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Over the past few years, there has been an explosion in the online world - an explosion that is also a harbinger of how business will operate in the future. Supply chains are being rethought, products and services reconfigured, and business models revamped. As such, the Internet is having a profound impact on the way business is being conducted in ways that are often disruptive to traditional methods. This is creating new challenges and opportunities. The Internet provides the opportunity for companies to reach a wider audience and create compelling value propositions never before possible (e.g. Amazon.com range of 4.5 million book titles), while providing new tools for promotion, interaction and relationship building. It is empowering customers with more options and more information to make informed decisions. The Internet also represents a fundamental shift in how buyers and sellers interact, as they face each other through an electronic connection, and its interactivity provides the opportunity for brands to establish a dialogue with customers in a one-on-one setting. As such, the Internet is changing fundamentals about customers, relationships, service and brands, and is triggering the need for new brand-building strategies and tools. In the midst of this, aggressive Internet start-ups have emerged, creating strong brands that are putting established brands at risk. Internet companies such as Yahoo!, Amazon.com, America Online (AOL) and eBay have been able to build powerful brands in a few years, whereas it has taken decades for traditional companies to achieve the client base, customer affiliation and level of sales, which these Internet start-ups have achieved. As a result, harnessing the reach and interactivity of the Internet to build and maintain brands has become extremely important. For pure online players, who are essentially intangible, brands are even more critical as customers have little to go on other than a recognised brand. Given the tremendous clutter in today's e-commerce marketplace, and the high cost of acquiring online customers, the most successful sites will be those that can attract customers and build
brand loyalty and enthusiasm that extends the brand-customer relationship beyond a single transaction. A Business Week survey found out that 57% of Internet users go to the same sites over and over again, rather than drifting from site to site1. Therefore, building awareness, attracting traffic or “eyeballs”, turning browsers into buyers, and turning first-time buyers into loyal repeat customers has become the Holy Grail of online marketing strategies. However, as the need to build brand loyalty online is reaching a peak, there is a growing recognition that traditional methods are no longer suited to this new interactive environment. As such, companies lack a coherent framework and concrete methods to build an online brand. In light of this, this dissertation seeks to explore how companies should go about building a successful Internet brand and to identify the critical factors that must be considered. During the last 3 years, there has been a rupture on the bubbles of the Dotcom industry. The disruption of the global Dotcom industry, the loss of investors’ confidence, the assai lance from hackers and code-breakers, the bankruptcy of many start-up giants (including Boo.com and Goodsonline.com) made many pessimistic souls believe at the doomsday of the industry in a nottoo-distant future. But according to experts, Dotcom industry is still a fledging and promising one. According to Hoffman, the online purchase will occupy up to 35% of the total figure in the next 30 years. By the way, the competition between the start-ups will be more fiercely than ever. In the era of digital technology, companies compete not only in price and quality, but also in brand name. Therefore, building a successful brand name on Internet is a vital task, especially to cyber companies.
ANALYSIS DONE BY KALAM SOFTWARE TECHNOLOGY This chapter provides an analysis of six companies. Each case is presented in the same format including, a company overview, its value proposition, the sources of added value (using the 7Cs Framework), its brand-building strategy (how it generates traffic), and other key factors that have contributed to its success (or failure).
In April 1994, Yahoo! was founded by David Filo and Jerry Yang, two PhD students at Stanford University, who started an online guide as a way to keep track of their personal interests on the Internet. The concept exploded (through word-of-mouth) and in less than six months, the site was receiving 1 million hits per day. Yahoo! has since promoted from an ordinary search service into a global Internet communications, commerce and media company that offers a comprehensive branded network of services and information to more than 145 million individuals each month world-wide, and is one of the few Internet companies to turn a profit early in the development of the Internet. As the first online navigational guide to the web, Yahoo! is a leading guide in terms of traffic, advertising, household and business user reach. Yahoo! is one of the most recognised brands on the Internet and is the 53rd most valuable brand in the world. The company's global web network includes 23 world properties outside the US.
At the core of Yahoo’s value proposition, lies the directory - a hand tailored and easy-touse guide to the Internet that becomes more useful each day as Internet penetration, the amount of information, and the number of websites continues to explode. According to CEO of Yahoo!, “We've set out to make Yahoo! the only place anyone needs to go to get connected to anything. There's nothing in the real world to compare to that1”. As such, Yahoo! offers a range of supporting services that add value, from e-mail services to stock quotes and much more, all in a single location.
4 . TVs. This creates a win-win situation as it satisfies Yahoo!. Content Yahoo! has pursued a broad range of deals with content and commerce companies. They have kept the design of the site simple and clean to appeal to customers and avoid slow-to-load graphics. Customisation My Yahoo! allows surfers to customise their view of Yahoo! and pick favourite topics. is the way it has structured and displayed infor mation.e. These have helped Yahoo! become the place to track down a broad range of valuable information and resources.SOURCES OF VALUE – THE 7Cs FRAMEWORK Convenience Central to Yahoo’s success. and more importantly. but instead to be selective and to display the best the web has to offer in a hierarchical framework that makes sense to customers. mobiles. regardless of platform (i. Their goal is not to list everything under the sun. to allow access. They have formed multiple alliances and partnerships with leading online companies such as Amazon.com and CD-now. Palm computers). Yahoo! extended its convenience through its Yahoo! Everywhere service. and have been at the heart of Yahoo’s growth and development. ranging from daily news and weather reports to road maps and books. the end-user. from stocks and sports results to weather and air fares. Their thrust has been to provide valuable content to customers. while providing partners access to a large customer base. More recently. Yahoo! has increased customer loyalty and retention rates. the partner. and is similar to a custom tailored newspaper. By tailoring the information to users' preferences.
message boards. Customer Care Yahoo! responds to customer inquiries via e-mail. or to make it their home page. one-to-many. and the nature of the navigation business. Yahoo! acquired Geo-Cities. (one of the largest online communities) which provide easy-to-use and innovative tools to allow users to publish content on the site. and contributing to their reputation as a quality service provider.000 chat rooms and widely varying topics. In 1999. Yahoo’s recent acquisition of e-Groups (an e-mail group communication service) will provide consumers with powerful new ways of communicating one-to-one. telephone and even traditional mail. Yahoo! spends more on customer support than most companies. fax. In addition. and many-to-many. Yahoo! Messenger has become a cultural phenomenon. 5 . reinforcing the brand customer relationship. with more than 100. and plans to incorporate other features such as online chat to facilitate communications. from sports to politics. where an ordinary chatter spends no less than 3 hours daily on Yahoo! Messenger to meet his or her epals. from public health to movies. where groups of people with shared interests can communicate through chat. In some countries like Vietnam and China. Yahoo! Messenger attracts more than 1 million chatters daily. Built from 1995. and is driving Yahoo’s multiple partnerships and alliances. and email. Yahoo! has also implemented campaigns to persuade users to bookmark the site. Connectivity Connectivity is Yahoo’s core product. One of the most recognized Yahoo! communities is the famous Yahoo! Messenger.Community Yahoo! has developed customisable web communities called Yahoo! Clubs. and spreads its communication through word-of-mouth faster than anything else. to provide its customer base with access to useful links and content.
As a result. Yahoo! aggressively promoted the site through public relations. While Internet companies were targeting existing Internet users through the use of online promotion methods. and through communications via email. These near surfers represented (and still do) a large and fast growing group and.Communication By positioning itself as a site that users frequently visit. they hired Black Rocket to create a brand awareness campaign that became very successful through the development of the tag line “Do You Yahoo!?” which conveyed the brand's irreverent personality. At the time this was considered a breakthrough. Given the unease with which the average consumer approaches technology. BRAND-BUILDING STRATEGY Yahoo! is a marketing machine. and according to Intellect-quest. by building a recognised brand name. Yahoo’s brand-building success starts with its name. and it formed a critical link in Yahoo’s brand building strategy.people who are not yet online but are likely to use the Internet in the near future. as experience surfers tend to be loyal to their search engine. Yahoo! would be one of the first sites that they visited. Yahoo! avoided characterising itself as a technology-oriented company. TV commercials and radio spots during drive time. Yahoo! also encourages customers to email ideas and feedback. therefore. 82% of Internet users and 23% of people intending to go online. Their strategy was to target “near surfers” . Yahoo! maintains close contact with customers. This was especially important. an approachable nature. Core brand attributes – a sense of irreverence. and an inherent friendliness. In 1996. It is often highly praised for its brand-building ability and promotion strategies through the use of traditional (offline) media and guerrilla marketing techniques to build awareness. and the company has always communicated the utility of its service in a way that reinforces other. Yahoo! extended beyond this to use traditional offline media. and its implications of a good time. recognise the name Yahoo!. 6 .
