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eDiss - School of Business dissertations
|Essays on Consumers and Digital Content
|Acta Universitatis oeconomicae Helsingiensis. A, ISSN 1237-556X; 228
|2003 Thesis defence date: 2003-12-17
|Consumer behaviour; Content industry; Digitaalitekniikka; Digital technology; Information technology; Internet; Kuluttajakäyttäytyminen; Sisältötuotanto; Technology; Teknologia; Tietotekniikka
|602910 | Availability info (Aalto-Finna)
|Digital content is steadily making inroads into the lives of European consumers. In the process, supply and consumption evolve. Consumers interact with vast information networks. Digital content producers have promising opportunities, yet have also faced challenges in their business creation. The present marketing dissertation evaluated the effects of digitization both on content offered and consumer behavior. This took place through three specific tasks.
The first task was to identify digital content through concept analysis. Digital content was defined as bit-based objects distributed through electronic channels. Examples include news and academic articles online, ringing tone and music track downloads, online games and software package updates. In the analysis, digital content was placed in relation to other commercial offerings. The comparison revealed conceptual similarities with regard to both products and services. The conclusion is that conceptually, digital content entails both conventional product and service features. It is argued that digital content is a product that also behaves in a service-like manner, thus creating its own offering subtype.
The second task was to specify characteristics that distinguish digital content marketing from other business. The study examined the applicability of different marketing mix variables, and argued that a process dimension is needed to complement the traditional 4Ps in this context. The 5Ps construct served as a frame for a literature synthesis. The findings of this literature synthesis form the basis for proposing that from the perspective of marketing, the key characteristics of digital content are information recombination, accessibility, navigation interaction, speed, and essentially zero marginal cost. It is argued that together, these five characteristics can form the essence of content digitization, from the marketing point of view.
The third task was to identify patterns in consumer usage of the Web. This part of the work analyzed empirical data from the Nielsen//NetRatings Internet consumer panel. Three interrelated Web usage patterns were identified and quantified. These are the mosaic of the Web; the simultaneous presence of concentration and exploration; and relatively balanced use of different navigation means. The diversity in consumers’ favorite sites led to employing the metaphor ‘the mosaic of the Web’, which refers to how Web usage has maintained individual preference and taste variety. The simultaneous presence of concentration and exploration refers to how users both linger in their favorite sites and surf a large number of different sites. Relatively balanced use of different navigations means refers to how consumers appear to use bookmarks, links from other sites, and search queries in a balanced way, though the percentages of these various means vary by usage intensity and age.
|Thesis defence announcement:
|Mitchell, Andrew A.
Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, Canada