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Study of Brand and Brand Valuation Methods

Introduction

A company’s brand image (Goodwill) or brand valuation plays a vital role in the modern business world. This has lead to the valuation of brands, which was quite unheard of in previous decades. In this dissertation I attempt to analyse and understand various brand valuation methods, its merits and the way it’s represented using the different accounting policies and / or methods across the various accounting bodies worldwide. The main objective of the dissertation is to understand various valuation model that will abide the various accounting bodies as well as satisfy the individual country’s rules and regulations.

The roots of branding is evident in ancient civilisations and some study shows even before Birth of Christ and this is evident from archaeological excavations in which we can find certain symbols or markings in pottery, coins and Arts. It was not until the 12th century trademarks were used to identify each manufacturer’s goods as well as measure their quality. In other words in the early times, brand names were not only used to distinguish between different goods which are similar but also distinguish their quality (Sudharshan, 1995).

The value of a brand is indicated by how much money a company pays in order to acquire them. These may vary from brand to brand, however companies are prepared to pay a good price for top notch brands. For an example Procter and Gamble paid 2.6 times Richardson-Vicks’ book value, Nabisco sold for 3.2 times book value, and General Foods sold for 3.5 times book value (Business Week, 1995).

This report will discuss the existing brand valuation methodologies and it’s significance in a company’s decision and require a sound marketing and financial view. Generally the marketing and financial approaches in this matter differ largely and today’s competitive market environment has made these two professions to work together in this regard. Brands are widely viewed as performance measures and important element decision making process.

Many large corporate companies’ demands royalties from subsidiaries for using their brand name and this has made authorities such as tax and financial regulators to standardise the process of brand valuation. Brand valuation will be an important criterion to evaluate corporate performances in this century. Investors increasingly demand for greater disclosure of brand valuation and it’s the financial manager’s duty to ensure that such information’s are adequately provided with the investors. This has brought to adopt a standard brand valuation technique / method in company accounts.

Organisation Background

This dissertation is not about a specific organisation brand valuation. It aims to cover many blue chip organisations accounting treatments in Brand Valuing. Mainly this study will involve understanding the accounting treatment of accounting bodies and accounting standards etc. The dominant model of branding in the twentieth century was the manufacturer as mega-advertiser. McKinsey (1994) believes that the traditional model of branding is no longer the only way, nor can it dominate in the future. According to Murphy (1990), brand is a complex phenomenon: “not only it is the actual product, but it is also the unique property of a specific owner and has been developed over time so as to embrace a set of values and attributes – both tangible and intangible – which meaningfully and appropriately differentiate products which are otherwise very similar.” These changes have prompted today’s business world to put a value into branding and thereby has the created the concept of Brand Equity or Goodwill of a company.

Rationale for the Chosen Topic

In realisation of various valuation methods and different accounting bodies treat the Brand values in the Balance Sheet differently at large. This dissertation will answer “How companies calculate and disclose brand value in financial statements”. Weather researcher will able to identify and develop a proper Brand Valuation formula in this dissertation?

Statement of the Problem in Valuing Brands

Since the late 1980’s, it has become essential that a company recognises a brand as an intangible assent and as a result include them in their financial statements. The main reason for this was a wave of acquisitions that took place in that era that helped exposes the hidden value in highly-branded companies. Examples include, Nestle buying Rowntree, Danone purchasing Nabisco’s European business and Grand Metropolitan buying Pillsbury.

However, accounting bodies throughout the world differ over how brand valuation should be done. The professional bodies have appeared uncertain as how to resolve the issue of brand valuation. It happens because of the lack of understanding and guidance over accounting treatment of brands. Much of the uncertainty associated with brands is regarding the relationship with goodwill and other intangible assets. There is real confusion about the distinction between brands and other assets such as goodwill or trademark. This difficulty leads to further problems when deciding how to measure and report them in financial statements.

