Case | HBS Case Collection | February 2000 (Revised May 2001)

BET.com

by Thomas R. Eisenmann and Pauline M Fischer

Abstract

Black Entertainment Television, a leading cable programmer, is launching BET.com, an Internet portal targeted toward African-Americans. This case examines the challenges facing BET management as it defines its service offerings and target customer segments in a fast-moving, highly competitive environment. BET.com faces two decisions: 1) whether to bundle Internet access service with its ethnic portal; and 2) whether to strictly target African-Americans or also pursue the "urban market," a young (aged 15-24), cross-racial segment with distinctive tastes in music and fashion and part of the core audience for BET's cable programming.

Keywords: Product Positioning; Ethnicity Characteristics; Internet; Age; Race Characteristics; Decision Choices and Conditions; Business Startups; Entertainment and Recreation Industry; United States;

Citation:

Eisenmann, Thomas R., and Pauline M Fischer. "BET.com." Harvard Business School Case 800-283, February 2000. (Revised May 2001.)