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Double edged sword for StarHub as overwhelming response to EPL package leads to CX woes

Double edged sword for StarHub as overwhelming response to EPL package leads to CX woes

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StarHub has apologised for the long waiting time as a result of the overwhelming reception to the launch of its EPL subscription package, Premier+. In a Facebook post, the telco said it is heartened to see the enthusiastic reception and explained that it is taking longer than expected to serve customers due to an overwhelming response. It also apologised for the inconvenience caused.

"We would like to assure that all customers who visit our online store as well as StarHub shops by Sunday, 19 June 2022, will be able to enjoy the early bird offers. We thank our customers for their patience and continued support," the telco said.

StarHub will offer the Premier League competition for six seasons, having entered into an exclusive agreement with The Premier League earlier this year. Between 9 to 19 June, subscribers will only have to pay SG$19.99 for Premier+ with StarHub mobile postpaid, broadband or TV+ plan that is more than SG$15 monthly. Meanwhile, the early bird cost of the Premier+ subscription only is SG$34.99. The usual price for both is SG$24.99 and SG$39.99 respectively. Despite the attractive pricing, several netizens also faced issues on the inability to modify their contract on the StarHub app while some said they are unable to sign up despite being an existing mobile and broadband user.

Others added that they had attempted to sign up countless times and waited for hours but they were still unsuccessful. Meanwhile, there were also netizens who commented that StarHub should have made the sign up process easier for consumers.

When approached by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE, StarHub reiterated that it is heartened to see the enthusiastic reception of the EPL package and thanked customers for their support. "In response, we are thrilled to extend early bird offers to all customers who sign up for Premier+ by 19 June 2022, reaching out to them swiftly through our website, social media, and customer touch points," the telco said but did not comment on the marketing activities for Premier+. StarHub has also resolved the technical issues encountered by some customers yesterday.

Meanwhile, statistics from Truescrope, there were more than 5,000 engagements within the Singapore market across the last two days after the announcement. The majority of key conversations on the StarHub EPL package came from a thread in HardwareZone Forum where netizens hotly discussed the package details and whether they would subscribe.

Overall, the plan was well-received by netizens, with many conversations discussing the details and terms of the plan, such as whether it can be a standalone or bundled. Many were comparing StarHub's pricing to the price that Singtel was charging in the last few years. 

Truescope Singapore's commercial director, Kelvin Koh, told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE that coverage on both mainstream, social, and search spiked on the StarHub's EPL announcement and peaked at 11 am on 8 June. That was when the announcement was released. Interest on search spiked once again at 10 am on 9 June following mainstream media coverage the following morning. 


Additionally, Meltwater told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE that the total number of mentions between 8 to 10 June increased by 786 and average daily mentions were 262. Among the top keywords were "Starhub epl", "monthly", and "new premier", and most of the searches originated from Singapore, with some from Japan also. While 79% of the online sentiment was neutral, 13% was negative and 6% was positive.

meltwater starhub epl 1

It is a known fact that great customer service is effective in building trust. According to the fifth edition of Salesforce's State of the Connected Customer report, 96% of customers say excellent customer service builds trust and 94% will likely purchase from the brand again if their experience was a positive one. Also, 82% have recommended a company based on excellent customer service. For companies that have made a mistake, 80% of customers will forgive them after receiving excellent service. At the same time, 78% have also made purchase decisions based on the quality of customer service.

Meanwhile, according to a PwC report titled "Experience is everything: Here's how to get it right", most consumers value efficiency in their customer service and are willing to pay more for it too. They also cited convenience knowledgeable service, and easy payment as the other important factors for a good customer experience.

Separately, on the advertising front, StarHub is also introducing a new way for sponsors to advertise through a technology called Virtual Circle Centre advertising. The telco said this enables it to do a virtual "takeover" of the football pitch, superimposing the sponsors' brand image into the centre circle at kick-off. StarHub hopes that through this, it can make advertising more dynamic, going beyond traditional broadcast banner ads to engage its customers in a fun yet non-disruptive way.

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