Research Questions

In order to compile a report on Brand Valuation Methods I intent to find answers to the following research questions:
What constitute Brand and Brand Equity
What are the problems in valuing a Brand
What are the available Brand Valuation methods
How does USA, UK and Indian Chartered Accounting Bodies value Brand
What is an acceptable and harmonized Brand Valuation model

Objectives of the Dissertation

To understand the significance of Brands and how they have developed from time to time.
To understand the Brand Equity Concept & Different Valuation Methods in Valuing a Brand.
To understand the Marketing and Finance perspectives of brand equity and how it will be presented and integrated, and their interrelationships in an Organisation.
To analyse 4 financial accounts of large Blue Chip companies and their treatment as Intangible assets in the Accounts

Literature Review

What Is A Brand?

“If this business were to be split up, I would be glad to take the brands, trademarks and goodwill and you could have all the bricks and mortar – and I would fare better than you”

(John Stuart, Former Chairman of Quaker Oats Ltd)

This statement of John Stuart emphasise the importance of the brand. In other words a “name, term, sign, symbol, or design, or a combination of them, intended to identify the goods and services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of competition” is categorised as a Brand. Furthermore, a Brand also helps to create awareness, reputation, prominence, and more in the marketplace.

What is Goodwill?

Goodwill in financial statements arises when a company is purchased for more than the fair value of the identifiable assets of the company. The difference between the purchase price and the sum of the fair value of the net assets is by definition the value of the “goodwill” of the purchased company. The acquiring company must recognize goodwill as an asset in its financial statements and present it as a separate line item on the balance sheet, according to the current purchase accounting method. In this sense, goodwill serves as the balancing sum that allows one firm to provide accounting information regarding its purchase of another firm for a price substantially different from its book value. Goodwill can be negative, arising where the net assets at the date of acquisition, fairly valued, exceed the cost of acquisition. Negative goodwill is recognized as a liability. For example, a software company may have net assets (consisting primarily of miscellaneous equipment, and assuming no debt) valued at $1 million, but the company’s overall value (including brand, customers, intellectual capital) is valued at $10 million. Anybody buying that company would book $10 million in total assets acquired, comprising $1 million physical assets, and $9 million in goodwill. Goodwill has no predetermined value prior to the acquisition; its magnitude depends on the two other variables by definition.

What is Brand Equity?

The goal of the brand leadership point is to create strong brands – but what is a strong brandIn Managing Brand Equity, brand equity is defined as the brand assets (or liabilities) linked to a brand’s name and symbol that add to (or subtract from) a product or service. These assets can be grouped into four dimensions: brand awareness, perceived quality, brand associations, and brand loyalty. These four dimensions guide brand development management and measurement.

Brands are a key element, along with other intangibles such as intellectual property and staff skills and commitment. Often 40-75% of a company’s assets may be attributed to brands [Goodchild and Callow, 2001] Despite the above facts the Chartered Institute of Marketing 2003 state “Brands are emotive and you can’t measure emotion.”

“The financial value of a brand is not interesting on its own; it’s what we can do to grow it that makes it interesting. The process of benchmarking a brand’s value involves understanding where that brand value comes from and supporting those areas to grow the strength of the brand.” [Shailendra Kumar, Future Brand, 2001]

The Development of Brand Valuation:

The technical knowledge of Chartered Accountants and accounting firms in valuing business valuations and applying discount rate, depreciation rates, appropriate tax rates etc was not developed in valuing a company Brand by accounting profession until recent time. This was mainly due to the fact that financial professionals lack commercial experience and to fully appreciate and understand how brands operate from the perspective of consumers and markets and retail distribution in a competitive context. This was an essential part in valuing a brand and without understanding the real valuation process any future predictions of the same will be no use because this valuation process will be carried out only by assumptions. And as a direct consequences provide no genuine benefit to business or investors alike.

