This paper describes the characteristics of the online marketplace, and the strategies and tactics which have been employed in reaching that market, starting with an outline of the special challenges inherent in the nature of the product itself, such as technical barriers and copyright considerations. The next section is an overview of the marketplace, addressing the differing requirements of the intermediary and the end‐user communities, followed by a look at how various tactics for promotion and sales have been employed by the online industry, ranging from promotions, to field and telemarketing sales, to ongoing customer interaction. As the market is notable for its wide international reach, a section is devoted to the requirements for worldwide marketing and support. The final section explores the ways in which the future of the online industry depends on the development of appropriate strategies for expanding the marketplace. The issues of market selection, perceived value of information and pricing strategies are discussed. For information services to move out into a broader market, strategic planning based on market needs must underpin product development and sales promotion.
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