parachutes. Visa and MCI.higher than all other services. They even have a barter deal with the San Francisco 49ers. a little wacky and inviting”. the research shows that 73% of Yahoo! users bookmark the service . The chapter proceeds to describe the influence of brands on the buying process. According to a recent study. and yo-yos. snowboards. as well as TV shows (Ally. which has been instrumental in establishing Yahoo! as a household name. these layers are unravelled to reveal the nature of brands and their reason for existence. a monthly magazine guide to what's new on the web and it has co-branded products. from the Zamboni ice-shaving machine of the San Jose Sharks (Ice Hockey Team) to over 120 products. and 76% turned to Yahoo! before visiting another search engine or navigational site. ER) and Hollywood movies. Although this seems like a shotgun approach. In addition.In addition. sailboats. including backpacks. Yahoo's ability to quickly pick up on user’s interests has been a key factor contributing to their success. breath mints. Yahoo! has managed to cultivate high brand loyalty. 92% of Yahoo! users rate the service as “excellent” or “very good” which is significantly higher than those of other sites. Yahoo! has paid little for this exposure. Yahoo! adopted “guerrilla marketing” techniques . it's too late.it must reinforce the image of the company as “a service that is fun. Once customers access the site. it is in fact a carefully orchestrated campaign that requires each branding opportunity to meet one strict test . to create Yahoo! Internet Life. and the importance of customer 7 . VP-Brand Marketing. According to Karen Edwards. customers quickly discover its value and through a high quality experience (7Cs). The nature of brands Introduction Brands are made up of many layers and dimensions. services and contests with well known brands such as Ben & Jerry's. new services and customised features highlight their ability to relate to customers' needs. Their innovation. They also teamed up with publisher Ziff-Davis Co.with its name being plastered on everything. In this chapter. stating that “if we wait to hear about it in the news. We need to be one step ahead in order to have a better service than our competition”. T-shirts. which has fans screaming Yahoo! to cheer their team as the Yahoo’s logo flashes across the football stadium screen.
or design. THE LAYERS OF A BRAND Brands are made up of four layers . intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to 8 . WHAT IS A BRAND? “A mixture of tangible and intangible attributes symbolised in a trademark. or a combination of them. both for customers. the augmented brand and the potential brand. but extends further to encompass added values derived from factors such as the brandcustomer relationship. whether online or offline and they form the backbone of this dissertation. customers buy products to meet certain functional needs. explaining the value of brands. Branding is about creating “value”. symbol. and to companies. most products and services cannot survive on functionality alone as this is usually matched in time. The Basic Brand The basic brand consists of the “name. term. The core Product / Service At the most basic level. the basic brand. creates influence and generates value” This definition truly captures the essence of a brand. which. The concept of brand equity is outlined. The most common barrier to competition is building a brand.the core product or service. the brand's emotional benefits and its self-expressive benefits. and for the company. These concepts are central to brands and brandbuilding. both to customers.satisfaction and brand loyalty. and highlights the importance of brand management. However. This value stems from the products and services that companies create and bring to the market. sign. if properly managed.
but the brand itself is the store. Levi's). Certain service brands. Intangible services are also more challenging to “package” and sell to consumers who often have difficulty conceptualising. information. The Augmented Brand Successful companies seek a competitive edge through the enlargement of the core product or service.g. not the products it sells The Gap stores. this is the case with all Internet companies. Service Brands (intangible) are much less numerous than their product counter parts. Coca-Cola. These products and services add value and make the offering much more difficult for competitors to emulate. PRODUCT AND SERVICE BRANDS Product brands are the original brand carriers.differentiate them from those of competitors”2. such as in retailing.g. They are the historical core of branding because they are the most prevalent. Motorola. Essentially. and because they most readily come to mind when consumers are asked to recall brands. as they essentially perform the function of a “virtual” intermediary or “infomediary” and are intangible. with supplementary products and services (e. etc. preferring things they can see and touch. actually sell products. In fact. Honda. The Potential Brand A brand achieves its potential when added values are so great that customers will not willingly accept substitutes. For instance: Ford. even when the alternatives are substantially cheaper or more readily available (e. quick delivery) that enhance the customer’s total purchasing and use experience. 9 . Southwest Airlines and Amazon. this should support the offering's performance and differentiate the brand from those of competitors. Kodak. Coke.com are examples.
as well as its position in the customers’ mind. I tried to find out the potential customers and collect relevant information.com CD-now EBay 10 . During the study. it will be necessary to understand the context of current issues within the Dotcom industry and to identify the main players within the Dotcom industry. Scope of the Study To understand what vital role a brand name might play in contributing to the success of a cyber company. The study reveals the dotcoms’ chance of viability in the market to tap the potential customers and to increase their market share. The study helps in analysing the viability of some brand names. The project work covers brand building strategies with special reference to six typical cyber companies. including: Amazon. the significance of brand name to a cyber company. and which brand they want to deal with most. The need of the study emphasises on the market research of the brands. therefore make contribution to their market share increase in the future. their successes and failures.com Fashion mall. The study also shows the perception and awareness of people towards some brand names. their brand building strategies. and how to build up a successful brand.Need for the Study The study concentrates on the field of global Dotcom industry. and lessons from them. as well as to analyze the information which may help cyber companies to formulate their brand building strategies in accordance with customers’ mind and perception.
factors of influence. In the study. and reference materials. text books. The study tries to analyse brand building strategies of 6 cyber companies. etc. level of transaction. such as basis of customer. level of beware ness towards a certain brand name. I also carried out my analysis and interpretation based on unconventional sources of information like cyber reference materials. e-opinion poll. 11 .com Yahoo And the survey has been conducted randomly selected respondents within the city of Chennai. I interviewed potential e-customers on certain significant points.Gap. During the study. frequency of e-purchasing monthly. and which factors cast influence on his or her decision of buying. level of satisfaction and convenience. besides using my own market researching result. and on what foundation a potential customer decides to join the mainstream of cyber purchase. This study tries to extract to customers’ attitude and beware ness towards respective brands. This study also tried to bring out the perceptions that e-customers finding while carrying out an e-commerce transaction. thereof bring out a lesson regarding how to build a successful brand on Internet. which attach to the success and failure of each and every of them. customer perception. Statement of the Problem This project has been undertaken to study about the strategies of brand building within start-up industry.
Objectives The objectives of this dissertation are as follows: To gain an understanding of the role of brands and how they have traditionally been built. only 6 companies are selected. The data available on this are limited and companies. Academic literature and an analysis of the impacts of the Internet will be used to investigate these factors. tools and strategies to build brands on the Internet. because of their business secret. and to identify new sources of value. 4. Out of 1 lacks odd dotcoms in the world. only some aspects of their brand building strategies are taken into consideration. are not willing to part with it. 6. Thus the results are applicable only in Chennai city. Biased and concealed responses by the respondents can’t be averted. 2. 7. The project is to be completed within 3 months. supported by secondary data related to aspects of online business from accredited and published sources 12 . The limitation of time horizon therefore is another constraint of this study. A review and analysis of leading academic thinking will be used to explore these issues. Hence the results must not be extended to the national level as the psychographics and demographics vary significantly across the country. Even though comparative analysis of different cyber companies is done. which is insufficient for a further in-dept analysis. 3. To explore how the Internet is changing the brand-building environment. Some of the data are collected from word-of-mouth that can be biased. 5. Given suggestions and interpretations are limited to particular companies only. This study was carried out in Chennai city.Limitations of the Study 1. so we can not generalize the findings.
2 . REVIEW OF LITERATURE Procedure Methodology The methodology used in this dissertation is illustrated in Figure 2. 2. with reference to the theoretical themes that emerge from the literature review and in terms of the practical implications for companies. Figure 2.RESEARCH METHODOL Academic Research Hypothesis Case Studies Conclusion Secondary Data The 7Cs Framework Primary & the Interactive Data Brand-Building Process 13 .1. To identify the key factors and characteristics that contributes to the development of successful Internet brands. This is based on the outcome of the primary research (in-depth case studies).1: Research Methodology caac.
The combination of cases provides a useful and practical insight into brand-building issues and problems. Consequently. traditional “bricks-and-mortar” companies that rose to the challenge of taking their brands to the Internet (Gap. nor desire. marketing. The absence of academic literature on Internet branding posed a major obstacle.com). to provide an in-depth analysis of the psychological and social dimensions of brands. this also highlights the true value of the dissertation. The case studies include born-on-the-web companies that are among the most recognised Internet Brands (Amazon. strategy and economics. relationship management. and factors that contribute to a brand's success. Hypothesis (Framework): This is based on the literature review and secondary data. however. While there is no attempt. eBay and Yahoo!). there is more work in popular rather than academic literature. 14 . CDnow.com).com. Secondary Data: This consists primarily of key facts and survey results quoted by leading consultancy and research firms. These are further refined using the insight obtained through the case studies. certain key factors are highlighted in their relevance to the dissertation. The resulting 7Cs Framework and Interactive Brand-Building Model outline key sources of added value and the tools available for companies to create a high-impact customer experience that is critical in building an online brand. Case Studies: The dissertation is essentially built on the in-depth analysis of the brand building efforts of six online companies. the literature review draws on leading academic thinking in more established areas such as brand management. as well as a recent Internet failure (Boo.Academic Research: Given that the Internet is such a new area. and is used to provide insight into some of the factors that contribute to the development of successful brands.
administration offices. Secondary data was obtained from sources like brochures of cyber companies. Method of collection: The survey was conducted to collect primary data both quantitative and qualitative. d) Sample size: Keeping in mind the budgetary. Data was sought from cyber companies and e-customers. web-users. Magazines. and Books etc. Methodology Assumption This section outlines the procedure followed in collecting data and analyzing it. c) Tools for data collection: The primary data was collected with the help of questionnaire. and potential purchasers. 15 . The questionnaire was designed to obtain necessary information that can help me to fulfill this study. Web sites. companies. time and manpower constraints. and residences. and by collecting them from the respondents at a later date in some cases. the total sample selected was 100 all of them were conducted in Chennai. b). Primary data was obtained from direct interviews with e-customers. The questionnaire was administered by me through direct visit to institutes.Conclusion: Discusses the key findings and areas for further research. a). Type of data used: Both primary data and secondary data where used.
