Turning a national long distance brand into a local wireless brand.


The Human Touch

While Sprint was well-known as a long distance service with “pin-drop” clarity, it did not yet exist as a wireless service brand among New Yorkers. To rapidly create this association required linking Sprint with the personality of New Yorkers on the move.

"David consistently demonstrates leadership at the strategic as well as the tactical level."
Dave Dess, Vice President, Brand Development and Communications, Sprint

By outfitting taxicabs with phones to call 911, David’s team created a true New York connection – both physically and emotionally. By placing dozens of Sprint PCS “phone booths” at the finish line of the New York Marathon for runners to call family and friends, they forged another local connection and generated massive trial.

In the city that never sleeps, the team reached out to young adults by exclusively offering ClubFONE for up-to-date club happenings. To be viewed as a “hometown” brand versus NYNEX, Bell Atlantic, and AT&T Wireless, Sprint PCS was also targeted at fans of the New York Yankees, Knicks, and Giants as well as the Hispanic market.

Within six months of the launch, David and his team achieved a 71 percent brand awareness level for Sprint PCS, and within one year, they captured 20 percent of new wireless service purchases.

SOAR Insight



  • New wireless carrier in largest U.S. market – No. 3 national long distance provider


  • Establish Sprint PCS as the premier local provider


  • Generate demand among new and experienced cellular customers through a balanced plan against the mass market and against key New York metro segments (Hispanic New Yorkers, Local and Suburban Commuters, Young Adult Club-Goers)


  • 71 percent brand awareness level within six months of launch
  • 20 percent share of new wireless service purchases within one year of launch