Sprint Nextel's (NYSE:S) Boost Mobile brand is rolling out a national marketing push for its prepaid mobile WIMAX product. Boost and Sprint brand Virgin Mobile started offering prepaid WiMAX smartphone service, via iterations of the HTC Evo, May 31.
Specifically, Boost is choosing to highlight the value of its plan, which still comes with its shrinkage policy. The company will reduce a customer's monthly bill down to $40 per month if they make 18 on-time payments.
To highlight that feature, Boost is marketing the plan using a character known as "4Genie," played by actor and comedian Faizon Love, best known for his performances in "Elf," "Couples Retreat" and "Zookeeper." Love will be featured in a national TV advertising campaign.
Peiti Feng, Boost's brand and marketing director, told FierceWireless that the ad campaign will also feature street advertising (such as in bus shelters), digital advertising and on Facebook and Twitter. She also said that the company will unveil a "$Genie" app for Facebook where customers can ask a wish of the 4Genie. Feng declined to comment on how much Sprint is spending on the campaign but said that the company plans to run it through the end of 2012.
Boost's ad push could be a response to a slowdown in postpaid activations in the industry. The seven largest U.S. carriers, comprising more than 95 percent of the market, reported a net loss of 52,000 postpaid customers during the first quarter.
Virgin Mobile, for its part, began marketing its prepaid WiMAX offerings last month via a commercial featuring Virgin Group Chairman Richard Branson. Virgin's WiMAX offerings start at $35 per month for 300 voice minutes and unlimited texting and data.
- see this release
Largest carriers lost combined 52,000 postpaid subs in Q1
Boost, Virgin intro prepaid WiMAX via HTC Evo smartphones
Sprint adds 1.5M iPhones in Q1, will bring WiMAX to prepaid brands
Rumor Mill: Sprint's Boost and Virgin units to offer WiMAX
Best Buy Connect disconnects from doing business
Article updated June 4 with more information from Sprint.