Information is becoming a major part of the products and services that people buy. it is a common technology platform that allows computing devices to communicate with each other. In doing so. highlighting the key developments that have contributed to its explosive growth and its impact on the business environment. and a critical source of added value 16 . and the “world wide web” (www). Though the sample size is limited to 100. news groups and mailing lists. I had used percentage analysis. To analyze and interpret the primary data. creating new challenges and opportunities.e) Assumption: The information from the respondents has been treated as the correct information. This chapter provides an overview of the Internet and its defining characteristics. which suits the best. Hypertext allows information to be organised in a user-friendly way that is easily accessible. it offers a number of alternative channels that enable businesses and people to communicate. which contain hypertext and pictures. In essence. The World Wide Web (www) is a large network of documents. INTRODUCTION The Internet is transforming the business environment. The three core channels include e-mail (the most common). and provides the opportunity for dynamic interaction. I felt it is good enough to come to conclusion about how to build a recognized brand name on Internet. OVERVIEW OF THE INTERNET The Internet is a world-wide network of networks.
24 hours a day. The Internet can also be accessed at any time . It Allows for Two-way Communication and Interactivity .the cost of searching for information and the cost of the information itself is significantly reduced (and in many cases is free). Conducting business over the Internet (e-business) represents a fundamental shift in how buyers and sellers interact. and deliver new products and services at low cost. It Overcomes the Barriers of Time and Space . allowing both parties to identify each other and build one-to-one relationships . anywhere. the Internet lets individuals and companies build interactive relationships with customers and suppliers. ubiquitous links to anyone. 7 days a week. telephone) is that the Internet goes beyond just enabling transactions. fax. The Internet becomes an information-rich “virtual” market space through which buyers and sellers interact. THE INTERNET AND E-COMMERCE E-commerce describes the use of the Internet as a medium and as a market for commerce. These characteristics combine to create a very powerful medium. web browsers.e. regardless of where the computer or Internet access device is physically located. software.this radically alters the process of interaction between communicating parties. These qualities eliminate the barriers of time and space that exist in the physical world.The Internet is a global network and can be reached from everywhere.not previously available with mass medium forms of communication. The main difference between the Internet and other electronic media (i. The buyer and seller “face” 17 . and people. These 'virtual' marketplaces are not fixed in physical territory but are created by the combination of standards-based networks. content.The Defining Characteristics of the Internet The distinctive characteristics of the Internet can be summarised in three key points: It dramatically Reduces Information Costs . These defining characteristics have fuelled its explosive growth. By allowing for direct.
and revolutionary new business models are emerging. THE IMPACT OF THE INTERNET ON BUSINESS The Internet has had a profound impact on the way business is being conducted . There is no need to travel to a physical location. The value of e-commerce transactions and market forecasts vary widely among research firms and government agencies.g. represents a level of efficiency and integration previously unattainable. The Internet also facilitates the development and co-ordination of global activities (e.how companies operate. However. over which the organisation’s processes flow. and no cash register. no order book. which are often disruptive to traditional business models. For example. they all project the value e-commerce transactions to grow at unprecedented rates. how they compete and how they serve their customers . suppliers. Globalisation of Business The Internet facilitates the globalisation of business by providing access to a global audience. a number of sweeping impacts are identifiable: The Development of Electronic Intermediation The Internet is enabling companies to break through organisational and geographic boundaries to create new structures that link businesses “virtually” (electronically) with customers. partners and other corporate constituencies. through the use of extranets). Although the particular impact will differ between industries. Improved Core Business Processes The use of Internet-based technologies as the platform. Instead there is a website. A “virtual” presence can mitigate the cost of having to invest in physical facilities. CISCO e-enabled its financial systems and now has the capability to close its financial year within one day.each other through an electronic connection. 18 .
The Pace of Business is Accelerating With the fast pace of technological change. collaborate more effectively and ultimately embed organisational intelligence within processes. it also removes the geographical protection from competitors. the diminishing barriers-to-entry and the lower switching costs. as they have access to more information leading to more informed decision-making. and the 24 x 7 environment.The Balance of Power is shifting to the Customer The Internet empowers customers. the typical clock-speed at which companies need to operate has accelerated. Competition is intensifying Although the Internet removes the geographical constraints of reaching customers. as they are just one 'click' away. Internet technology can be used to exploit collective learning and knowledge. the development of a knowledge economy. improving processes.internally and externally . has resulted in a fierce competitive environment. It also provides easy access to competitors’ offers and allows customers to consider every available alternative. combined with the emergence of electronic intermediaries. switching costs are much lower. their organisations must harness knowledge .in developing products. fierce competition. 19 . allowing employees to share knowledge. As a result. This. empowered customers. Knowledge is becoming a Key Strategic Asset Many companies have recognised that if they want to succeed. the globalisation of business. products and services. getting closer to customers and ultimately staying ahead of competitors.
extensive outsourcing. and most traditional partnerships were vertical. thus creating a “value net”. The Strategic Importance of Alliances and Partnerships Although this point has already been touched upon.Revolutionising Sales and Brand Management The Internet provides companies with a new channel to reach a new breed of customer. alliances and partnerships have taken on a new level of strategic importance. New Ways of Organising and Structuring Business Transformed communications costs and capabilities are helping to drive a fundamental rethink of how firms should organise themselves. It allows companies to improve customer service. supply chain cooperation. linking companies with competitors and players from entirely different industries and business sectors. companies have looked upon alliances only as a means of filling gaps. most Internet and ecommerce partnerships extend beyond this. and multiple strategic alliances and partnerships. Traditionally. linking companies with suppliers and customers up and down a pre-defined value chain. The extent of this partnering highlights the typical structure and dynamics of an online company. Examples of emerging information age business structures include flat versus hierarchical. 20 . Enhanced communication capabilities allow companies to build one-to-one relationships with their customers and suppliers that were previously impossible. However. achieve global reach and realise a new source of cost advantage.
where the user feels a part of. they have never handled or seen (except on-screen). and sites that understand the user's needs and preferences. the intangible nature of the Internet. the logic of the Internet cuts another way. In addition. Generally. addresses. However. etc. has placed greater importance on trust and security. This chapter explores the new dynamics of brands and the critical importance of customer loyalty online.BUILDING BRANDS ON THE INTERNET A HYPOTHESIS INTRODUCTION The Internet is changing the brand environment or “brandscape”. The limitations of brand-building on the Internet are also discussed. in addition to providing added value. credit card numbers.names. THE NEW DYNAMICS OF BRANDS Traditionally. On the other hand. the Internet makes search and comparison much easier.a way for consumers to simplify the time-consuming process of search and comparison before deciding what to buy. New strategies and tools for building brands on the Internet are identified. Transactions on the Internet require customers to provide detailed personal information . This highlights the surfacing of information and relationships as key sources of added value in the Internet economy.sites that provide a wealth of information and make comparison shopping easy. including the interactive approach to attracting customers and building loyalty. and the fact that customers are buying goods that. People only tend to transact with sites they know and trust . Customers derive added 21 . in most cases. people have concerns about sharing personal information. brands were a substitute for information . This threatens to undermine the value of brands.
