strategy in India’s competitive telecom sector. Price is the whip hand used to survive in the cutthroat competition of India’s telecommunications sector. Post-paid plans for voice services start at Rs.199.

The Idea, now V! provides its customers with appealing ISD packages for postpaid services, with pricing comparable to other service providers. Full talk time vouchers for prepaid services start at Rs.100. Combo vouchers are priced differently than single vouchers. As a result, they can take advantage of their customers’ willingness to pay.

V! can maximize its profits in this way. The prices for value-added services are outrageously high so that only those seeking luxury services are willing to pay a premium.


3. Vodafone Idea Place:

V! has a tremendous amount of reach. People use V!’s services in almost every part of the country. It is critical to be able to provide immediate customer service in the modern era. V! is able to accomplish this by always being available to customers through customer support. 

V! cellular’s online portal allows customers to report issues. This portal also allows customers to search for various packages, pay bills, and easily recharge their phones. The company’s stores can be found in all major cities and all Indian states.


4. Vodafone Idea Promotion:


Vodafone Idea Promotion Strategy - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

V! devotes a sizable portion of its profits to advertising and promotion. The tagline “Together for Tomorrow” is used by V! to promote its brand. The majority of V!’s promotional projects involve television commercials. 

They have also sponsored various sports initiatives, such as cricket and football matches, to help promote their brand over the years. For advertising, V! employs a variety of mediums such as television, online, print, billboards, and so on.

Since V! is a service marketing brand it has an additional 3 P’s i.e. People, Process & Physical Evidence. So let’s look at the additional 3 P’s of V!’s marketing mix below.


Now that we’ve seen the brand’s marketing mix, let’s take a look at V!’s advertising campaigns.


Vodafone Idea Advertising Strategy


Through advertising strategies, customers can learn and experience more about a company or a product. These are some of the company’s efforts to persuade the customers.


– A marketing campaign was launched by Vodafone Idea to promote its new name, “V!.”

Vodafone Idea, the country’s newest telecom operator, had planned an elaborate advertising campaign to announce its arrival. The company intended to launch its branding campaign through television and digital advertising. So, over a few weeks, Vodafone Idea launched a comprehensive multimedia campaign to establish itself in a competitive market.

According to industry sources, the company planned a massive promotional campaign to gradually position its revamped self. Due to time constraints, they organized a virtual event to present their refurbished and amalgamated identity ‘V!’’ to the world. 

Vodafone Idea Brand Logo - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

Furthermore, in accordance with the current situation, ‘V!’ first advertised itself on multimedia platforms such as television and digital platforms. The company intended to follow this up with a high decibel marketing strategy in order to resonate with the brand’s values and goals while also establishing a significant legacy.


– “ #StrongerEveryHour ” Campaign

With data becoming increasingly important in our mobile lives, a smooth network experience is essential for accessing information, fulfilling entertainment needs, and having conversations. Vodafone Idea, the country’s largest telecom network, ushered in the New Year of 2019 with the launch of #StrongerEveryHour


Vodafone Idea Advertising Campaign- Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

Source: https://youtu.be/zj2XXoOz3nY

This campaign aims to highlight the enhanced network of ‘Vodafone SuperNet 4G – India’s Data Strong NetworkTM,’ particularly in congested areas where a tower is added every hour.

The marketing campaign’s creatives had been crafted by Ogilvy & Mather.

Now that we’ve followed through some of V!’s marketing campaigns, let us look into its digital marketing and digital presence.


Vodafone Idea Digital Marketing 


If you have a digital presence, customers can easily browse through your portfolio. It enables you to interact with your customers while also keeping you ahead of your competitors. Vodafone Idea makes extensive use of social media platforms. Let’s take a look at some of them:



Vodafone Idea Website- Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE



Vodafone Idea Facebook - Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

  • 21 Million+ Followers



Vodafone Idea twitter- Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

  • 29K+ Followers


The following are some of V!’s efforts and initiatives aimed at increasing its digital marketing presence and strategy:


V! introduces the Premium Video On Demand (PVOD) service on the V! Movies & TV App:

V! announced the launch of its Pay Per View service model, in conjunction with Hungama Digital Media Entertainment deals. This is a first-of-its-kind that telco has offered in India’s rapidly growing Premium Video On Demand (PVOD) market.


V! Unlimited users can now stay up all night surfing the web at no extra cost:

Nighttime Internet and OTT bingeing are on the rise, especially as people practice more flexible and remote working and devour more time-consuming content.


So, now that we’ve gotten a sneak peek at Vodafone Idea’s digital marketing activities, let’s take a look at its competitors and see how V! stacks up next to its competitors.


Vodafone Idea Competitors Analysis


Vodafone Idea Competitors Analysis- Idea Marketing Strategy | IIDE

In the telecom sector, players such as Airtel and Jio are competing head-to-head. V!’s market share has decreased to 25.10 per cent, while Airtel’s has increased to 28.97 per cent. Reliance Jio continues to be India’s largest telecom operator by market share, with 35.34 per cent.

V! distinguishes itself from its competitors in the mobile internet segment by offering 2G, 3G, 4G, and LTE internet service to its customers across India at very low prices.

Post-paid plans for voice services start at Rs.199, which is significantly less than the basic plans offered by the market’s other players. For prepaid services, the price of full talk time vouchers starts at Rs.100, which no other carrier offers. 

As a result, V! is attempting to establish unique competitive advantages in order to survive in an increasingly competitive industry.


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V!, the newly merged company, has come to represent integration. The company is doing everything it can to make its presence known and has had some success thus far. V!’s campaigns have also performed exceptionally well. 

Vodafone and Idea cellular subscribers have combined to form a massive subscriber base, which is proving to be a significant competitive advantage in times when even the smallest advantage is critical and goes a long way.

Did you find our work informational? Do you want to find out more? For more information, please visit our website at [email protected]. Also, if you’re interested in Digital Marketing, IIDE’s Founder and CEO- Karan Shah’s Free Masterclass is a great place to start.

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]


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