Sprint has emerged as the winner among major wireless networks with as much as 58.2% share of digital engagement between May 16 and June 15. In that period, the carrier spent an impressive $27 million on 12 spots that ran almost 7,000 times, but its commercial featuring former Verizon spokesman Paul Marcarelli stood out with 47.6% of the digital share of voice for the entire industry, which is a measure of the percentage of commercials run by a carrier compared to the commercials run by the wireless industry in the said period. The measurement was conducted by iSpot.tv which is a well-known TV advertising measurement company.
Sprint's 'Paul Switched' ad, which featured Paul Marcarelli, appeared first on June 6, and in the next nine days, was aired more than 1,300 times on national television and appeared during NBA and NHL finals as well. Amazingly, the particular commercial grabbed more than 75% of Sprint's overall digital share of voice. At the same time, the commercial received 3.2 million views and 26,000 social actions as well. AT&T, which had topped the group in iSpot.tv's rankings on digital engagement in the period from March 16 to April 15, saw its share in digital engagement fall from over 60% to just 12.1%, but Verizon clung onto second place despite witnessing its share going down from a little under 24% to 22.6% this time. T-Mobile finished at a distant fourth place with just 4.1% share of digital engagement between May 16 and June 15.
Even though Sprint gained almost as much share in digital engagement as AT&T did in the previous period, its total spending is almost a fourth of what AT&T spent. While the latter spent $109 million between March 16 and April 15, Sprint spent just $27 million. At the same time, Verizon's share fell marginally from 24% to 22.6% despite its monthly spending falling markedly from $41.5 million to $25 million. The surge in Sprint's spending on TV advertising comes at a time when the carrier is completing a number of transactions to keep its balance sheets off the red zone. Back in April, Sprint signed a deal with Mobile Leasing Solutions to sell and then lease back certain leased devices and bagged $1.1 billion in cash in the process. The carrier has also completed an 18-month bridge financing facility which is expected to bring in another $2 billion of additional liquidity.