Therefore. Which identified the following factors? . and some are spending over $500. Many e-retailers ('e-retailers') are averaging more than $100 to acquire a new customer. - Repeat customers refer more people and bring in more business . brands have been developed in an environment whereby a company creates a brand. unless they are selling high-price. 22 .Companies will not break-even on one-time shoppers . In doing so. this also poses a challenge as these relationships may take on a life and character of their own. and projects it onto a third party intermediary (the media). it could be argued that customer loyalty is even more critical online. whereby the company can establish a dialogue and interact with individual consumers on a one-to-one basis. However. a company can listen. it is very unlikely that an online retailer can break even on a one-time shopper. learn. as well as on topics of interest related to the brand and product characteristics. Traditionally. THE IMPORTANCE OF ONLINE CUSTOMER LOYALTY According to a recent study8. companies need to retain customers so that they return to the site repeatedly. on the other hand. In response. rather than simply speaking at customers.word-of-mouth is the single most effective and economical way online businesses grow their sites. offers interactivity. In fact. understand and relate to customers. - Repeat purchasers spend more and generate larger transactions . customer acquisition costs are high. high-margin items. This creates the opportunity for companies to build stronger relationships than previously attainable.value through the provision of information on the products or services they buy. 75% of senior executives believe the success of an e-business initiative depends entirely on its ability to build customer loyalty. The Internet.due to more frequent shopping and larger purchases.often. and to recover their investment. many unnamed customers develop a “relationship” with the brand.
com was the only cyber company who could claim profit. CASE STUDY: GAP. UK. During the period of 2000-2001. This success is largely due to their simple formula – “to deliver style. and with customers holding all the power. and sales in 1999 amounted to $80 million.COM COMPANY OVERVIEW Gap opened its first store in San Francisco in 1969.com. This is further reinforced by the fact that. up from $20 million in 1998. and provides useful insight into how traditional brands can leverage their strength online. 23 .800 stores in the US. companies must ensure that they provide a completely satisfying end-to-end customer experience. In late 1997. and are still relatively small compared to Gap's $9 billion in annual sales. Even the collapse of the global Dotcom industry in middle 2000 showed a very little effect to Gap. Gap. Germany and Japan. service and value to everyone”. The Gap offers a balance of modern and seasonal styles of clothing. These points stress the importance of online customer loyalty. online sales are only available to US customers. Gap started selling items online . a disgruntled online customer tells 10 people about a poor experience. but also provides more opportunities for cross-selling. For example. Gap. from jeans and T-shirts to khakis and jackets. almost 70% of The Gap online shoppers said that they would consider buying furniture from The Gap.com is an example of successful crossover marketing. Canada. Its reach extends across more than 1. Gap's online sales tripled in 1998 alone. Repeat purchasing not only binds trust.- Loyal customers are more willing to buy other products from the company. on average. and today it is the 29th most valuable brand in the world. however.an early convert to the then-revolutionary idea of clothes retailing on the Internet. Currently. the growth prospects are enormous.
Michael. Executive Vice President of Global Marketing. head of Gap Online. GapKids. as well as sample all of the latest shades of fingernail polish on a virtual hand. very efficient”15.. and BabyGap. In addition. the extensive integration of Gap's online and offline activities are clearly evident..VALUE PROPOSITION Gap's simple. Gap Online primarily focuses on Convenience. SOURCES OF VALUE – THE 7Cs FRAMEWORK In terms of the 7Cs framework. and Customer Care. which would not be possible in the store. letting customers access the Gap brands. “this is about being clicks-and-mortar. standard styles are well suited to online shopping. The site's virtual style feature also allows customers to mixand-match combinations of clothing. and easy-to-use. and customers can view their latest TV adverts for buying inspiration. Unlike other companies that transform from “brick and mortar” to cyber. According to Jeanne Jackson. The site also offers sharp graphics.com store one immediately notices the consistency between the online and retail stores.com content consists of detailed information on its full range of products. making navigation even faster... Gap online exploits the accessibility and convenience of the Internet. Content.making visual references to its offline roots.very easy. 24 . Gap.. making it convenient. from the blue and white colour scheme to the easy-to-shop format . allowing shoppers to contrast different cuts and styles.. from shirts to accessories and hard-to-find sizes. This personality is reinforced online through the simple structure and layout. Visiting the gap.. and Gap online provides access to the full range of items at Gap. to provide customers with greater convenience and options. but provides customers with the option of viewing text-only. whether in the store or online14”. describes the company's brand personality as “direct and straightforward .
Gap has also developed an affiliate programme. on shopping bags and even on the cash register. Gap. etc. and had recently established marketing deals with AOL and CDnow. Gap does not provide any community features on its site. In order to integrate its offline and online operations and logistics.com" on the display screens between transactions.shop.) that also promote the online store. Gap. which displays “Shop online at www.Unlike the case of Boo. once customers are registered online. and goods bought online get returned at the same rate as store purchases . customers can return goods purchased online to their neighbourhood store. By doing so.com allows customers to track the status of online purchases and provides contact information on the nearest store.com also provides a Gift Central feature which offers gift suggestion from Gap.gap. Magazines. promoting its specials and including links directly to items on Gap's website. and BabyGap. on counter cards. BRAND-BUILDING STRATEGY – EXTENSIVE INTEGRATION Gap. twice a month. In addition. However. Gap made a decision to charge sales tax on online sales. billboards. GapKids. standard styles are well suited to online clothes shopping. Gap communicates with customers through customised e-mails. 25 . and customers can register to get e-mail reminders of upcoming holidays and birthdays. it is fully leveraging its offline presence to build awareness. Gap's simple. This level of customer care is an important factor in making customers feels more comfortable with online purchasing. The Gap site connects to other Gap online stores including GapKids and BabyGap.com has been able to piggy-back on The Gap's offline advertisements (in TV.as most Gap online shoppers have a good idea of how Gap clothes fit.com.ship”. by displaying the URL in store windows with the slogan “surf. In addition. without causing complications.
com in return for a 5% commission on every sale referred through the site. either online or in stores. Gap has also supplemented this with online promotions: -year commerce and marketing agreement with AOL that gives Gap more visibility on the Internet by linking to the world's largest online shopping destination: Shop@AOL marketplace. which can be used towards future purchases. flooded with e-mails form customers asking how they could buy a recording of the music played in Gap TV commercials. by offering a 10% discount and free shipping on their first online purchase. or to refer shoppers to Gap's website. In certain high traffic Gap and GapKids stores. whereby for every $100 a customer spends at Gap Online. Gap has held in-store campaigns to get customers to submit their e-mail addresses. 26 . providing a useful way to directly reach customers. they send the customer a $20 Gap Shop-Card. the retailer has installed “Web lounges” that lure buyers with comfortable couches and terminals hooked up to Gap. Most of Gap's online traffic is generated by leveraging its physical presence.Store clerks are also trained to look for products online for their customers if the store does not have them in stock. -Card. ncouraging sites to establish links to gap. These efforts doubled the size of Gap's e-mail database. To convert walk-in shoppers to cybershoppers. however.com.
A key factor has been Gap's consistency and ability to deliver the same level of service quality that is expected from the brand. and can also provide access to different customer segments who may not usually buy the products at all . By aggressively marketing both the stores and the website. on the other hand. have already established the back-end operations and can use them as the cornerstone of their online business. Total no of respondents = 100 2.com is an example of successful crossover marketing. of Respondents 23 47 30 100 Percentage 23% 47% 30% 100% 27 . provides existing customers with added value through the convenience of purchasing online. while reaping the benefits of low customer acquisition costs and extended reach. The Internet.CONCLUSION Gap. whereas established companies. ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION OF INTERNET STRATEGIES 1.thereby increasing the company's reach. Gap has been able to significantly strengthen their brand-customer relationship. With their brand awareness and network of retail outlets. 1 2 3 Total Age 15-19 years 20-24 years 25 years above No. Gap had a significant advantage over pure online players in attracting customers and building critical mass. No. Pure online players have to invest heavily in logistics. thereby reinforcing its brand identity. Age group Break-up SL. and allowing each to leverage the strengths of the other. such as Gap. This type of seamless integration and symbiotic relationship is critical in building successful “clicks-and-mortar” brands.
Particulars No. Break-up of Computer and Internet Literate Sl. 1 2 3 Total Qualification Under graduate Graduate Post graduate No. No.3. No. Respondents 1 Yes 71 71% of Percentage 2 No 29 29% Total 100 100% 28 . of Respondents 33 51 16 100 Percentage 33% 51% 16% 100% 4. Qualification Break-up of Respondents SL.
The profession of respondents Sl. of Respondents Percentage 1 Student 35 35% 2 Computer engineer 13 13% 3 Faculty 21 21% 4 Businessman 16 16% 5 Others 15 15% Total 100 100% 29 .5. Occupation No. No.
No.1: What are people doing online? SL. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Particulars E-mail General Information Surfing Reading Hobbies Product Information Travel Information Business / Work Entertainment Purchasing Stock Quotes Job Search Chat Rooms Homework Auctions Banking Trading stocks No.Table No. of Respondents 91 78 72 70 67 64 55 50 35 35 29 26 25 22 17 15 9 Percentage 91% 78% 72% 70% 67% 64% 55% 50% 35% 35% 29% 26% 25 % 22% 17% 15% 9% 30 .
