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Bongo Live Focuses On Marketing Via Mobile Phones

Bongo Live Focuses On Marketing Via Mobile Phones

Taha Jiwaji saw a business opportunity when his parents could not afford to market their computer company to customers in Tanzania using traditional advertising methods, such as TV, radio, and print.

From this need Jiwaji’s company, Bongo Live, was born in 2010. The company offers a marketing service via mobile phones, specializing in group messaging, texting services and custom applications.

As a result, Bongo Live says it has leveraged the explosion of mobile phones in East Africa to make communication and advertising easy, efficient, and economical for its clients.

The company’s range of services is extensive, including group messaging, text offers, tailored texting services (such as raffles, voting, and surveys), and custom applications that cater to organizations and individuals of all varieties.

Jiwaji saw customers wanted to receive targeted and customized offers directly on their cell phones and local Tanzanian businesses were ready to deliver high-impact mobile marketing campaigns which not only engaged their customers, but kept them coming back.

Subscribers to the Bongo Live service supply the company with a list of contacts. Its team of marketing consultants then assists clients in creating text ads that match their marketing objectives and their brand. Next, the team uses a proprietary system to send text advertisements to clients’ customers. Broadcasters are able to send texts to any of their groups and contacts by signing in and using a tailored web platform. Additionally, Bongo Live continuously monitors its broadcast text traffic and receives delivery reports for all messages sent.


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Jiwaji said his company has seen significant success and has even lured an investor or two, which has fueled speculation for Bongo Live’s expansion into the markets in neighboring countries such as Malawi, Burundi, Rwanda, Congo, and Ethiopia.

“We would like to expand to those countries,” he said. “We are just at the point where we want to become sustainable locally and have a very solid product before venturing out into a new market, because each market is completely new. It’s not like the U.S., where you move from one state to another where everything is the same, although just moving location slightly. The languages are different. The ways of doing business are different.”

Jiwaji said a local Tanzanian network is needed, and hopes more technology-related businesses will come to his country.

“We’re really trying to develop the tech community and grow the space, but we’re also trying to heavily promote the culture of collaboration and sharing, which is crucial to developing local technology products that solve local problems,” he said. “Those are some of our key aims.”