Napster strategy

Napster (2005) describe their strategy as follows. The overall objective is to become the 'leading global provider of consumer digital music services'. They see these strategic initiatives as being important to achieving this:

• Continue to build the Napster consumer brand - as well as increasing awareness of the Napster brand identity, this also includes promoting the subscription service which encourages discovery of new music. Napster (2005) say 'We market our Napster service directly to consumers through an integrated offline and online marketing program consistent with the existing strong awareness and perception of the Napster brand. The marketing message is focused on our subscription service, which differentiates our offering from those of many of our competitors. Offline marketing channels include television (including direct-response TV), radio and print advertising. Our online marketing program includes advertising placements on a number of web sites (including affiliate partners) and search engines'.

• Continue to innovate by investing in new services and technologies - this initiative encourages support of a wide range of platforms from portable MP3 players, PCs, cars, mobile phones, etc. The large technical team in Napster shows the importance of this strategy. In the longer term, access to other forms of content such as video may be offered. Napster see their ability to compete depend substantially upon their intellectual property. They have a number of patents issued, but are also in dispute with other organisations over their patents.

• Continue to pursue and execute strategic partnerships - Napster has already entered strategic partnerships with technology companies (Microsoft and Intel), hardware companies (iRiver, Dell, Creative, Toshiba and IBM), retailers (Best Buy, Blockbuster, Radio Shack, ^

Dixons Group, The Link, PC World, Currys, Target), and others (Molson, Miller, Energizer, Nestlé). • Continue to pursue strategic acquisitions and complementary technologies - this is another route to innovation and developing new services.

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