The E-Mode of Brand Positioning: The Need for an Online Positioning Interface

The E-Mode of Brand Positioning: The Need for an Online Positioning Interface

S. Ramesh Kumar (IIM, Bangalore)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-813-0.ch008
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Brand positioning is a crucial strategy to any brand’s strategy. Given the rapid development of technology and it impact on online strategies, changing lifestyles of consumers and the consumer interaction required as a part of contemporary brand strategy, there may be need for brands to synergize their positioning strategies with online positioning strategies. This would enable brands to adapt to an environment which is increasingly becoming digital. The paper after taking into consideration the published literature on brand positioning, attempts to formulate online positioning strategies using different aspects of brand positioning, price, customer interactivity and consumer community orientation. Implications for marketing managers are provided.
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Brand positioning has been the cornerstone of marketing strategy in the recent times in fast moving consumer product categories, durable categories and services. It would be difficult to think of a strategy for any brand without a well thought-out strategy for entering the consumer’s psyche (Ries and Trout,1987).

Thus, Nike’s success could be attributed to the positioning that it is worn by the world’s best athletes as reflected by the Michael Jordan campaign (Trout and Rivkin,1999). While the challenges concerned with positioning strategies still remain with the marketers, the environment has been changing with the influence of web-based marketing. In the year which closed in Sept.1999, there was an increase of 221.5% of the goods which were traded over the Internet. Consumer goods registered an increase of 665% increase over the same period (Wind and Mahajan,2001).

The consumer is becoming more evolved in terms of information control. The consumer is no longer likely to receive information without the interactive component being present when he/she gets involved in consumer decision making. Hence, the traditional positioning strategies may not succeed as segments are becoming smaller and less homogenous (Solomon,2003). A number of established brands have also started using the Internet and the Web to adapt to the changing environment. Some of the global brands to make this transition include Levi’s, Dockers and Barbie (Ries and Ries, 2000).

Even in a developing country like India where less than 5% of the total retail sales come from organized supermarkets/malls and the penetration of the Internet is miniscule, supermarkets like Subiksha and FabMall( have started online marketing of groceries and consumer goods. Fabmall started as an online store at Bangalore with books and misic and over a period of time has added several categories like groceries jewelry and gifts. It has since added physical retail stores around the city of Bangalore. Today, its model attempts to synergize the advantages of retail outlets and online dimensions. The physical retailing model of the company has grown from revenues of Rupees(Rs) 4 million to Rs 15 million per month from April 2003 to November 2003 (Kumar and Mahadevan,2003).

The trend of having multiple channels to reach the consumers could result in building a good brand besides the profitability aspects. Subiksha is a discount grocery store at Chennai(previously known as Madras) which deals with low priced groceries. The store has a network of stores around the city and has started online operations by which customers could order groceries. The unique aspect of this store is that the residential neighborhoods are located close to the network of stores and hence the delivery charges which are normally significant get saved.

This integration of physical and online presence is commonly observed in global brands. Charles Schwab transacts 80% of its business over the Internet but increased its offline presence as both channels would be required to service its customers (Lindstorm, Peppers and Rogers,2001). Tesco, the UK based retail chain with 600 stores, 60,000 product-lines and 10 million customers who are members of a loyalty program has illustrated how the combination of online and offline retailing could develop a successful retail brand. with a customer base of 8.4 million and 66% of sales being contributed by repeat purchasers is a brand which has an association of customizing products (books, music etc) to the needs of consumers by suggesting a number of options which they may not have otherwise considered (Rust, Zeithamal and Lemon, 2000).

Given the rapid challenges in the marketing environment and consumer lifestyles and the growing influence of technology with regard to consumer retailing and marketing communications (e.g. advergaming and SMS messages), there is a distinctive need to explore new conceptual frameworks for the concept of positioning. There are two stages which would lead to the development of such frameworks which could assist practitioners in a marketing environment. The first stage is concerned with analyzing the existing dimensions of brand positioning with a view to examine how they could be used for a brand which will have both online and offline retail channels. The next stage is to develop a framework for categories of consumer products from the insights gained from the first stage.

