Netnography: Ipod Example


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The term netnography has gained currency within the field of consumer research to refer to ethnographic research conducted on the Internet. It is a qualitative, interpretive research methodology that adapts the traditional, in-person ethnographic research techniques of anthropology to the study of the online cultures and communities formed through computer-mediated communications (“CMC”).
At least four aspects of online, computer-mediated, or virtual, interaction and community formation are distinct from their in-person, real life (“RL”), or face-to-face (“F2F”) counterparts. First is the textual, nonphysical, and social-cue-impoverished context of the online environment. Second is an unprecedented new level of access to the heretofore unobservable behaviors of particular interacting peoples. Third, while traditional interactions are ephemeral as they occur, online social interactions are often automatically saved and archived, creating permanent records. Finally, the social nature of the new medium is unclear as to whether it is a private or public space, or some unique hybrid. Ethnography adapts common participant-observation ethnographic procedures—such as making cultural entrée, data collection, analyzing data, and conducting ethical research—to these computer-mediated contingencies and provides sets of specific guidelines (see Kozinets 2002 for a detailed development of the process; see also Kozinets 2006).

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  • Write their responses on the board. Then give awnsers. candid consumer thoughts about product, competitors, desired features, ideas for improvement, unintended uses, design, brand perception
  • “ It would be nice to have the whole front as a widescreen and have a side button that brings up the menu, so you can navigate with taps, or have the click wheel on the back.”
  • “ Quality over cool is as important in devices as music.”
  • Cant beat em join em? Talking smack about your product; stand up for your product with proactive ePR (vs reactive PR). Buy out their domain name. Search engine optimization and netvertising.
  • Netnography: Ipod Example

