Intercept: Proposal for infoDev activity

Marketing plan / communication strategy

The INTERCEPT project has been developed as direct off-shoot from the INFO2000 programme, identifying a series of new project development options which were not originally envisioned or accounted for by INFO2000. In this respect, while the central aims of INTERCEPT have emerged from the research and development of INFO2000, building upon that body of work, INTERCEPT represents a series of clearly identified project target areas for what can be considered new commercial and project related development.

INTERCEPT phases and activities:

The marketing and development plans for the INTERCEPT project are central to the long-term sustainability aims of the project. They span a long enough period to open markets in government, non-government and commercial sectors in developing countries and internationally, sufficient to provide for the project’s ongoing maintenance and development costs in the longer term.

Year 0 (Oct – Dec 1998) – Pre-Establishment Phase: During these first three months of the project, the focus of work will be on creating all the structures for internal and external coordination. This will include: partnership agreements, administrative systems, management tools, schedules for the technical phase, communication and reporting protocols, refinement of marketing strategy and project planning and cross-project planning with INFO2000 and DAINET.

Year 1 (1999) - Technical Development Phase: In Phase One (Year 1) of the INTERCEPT project, basic information (content and interlinkages) will be elaborated largely as a result of the complementary INFO2000 activities.

A range of communication strategies will be used to build relations with identified sectors for development (government, non-government and commercial). Emphasis will be placed on end-user engagement from within each sector and the identification of strategic players in each sector (individuals and organisations). These key identifications will enable further refinement of the project delivery targets during the next two years during which the project is implemented.

For example, considerable effort will be devoted in Year 1 to identifying existing and new international development projects in the environmental sectors of developing countries. These are projects and groups with which INTERCEPT can be allied and associated, developing the practical functionality of the project with a view to INTERCEPT playing a more proactive role in project development in subsequent years. It is intended that this will involve projects in each of the three target sectors and from contrasting global regions.

Because the products and services build on ongoing activities, there is a strong case for progressive implementation, initially through selective communication of modules of the service. Progressive activation will also involve building increasing proportions of multimedia content into Web information services. Communication strategies in this technical development phase will target Internet and email users of environmental services in developing countries.

Years 2 and 3 (2000/2001) – Implementation Phase: Increasing amounts of basic information (content and interlinkages) will be made available during this phase, created largely as a result of infoDev-funded research and editing activities in the partner organisations.

Increasing product exposure: Careful market development in project Year 1, establishing project platforms in each of the identified sectors, will lead to the first in a series of major launch events for INTERCEPT at the start of Year 2, to be followed by further launch events internationally and on Internet over the two-year implementation phase. There are a number of opportunities for "launching" the product/ service, notably at relevant high-level international conferences. An international meeting suitable for the final launch of the INFO2000 components is the World Conservation Congress, scheduled for 2000. EXPO2000 (Hannover) will be a likely launch place for INTERFACE (Ashok Khosla, President of DA, is on the Advisory Boardof EXPO2000). Other opportunities will emerge.

Workshops, seminars and demonstrations: During the Implementation Phase, efforts will be made to enable potential users to discover the Web version of the product/service and to develop user-partnerships with the project, further developing the system and aiding in the improvement of the service. This will particularly be achieved through the involvement of information providers and potential users in review of the service components. Where necessary, seminars and workshops will be held to review and discuss the services being developed.

The new information products and services will be publicised by the partners and their regular collaborators through usual channels, including publication catalogues, on-line announcements, meetings, magazines, regular mailings etc). Potential users currently relying on non-automated communications, or with email access only, will be provided with strategies for improving their access to the information.

A regular series of media briefings, together with the launch of INTERCEPT’s own quarterly newsletter, along with commissioned articles in the relevant technical journals of each target sector, and feature pieces in general media, will develop over the full term of the project as a central function of the marketing and outreach plan.

The Internet provides multiple avenues for dissemination. These include passive posting of "what’s new" information on websites, active postings to news groups and listservers, submission of information to key search tools, requests that links are placed on other relevant WWW services..

Traditional information dissemination will take place through the project partners’ journals, press releases, press conferences combined with demonstrations, and submitting the products/service to review processes of the print and on-line media concerned with conservation and/or technology issues. As appropriate, a demonstration CD-ROM (or a CD-ROM with limited facilities for access to all the data) will be distributed to targeted individuals. Finally, it is likely that an affordable (sponsored) CD-ROM product will be made available.