THIS WEEK: Branson aims to Net families

Richard Branson, who has already launched his brand into airlines, radio stations and cola, is now hoping Virgin can turn the Internet into a consumer-friendly medium.

Richard Branson, who has already launched his brand into airlines, radio

stations and cola, is now hoping Virgin can turn the Internet into a

consumer-friendly medium.

Virgin Net was launched this week in a push that will initially rely on

in-store retail promotion and public relations. It will be taking on the

likes of CompuServe and AOL as the ‘doorway’ through which users explore

the Internet.

Virgin Net, Virgin’s Internet service provider, claimed that the

‘Virginisation of the Net’ will take the Web into the domain of the

family and shake off its ‘nerdy’ image.

It is offering unlimited access for pounds 10 per month, with all calls

charged at local rate.

Martin Keogh, Virgin Net marketing director, said: ‘Ten pounds is a very

competitive price. We’re trying to open up the domestic market, and part

of what was holding it back before was the price.’

He said a press ad campaign had been created and was ready to run at any

time but he wanted to see what the response is like from its promotions


The service will be fully live on November 28 when the software will be

distributed, in CD or floppy disk formats, through retail outlets

including Virgin Megastores and Virgin/Our Price stores.

Virgin Net is testing a home installation scheme for the service in

Bristol and Edinburgh which may extend nationally if successful.

It is also running a promotion with Megastores, in which customers

buying CD-ROM software will get a free three-month trial of the service.

As well as the pounds 10 monthly deal Virgin Net is offering five hours

online for pounds 6 per month, plus a usage fee of 2p per minute after


Virgin Net is a joint venture between Virgin Communications and


See Profile, page 21

Virgin territory

* In the UK the number of households online is expected to rise to 4.3

million by 2000.

* CompuServe is the current market leader with 400,000 subscribers.

There are about 150 providers offering access.

* Virgin Net’s through-the -line agency is Impact FCA and advertising is

expected to appear next year.


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Branding guru Wally Olins dies aged 83
Duracell short film captures epic Transatlantic voyage
ASH runs Tinder experiment to show smokers are less desirable to opposite sex
British Airways teams up with Gerry Cottle Jnr for summer of rooftop film screenings
Arklu says 'girls can be superheroes too' with doll design competition
Coke enters squash market with Oasis Mighty Drops
Virgin Galactic signs up Land Rover as space flight sponsor
Motorola marketer Andrew Morley departs as Google gears up for sale to Lenovo
US Airways apologises after tweeting obscene image at a customer
Mumsnet admits users' emails and passwords accessed via Heartbleed bug backs 'rubbish' mobile app with TV ad
Powerade launches global World Cup campaign
Burberry's flagship Shanghai store facade responds to weather changes
Subway considers taking fast food to fast lane with F1 sponsorship
Ikea splurges 'grey' Belgium with colour
Grim outlook for Tesco boss Philip Clarke ahead of expected profits fall
Thomson to create first crowd-sourced wedding decided by Facebook fans
Currency wars meets origami in Alpari FX trading ad campaign
Amazon rumoured to launch 3D smartphone in September
Facebook to allow European users to store and transfer money on site, claims report
Unilever pilots multi-brand advertising with YouTube beauty channel
Lego, Coca-Cola, Net-a-Porter, Bitcoin and AOL: the digitally creative brands
Dove tries to tell women their beauty is innate through placebo patches
Wonga faces social media storm after forcing Twitter to remove satirical material
Spotify tells the stories of relationships with music
Skype contrasts real stories with 'saccharine' style of Google and Apple
Top 100 UK advertisers: BSkyB increases lead as P&G, BT and Unilever reduce adspend
Viral Review: One Direction perfume 'prankvert' should have been a bigger hit
German beer brand Warsteiner tells drinkers to 'do it right'
SSE signs 10 year deal to sponsor Wembley Arena