How to Develop a Word-Class Online Brand via Branding & Social Media? (Series 3)

Checklist to launch a new category online:

To develop a big brand on the internet it’s better to take care of following checklist: (Otherwise you might launch it, but still won’t be able to capture major market share like Barnes and Nobles.)It’s not the checklist to apply on any one category. Separate points can be applied for separate categories.

a. Is the brand fashionable or not? (e.g. Clothing vs. computers). Fashion brands, like clothing, are not that much successful online. As for many categories, a shopper wants to see it, feel it, touch it, smell it, try it, taste it. On the other hand, hardware or software brand will do. Mostly, people are not that much interested in experiencing hardware products, like computers, software, etc.

Five senses

b. Does the brand has variations, and it’s difficult to maintain inventory? (e.g. Books vs. computer). When a consumer needs to search through racks, and the retailers are sure we’re usually out of stock. Make sure that the new online brand is coming as a threat. Amazon, world’s first online book store, is already doing it across the world. Amazon started as an online book store, (but now making a mistake of getting a brand extended by adding more categories to its site.)

Books Archive

OutOfStock

 

c. Do the consumers have so many choices to buy the same brand at the lower price? Today, consumer can Google you, make a comparison and check the lowest possible price to buy your brand. PakWheels recognized the idea and now a leading car-buying site in Pakistan. Priceline, for ticketing, in America.

Pakwheels

d. What is the brand shipping / delivery cost  as compared to a purchase price? Here, the point is customer value. When the cost of delivery is substantial as compare to the price of the product, consumer tends to use your site as a medium and buy from your outlet by visiting. On the other hand, If your delivery cost is reasonable, they might buy  online

HDTVFreeShip_300x250freightexample

e. Do you have the distribution benefit? Two categories here: Those brands depend heavily on the phone for distribution or need to distribute/transfer their services or knowledge through books, articles, etc. can move online with the same brand name, as it increases customer value and strengthens the brand.
For example, home delivery or professional services brands.

Home delivery brand: Dell, Pizza Hut or Domino’s, etc.
Professional services brand: Laura Ries, Seth Godin or any professor, etc.

Al Ries taught me significance of internet branding. I asked him the important question regarding internet branding during an interview. Click here to know what the guru says. (Must Read)

Exceptions to the checklist: Brands always work “as compare to competitors”. If you see any leading brand both on internet and on the real world, also observe what the competitors are doing. Here are the hints, In that category, there would be:

1. Little competition or no competition
2. Leading brand would be having more credibility on the market (because of itself or its parent brand.)

As you might expect, the above mentioned exceptions will work for the short term. When the competition will increase exception 1 will be gone.
On the other hand, when any specialized brand will be launched in that category, after some period of time, exception 2 will be gone too.

Got ideas of your own for what’s working well on internet branding? Would you like to read Series 4 of this article? Let me know in the comments below!

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