Brand marketing of fabless company
For some time, branding has been a core of the success of the product aiming at individual customers (B2C), such as Coca Cola, Nike and Mercedes Benz. Now even a company who has been dealing with corporate customers (B2B) needs to pay attention to branding. Philip Kotler, marketing master, stressed in his latest book entitled ‘B2B Brand Management’ that a company needs to differentiate itself with B2B branding in order to survive in a competitive world. Branding is essential if any company attempts to lead the global IT market in which low prices and technology are becoming more common.
In the industrial society the brand marketing was accepted as a privilege which only large conglomerates could enjoy, but nowadays anyone in the information oriented society can have a chance to enjoy it. Understanding, discovering and making the use of customers which create the culture of Web 2.0 era that claims to stand for participation, sharing and opening is regarded as the most effective method for brand marketing, being magnified as the best shortcut. In this process, even small and medium-sized businesses can seize an opportunity to enhance a brand value.
‘Wikinomics’, a book devoted to economics of Web 2.0, shows a value of open, large, cooperative relationship which is being created between customers and companies. The message of the book is that the competitive edge of a product is how well a company and prosumer make the use of the community. In practice, the most progressive user creates an online prosumer community, share product-relevant information, cooperate to proceed with customized project, participate in business transactions, and exchange secrets, tools and revisions.
A blog is a typical example which makes the Web 2.0 era distinct. One of its noticeable functions is to become a tool of knowledge production. It is deemed to be part of a larger flow of the open-source revolution represented by ‘Wiki’. In Google, its all softwares are being developed by allowing all employees to share the platform openly using their own blogs.
It becomes the most effective tool in the word-of-mouth marketing, which is regarded as a more noticeable function. Intel where first started the B2B brand marketing with ‘Intel Inside’ is launching a fresh attempt for the era of Web 2.0. Personal blogs in which most of engineers in Intel have are integrated into the company’s blog, building a community with global customers for communication.
Even domestic fabless companies should create a competitive edge which can be sustainable as branding in order to carry out a global marketing. Where does a brand value of fabless company come from? It can come from a value chain from prosumers and even SP (Solution Provider) in future. A prosumer is an innovative developer and loyal customer in the era of Web 2.0, and SP is a marketing tool and sales network in the ear of Web 2.0. It is necessary to build a sustainable, global, powerful, innovative net system with them. If then, how can a link of value chain be connected?
I’d like to suggest ‘B2B (Blog to Prosumer) brand marketing’. Blogs of successful companies are commonly set into the needs of prosumers and attract their voluntary participation. Also, every single power blog of prosumers forms a cult, which naturally promotes through word-of-mouth. Once a community is created between them, it guarantees that a sustainable competitive advantage is ultimately gained as branding. This refers that it has led the global market, further being recognized for the standard platform.
A design contest, a way of global brand marketing, is of help to prepare the momentum because a large number of prosumers can be secured in a short period of time. The world’s most eminent MCU vendors such as Atmel and Microchip have discovered prosumers in design contests and prepared standard platforms.
Although Korea is a powerful nation in the semiconductor, unfortunately the presence of global brand for fabless companies is lacking of late. However, the era of Web 2.0 stands open. The opportunity has finally offered itself to view. A prosumer is the answer.