Creating Competitive Markets for Small Businesses with New Media and E-Business Strategy

Creating Competitive Markets for Small Businesses with New Media and E-Business Strategy

Mabel T. Kung (California State University at Fullerton, USA) and Yi Zhang (California State University at Fullerton, USA)
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 19
DOI: 10.4018/jebr.2011100103
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The innovative and dynamic nature of E-business enables small companies to compete with multinational corporations via online marketing. This paper serves as a guide from a practitioner’s perspective to embark in E-business while traditional marketing strategies are diminished. Three E-business adoption models for small enterprises are discussed. Planning involving new media, Internet technological capabilities and marketing strategies are examined. A literature review on new media gives a comprehensive study of online marketing. To evaluate the effectiveness of the E-business approach, a case study of a family chain of hotels is presented.
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E-Business Adoption Models For Small Businesses

The multi-disciplinary research approach is taken to combine target marketing, information management, pricing structures and profitability and above all, customer satisfaction. Three technology adoption models (focus dominance, contingent and transporter, and the Internet adoption) for small enterprises from the literature are presented to provide guidance for business owners.

In the focus dominance model, Levy et al. (2001) discuss the adoption of information systems within the strategic context of the business. It examines the technology adoption based on two forces: strategic focus and marketing position, namely, customer dominance. The two dimensions of strategic focus (cost reduction versus value added) and customer dominance (usually inversely proportional to customer numbers) define the strategic context, and create four competitive scenarios for the integration of E-business.

To evaluate the context of the contingent and transporter model (Levy & Powell, 2003), business growth and the business value from using Internet technologies as a function of the firms’ competitive positioning and their industry knowledge are the two key elements for planning and investment. Levy and Powell (2003) argue that small businesses do not follow “stages of growth” model for Internet adoption. They provide a contingent model that involves transportation from one use to another without the implicit idea of growth in resource planning.

The third model is the Internet adoption model (Mehrtens et al., 2001). Three main factors influence decisions: perceived benefits, organizational readiness, and external pressures that highlight the needs from the core business, business owner, and customer perspectives.

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