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Amex Travel

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Companies who use Amex Travel get 24/7 access to customer service, guaranteed low rates, and many times they get rebates from the companies they book with just for using Amex. i.e. Hilton and Delta give 3-5% back just for using Amex! This doesn't include the incentive Amex gives. How does this play into marketing and branding? How do these partnerships work from a marketing perspective?

Intermediaries are often helpful when expanding into new markets and/or new verticals. These companies (people) often have experience with the products and the markets they enter. This is, most of the time, what keeps companies on track and selling product in markets and with products they don't know. What companies have entered verticals they don't know? Were they successful?

Market channels and intermediaries are basically the middle man for many products and services. With the growth of the Internet age and the increase in online sales, the space for the middle man is getting a little tight. One career that is now almost non-existent is a travel agent. Many people get better deals online than using a travel agent and don't have to worry about paying any additional processing fees. As you may know, every online shopper can do it better than anyone in the store.

What are the benefits for a company to continue to use the middle man, even with Internet sales, and what are the cons for continuing this route?

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Effects on marketing and branding

The companies mentioned in the case are still considered as marketing channels. As mentioned by Kotler and Keller (2006), marketing channels are sets of interdependent organizations involved in the process of making a product or service available for use of consumption. This has been the role played by Amex and other similar companies. There is no threat as to adverse effects on branding because these companies just assist in the distribution process. According to Kotler and Keller, "they neither take title to the goods nor negotiate purchases or sales, they are just called facilitators".

Intermediaries and expansion into new ...

Solution Summary

The companies who use Amex travels are examined. The use of a middleman and marketing effectiveness are determined.

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Stone, B., & Jacobs, R., (2008). Successful direct marketing methods (8th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Publishing.

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