The fourth quarter of 2023 saw DISH invest heavily in the marketing of its Boost Mobile and Boost Infinite brands. According to the latest prepaid report from the firm Wave7 Research, Boost Mobile was the fifth most advertised brand among all brands and industries in the USA during the week of 11/27-12/3. The dates correspond to the week of Cyber Monday. Boost Mobile ads were played over the airwaves more than 43k times during the week. The ads primarily focused on Boost Mobile's in-store offers of a free Samsung Galaxy A23, and a $49.99 iPhone 11 deal. Both offers remain in place today.
Boost Mobile's postpaid sister brand, Boost Infinite, was actually the second most advertised brand in the country during the prior period of 11/20-11/26. Boost Infinite went all in on advertising its free iPhone every year offer alongside a pitch of being "the only carrier that switches between its own network and the other top two networks to find the best quality calls and data for you anywhere, anytime." Thirty and sixty second time variations of the ad aired over 23k times with other ads airing as well. Both Boost brands also ran TV ads highlighting their offers.
Although Boost Mobile boosted its radio ad airings during Cyber Monday week, its overall radio ad strategy was strong during the quarter having spent several weeks hovering around a top ten spot in airings. Starting on 12/11 the brand aired an ad pitching a "Boostmas" sweepstakes that provided $1k in winnings daily for 12 days to visitors to Boost Mobile stores. The promo was also pitched online as seen in this Instagram post from Boost Mobile. The radio ad for the sweepstakes aired over 11k times.
Boost brands weren't the only wireless brands to invest heavily in radio advertising over the holiday shopping season. Cricket Wireless actually placed 4th of all brands in the USA for radio advertising during the week of 12/4-12/10 with more than 43k ads aired. During Cyber Monday week it placed in the top ten. Offers for a $199.99 Motorola Razr, and a free Samsung Galaxy A14 were featured pitches in December. The inclusion of HBO Max with Cricket's flagship unlimited plan was also heavily featured via radio advertising.
DISH's investments in radio advertising for both its Boost Mobile and Boost Infinite brands need to pay off. Boost Mobile has been bleeding customers ever since DISH took ownership of it in 2020. A press release from DISH announcing the close of its acquisition of Boost Mobile on July 1, 2020, noted that DISH picked up more than nine million customers in the deal. Yet by 8/3/23, the number of Boost Mobile subscribers was estimated to be down to 6,9000,000. The estimate comes from 2Q23 management remarks from Tucows, a company whose software powers the platform Boost uses for subscriber management and billing.
“Dish spent heavily on advertising for Boost Infinite and Boost Mobile. Analysts during the next earnings call will want to know whether this ad push has improved subscriber performance. I’m skeptical, as increased ad spending is not an a panacea for weak retail and branding strategies.” – Jeff Moore, Principal of Wave7 Research