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Customer reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars

on 27 January 2002
I am not sure if I totally agree with everything Al and Laura are saying, some of the argument seem somewhat loosely based on circumstantial evidence, yet on the other hand much of what they have to say makes a lot of sense. I am not so sure that all the 11 laws promulgated are indeed "immutable". The law of vanity (chapter 9), for example, I would like to know what the Ries's think of the Virgin brand and how it has transcended from being a record label to a airline carrier, health club operator, cell-phone service provided among others, is this just and exception or is mutation possible? The book enlightened me into some key insights about the Internet that I had not considered relevant before, like the issue of interactivity and the consequential impact on Internet advertising. I was also particularly irritated at first by their chapter on "divergence" and their strong feelings on the myth of "convergence", but then I gave it some thought, I consider that maybe we are being misled by the media hype in respect of convergence in respect of gadgets, but where I think the Ries's are missing the point is in the convergence at the service level - here I think there is a strong case for convergence of content with medium and billing etc. I think the merger of Time Warner with AOL will prove to be model for future survival. For example if the cable company delivering the pay-per-view TV can also give me my telephone and Internet connection - great. Overall this book definitely provides some useful and sound advice for the entrepreneur considering an e-commerce presence, and which one can avoid this today?
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on 26 June 2000
A great commonsense introduction to the business of branding on the net. Some of their ideas seemed obvious - like don't choose too long a name for your site. But then not everyone follows this advice. I'm not sure that I totally agree with everything they said about choosing category names for sites - presumably if your site caters to a niche market (how many sites will ever sell lawnmowers for example?) then choosing a category name would actually be sensible. The book certainly got me thinking more clearly about how I could alter my approach to the web though.
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on 21 September 2013
It's a bit like reading one of those get rich quick emails. The pace is relentless and examples are pumped at you without any conclusions being drawn. At the end of each chapter one finds oneself asking "so what?". Some of the cases are dated - for example citing AOL as the successful search engine. In my part of the world the big name is Google. It is even a verb - how's that for branding? A very tiring read, even if it does have some useful information.
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on 13 February 2001
A book that was written in a rush to catch the internet wave, and that now reads like receding surf. To be honest, I gave up about half way through, bored by the endless lists that 'prove' the laws. This point roughly co-incided with the realisation that "immutable" means (in the case of this book) "speculative". I guess a fair number of bankrupt dotcom's followed them to the letter.
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on 23 October 2000
As usually delighted with the work from Al and Laura Ries. I once attended a seminar with them and the tape is as good as the seminar was (with quite a comfortable price advantage). The publication gives a perspective over what is really important in the internet branding. A must book or tape for those involved in using Internet for business purposes.
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on 18 December 2000
Okey I'm going to keep it simple: + It's a short book + Clear statements are made by the authors + It is fun to read - Too simplifying -Too shallow - Feels like it was written in a hurry
I belive there still are better books on e-branding to be written, but in the meantime this book can do it.
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on 8 July 2000
You may never fully comprehend Internet marketing without this book. The authors' vast experience of success and failure in branded products is reviewed in this book. Even the contentious issues contribute to the way you think about e marketing. Great value for money!
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on 14 December 2004
This books give a good case-by-case dissection of branding on the Internet, it is a must read for those planning and developing online brand strategies. I have used the laws with great effect on a few occasions.
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VINE VOICEon 27 May 2004
The 11 Immutable Laws of Internet Branding is a valuable guide for those who operate, work for, or invest in e-businesses. If this book had come out 7 years ago, billions would have been better invested. Perhaps the valuations of surviving e-businesses would still be higher as well.
Al and Laura Ries point out that companies seeking to do business on the Internet almost always get it wrong. And those errors begin with their choice of a brand name to use, the services they offer, the form those services take, and the technologies they plan to use. Basically, the authors make the now familiar argument (if you have read their earlier work) that there can only be one winning name in a category, that this name will be a proper noun or two rather than a common noun or two. The lousy examples they give of poorly selected brand names would be fairly humorous if it weren't for all of the money and lives being wasted in an obviously losing effort. One of the most persuasive arguments they make is that most categories will be dominated by one brand, and that brand will be the one with the best brand name (assuming some level of decent service), not necessarily the first entrant. Thus, Amazon.com is praised for having a good name while buy.com is hissed for a generic one. Yet everyone believes that being first on the Internet is the only issue for dominating a category. Wrong!
Since their earlier work called for 22 Immutable Laws of Branding, I was pleased to see that the Internet is less complicated to brand correctly than a typical new product. The main reason for this is that the seller is dealing directly with the buyer, rather than through an intermediary like a bricks and mortar retailer.
The most telling argument they make is that existing businesses have an important decision to make: To either turn the existing business into an Internet-based one (like Cisco, Dell, and Charles Schwab have done), or to create a new brand with an Internet business model to compete with the nonInternet business. Most businesses would benefit from carefully thinking through this point.
The authors also argue that making your Web site more interactively valuable is critical to your success. If you notice that most Web sites aren't, you will soon be convinced that this is advice more people need to read and understand.
This book points out the problem that many people are now operating Internet-based businesses who have little understanding of the fundamentals of how to succeed. This book will be a valuable contribution to the literature of how to solve that problem.
The book is also valuable for its ability to point out the sources of stalled thinking when it comes to the Internet. The issues are more similar to existing businesses than different, despite all of the hype in the e-press.
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