00% 10.00% 60.00% 30. only 70 logged on cyber companies for purchasing. chatting. surfing.00% 70.00% 0. searched for general information (78%). entertainment.Source: Survey Interpretation: From the above table.00% 90. Figure 1: What are people doing online 100. and attended recreational activities (reading.00% 80. Out of 100respondents. hobbies.00% 50.00% E-mail General Information Surfing Reading Hobbies Product Information Travel Information Business / Work Entertainment Purchasing Stock Quotes Job Search Chat Rooms Homework Auctions Banking Trading stocks 31 .00% 20. etc). and only 36 had the real intention to buy or sell online.00% 40. it is clear that the majority of respondents have surfed on Internet to check their e-mail (91%).
product searching. hobbies. The other majority 82% surfed on the World Wide Web for other activities (reading. entertainment.Table No.2: Number of respondents who really carried out business transactions on Internet SL. No. surfing. Figure 2: Number of respondents who really carried out business transactions on Internet Real E-purchaser Ordinary surfer 32 . etc). 1 2 Total Particulars Yes No No. of Respondents 18 82 100 Percentage 18% 82% 100% Source: Survey Interpretation: It is evident from the above table that the minority 18% of the respondents has actually bought or sold on Internet. chatting. Advertisement should be aimed at this small potion of customers rather than pursuing the whole vast market.
com Boo. Among six respective brand names. following by Yahoo! and Amazon.Table No. 33 .com Yahoo! Others No. The fourth brand has only 2 customers. eBay has got the biggest number of transactions.6% 36% 0% 27. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Total Company Amazon.4% 100% Source: Survey Interpretation: The above table shows the degree of popularity and credibility among different brands. and Boo. No.com got none.3: Name of cyber companies that you actually dealt with SL. of Respondents 9 0 2 13 0 10 2 36 Percentage 25% 0% 5.8% 5.com CDnow eBay Gap.com and Gap.com.
Figure 3: Name of cyber companies that you actually dealt with
Amazon.com Boo.com Cdnow eBay Gap.com Yahoo! Others
Table No.4: Number of e-purchasers who want to come back for future transactions
SL. No. 1 2 Total
Particulars Yes No
No. of Respondents 34 2 36
Percentage 94.4% 5.6% 100%
Source: Survey Interpretation: Among the real e-purchaser, the majority of 94.4% wants to come back to respective cyber companies they dealt with before. It shows the solidity of business transactions and relations on the Internet. Once customers are satisfied, they intend to keep the nexus with the company they know, rather than shifting from company to company. It highlights the significance of keeping up with customer’s standard and perception right in the first transaction (the moment of truth)
Figure 4: Number of e-purchasers who want to come back for future transaction.
Table No. 5: Standards for a good online company
SL. No. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Total Source: Survey
Particulars Brand Cost Convenience Means of payment Variability Promotion & discount Others
No. of Respondents 30 13 16 5 9 16 11 100
Percentage 30% 13% 16% 5% 9% 16% 11% 100%
Interpretation: Among the above factors (brand, cost, convenience, means of payment, variability of goods and services, promotion and discount), brand name holds the most significant position, with 60 out of 200 respondents claimed that is was the most important factor to a company. The next important factors are convenience (16%), promotion and discount (15.5%), cost (13%), variability (9%), and means of payment (5%).
Figure 5: Standards for a good online
30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0%
Brand Cost Convenience Means of payment Variability Promotion & discount Others
Table No.6: Keys to Web brand Loyalty
SL. No. 1 2
Particulars Ease of use & navigation Fast response time
No. of Respondents 37 26
Percentage 37% 26%
Out of 200 respondents. 74 claimed that the Ease of use & navigation is the most important element (37%). and 34 supported Relevant & accurate information (17%). 40 to Familiarity (20%). Figure 6: Keys to Web brand Loyalty 40% 35% 30% 25% Ease of use & navigation Fast response time 20% Familiarity 15% 10% 5% 0% 37 Relevant & accurate information .3 4 Total Familiarity Relevant & accurate information 20 17 100 20% 17% 100% Source: Survey Interpretation: The above table shows the key factors that ensure web brand loyalty. whereas 52 gave their vote to Fast response time (26%).
Table No. of Respondents 26 24 22 28 100 Percentage 26% 24% 22% 28% 100% Source: Survey Interpretation: The above table shows the key factors that destroy web brand loyalty.7: Killers of Web brand Loyalty SL. No. 1 2 3 4 Total Particulars Outdated information Slow response time Site downtime Poor customer service No. Figure 7: Killers of Web brand Loyalty 30% 25% Outdated information 20% Slow response time 15% Site downtime 10% Poor customer service 5% 0% 38 . and 28 to Poor customer service (28%). whereas 24 attributed to slow response time (24%). Out of 100 respondents. 26 claimed that outdated information is the key element that demolishes customers’ belief (26%). 22 to Site downtime (22%).
Table No. and luxury were hardly chosen. Whereas goods with high value like real estate. Out of 100 respondents.8: Things you want to buy online SL. vehicles. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Particulars Consumable Luxury Interior Garments & footwear Vehicle Real estate Antiquities Others No. most of them (75% & 67%) chose consumable and garments & footwear respectively. No. of Respondents 75 16 26 67 24 7 31 40 Percentage 75% 16% 26% 67 % 24% 7% 31% 40% Source: Survey Interpretation: From the above table. 39 . we can see the tendency of what people want to buy on Internet.
following by Yahoo! and Amazon.3. Yahoo! transcends eBay and Amazon.com CDnow Gap.9: Ranking the popularity of six below cyber companies Rank 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th Company Yahoo! eBay Amazon.Figure 8: Things you want to buy online 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% Consumable Luxury Interior Garments & footwear Vehicle Real estate Antiquities Others Table No.com.com Boo. we can see eBay has got the biggest number of transactions among the lot. But with regard to level of recognition and awareness.com Source: Survey Interpretation: From the table No. It proves how effective Yahoo! is in 40 .com.
Table No. the extensive research and in-depth case studies provided in this dissertation indicate certain common underlying characteristics which can be summarised as follows: 41 . But as time goes by. and customers usually refer bulk-mails as “garbage” and try to delete them without casting a single glance at. bulk-mails do not have the same significance like before. of Respondents 19 81 100 Percentage 19% 81% 100% Source: Survey Interpretation: Chain-mails and bulk-mails are often used to get customer awareness and attention. 10: Do you usually read chain mails & bulk mails? SL. including viral effect and wordof-mouth.creating community activities and spreading public relationship. It is called as “self-protection reaction”. 1 2 Total Particulars Yes No No. Cyber companies should develop other kinds of promotion and brand building rather than relying on chain-mails. No. Key factors that contribute to building a successful online brand There is no one-size-fits-all solution for building a successful brand on the Internet. however.
A Compelling Value Proposition Successful online brands are exploiting every capability offered by the Internet to deliver compelling value propositions that appeal to customers. Successful brands recognise that the value proposition must more than compensate for the loss of in-person contact. lower prices. by offering more value than attainable through traditional “bricks-and-mortar” establishments. Connectivity. by offering more value than attainable through traditional “bricks-and-mortar” establishments. Key factors that contribute to building a successful online brand There is no one-size-fits-all solution for building a successful brand on the Internet. and access to more information on the products or services being provided. The 7Cs framework allows companies to deliver a tangible customer experience. Compelling Value Proposition Strong Internet brands are those that create a high quality engaging online customer experience. lower prices. the extensive research and in-depth case studies provided in this dissertation indicate certain common underlying characteristics which can be summarised as follows: Successful online brands are exploiting every capability offered by the Internet to deliver compelling value propositions that appeal to customers. Community. and enhancing this with layers of added-value through the '7Cs' Convenience. Community. wider selections. by ingraining convenience 42 . Successful brands recognise that the value proposition must more than compensate for the loss of in-person contact. Connectivity. wider selections. however. Content. Customisation. Customisation. and enhancing this with layers of added-value through the '7Cs' Convenience. Content. Customer Care and Communication. Customer Care and Communication. They are providing greater convenience (24x7). and access to more information on the products or services being provided. Successful online brands meet the demands inherent in each of the 7C categories. They are providing greater convenience (24x7).
In doing so. they are differentiating their experience from those of competitors. but also provide added value 43 . delivering compelling content. The 7Cs framework allows companies to deliver a tangible customer experience. The successful brands are those who are investing heavily in logistics. making connectivity easy. and customer care to ensure a completely satisfying end-to-end customer experience. A well Strong Internet brands are those that create a high quality engaging online customer experience. developing a community feel. A Reputation for Excellence (Delivering on their e-Promises) Fulfilment and delivering on e-promises is the acid test of online brands. and establishing two-way communication. integrated customer acquisition strategies. By placing emphasis on different 'Cs'. but leads them to spread positive word-of-mouth. results in higher brand equity. ranging from online methods to traditional offline media. they are differentiating their experience from those of competitors. quick-to-load and easy-to-navigate. distribution centres. making connectivity easy. They are targeting their promotions to attract quality customers and to keep customer acquisition costs down.and making the site easy-to-use. and establishing two-way communication. integrating customer care. A well executed customer experience that satisfies customers. which builds confidence and trust that not only entices customers to do repeat business with the company. delivering compelling content. Strong Communications Programme & Efficient Customer Acquisition Strategy The key Internet brands have made major commitments to building awareness and have developed multifaceted. By placing emphasis on different 'Cs'. they are cultivating a reputation for excellence. integrating customer care. by ingraining convenience and making the site easy-to-use. Quality customers who are heavy users of the brand are important as they not only offset the cost of customer acquisition. attracting other customers to the site. customising the experience. quick-to-load and easy-to-navigate. developing a community feel. customising the experience. Successful online brands meet the demands inherent in each of the 7C categories.
