Een volwaardige challenger in telecomland - Scarlet | Effie case 2017

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Scarlet - Een volwaardige challenger in telecomland

Een volwaardige challenger
in telecomland

Bronze Effie
Scarlet - BBDO Belgium

Scarlet - Een volwaardige challenger in telecomland

Een volwaardige challenger
in telecomland

Bronze Effie
Scarlet - BBDO Belgium


The Belgian telecom market, particularly as it relates to triple play offers, has been dominated by three major players for over ten years. In the north, Proximus (still known as Belgacom until October 2014) dominates the market alongside Telenet, and in the south, Proximus and VOO lead the market.

In 2013, Scarlet was in dire straits: growth was stagnating and Scarlet was running at a loss because of high customer acquisition costs and a non-existent brand positioning.

How could we give Scarlet a reason to exist in a telecom market that had been dominated by three major players for years?


Business objectives

  • Customer Acquisition: grow the customer base for both mobile and triple play
  • Reduce cost per Acquisition: acquisition costs had to be reduced drastically to increase profitability

Perception objectives

  • Brand Awareness: to become a strong player, Scarlet also needed to be a recognisable alternative to the competition as a convergent telecom provider
  • Building our own Brand Identity: to ensure a move to an online channel sales strategy was a success, it was necessary to make Scarlet a credible and strong telecoms brand.
    This brand needed its own coherent and consistent communication style that differentiated Scarlet from other telecom providers.
  • Building a Reliable Brand: the biggest validation in building towards a fully developed brand is when people start recommending your brand to family and friends; it is the ultimate proof that you are no longer an insignificant player.


The telecom market is dominated by three major players that love to tell big, emotional stories and offer complex products. Telecom providers like to ladder up their commodity products as much as possible and add a serious dose of emotional benefits.

We positioned Scarlet as a no-frills low-cost player and took the daring decision to recognise telecoms as a commodity and put the importance of telco into perspective.
With no-nonsense communication, we showed people that telecom was a commodity (so why would you pay more?), through a consistent slightly rebellious tone-of-voice and a clear visual identity.

A shift from a 3rd party sales channels to online and effective communication, led to lower acquisition costs and customer growth.


  • The majority of Belgian consumers today know Scarlet as both a fixed and mobile operator
  • Scarlet has become a reliable provider
  • Scarlet has earned its own credible place in the telco-market
  • We lowered our acquisition costs with 66%
  • Our customer base grew significantly every year for both mobile and triple play

Rémi Gemenne

Rémi a un master d'Ingénieur de Gestion de HEC-Université de Liège, ainsi qu'un post-master en entrepreneuriat. Il a commencé sa carrière chez Proximus, anciennement Belgacom. Il a occupé diverses fonctions au sein du département marketing (stratégie, go-to-market…).
Depuis septembre 2013, il est à la tête du département Marketing de Scarlet et est responsable du positionnement stratégique, du développement de la marque, et des campagnes de communication.

Scarlet - Rémi Gemenne

BBDO Belgium
Jan Van Brakel

Jan studeerde af als Bachelor in de Grafische en Digitale Media en als Bachelor in het Communicatiemanagement. Hij deed ervaring op bij BBDO Belgium, Duval Guillaume, bij CIBE Communicatie, een communicatiebureau gespecialiseerd in de publieke sector, en bij ESKO, wereldleider in verpakkingssoftware.
Sinds 2013 versterkt hij het strategisch team van BBDO Belgium als Strategic Planner waar hij o.a. verantwoordelijk is voor Lidl, Scarlet, Vandemoortele en Fun.

BBDO Belgium - Jan Van Brakel