Hear from Fortune 500 brands that have been forced to pivot as consumer preferences evolve, as well as entrepreneurs building brands from scratch to meet new consumer needs. This event peels apart the layers of brand building with a carefully crafted roster of top marketing, technology, and creative leaders.Learn more
Get ready for some T-Mobile Twitter trash talk.
The mobile carrier, whose brazen (and well-compensated) CEO John Legere is a frequent social media boaster, posted gains in new monthly subscribers outpacing the totals from Verizon and AT&T combined. In its first quarter earnings statement this morning, T-Mobile said it added 2.4 million net subscribers and 1.3 million postpaid subscribers; its two larger rivals picked up 1.16 million postpaid customers during the quarter.
For T-Mobile, the figures are a coup. In 2013, the struggling company kicked-off its "Uncarrier" campaign, which dropped contracts and shed other carrier conventions in a bid to steal subscribers from AT&T, Verizon and Sprint. Its strategy has helped improve the network's reception among consumers next to competitors with heftier marketing budgets.
In April, T-Mobile announced it was dropping overage fees by June, another unconventional measure, and prodded other carriers to take the same step.
"A year ago I promised that we would bring change to what I called this arrogant U.S. wireless industry," Mr. Legere said in a statement this morning. "We are delivering on that promise and our results reflect the growing customer revolution that we've ignited."
By the end of 2014, T-Mobile expects to add between 2.8 million and 3.3 million branded postpaid subscribers on net. The company added 67,000 tablet subscribers during the quarter, after announcing a free data plan for the device in October. But those were less than a fourth of AT&T's tablet quarterly additions.
Its "Uncarrier" manuevers came at a cost. The company swung to a loss of $151 million for the quarter, after a net income gain of $107 million in the same quarter a year ago.
For some analysts, the company is accelerating to prime itself for a better price for Sprint, which is swiftly losing customers. Bloomberg reported on Thursday that Softbank, Sprint's parent company, has met with at least six investment banks about a potential merger and is plotting the move for as early as June.
On Tuesday, Sprint reported it had lost more than half a million subscribers during the first quarter.
After the earning report, Mr. Legere was quick to broadcast the news, with little concern for being profane
We have outpaced the competition AGAIN – 12 times over! I shit you not! http://t.co/neCrKUgKYH— John Legere (@JohnLegere) May 1, 2014
"It's a great day to be magenta," the CEO tweeted, referring to the company's token brand color. He added a warning: "#LotsofTweets coming!"