SANTA CLARA, CA: Sun Microsystems wants to make Java a household word, and is planning to launch a multifaceted marketing campaign aimed at educating consumers about how ubiquitous its programming technology really is.
"In one way or another, you're probably using Java," said Andy Lark, VP of global communications and marketing. "You use Java in your car, in your cell phone - it's in so many consumer devices. So many companies use this technology, and we want to make people aware of that."
Java is used to write software that works with computer networks in a variety of hi-tech products.
Lark said that Java has an 85% awareness rate among technology professionals and users, and of that 85%, nearly 99% have an affinity for the Java brand. Lark now wants to bring that share of mind and share of heart to consumers and, ideally, increase awareness of the company's brand.
Lark said such an effort is called "ingredient branding," which is not unlike what Intel has done with "Intel Inside," leading consumers to look for the Intel logo on PCs.
But Lark points out that sales of Java-based devices, particularly cell phones, will quickly outstrip PC sales. Ideally, as people become more aware of the multifaceted role Java plays, such as powering cell-phone-based games, then they'll demand products with Java, leaving Microsoft's rival .NET software behind.
Lark said Sun's various PR firms are helping promote and publicize Java - Citigate Cunningham and Chen PR in particular.
Michael Hakkert, Sun's new director of global communications and corporate PR, said the company also stands to develop more partners as the campaign drives interest in and demand for Java-based products.
"In the past, the focus has been less on the impact of the end user," explained Hakkert. "We'll still talk about Java-embedded services, but we also want to focus on the value - the impact of that on the user. We really want to build awareness in the consumer media."
Sun will highlight Java-enabled products in the media, and will also launch a consumer website, Java.com, that will feature Java-based games and other products.
Sun has already begun to leverage its partnerships by having tech powerhouses like Intel, Oracle, Motorola, and Palm talk about their own Java-enabled products at Sun's 2003 JavaOne Conference in San Francisco last week.