whereby each party benefits from the other's expertise or skills. and exclusive alliances can lock out competitors from valuable content or online real estate. Strong Partnerships and Strategic Alliances Rather than doing everything on their own. Yahoo's success can be largely attributed to its unique positioning strategy and distinct image that appeals to its target market. while ultimately benefiting the end-customers. as well as determine how far the brand can be meaningfully stretched to other products and market segments. By distinguishing their offering and focusing on unique sources of value-added.to the brand community. variety. a company can leverage the partner's brand and reputation to reinforce its own. Alliances with leading portals and popular sites are important to generate traffic and brand visibility. to distinguish themselves from competitors. before it fractures. The most successful partnerships are symbiotic matches. these companies must have an inherent understanding of their brand identity and core values. to maintain consistency. Alliances and partnerships play an important role in achieving speed and momentum. Properly orchestrated “guerrilla marketing” ploys can also be effective in building awareness and reinforcing brand image. brands are harder for competitors to emulate. In addition. 44 . and convenience. these companies are creating even stronger value propositions. Unique Positioning Concept & Distinct Brand Image Strong brands are developing unique positioning concepts. content. As a result. and by partnering with well-known brands. leading brands have focused on building strong partnerships and alliances. offering customers the best in quality. particularly to secure content and widen reach to new customer segments and niches.
customisation and customer care. and develop a detailed understanding of their customers' needs. It locks up important content and distribution partnerships. and by focusing on customer needs. 45 . that comes with innovation. and it can acquire customers while it is still inexpensive to do so. and extensive word-of-mouth due to its novelty.Intense Customer Focus Leading online brands have an intense customer focus. and benefited from additional hype. Customer focus builds trust and credibility that is central to developing a strong brand-customer relationship. by providing better services. Many strong online brands were also early-movers on the internet. and traffic. are leveraging this customer knowledge (learning) to nurture relationships (relate). these wellpublicised brands also took off. These brands are accumulating knowledge about customers. By getting to market early. customisation and customer care. through past transactions and solicited input. and develop a detailed understanding of their customers' needs. are leveraging this customer knowledge (learning) to nurture relationships (relate). As Internet penetration exploded. and by focusing on customer needs. by providing better services. and it aligns itself with the most influential venture capital sources. Customer focus builds trust and credibility that is central to developing a strong brand-customer relationship. Identified a market opportunity early and moved quickly to capitalise on the potential they saw. These brands are accumulating knowledge about customers. the company benefits from the buzz. First-Mover & Early-Mover Advantage Most of the successful online brand leading online brands have an intense customer focus. Getting to market quickly can provide an Internet company with significant momentum and a valuable boost over the competition. through past transactions and solicited input. The challenge then lies in keeping up the momentum. A first-mover advantage is an important asset for an online brand.
Yet while everything is being turned upside down. The era of Internet brings a totally new approach to building a brand name. expand the brand experience to meet customers' expectations in the online world. and are continuously adding new services and functionality to their sites. to create new services and content that satisfies customer needs. these innovations are difficult for competitors to reproduce. Let’s have Table No. established fulfilment systems and infrastructure. By leveraging unique customer information. Through extensive and seamless integration. They have an established brand. and differentiating it from other brands.factors that clearly differentiate them from pure players. but at the same time. In many cases. The Internet has radically changed the business and competitive environments. clicks-and-mortar brands are providing customers with true added-value. while reaping the benefits of lower customer acquisition costs and extended reach. and a physical presence (tangibility) . Strong clicks-and-mortar brands are integrating their online and offline activities to leverage the strengths of each other. This type of relentless innovation is instrumental in ensuring brands develop traction and build momentum to keep ahead of competitors. one component remains unchanged . established customer relationships. They possess critical assets that give them an advantage over pure online start-ups. 11: Different approaches in brand-building a glance at the different routes to brand building on the new dynamics of brands. 46 . the innovations are the result of the company's ability to record its vast database of customer information. these brands must respect their core brand elements and maintain consistency in the service quality that is expected. giving the brand an edge.value remains (and always will) the basic building block for every successful brand. In doing so. Ability to Leverage Offline Brand and Assets Bricks-and-mortar brands are often well positioned to succeed on the Internet.Relentless Innovation Successful Internet brands are continuously looking for new ways to wrap more value around their core service and offering.
In addition.The Emerging Brand-building Environment Traditional Approach Monologue Public Mass Anonymous Adversarial Focus primarily on one-off transaction Remote research Manipulative. Therefore. approach Standardised Customised One-to-One Approach Dialogue Private Individual Named Collaborative Focused on relationship over time Intimate learning “stimulus-response” Genuine needs driven. Nevertheless. there has been a limited time horizon to evaluate the durability of Internet brands. building relationships and satisfying needs. ongoing research would be necessary to build on the findings of this dissertation. service approach Given that the commercial Internet only began to take off in 1994. new opportunities and dynamics will emerge as companies develop innovative ways of acquiring customers. with the emergence of wireless access and new platforms. 47 . it that the core concepts and key factors identified that contributes to successful online brands is likely to persist.
Nevertheless. and their respective effectiveness.3 48 . tools and key factors outlined in this dissertation are also applicable to business markets. As such.4 3.3 3.2 4. they are equally important in business markets.0) 2. drawing on several case studies from business markets.1 3. would represent an exciting opportunity for further research. Based on my own research and survey.Brands and brand-building tools tend to be associated with consumer markets. their popularity. Having established a strategic perspective on building online brands. an in-depth analysis. however. the concepts. Table No. I had recognised the often used brand promotion method.8 2. 12: Popularity and effectiveness of brand building methods Method Banners E-mails to customers Buttons Public relations Magazines Sponsorships Popularity 89% 77% 55% 45% 34% 34% Effectiveness (rank from 0.0 to 5. this dissertation would benefit from complementary in-depth research in the social and psychological dynamics of the Internet and its impact on consumer behaviour.
6 3.3 Figure c.1: Popularity of method 90% 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% Banners E-mails to customers Buttons Public relations Magazines Sponsorships Newspapers Radio Direct mail Television E-mail to opt-in lists Outdoor Affiliate programs 49 .4 4.0 3.5 3.Newspapers Radio Direct mail Television E-mail to opt-in lists Outdoor Affiliate programs 32% 32% 30% 30% 23% 17% 17% 2.7 4.4 3.
5 0 E-mail to opt-in lists Outdoor Affiliate programs From the above table.2: Effectiveness of methods 4. It is the way has been chosen by many successful ones like Gap.5 1 0. 50 .5 3 E-mails to customers Buttons Public relations Magazines Sponsorships Newspapers Radio Direct mail Television 2. .5 4 Banners 3. or AOL.com. or eBay. it is clear that some usually used promotion methods like banners and email showed little effect towards customers. company should increase the use of: .5 2 1.com.Figure c.Affiliate programs: with other already-recognised online companies like Yahoo!. to enhance awareness and brand image. Therefore.Public relation and outdoor activities. Amazon.
Avoid the mistake by Boo. Because of its particular risk and configuration. When a customer posts Further. Further. Beware o hackers at the top most level. there are some more suggestions from this study to cyber companies regarding how to create a strong brand name on Internet: Supply relevant and accurate info. Make sure that the availability of goods and variability of categories are ensured. there are some more suggestions from this study to cyber companies regarding how to create a strong brand name on Internet: Have a credible logistics with acceptable quality of goods and service. His or her mail to ask some question with regard to product info search. cigarette and alcohol. 51 . luxury. and leads to nothing but frustration of customers. Don’t try to dig on valuable items like antiquities. or real estate. When using credit card as the most popular means of payment. Build a simple website with humble graphic and accessible info. upholstery.com of building a website that requires a powerful computer configuration and a wide Internet runway. The result is website is too slow to load.E-mail to op-in list: bulk-mails are sent to an interested group of customers only. an online company should focus on small value items like books. garments and footwear. consumable. etc. For instance: sending e-mails to a regular patron informing about goods available in which he or she may be interested. Site must be easily used and navigated. company must ensure the privacy of customer. instead of viral chain-mails and bulk-mails.. feedback must be given within 48 hours.
