Communication is extremely vital in information dissemination and thus many companies rely heavily on it for clientele outreach (Fielding, 2006). The quest for efficiency, therefore, becomes a major concern for many businesses when choosing the right forms of communication in order to maximize effectiveness and wider market reach.
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This dictates the need for market understanding and clientele destinations so that the chosen communication media can easily reach the targeted clientele at the right time (Nielsen, 2008). This implies that there has to be a lot of care in media selection for maximum output. In return, this will ensure that the set objectives are achieved within a given time frame. Needless to say, an effective communication platform is an integral requirement for business growth and profitability.
While market expansion entails maintaining long term relationship with current clients and acquiring new ones, there is need to select the most effective communication models and the right communication channels for message deliveries and propagating the ideals of a business (Capelin, 2004).
In most cases, one way communication is preferred but with the advent of new technology amidst a supportive business environment, it has become unavoidable necessity for feedback information regarding on-way statics and thus there is possibility that organizations can get information regarding the number of recipients of their one-way sent communication.
Therefore, this improves a company’s influential judgment on choosing the right medium of communication. With diversity in information systems, different forms of communication that present suitability in several forms are readily available in the contemporary business world (Capelin, 2004).
This therefore forces any communication type to put into consideration the form that has to be relayed to respective stakeholders. The contact media also plays vital role in determining communication type to be employed in message relaying. For instance, in order to relay information through a visual communication system, it is required that the information form be either pictorial or in video form.
Likewise, Fielding (2006) argues that using audio communication systems would require the use of audio messages and in the same way, published media will automatically require written messages or pictorial compositions. Electronic media can sometimes combine all of these information forms and relay them using one medium. However, suitability and reliability of the medium chosen will depend on area of coverage and the number of loyal subscribers to that medium of communication.
The higher the number of subscription in a communication medium and the larger the area of coverage, the favorable the medium itself for use as an agent of message dispatch. Since Optus is a multinational company that is based in Australia but still under expansive plans, there is urgent need to employ different and most appropriate channels of communication which will attract new customers and still retain the existing ones (Smith, 2009).
With roughly more than ten products and services and while dominating the Australian market share in its category, Optus Solutions Ltd will seek to trap new markets outside the country and beyond the Australian continent in order to increase its capital base. The already successive expansive attempt into the Asian markets is yet another opportunity for the company. Optus is seeking to cross borders to capture new markets and maintain its dominance in the Information and Communication Technology industry.
Purpose of the report
The purpose of this report was to examine if the choice by Optus Solutions Ltd to use facebook as a medium of communication between the company and potential clients in its attempt to make further expansions was the best choice in achieving its objectives.
Furthermore, the report was supposed to offer recommendations on the choice of media of communication for the company alongside other communication strategies that Optus should employ for optimum reach to its clients. Additionally, recommendations were to focus on effective communication strategies for the Optus Company even as it endeavors to expand.
While examining if facebook was the right and most effective media for use by Optus solutions Ltd in communication aimed at marketing, it was important to consider its use for new products and services advertisements and the future expansions and awareness rate of the facebook media. On the same note, it was also important to consider the efficiency of the media chosen by this company for its expansion purposes.
Much of the information used in this report was largely collected from various sources. These included consultations, totally sovereign review of the company information from its own website, business oriented websites as well as facebook information available on this company in regard to expansion and communication in regard to attracting new customers and keeping existing ones.
Additional information was also obtained from direct online survey of potential customers outside Australian region. This catered for additional information regarding knowledge of the company and its products. This information was gathered and documented for use in the report to determine if the company was using the right channels and media of communication to reach existing and potential new customers to the company.
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Online interviews were carried out to establish if all people living in the Australian continent were really aware of the company, its products and services before it embarked on its expansive plans. Same procedure was followed as above and all the information collected tabulated to analyse the awareness of the people regarding the company.
In carrying out the online interviews, some respondents were unwilling to spare time for the interview citing reasons such as ‘wastage of their special time’ in response. Others could not present truthful information and thus some biasness in the information collected about the company.
Locating the exact information about the company and its choice of forms of communication to reach its targeted population was extremely hard and thusmyriad of assumptions were inevitable in the writing of this report. Lots of information regarding the daily operations of this company is either kept highly confidential or the company does not provide the details of its daily running and this was a great limitation in determining the exact statistical information needed for analysis.
It has been greatly assumed that the information available on websites and facebook regarding Optus Solutions Ltd is all accurate and thus largely used in the analysis and evaluation of communication strategies of the company. This information will enable the determination of the effective types of communication employed by Optus in reaching its targeted audiences.
