Richard Branson has decided to "Go Portal." It's spending big marketing dollars to jump start its own portal, going after the business of Yahoo and MSN. Virgin Media, formed by the merger of Virgin Mobile and NTL:Telewest, launches this week with a £1m online ad campaign as it goes head-to-head with MSN and Yahoo! to become the UK's top entertainment portal. Virginmedia.com will become the central portal, competing against established portals along with other ambitious media companies, like Orange, looking to boost their portal presence. " The virginmedia.com launch will be the biggest UK portal launch.
My take is that this is a bit of a late move, but it could work because Virgin controls quite a bit of media content. If they can successfully leverage their offline properties to drive traffic to the site, it might actually work. As a sign of the offline strategy, they're starting to pass out leaflets.
When was the last time that a portal passed out leaflet to promote itself?