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BRANDING NEWS: UK Online targets small businesses

Sky owned internet service provider UK Online has announced a major repositioning of its brand, aiming itself at the small business sector and turning its back on the consumer market.

It has strengthened its marketing team to push the new offering, which it is targeting at companies with ten or fewer employees, appointing Deborah Robertson to the role of marketing director. Previously, marketing fell under the remit of Chris Stenning, the then general manager who has now been promoted to the role of managing director.

A two pronged launch campaign began last month with print, outdoor and radio advertising across London, stage two of which will roll out nationally in September. Online adverts are also appearing across internet portals and comparison sites including Broadband Guide and This Is Money.

"Our competitors seem to lump small business customers in with their consumer customers, or put them on a business tariff that has too many benefits at too high a cost," says Robertson. "Our package is about one price, one offering. It is positioned to be competitive, not necessarily because it is the cheapest offering, but because it is the simplest".

UK Online was acquired by Sky in 2005. It is believed Sky will now focus its consumer push on its own Sky Email package, which it has been heavily promoting alongside its TV services. It also owns network and hosting company Easynet, through which it already targets larger organisations.


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