It has also been greatly assumed that all the information collected online from sources in the Australian peninsula is nothing but accurate information and thus has also been extensively used in the analysis and evaluation of the company as regards communication strategies and expansive plans.
Thirdly, it has been also assumed that the products shown on the Optus website page of products and services are entirely the only products and services the company has to offer to customers in the Australian regions and beyond its borders. These products will be singly evaluated in the given regions; that is in Australia, Philippines and the Indian markets for determination of the ability of the company to venture into new markets in respect to effective communication (Capelin, 2004).
Since every company uses a strategic medium in its effective communication to targeted audiences, it has been heavily assumed too that Optus Solutions Ltd is extensively using facebook as the strategic medium in its expansion efforts. This information available on facebook regarding the company and its products will entirely be used to promote the company in display and advertising of its products and services and present an effective communication tool by the company.
Optus is one of the largest telecommunication providers in the Australian region, fully owned by a Singaporean company called Singapore Telecommunications. Its Optus brand is its major brand under which it trades but has also other subsidiary brands that it owns which operate under different names and these include, Boost Mobile, and Virgin M. Australia, which operate in the telephone industry, Alphawest in the ICT industry and in others in the network industry like Uecomm.
Initially this company was fully owned by the government and was known under a different operating brand name which was Aussat Pty. It underwent a rebranding thus changing its name to Cable and Wireless Optus Pty that lasted for a period before another rebranding to its present brand name Optus. With successful rebranding, this company has undergone multiple transitions and in the process gained and lost potential clients in the process of rebranding since some clients are not information conscious.
The company owns a large portion of the fixed telephony services in the region with commercial POTS that represent its ability to serve the local and international regions, that is, it is able to reach the local and distant regions. It also owns commercial voice over internet protocol, voice over DSL and intelligent network applications.
In the mobile telephony industry, it covers the largest share in the market by owning a GSM and GPRS service that covers almost all the Australian population- approximately ninety seven percent of the total population. It also has a great 3G and HSPA service industry that covers approximately more than ninety seven point three percent of the total population of Australia. It again owns the satellite telephony industry that covers the whole of the country.
Besides the telephony industry, the company owns other services in the internet provision industry which include Residential Dial-Up services that expand in all the states, residential Broadband internet services which are run through a cable system and DSL that span in all the states except the northern regions.
It also has satellite internet services that it runs through its geostationary satellites, a secure gateway services that are specially offered to the national government and commercial internet access. In addition there is also cable television known as Optus television provided in the largest cities of the country. It also has data transmission services and other services offered through leased lines.
Its terrestrial infrastructure spans over the largest cities of Australia, its satellite infrastructure spanning through the regions of geostationary satellites, the international earth points of geostationary satellites and the national earth stations in major cities in Australia. The company has a customer access base network of major cities including Sydney, Brisbane, Canberra, Wollongong and Adelaide to name just but a few.
Other accessible regions include regions where the company is able to provide coaxial cables. In other words the company has the ability to reach the whole market of Australia since accessibility is possible everywhere within the country for the diverse products and services it offers (Smith, 2009).
The company announced its international expansion plans in the year two thousand and three and a year later, it was able to launch a short messaging service that could reach more than ninety countries worldwide.
This was its clear move towards internationalization but then no clear communication strategy was shown in regard to the expansion and how the markets had been acquired. Today the company looks forward to making further expansions in the mobile telephony industry into other countries of the world including the Asian region and the African peninsula.
According to data and information available on facebook, the following tabulated report was drawn. This took into consideration all the products and services that the company offers and their status on facebook as a media of effective communication for purposes of retaining and acquisition of new customers in its expansion endeavor.
Although most products could not be found on facebook, the results had to constitute each and every product of the mother company since effective promotional strategies through effective communication has to happen in every department and thus each product undergoes the same effect.
Optus products and services as shown on facebook pages
|Product||present on facebook||likes||dislikes|
|Security||yes||not shown||not shown|
Australia by itself alone is a country with a population of more than twenty two million people and out of these, more than ten million people- reflecting more than forty five percent, have signed up for facebook accounts. This is a translation of approximately half the Australians on facebook but as evident from the above results, it is extremely clear that Optus popularity on facebook is extremely low.
Being a multinational company that operates in the whole of Australia and being one of the largest telephony providers in the region, the company has only managed to gallon a whopping total of only 52,284 likes from its existing and or potential customers (Jones, 2010). This represents a shockingly low popularity level for a company brand like Optus.
This implies that its communication strategies are not fruitful or the facebook communication strategy in not highly effective. This is also indicated by the presence of one of its services, that is, networking as a service also has shockingly low number of likes; an indication of unpopularity.