Customer Care and Communication. however. wider selections. the extensive research and in-depth case studies provided in this dissertation indicate certain common underlying characteristics which can be summarized as follows: Successful online brands are exploiting every capability offered by the Internet to deliver compelling value propositions that appeal to customers. They are providing greater convenience (24x7). and access to more information on the products or services being provided. Connectivity.Yes No Key factors that contribute to building a successful online brand There is no one-size-fits-all solution for building a successful brand on the Internet. wider selections. They are providing greater convenience (24x7). Content. Customization. and access to more information on the products or services being provided. by offering more value than attainable through traditional “bricks-and-mortar” establishments. and enhancing this with layers of added-value through the '7Cs' - 52 . lower prices. lower prices. and enhancing this with layers of added-value through the '7Cs' Convenience. Successful brands recognize that the value proposition must more than compensate for the loss of in-person contact Compelling Value Proposition Successful online brands are exploiting every capability offered by the Internet to deliver compelling value propositions that appeal to customers. by offering more value than attainable through traditional “bricks-and-mortar” establishments. Community.
they are differentiating their experience from those of competitors. quick-toload and easy-to-navigate. The 7Cs framework allows companies to deliver a tangible customer experience. A well executed customer experience that satisfies customer Strong Internet brands is those that create a high quality engaging online customer experience.Convenience. delivering compelling content. quick-to-load and easy-to-navigate. developing a community feel. delivering compelling content. they are cultivating a reputation for excellence. making connectivity easy. distribution centers. by ingraining convenience and making the site easy-to-use. and establishing two-way communication. results in higher brand equity. and customer care to ensure a completely satisfying end-to-end customer experience. A well executed customer experience that satisfies customers. Content. they are differentiating their experience from those of competitors. A Reputation for Excellence (Delivering on their e-Promises) Fulfillment and delivering on e-promises is the acid test of online brands. By placing emphasis on different 'Cs'. integrating customer care. A High Quality Online Experience Strong Internet brands are those that create a high quality engaging online customer experience. by ingraining convenience and making the site easy-to-use. integrating customer care. making connectivity easy. The successful brands are those who are investing heavily in logistics. Successful online brands meet the demands inherent in each of the 7C categories. which builds confidence and trust that not only entices customers to do 53 . Connectivity. The 7Cs framework allows companies to deliver a tangible customer experience. In doing so. customizing the experience. Successful brands recognize that the value proposition must more than compensate for the loss of in-person contact. customizing the experience. Customization. Customer Care and Communication. By placing emphasis on different 'Cs'. and establishing two-way communication. Successful online brands meet the demands inherent in each of the 7C categories. developing a community feel. Community.
brands are harder for competitors to emulate.repeat business with the company. Quality customers who are heavy users of the brand are important as they not only offset the cost of customer acquisition. integrated customer acquisition strategies. before it fractures. Properly orchestrated “guerrilla marketing” ploys can also be effective in building awareness and reinforcing brand image. to maintain consistency. By distinguishing their offering and focusing on unique sources of value-added. attracting other customers to the site. Alliances and 54 . these companies must have an inherent understanding of their brand identity and core values. Yahoo’s success can be largely attributed to its unique positioning strategy and distinct image that appeals to its target market. to distinguish themselves from competitors. ranging from online methods to traditional offline media. and convenience. particularly to secure content and widen reach to new customer segments and niches. content. They are targeting their promotions to attract quality customers and to keep customer acquisition costs down. but also provide added value to the brand community. Strong Communications Programmed & Efficient Customer Acquisition Strategy The key Internet brands have made major commitments to building awareness and have developed multifaceted. In addition. variety. but leads them to spread positive word-of-mouth. as well as determine how far the brand can be meaningfully stretched to other products and market segments. As a result. Unique Positioning Concept & Distinct Brand Image Strong brands are developing unique positioning concepts. these companies are creating even stronger value propositions. leading brands have focused on building strong partnerships and alliances. Strong Partnerships and Strategic Alliances Rather than doing everything on their own. offering customers the best in quality.
and develop a detailed understanding of their customers' needs. and 55 . Customer focus builds trust and credibility that is central to developing a strong brand-customer relationship. These brands are accumulating knowledge about customers. Customer focus builds trust and credibility that is central to developing a strong brand-customer relationship. through past transactions and solicited input. are leveraging this customer knowledge (learning) to nurture relationships (relate). First-Mover & Early-Mover Advantage Most of the successful online brand leading online brands have an intense customer focus. These brands are accumulating knowledge about customers. through past transactions and solicited input. By getting to market early. Intense Customer Focus Leading online brands have an intense customer focus. and benefited from additional hype. by providing better services. Getting to market quickly can provide an Internet company with significant momentum and a valuable boost over the competition. customization and customer care. and develop a detailed understanding of their customers' needs. the company benefits from the buzz. whereby each party benefits from the other's expertise or skills.partnerships play an important role in achieving speed and momentum. that comes with innovation. are leveraging this customer knowledge (learning) to nurture relationships (relate). and by focusing on customer needs. customization and customer care. and by focusing on customer needs. and it can acquire customers while it is still inexpensive to do so. and by partnering with well-known brands. and exclusive alliances can lock out competitors from valuable content or online real estate. and it aligns itself with the most influential venture capital sources. while ultimately benefiting the end-customers. and traffic. Alliances with leading portals and popular sites are important to generate traffic and brand visibility. by providing better services. The most successful partnerships are symbiotic matches. Many strong online brands were also early-movers on the Internet. It locks up important content and distribution partnerships. The challenge then lies in keeping up the momentum. a company can leverage the partner's brand and reputation to reinforce its own. s identified a market opportunity early and moved quickly to capitalize on the potential they saw. A first-mover advantage is an important asset for an online brand.
established customer relationships. these innovations are difficult for competitors to reproduce.value remains (and always will) the basic building block for every successful brand. clicks-and-mortar brands are providing customers with true added-value. these brands must respect their core brand elements and maintain consistency in the service quality that is expected. By leveraging unique customer information. while reaping the benefits of lower customer acquisition costs and extended reach. established fulfillment systems and infrastructure. Strong clicks-and-mortar brands are integrating their online and offline activities to leverage the strengths of each other. to create new services and content that satisfies customer needs. They have an established brand. giving the brand an edge. Relentless Innovation Successful Internet brands are continuously looking for new ways to wrap more value around their core service and offering. In many cases. expand the brand experience to meet customers' expectations in the online world. the innovations are the result of the company's ability to record its vast database of customer information. This type of relentless innovation is instrumental in ensuring brands develop traction and build momentum to keep ahead of competitors. 56 . They possess critical assets that give them an advantage over pure online start-ups. and are continuously adding new services and functionality to their sites.extensive word-of-mouth due to its novelty. Ability to Leverage Offline Brand and Assets Bricks-and-mortar brands are often well positioned to succeed on the Internet. and a physical presence (tangibility) . The Internet has radically changed the business and competitive environments.factors that clearly differentiate them from pure players. In doing so. Yet while everything is being turned upside down. Through extensive and seamless integration. one component remains unchanged . these wellpublicized brands also took off. As Internet penetration exploded. but at the same time. and differentiating it from other brands.
The websites have to be very focused to appeal to the specific target audience. a few years ago nobody imagined the extent of the involvement of internet in our day to day lives. Mosaic services is one of the major Internet Marketing experts India. As internet is a dynamic medium. Companies are developing Corporate Internet marketing Strategies to fully utilize this interesting as well as efficient medium. garner supplier support and Corporate Internet Branding. pay-perclick advertising. Internet connects us to the world.SUMMARY Internet has influenced the way we live and work drastically. Most of the corporate organizations aim at reducing the overall costs of the business and providing new virtual products. • Impression on the visitor After the visitor reaches the site. 57 . PR campaigns and affiliate marketing. outlines a strategy for online presence. reducing the communication time. Corporate Internet marketing Strategies include maintaining a proper and efficient marketing site along with building customer loyalty. therefore the Corporate Internet marketing Strategies too need to be changed as per the market requirements. the design and information on the site should interest him. The major points of consideration are: • Visibility on the search engines As most of the users use search engines to get information on any subject. This can be done with the help of search engine optimization. The content should be easy to understand and the site should be user friendly and easily negotiable. New technological advancements give rise to fresh opportunities that have to be tapped to make optimum utilization of the internet. constantly changing and evolving itself. Secure exchange and information overload have led to the development of regional search engines and more sophisticated search engines where you get well organized information that help in Internet Branding and improving visibility. visibility in search engine is the key factor.
Visit the site www. Let’s have a glance at the different routes to brand building on the new dynamics of brands. • Retention of the visitor or client. Conclusion The era of Internet brings a totally new approach to building a brand name. is the solution to your online marketing needs. 11: Different approaches in brand-building The Emerging Brand-building Environment Traditional Approach Monologue Public Mass Anonymous Adversarial One-to-One Approach Dialogue Private Individual Named Collaborative 58 . These elements help in increasing visitors as well as business from present clients. Table No. The site must have features that attract repeat visitors.mosaicservice. An internet marketing campaign and e-commerce strategy help in increasing the conversion after an initial curiosity is aroused in the visitor or the target audience. Mosaic services.• Conversion of the visitor into a client The goal of any marketing strategy is to convert the visitor into a client.com to get more information about the services being offered by the internet marketing company.
Therefore. and their respective effectiveness. the concepts. Brands and brand-building tools tend to be associated with consumer markets.Focus primarily on one-off transaction Remote research Manipulative. it that the core concepts and key factors identified that contributes to successful online brands is likely to persist. Nevertheless. 59 . approach Standardized Focused on relationship over time Intimate learning “stimulus-response” Genuine needs driven. Based on my own research and survey. tools and key factors outlined in this dissertation are also applicable to business markets. I had recognized the often used brand promotion method. there has been a limited time horizon to evaluate the durability of Internet brands. building relationships and satisfying needs. they are equally important in business markets. In addition. drawing on several case studies from business markets. As such. with the emergence of wireless access and new platforms. Having established a strategic perspective on building online brands. would represent an exciting opportunity for further research. however. an in-depth analysis. their popularity. service approach Customized Given that the commercial Internet only began to take off in 1994. Nevertheless. new opportunities and dynamics will emerge as companies develop innovative ways of acquiring customers. ongoing research would be necessary to build on the findings of this dissertation. this dissertation would benefit from complementary in-depth research in the social and psychological dynamics of the Internet and its impact on consumer behavior.