Despite the above fact, brand valuation methodologies have been developed and adopted in valuing brands recently and are now viewed as important business tool. Only now, brand valuation and intangible asset valuation are given it’s importance after being taken seriously mostly due to USA financial reporting standards requiring acquired intangibles which can be separately identified and have separate economic lives to be valued and put on the balance sheet. International accounting standards will require UK (and other countries adopting IAS’s) public companies to do the same and this will be effective from January’2005. Additionally these intangibles require annual impairment testing to make sure their values have not been diminished. If they diminish in value then a write off to the profit and loss account is required. For example under new accounting standards AOL Time warner has written off $54 billion dollars. (AOL 2007 Annual Accounts)

In the UK and Australia, accounting rules require companies to write off the goodwill obtained through acquisitions. The rules have often resulted in sizeable losses for acquiring companies in the year of acquisition. This happened because under these rules, the money paid in an acquisition over and above the fair value of identifiable assets is viewed as money lost without a compensating asset being acquired. However, this principle drew protests from a lot of UK companies. Those companies protested by capitalizing their acquired brands and arguing that they were not goodwill but identifiable assets. Some of the companies have gone further by capitalizing not only “acquired” brands but also the “home-grown” brands such as Cadbury.

Brand Valuation Methods

There are three methods for charging price premium on a branded product

a)Cost Method – On this method, the current value for historical expenses when creating a brand.

b)Market Method – This approach looks into the transactions of brand.

c)Income Method – In this approach, two methods are used to calculate the premium value:

Discounted Cash Flow model
Excess Earnings method.

Research Methodology, Data Collection Methods and Data Analysis

In order to compile this dissertation, a Case Study/Desk Research based methodology has been used. Various company financial accounts have been verified with particular attent

Primary data will consist information interviews, questionnaires etc. An in depth interview with a Brand Consultant is planned and interview will be conducted with Financial and Marketing Consultants of an Organisation.

Secondary data will include data collection from annual reports, books, journals, articles and websites which give us an insight of how the companies have evolved from time to time and how did the company manage to build the brand and what strategies have they used in valuing a brand. Both quantitative and qualitative data will be using in this research.

Case studies the case studies will consist of a detailed study about various companies Brand Valuation Methods and the company from its beginning stage to the stage which it has attained now from the Desk Research.

Analysis: The various valuation methods will be explore and critically analysed in order to understand the advantages and disadvantages of each methods. Further how a Brand valued during Economy Boom had valuation done in Economy Recession period especially weather the Brand has been devalued to reflect the true picture. Apart from it this section also emphasizes on how the company attained this stage and about the competitive advantage and core competencies have bought them to this level. These analyses are undertaken with the help of the secondary and primary data.

Desk Research

Desk Research is the name given to finding published information which can include company Annual Reports, Financial details, Experts reports, Research Reports, Market statistics or comments and information about the issues in a marketplace. (Wikipedia 15.03.2011).With the widespread adoption of the Internet, use of published information (desk research) to scope a market is becoming increasingly common as a means of carrying out Market Researches. Traditionally using desk research to find information about potential customers, competitors and intermediaries in markets has been a time intensive process, often carried out on an on-going basis to cope with the slow delivery of paper-based material. With the Internet, vast seas of information have opened up electronically making desk research a practical tool for research, particularly in dynamic markets where data is quickly out of date.

In this report the internet will play a vital part especially the Google search engine and the various sources of electronic journals since this published report stand as a verification source to the researchers Primary Research and various in-depth knowledge about the subject were explored. This is one of the major disadvantages of Desktop Research. Too much of information can easily distract and deviate the Research Objectives

ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS:

Research ethics relates to questions about how we formulate and clarify our research topic, the data collection and processing method and how we report our research findings in a moral and responsible way. The appropriateness of a researcher’s behaviour in relation to the rights of those who become subject of their work or are affected by their work is referred to as research ethics (Saunders et al, 2007). Although all research methods have specific ethical issues associated with them, qualitative research is likely to have a greater range of ethical concerns compared to quantitative research. Most of the data that will be used in conducting this research will be quantitative data. The quantitative information’s are readily and publicly available without any form of moral or ethical intrusion.