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Subir Bandyopadhyay
Table of Contents
Subir Bandyopadhyay
Subir Bandyopadhyay
Chapter 1
Subir Bandyopadhyay, Rosemary Serjak
In recent years, many online brands (or e-brands) have emerged. For a brick-and-mortar brand to excel in the online environment, the brand manager... Sample PDF
Key Success Requirements for Online Brand Management
Chapter 2
Luis Casaló
The Internet is taking on an increasingly major role in political marketing and branding strategies. This is because of the use that the public... Sample PDF
The Role of Blogs on a Successful Political Branding Strategy
Chapter 3
Aslihan Nasir, Süphan Nasir
Today, as business becomes ever more challenging, brands become the main assets of many companies. Fierce competition forces companies to... Sample PDF
Brand Personality of Web Search Engines: Who is the Conqueror of the Digital Age?
Chapter 4
Tobias Kollmann
This chapter examines whether classical brand naming concepts are sustainable for entrepreneurial firms in the Net Economy. A prior study of Kohli... Sample PDF
The Naming of Corporate eBrands
Chapter 5
Patrali Chatterjee
Consumer-centric organizations recognize customer relationships with brands as a source of sustainable competitive advantage that they can leverage... Sample PDF
Returns on e-Branding Investment: Linking Pre-Acquisition Marketing Activity to Customer Profitability
Chapter 6
Fang Wan, Ning Nan, Malcolm Smith
Though marketers are aware that online marketing strategies are crucial to attract visitors to Web sites and make the Web site sticky (Hoffman et... Sample PDF
Consumers' Optimal Experience on Commercial Web Sites: A Congruency Effect of Web Atmospheric Design and Consumers' Surfing Goal
Chapter 7
José J. Canals-Cerdá
Internet markets are usually under the command of a market intermediary that charges fees for its services. Differences in quality across items... Sample PDF
Nonlinear Pricing in E-Commerce
Chapter 8
S. Ramesh Kumar
Brand positioning is a crucial strategy to any brand’s strategy. Given the rapid development of technology and it impact on online strategies... Sample PDF
The E-Mode of Brand Positioning: The Need for an Online Positioning Interface
Chapter 9
Sanjeev Swami
Until 1997, job seekers in India would wait the whole week for the weekly supplements of various newspapers, or sundry employment journals and... Sample PDF
Job Search at Case Study of a Successful Dot-Com Venture in India
Chapter 10
Peter O’Connor
Since its launch in 1994, the Web has continued to grow at a phenomenal rate, from an estimated one billion Web documents in 2001 to over eleven... Sample PDF
Trademark Infringement in Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Chapter 11
Robert Pennington
Brands have evolved from signs of property rights to signs of product attributes to signs of consumer attributes. Brands have become an important... Sample PDF
E-Branding the Consumer for Cultural Presence in Virtual Communities
Chapter 12
Terry Daugherty, Harsha Gangadharbatla, Matthew S. Eastin
As the Internet expands to include individual applications such as banking, shopping, information gathering, and so on, brand managers and marketers... Sample PDF
Impact of Internet Self-Efficacy on E-Service Brands
Chapter 13
Shintaro Okazaki, Radoslav Škapa
This study examines Websites created by American multinational corporations (MNCs) in the Czech Republic. Utilizing a content analysis technique, we... Sample PDF
Understanding Brand Website Positioning in the New EU Member States: The Case of the Czech Republic
Chapter 14
Dahui Li, Glenn J. Browne, James C. Wetherbe
Limited studies have investigated online consumer loyalty and retention from a relationship orientation in electronic commerce research. It is... Sample PDF
Online Consumers' Switching Behavior: A Buyer-Seller Relationship Perspective
Chapter 15
Piyush Sharma, Rajiv Mathur, Abhinav Dhawan
Offshore outsourcing is a fast-growing aspect of the world economy today and it has drawn attention from policy makers as well as public at large in... Sample PDF
Understanding Consumer Reactions to Offshore Outsourcing of Customer Services
Chapter 16
Edward J. Garrity
This paper develops a new model of web information systems success that takes into account both intrinsic and extrinsic motivating factors. The... Sample PDF
An Extrinsic and Intrinsic Motivation-Based Model for Measuring Consumer Shopping Oriented Web Site Success
Chapter 17
Christy M.K. Cheung
The topic of online consumer behavior has been examined under various contexts over the years. Although researchers from a variety of business... Sample PDF
A Critical Review of Online Consumer Behavior
Chapter 18
Patricia T. Warrington, Elizabeth Gangstad, Richard Feinberg, Ko de Ruyter
Multi-channel retailers that utilize an eCRM approach stand to benefit in multiple arenas - by providing targeted customer service as well as... Sample PDF
Multi-Channel Retailing and Customer Satisfaction: Implications for eCRM
Chapter 19
Chung-Hoon Park, Young-Gul Kim
Among the potential determinants of consumers’ commitment to on-line shopping site are information features of the web site because on-line shopping... Sample PDF
The Effect of Information Satisfaction and Relational Benefit on Consumer's On-Line Shopping Site Commitment
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