1 3.0 to 5.0 3.0) 2.6 3. 12: Popularity and effectiveness of brand building methods Method Banners E-mails to customers Buttons Public relations Magazines Sponsorships Newspapers Radio Direct mail Television E-mail to opt-in lists Outdoor Affiliate programs Popularity 89% 77% 55% 45% 34% 34% 32% 32% 30% 30% 23% 17% 17% Effectiveness (rank from 0.5 3.Table No.7 4.3 2.2 4.3 3.8 2.3 60 .4 3.4 4.4 3.
Figure c.5 2 Banners E-mails to customers Buttons Public relations Magazines Sponsorships Newspapers Radio Direct mail Television E-mail to opt-in lists 1.2: Effectiveness of methods 4.5 3 2.1: Popularity of methods 90% 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% Banners E-mails to customers Buttons Public relations Magazines Sponsorships Newspapers Radio Direct mail Television E-mail to opt-in lists Outdoor Affiliate programs Figure c.5 4 3.5 1 0.5 0 Outdoor Affiliate programs 61 .
or AOL.com. When using credit card as the most popular means of payment. Build a simple website with humble graphic and accessible info.E-mail to op-in list: bulk-mails are sent to an interested group of customers only.com of building a website that requires a powerful computer configuration and a wide Internet runway. instead of viral chain-mails and bulk-mails.com. It is the way has been chosen by many successful ones like Gap. . . and leads to nothing but frustration of customers. The result is website is too slow to load. Therefore.Affiliate programs: with other already-recognised online companies like Yahoo!. Avoid the mistake by Boo. 62 . Make sure that the availability of goods and variability of categories are ensured. For instance: sending e-mails to a regular patron informing about goods available in which he or she may be interested. feedback must be given within 48 hours.Public relation and outdoor activities. Site must be easily used and navigated. or eBay.From the above table. company must ensure the privacy of customer. company should increase the use of: . Amazon. there are some more suggestions from this study to cyber companies regarding how to create a strong brand name on Internet: Have a credible logistics with acceptable quality of goods and service. it is clear that some usually used promotion methods like banners and email showed little effect towards customers. Supply relevant and accurate info. Beware o hackers at the top most level. His or her mail to ask some question with regard to product info search. to enhance awareness and brand image. When a customer posts Further.
luxury. They avail the services of an online ad agency and run banner advertisement campaigns. The advertisers. the business enterprises start establishing a place for their brands. consider banner advertisement as the first effort towards a brand building regime. The advertisers have to modify the campaign and withdraw non-performing ads. income group etc. The prospective customers obtain more information by click through and banner ads are also served them over the screen. consumable. Targeting is generally done by the pattern of past behavior. or real estate. connection. The range of interactive banner advertisement campaign keeps on enticing the viewers and achieves responses. who plan to launch their brands. upholstery. browser. SCOPE OF THE SYSTEM The brands have to be launched with full bang. It is made possible by replacing them quickly and efficiently.Don’t try to dig on valuable items like antiquities. The Internet users come across web pages that have relevant content to satisfy their need. on the basis of profile. garments and footwear. This inclination for information brings them to web pages of the publishers with good site metrics. Because of its particular risk and configuration. cigarette and alcohol. an online company should focus on small value items like books. there is a need of adopting industry edged solutions of advertising. when the competition in the marketplace is rising. etc. The ad campaigns consist of the interactive ads that are designed on the basis of the products and services. Today. page rank and SERP listings. Following this practice gives recognition to the brands that are newly introduced. and analysis. track the performances of banner ads and allow them to analyze the ads placed. By this means. The agencies that run campaigns for the advertisers. demography. 63 . The banner advertising consists of serving the particular ad to a relevant user. data. tracking. The banner advertisement has the potential for effective targeting.
8% (24. In 2009. and are looking for new and innovative ways to generate incremental online revenues. as described here. Hubs believes that launching a robust Local Internet Marketing Strategy.S. especially on the local level. low-cost Internet revenue opportunities. will help weather the economic storm and complement their traditional revenue sources and brand contributions. The newly launched brands get an edge in the industry after these effective services. So how does this apply to major hotel chains? Over the past 5-6 years. and a declining voice channel.SUGGESTION In this way. There was a further acceleration of these trends in Q1 2008: Internet bookings comprised 47% of CRS bookings (41. This CRS distribution ratio shows rapid growth in the Internet channel. the advertisers obtain useful leads and take them into sales process or lead conversion process. In the first half of 2008. Each year since 2004. Internet bookings have surpassed GDS hotel bookings.8% in Q1 2007). compared to the same period a year ago Franchisees are starting to realize that the hotel chains’ e-Commerce departments cannot possibly capture all available online revenue opportunities for their property. The climate of the current economic environment is forcing franchised hotels to become more involved in their brand’s marketing strategies and seek untapped. Internet Marketing Strategies Surveys show that up to 84% of travel research and planning in the U. The Internet has become the single most important travel planning and distribution channel in hospitality. is conducted via the Web (e-Marketer/TIA). in Europe by 1. a flat GDS channel. GDS was 32. and have learned how to build brand equity on the Web.2% (34.3% and in the Asia Pacific by 3.4%.1%).1% in Q1) and voice 20. occupancy rates in North America fell by 2.9%. over 40% of all revenues in hospitality will be generated by the Internet. and another third of hotel bookings will be influenced by the Internet but done offline. 64 . most of the leading hotel brands have become proficient national and international e-Marketers.
These opportunities fall outside the scope and “bandwidth” of the major hotel brands’ Internet marketing efforts: • Local events that generate overnight stays: county fairs. there are many online revenue opportunities at the property-level that derive from local audiences and markets. sports events. MSN is local in character • Online yellow pages and directories • Links and sponsorships on directories and portals • Email marketing and sponsorship opportunities • Local feeder market and key customer segment initiative 65 . Yahoo.Due to the nature of online travel consumers’ purchasing habits and the way search engines index and present content on the Web. festivals. concerts and performances • Local group and social event planning • Local search – over a third of all searches via the major search engines like Go ogle.
ebay.gap.bain.com www. In which the following websites were employed to be used: www.ac.gapinc.com 66 .com www.BIBLIOGRAPHY World Wide Web The Internet was used to collect information on Dotcom industry.com www.bcg.cdnow.economist.com www.durlacher.com www.com www.com www.ebusinessforum.com www.com www.com www.com www.ey.com www.businessweek.forrester.atkearney.boo.amazon.com www.com www.com www.
mckinseyquarterly.interbrand.com www.yahoo.com www.com www.nua.com Magazines Monthly business magazines in Chennai: The Economist The Wall Street Journal The Week The Financial Times Forbes Business Week Sales and Marketing Management Computer World Far Eastern Economic Review Advertising Age 67 .pwcglobal.com www.www.
. P. “The Future of Brands” 68 . D “Managing Brand Equity: Capitalizing on the Value of a Brand Name”. “Building Strong Brands” Clifton. Aaker.. D. & Maugham. R. “Marketing Management –the Millennium Edition” Aaker.Books Kotler. E.
Appendix – Questionnaire 1. What is your profession? Student Computer engineer Faculty Businessman Others 69 . Are you a Computer and Internet Literate? Yes No 4. What best describes your age? 15-19 years 20-24 years 25 years & above 2. You are a: Under graduate Graduate Post graduate 3.
SECTION B 1. What are you usually doing on Internet? Reading and writing email Searching for general information Surfing Reading Hobbies Searching for product information Travel information Doing your business / work Entertainment Purchasing Stock quotes Job search Chatting Doing your homework / assignment Auctions Banking Trading stocks 70 .
Have you ever carried out your business transaction(s) on Internet? Yes No 4.com Gap.com CDnow.com Boo. If yes.com Yahoo. name the company that you dealt with Amazon. How long you usually spend on Internet Less than 7 hours per week 8-14 hours per week 15-28 hours per week 3.2. Do you want to come back to those companies for further transactions? Yes No 71 .com Others 5.com eBay.
According to you. According to you. According to you. what is the killer of Web brand loyalty? Outdated information Slow response time Site downtime Poor customer service 72 .6. what is the key to Web brand loyalty? Ease of use and navigation Fast response time Familiarity Relevant and accurate information 8. what is/are the most important element(s) for a good online company? Brand Cost Convenience Means of payment Variability of items Promotion & discount Others 7.
Things you want to buy online Consumable Luxury Interior Garments & footwear Vehicles Real estate Antiquities Others 10.com 11.com CDnow eBay.com Boo. Do you usually read chain mail or bulk-mail? Yes No 73 .9.com Gap. Rank six below companies from 1 to 6 in order of the most to the least recognized brand Yahoo!com Amazon.
12. please do so ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 74 . If you wish to add any other remark. What kind of advertisement normally attracts your attention? Chain mail & bulk-mail Direct mail Television Newspapers Radio Buttons Banners Ads featuring gifts and discounts 13.
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