Time Scale

TIMETABLE OF WORK

Week 1 – 2 Discussion with Supervisor about the direction and obtaining guidance

Week 3 – 5 : Desk Top Research on Brand Valuation Models

Week 6 – 8 Literature review on Branding and Study on IAS – Brand / Goodwill

Week 9 – 11: Collecting Financial Data of 4 Blue Chip Company and its treatment on Balance sheet.

Week 12 – 14: Organising interview with Financial controller of Large blue company’s view on Brand Valuation method.

Week 15 – 16: Analyse the Collection of data and interview notes.

Week 17 – 18 : Develop a Brand Value Model

Week 19 – 21 : Finalising the Report

Week 22 : Binding and Submission of Report

References

Aaker, D.A. (1997), “Should you take your brand to where the action is?”, Harvard Business Review, .

Aaker, D.A. (1996a), “Measuring brand equity across products and markets”, California Management Review, Vol. 38 No.3, pp.102-20.

Aaker David A (1991), ‘Managing Brand Equity’, p.15, NY Free Press

Allen, D. (1990), “Creating value, the financial management of brands”, in “Report of the committee on cost, profitability, for marketing” (Eds),

Accounting Review, Supplement, Vol. 47 pp.575-615.

Blackston, M. (1995), “The qualitative dimension of brand equity”, Journal of Advertising Research, pp.RC2.

Bhattacharyya, D. K., (2003) Research Methodology, Anurag Jain for Excel Books, India.

Cravens, K.S., Guilding, C. (1999), “Strategic brand valuation: a cross-functional perspective”, Business Horizons, Vol. 42 No.4, .

Gill, H. (1995), “Broad definition on brand and asset”, Management Accounting Journal, .

Kevin Lane Keller – Strategic Brand Management (2006), 2nd Edition

Kapferer, J.N. (1992), Strategic Brand Management: New Approaches to Creating and Evaluating Brand Equity, The Free Press, New York, NY.,

Manuchehr Shahrokhi, Professor of Finance, Department of Finance, Craig School of Business, California State University-Fresno, California, USA

Mukherjee, D N (Nov –Dec, 1998), ‘Managing Intangible Assets’, Business World, p.772.

Philip Kotler and Gary Armstrong: Principles of Marketing, Tenth Edition, Prentice Hall

Zeff and Dharan, 1997 Readings and Notes on Financial Accounting

Websites

Brand Management – www.brand.com (April 2011)

Brand Finance Plc – www.brandfinance.com (April 2011)

Wikipedia – www.wikipedia.com (April 2011)

Bibliography

John Murphy, 1990, “Brand Valuation”

Simon, C.J., Sullivan, M.W. (1993), “The measurement and determinants of brand equity: a financial approach”,

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Consumer behaviour and attitudes towards nike regarding the tiger woods personal scandal – has it effective nikes brand image?

Introduction

The author has always had an interest in the lives of celebrities and their behaviour, the proposal of investigating celebrities behavioural impacts intrigued her and this was the main inspiration for the research to be carried out. This research will determine if the behaviour of a celebrity in their personal life that is endorsing a product has an effect on the brand image. This research will focus primarily on the Tiger Woods Phenomenon.

In today’s current markets there are so many competitors and product replacements that a product alone is solely not enough to be the deciding factor in a purchasing decision from a consumer (REFERNCE). Many consumers are looking at other factors that will influence their decision on a certain product. One of the factors is the Brand. The building of a strong brand is one way in which a company can develop and sustain an advantage over its competitors, this in turn will maintain or increase its sales or market share. Hankinson & Cowking (1993)

Tiger Woods is a professional golfing champion he is also an extremely lucrative brand and, his brand has been very profitable to him through means of sponsorship, however what happens to the brand image when a celebrity endorser is hit with personal issues that affects their image.