    1. 1. Do you know where your customers are (logged on)? ::Angeline Close
    2. 2. <ul><li>Ethnography: Study of a community </li></ul><ul><li>Netnography: Study of an online community </li></ul><ul><li>Consider the ipod nano… </li></ul><ul><li>What can a brand manager can </li></ul><ul><li>Learn via a netnography? </li></ul><ul><li>What type of sites can a </li></ul><ul><li>brand manager go to gather public </li></ul><ul><li>opinion on their product/brand? </li></ul>
    3. 3. <ul><li>Corporate website (no phishing allowed) </li></ul><ul><li>Advertisements (sponsored links, banners) </li></ul><ul><li>News sites (wsj; </li></ul><ul><li>E-commerce sites (Amazon) </li></ul><ul><li>Rating and referral sites (,, Zagat, Shopping, mySimon) </li></ul><ul><li>Community sites, discussion boards </li></ul><ul><li>Consumer webpages & weblogs </li></ul><ul><li>= eWOM! (Electronic Word of Mouth) </li></ul>
    4. 12. <ul><li>“ I don't like the iPod, period. There are superior products out there, have been for quite some time. I have gotten shit for quite some time from a number people because I promote other things that outclass the iPod in every measureable way, except shiny. The people have finally spoken, its vindication for those of us that do actual research and don't follow trends.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Maybe if the average American wasn’t technology retarted the iPod video would be priced so HIGH!. Wow apple your sooooo inovative you created something that has been out by the brand Creative for only 4 years lol.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Geez, and a PSP goes for $250, + an additional $99 for 1GB of storage, bought seperately. Sony SUCKS!!”   </li></ul>
    5. 13. <ul><li>“ The smaller the screen to watch movies, the more of a headache u will get!”  </li></ul><ul><li>“ I don't even want to image trying to read subtitles on something like that for an extended period of time... it just massacres my eyes.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Is it just me or is the screen a bit too small for $300 US? There are bigger screen devices out there that are cheaper, and can play more than the ipod video!” </li></ul><ul><li>“ That's a bloody small screen, especially in comparison to the PSP's which is 4.3 inch 16:9 widescreen.  I'd rather spend my money on something that plays movies and won't make me blind.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ It seems like a strange design when the screen is smaller then the click wheel.” </li></ul>
    6. 14. <ul><li>“ Today, it's music videos and TV shows, eventually movies, but just like the original iPod drove the Podcasting craze, the new video iPod will drive a homemade-video craze, and sites that allow users to quickly record or upload video for sharing, broadcasting, publishing - will have to find a way to integrate with the new iPod to push that trend forward.” </li></ul>
    7. 15. <ul><li>Nano’s success: sold 1 million in just 17 days! Sold 6.5M last quarter, halo effect, net $ 430M </li></ul><ul><li>iTunes Music Store $2, offers 6 shows (e.g., Desperate Housewives & Lost ) </li></ul><ul><li>2,000 music videos </li></ul><ul><li>6 short films from Pixar </li></ul><ul><li>free video podcasts </li></ul><ul><li>free movie trailers </li></ul>
    8. 17. <ul><li>“ I'm sure all the Apple geeks are peeing their pants </li></ul><ul><li>from excitement now, but seriously where would </li></ul><ul><li>one use this? The only use for the video feature </li></ul><ul><li>that I see is for people who spend a lot of their </li></ul><ul><li>time commuting via public transportation. You </li></ul><ul><li>won't use it at home, while driving or running, now </li></ul><ul><li>would you? I should hope not. Even while </li></ul><ul><li>commuting on the train or bus watching a movie </li></ul><ul><li>on a 2.5 inch screen is something that only </li></ul><ul><li>hardcore gadget freaks would enjoy.” </li></ul><ul><li>-Ranndino on 10/13/05 5:29 BST </li></ul>
    9. 18. <ul><ul><ul><li>Define the research issue & the target market </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Search discussion group topics & content lists to find the target market </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Identify e-communities to study </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Identify specific topics for discussion </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Subscribe to pertinent groups, register in communities </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Search e-mail discussion groups lists </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Subscribe to filtering services that monitor groups </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Read FAQ’s and instructions of your competitors </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Monitor chat rooms </li></ul></ul></ul>
    10. 19. <ul><li>Content of the research instrument </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Post strategic queries to news groups </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Post surveys on your website </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Offer rewards for participation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Post strategic queries on your Web site </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Post relevant content to groups with a pointer to your </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>e-survey </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Create a chat room, build a community of consumers </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Manage e-Wom </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>How can a brand manager manage </li></ul><ul><li>e-Wom? Your ideas? </li></ul>
    11. 23. <ul><li>Implications for representative sample </li></ul><ul><li>Do you tell the truth on message boards? </li></ul><ul><li>Do you respond in character? </li></ul><ul><li>Avatars, identities, personae proliferation </li></ul><ul><li>On the web, no-one knows you’re a competitor </li></ul>
    12. 24. <ul><li>Advantages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Large sample possible quickly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immediate analysis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Considerably cheaper </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Transcripts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sensitive topics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Disadvantages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Identity validation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Loss of non-verbals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Loss of intangibles (silence, tone of voice) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compensate with emoticons :-) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cookies controversy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reliability and integrity of information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shoulder surfing distortions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information Overload </li></ul></ul>
    13. 25. <ul><li>Prospect theory (Tversky and Kahneman 1981) </li></ul><ul><li>Goal framing (Meyerowitz and Chaiken 1987) </li></ul><ul><li>Negativity bias (Herr, Kardes, and Kim 1991) </li></ul><ul><li>Fear appeals (Ripptoe and Rogers 1987) </li></ul><ul><li>Merriam formula (-ve = 4 X +ve) (Kroloff 1988) </li></ul><ul><li>Negative messages are more diagnostic (Skowronski and Carlston 1989) </li></ul><ul><li>Negativity effect, where negative information is weighted more than equivalent positive information has been widely demonstrated </li></ul>
    14. 26. <ul><li>Recent research has questioned the universality of a negativity effect (Ahluwalia 2002, 2006; Levin et al 2002) </li></ul><ul><li>The following variables are expected to influence the extent of this negativity effect </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Prior impression </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Commitment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Credibility of source </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information elaboration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Knowledge of persuasion tactics </li></ul></ul>By Angeline Close