The satellite service has as well received a tremendously low popularity on facebook; another clear indication of extremely low popularity. Products which include, Mobility, Enterprise communications, Global and ‘Telepresence’ were conspicuously absent on facebook implying nonstrategic efficiency in communication (Fielding, 2006).
Optus company brand on facebook page consisted of graphical image with persuasive writings on it, encouraging new and old customers to participate in liking the company and finding the key master company for a chance to win a trip. This is a marketing strategy which reflects likings from hopeful winners and thus, not people who really like the company.
Basing on this, the company was trying to woo potential clients and thus the likes also represent people who even do not know Optus or have never used any one of its services. Although this strategy works in marketing for its expansive endeavors, actual reflection of potential customers in the internationalization efforts is not clear.
The other products and services on the facebook page did not have any graphical or pictorial compositions but only word messages. This shows that the company did not use effective communication types like visual on the given media to communicate to its existing customers and attract new ones.
Nielsen (2008) points out that effective communication embodies the use of all the four types of communication whereby visual communication has the greatest intensity followed by verbal or audio communication. Not denying the fact that the company uses these in its routine communication practices, they are scantly available on facebook and thus an implication of failure of communication.
Failure of other products’ presence on facebook is a direct indication of failure of utilization of highly potential media in effective communication to various stakeholders- another landmine of poor communication skills (Capelin, 2004). Facebook is the most famous tool in social media and with more than eight hundred million subscribers and more than ten million Australians. This is an indication of enormous potential in facebook in communication since old and potential clients are found here.
Recommendations and implementations
Optus as a company with diverse products and services need to utilize effective communication skills to keep and acquire new clients (Nielsen 2008). The emergency of facebook as a social media provided the greatest potentials for extensive communication between individuals and companies.
This thus should have been one of the best tools the company should use to make effective and transparent communication between stakeholders. The use of wall posts and other visual and responsive media on facebook should have been a priority. Traditional forms of communication which include radio and television should increase the familiarity of in the home environment (Gibson, 2008).
Thus employment of visual and pictorial compositions on facebook and the launch of other products and services’ facebook profiles will greatly help in increasing the popularity of facebook. This should take place with immediate effect with awareness campaigns in order for all stakeholders to be aware of any changes in product progresses. This would be the utilization of effective communication skill in presentation of relevant information to all stakeholders.
From the discussion above, it is clearly evident that Optus as a company had not utilized facebook as a media of communication for effective communication to various stakeholders. Australia by itself alone is a country with a population of more than twenty two million people. Out of the total population, about 45 percent are currently using facebook as their preferred social site as well as means to reach out for friends and other acquaintances.
This implies that the company could greatly benefit from utilizing facebook as one of the channels of communication. Furthermore, Optus has a very strong presence on the physical environment with a familiarity percentage ranging close to 90 percent. On the other hand, it commands a tiny 3 percent on face book. The fact that the Australian population using population is relatively large implies that the company has been losing huge profits due to the unreached clientele base.
This is a reflection of failed utilization of potential communication media in carrying out effective communication and hence marketing of the company. Other products and services such as satellite service have equally received tremendously low popularity on facebook. Needless to say, this may be yet another clear indication of extremely low popularity of the company especially on the bulk of the population.
Others which include, Mobility, Enterprise communications, Global and ‘Telepresence’ just to mention a few were conspicuously absent from facebook (Jones, 2010). If such services are not firmly in place and worst of all, not recognized by the target, then it implies that the given company is by far and large, employing nonstrategic efficiency in communication.
Failure of other products’ occurrence on facebook is a straight indication of failure of exploitation of highly potential media in effective communication to a range of stakeholders- an additional landmine of poor communication skills. Facebook is the most well-known tool in social media and with more than eight hundred million subscribers and slightly above ten million Australians.
Indeed, it is a clear indication that facebook as a social utility presents numerous and potential opportunities to the business world such that proper utilization of the facility can indeed boost returns and profitability of a business entity.
Capelin, J. 2004. Communication by design: Marketing professional services. Atlanta: Greenway Communications.
Fielding, M. 2006. Effective Communication in Organizations, Cape Town: Lansdowne Ltd
Gibson, B. 2008. Case study report, Melbourne: Monash University. Web. Available from https://www.monash.edu/rlo
Jones, S. 2010, Optus Facebook Page. Web. Available from https://www.facebook.com/optus
Nielsen, J. 2008. Effective Communication Skills, New York: Xlibris Corp.
Smith, S. 2009. Telepresence managed. Web. Web.