CAMPAIGN-I: Behind the Hype - Online shopping and parenting advice Mothercare.com brings the high-street brand to the net.

Mothercare.com launched in the UK in September, offering online shopping, advice and interaction with other parents. The site also offers a gift ordering and delivery service, and aims to provide parents with a support network and the goods and services available in Mothercare stores.

Mothercare.com launched in the UK in September, offering online shopping, advice and interaction with other parents. The site also offers a gift ordering and delivery service, and aims to provide parents with a support network and the goods and services available in Mothercare stores.

Site characteristics: The site was designed by Identica and runs on BroadVision's One-to-One applications software. It's fairly easy to use and offers a clear selection of options and areas within the site. It's rather text heavy, in bland pastel shades.

Target demographics: The site is aimed at parents,covering pre-conception to pre-school, and offers a wide range of services and a chance to chat online.

Principals: The director of mothercare.com is Patty Diamond of Mothercare Direct.

Backers: Funded by Mothercare.

Marketing: The launch of the site was supported by an above-the-line advertising campaign by Duckworth Finn Grubb Waters, which ran in the national press, consumer magazines and on poster site advertising. Duckworth Finn recently resigned the account and a new agency is to be appointed.

Competition: There are many other competitors in this market, all offering advice and shopping services to new parents. Mothercare.com is at an advantage because Mothercare is a well-established brand in the high street. There is also a strong relationship between the website and the stores - items bought through the site can be returned to any of its shops.



THE YEAR AHEAD - Excellent prospects

A late entrant into an already overcrowded market. However, as Mothercare is already an established high-street brand, the future looks secure.



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