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The value of Telkom ziada points. Why Ziada points are powerless compared to bonga points

The value of Telkom Ziada Points
Telkom ziada is a loyalty program that rewards Telkom subscribers for spending their airtime on calls, SMS or data.
For every Ksh.1 spent on Telkom, you earn one ziada point. Once the points have accumulated to a reasonable amount, you can redeem them for either airtime, data or even get a device.
Just like any other loyalty programs, this is a way Telkom Kenya wants to thank you for being a loyal customer and hence a valued contributor to their annual profits.
A close comparison of Telkom Ziada and Safaricom's bonga indicate some sharp similarities as well as contrasts, and thus many customers ask themselves at some point if such loyalty points really have any value or they are just another way of blindfolding customers to keep them coming for more with very little benefits in the name of rewards.
In this the intention of any business person to retain their customer, and make them fall in love with their brand. Various companies have come up with customer reward programs, but each intents to have the maximum customer satisfaction with the minimum expenses.
In this article therefore we are going to discuss the value of ziada points, and though I will try to remain as neutral and objective as possible, I will keep on comparing this product with Safaricom bonga points, since it is the widely understood loyalty program in the country and the one closely related with Telkom ziada.( though there are others like those of supermarkets and petrol stations).
First; who are eligible for Telkom ziada?
Any Telkom prepaid customer is allowed to earn ziada points, and to ensure they do so right from their first top, Telkom automatically enrolls all new members upon successful registration of their line. However, all postpaid Telkom customers are not allowed to participate in this reward program.
How are we going to determine the worth of Telkom ziada?
To full understand the value of any reward program, it is good to look at the following:
  • The validity period of such points. The longer the expiry period of any loyalty points the better their value, since it gives you sufficient time to accumulate them to a reasonable amount that can allow you redeem them for better prices.
  • The redemption list. For any loyalty points, there is a list of items or products that you can redeem your points for. The longer this list is and the more dynamic it is the better for the customer, and hence the valuable the program.
  • The cash value of the points. Another way of determining the value of loyalty points is to find their points: cash conversion ratio. The more balanced the ratio the better. Eg. A 2:1 points : cash ratio us much better than a 5: 1 ratio. However the ratio is also determined by how much do you spend to earn a single point. For instance, since every ksh.10 gives you 1 bonga point while the same amount gives you 10 ziada points means that bonga points will have a much better ratio than ziada points.
  • Since there's no basis for normalizing loyalty points, it is only fair to compare those of similar service providers, e.g to compare those of a supermarket with another supermarket and those of a petrol station with another petrol station. That is why in this article we will be determining the value of ziada points based on Safaricom bonga.
How many ziada points do you earn per shilling spent?
For every Ksh.1 Bob spent on either calls, data or SMS, you earn one ziada point. This means if you spent Ksh.100 daily on Telkom airtime you earn 100 ziada points. Compare this with Safaricom's bonga which gives 1 point for every ksh.10 spent. We therefore expect that for a similar amount of airtime spent, ziada points will always be 10 times more than bonga points. Does this mean ziada points are more valuable than bonga?
Ziada points rewards.
The value of Telkom ziada Points

If you have accumulated sufficient ziada points, you can redeem them for either airtime, freedom bundles or Telkom device. These are the only options available, as shown on the screenshot above.
For airtime, you can get Ksh.50 with 1199 points or Ksh.100 airtime for 1999 points.
Alternatively you can redeem your points for daily 2 Gb at 1649 points,weekly 2 Gb freedom bundles at 4149 points or monthly 4 Gb at 8299 points.
Telkom also allows you redeem your points for a Telkom 4 G mifi at 124,975 or a4 G CPE router for 249,975 points.
How much does ziada points worth?
If you were to convert all your ziada points to cash, how much would it be? To estimate the ziada cash value, we will use the above redemption options:
For airtime, 1999 points gives you Ksh.100. This translates to Ksh.1 for every 19.99 points which can be rounded off to 20 points, or 124,975 for ksh.4999 which is also like 20 points for every Ksh.1.
If we device the above by 10, it resembles bonga point's Ksh.1 for every 2 points.
Differences between bonga points and ziada.
Though both bonga points and ziada have almost the same monetary value, there are great differences between Safaricom bonga and ziada as indicated below:
  1. While you can redeem bonga points for airtime, data, SMS, KQ tickets or even cement, you can only redeem ziada points for airtime, data or SMS. In order to make their bonga program lively, Safaricom have partnered with various companies to allow customers buy their services of goods with bonga points. To date, Telkom has not entered into any such partnership.
  2. If you want to redeem your ziada points for say airtime, you can either get ksh.50 airtime or Ksh.100. For bonga, you can redeem from as low as Ksh.5.
    The value of Telkom ziada Points
As shown on the screenshot above, Telkom say you can redeem from as low as Ksh.10 of airtime, but when you dial *126# on your Telkom line you only get the two airtime redemption options.
From the above discussion, we can clearly conclude that Telkom's ziada points are not that valuable, and though Telkom seems to be overlooking this simple reward program, it's with such that Safaricom will always remain miles ahead of them.
What are your thoughts about this? Kindly share on the comments section below.
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  1. There is a valid point in this argument. The one to one ( 1:1) use to gain reward ratio used by Telkom leaves the Telco with very limited room to reward their customers much. Likewise, the ten to one (10:1) ratio used by Safaricom is equally discouraging for customers who earn less than two dollars a day and who happen to be the majority. The ratios notwithstanding, the two Telcos should purpose to reward not based on the amount used, but probably based on customers dynamics: different customers, different top up habits, different uses, different frequencies.... The list may be longer but not endless. The onus is upon the service providers to study and understand these customer dynamics. My views may be as different as yours.


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