Antecedents and Consequences of E-Marketing Strategy: Evidence from E-Commerce Business in Thailand
Chailom, Peerawat, International Journal of Business Strategy
E-commerce, the selling and buying of products or services via electronic systems like the Internet, is now increasing rapidly as many companies employ e-commerce to grasp larger market and perform non-stop business, and it becomes an essential part of business strategy and an effective accelerator for economic development. Today, IT is utilized by many companies to build their brands, share information, promote greater participation of customers, publicize messages, make customer services available, and create promotional campaigns, above all reduce costs and gain a competitive edge in the marketplace. As Luftman (2004) mentioned that many executives realized that information technology is an important factor for firm to detect and react to market change in such a time when firms are struggling to succeed in a globalization period which filled with uncertainty.
E-commerce totally emphasizes on the use of internet or web to simplify and speed up commercial transactions. Internet, as a huge network of people and information, empowers e-commerce to show and sell their products and services online and enables business partners, prospects, and potential customers access to information about their products and services that would lead to purchase. Furthermore, the internet brings the convenient and cost-effective method to associate with customers, to reach target customers, and to figure out their needs. The enormous growth of Internet auctions is modifying the original pricing models and business operations of many firms (Red Herring, 1999). Internet can be used as a significant channel for marketing and distributing products and services, and with the expanded adoption of it, e-businesses have the great opportunity to establish competitive advantage. As Venkatraman (2000) agrees that the potential of internet is now recognized as a strategic ingredient by managers although this potential is not fully implemented.
The strategy focusing on IT and internet can be considered as an e-marketing strategy which is the important way to catch wide audience. As Huang et al. (2004) said consumers perceive that a lot of information available on the Web is great challenges to them for observing what they are interested in. E-marketing strategies concerns with using emerging communication and data networks to convey individualized and continuous communication between the firm and its customers and to provide usefulness over traditional networks (Watson et al., 2002). However, building an online presence is worthless if firms cannot attract customer to buy their products and services. Effective e-marketing needs a broad strategy that cooperates company's business model and sales objectives with its website feature and looks, emphasizing on its target market through appropriate option of advertising type, media, and design (Combe 2006, 118). Thus, it is better for firms to have clear understanding about how to deploy e-marketing strategy through IT and internet for building competitive advantage. A research shows the capacity of IT affects firm success via IT capabilities or firm-specific resources which build alternatives to response the change (Sambamurthy, Bharadwaj and Grover, 2003). With the spreading of digitalization, it is easier to change particular aspects of a business and speedily observe how customers respond (Wyner, 2000). Therefore, firm's ability to employ IT and Internet into its main strategy is the way lead to better performance.
Also, the use of Internet leads the advent of social networking site which can be implemented as a channel for e-business to advertise their products and services or launch marketing strategy. A few of the comprehensive social networking options seen on the internet nowadays are Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter. Over the past ten years, the varied use of social networking sites has been rising almost exponentially and it is used by individuals of all ages especially among young people. Social networking site is aimed to attract customers' attention which can develop into repeater, as it provides such an avenue to reach product and service in their own environments. This is another efficient port to establish good relationship with customers and positive portfolio around the Internet.
Currently, the most frequently seen social networks are Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, and Twitter. A number cited by facebook.com indicates Thai facebook.com users are around 14,235,400 people (www.facebook.com as of 14 Mar, 2012) and grew by more than 2, 058,760 in the last 6 months. The largest age range is currently 18-24 with total of 4,697,682 users, followed by the users in the age of 25-34. These figure shows the potential buyers of e-business is using Facebook. This can be implied that having an account on the above mentioned social networking sites is one way leads to accessing customers' eyesight an brings efficient e-marketing strategy. Wiser marketers are always seeking better understanding about their customers' behavior. The social networking sites may be used to obtain more information about consumers because these sites contain users' preferences which are important for firms to observe and follow consumer behavior trend. Thus, these social network websites are all essential for social networking and viral marketing which is part of the e-marketing.
The implementation of the Internet and related information technologies to operate marketing activities is the definition of the word 'e-marketing'. It is relevant to the use of IT/Internet or even social network sites to publicize company's profile, to promote campaign, to globally reach customers, etc. Although the Internet is applied widely as a marketing medium, not all of the e-marketing strategy designers have a clear perspective to plan, implement, and analyze their e-marketing movements. Even though the study regarding to e-commerce and e-marketing strategy can be seen widely, the trustworthy outcomes of utilizing social networking sites as firm's strategy has not been examined yet. In sum, marketing planning should apply their marketing strategies in proper with the medium to accomplish in e-marketing.
This study investigates the effects of Social Network, Internet Competitive Learning and Internet Dissemination on E-Marketing Strategy and Success of E-Commerce Business in Thailand. The results of this study can be used to improve the performance of e-commerce firms and provide implications for e-commerce practices to Thailand e-commerce business. The purposes of this study are (1) to study the relationship between e-marketing strategy and e-commerce success (2) to examine the relationship between e-marketing strategy and e-commerce success by using IT capability (3) to examine the relationship between social network, internet competitive learning …
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Publication information: Article title: Antecedents and Consequences of E-Marketing Strategy: Evidence from E-Commerce Business in Thailand. Contributors: Chailom, Peerawat - Author. Journal title: International Journal of Business Strategy. Volume: 12. Issue: 2 Publication date: August 2012. Page number: 75+. © 2008 International Academy of Business and Economics. COPYRIGHT 2012 Gale Group.
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