There has been a lots of research carried out on the subject of celebrity endorsements, but since the internal and external environment of a business is changing all the time and also the customers are becoming increasingly savvy and smarter when deciding on which product to choose. Consumers make knowledgeable selection on what brand to purchase and it would be fascinating to see whether a consumer would change the opinion of the brand if the brand is endorsed by a celebrity that they identify themselves with or if the behaviour of the celebrity endorser will have an impact on the consumer’s perception of the brand.

Background

Tiger Woods is currently 7th in the world golfing rankings previously dropping from 1st, he is one of the most successful golfers of all time. His image and reputation made him one of the most powerful marketing tools for a number of organisations that included Nike, American Express, Gillette, Accenture, Tag Heuer, Buick, EA Sports and Gatorade. This sponsorship deals earned Tiger Woods xxxxx , however this all changed in November 2009 when news broke that Tiger Woods had participated in infidelity to his wife. This was just the start of ‘The Tiger Woods’ scandal, the scandal that would go on to ruin Tiger Woods reputation and his squeaky clean public image. The story alleged that Tiger had been having affairs with a number of women over a period of time. (REFERNCE).

Public opinion of Tiger Woods changed; Brands that sponsored Tiger were under a lot of pressure on how to react. Tiger knew that this story and the media backlash that he had received could potential damage his career forever. On 1st December 2009 Tiger Woods public apologised to his family and his fans in a statement released on his website, however some of the damage was already done on his public image and brands had decided to drop him straight away such as Accenture and Gatorade and other companies scaled down there work with him like Gillette and Tag Heuer. Nike however, decided to keep their sponsorship deal in full force and stood by Tiger Woods.

A celebrity being used to endorse products and services is not a new concept. Celebrities have been used to advertise and promote products for more than 50 years (ref). The influence that celebrities can have on brands can be quite strong if the celebrity and the brand match Elliot and Percy (2007).

Aim and Objectives of the Research

From the research the author intends to examine what happens with customer’s views and opinions of an endorsed brand when the celebrity’s behaviour causes negative press. In particular to determine whether having Tiger Woods endorsing Nike affected the brand image and the consumer’s perception of Nike when he had an affair and his personal life was made public in the media and did it have a knock on effect on the consumer buyer behaviour towards Nike.

The research will identify consumer’s views and opinions on Tiger Woods and whether his behaviour has changed their perception of him, it will also assess whether Tiger’s behaviour had an effect on the Nike brand that he is endorsing and does Tiger Woods portray what Nike wants its image to be perceived as. An evaluation of the findings will determine whether or not Tiger Woods behaviour has affected Nike and if it has, then how and if it has not then what might be the explanation for this.

The conceptual framework used

The study uses direct research methods based on primary data collection through questionnaires and secondary research from books and journals. The review of the literature will cover the aspect of brand, branding equity, brand awareness, brand image and brand loyalty, endorsements, celebrity advertising and the consumer buying behaviour process .Using the author’s findings a conclusion will be made regarding the effect of Tiger Woods behaviour on the Nike Brand Image.

Literature Review

What is a Brand

Kapferer (2008) defines brand a set of associations that add to the perceived value of a product or service. A brand is an intangible asset to a business, and it is nowadays what businesses focus on to differentiate themselves from their competitors. Wyatt (2008) claims that intangible assets such as brands, patents and workforce are essential determinants of a company’s worth and over the year’s accountants have been criticised for not consistently recognising a brand name Kaplan & Norton (2007). King (1991) extends this argument buy stating that “A product is something that is made in a factory; a brand is something that is brought by a customer. A product can be copied by a competitor; a brand is unique. A product can be quickly outdated; a successful brand is timeless”

Brand Equity

Akaer et al (1991) explains that there is much confusion of brand equity and brand image as however there is one main distinction between the two , brand equity is deals with the value of the brand beyond the physical aspects. Akaer et al (1991) goes on to say that the name awareness , loyal customers , perceived quality and associations that are linked to the brand can add or subtract value to the product or service being offered. Yoo and Donthu() take brand equity a step further suggesting that brand equity is the consumer’s different response between a focal brand and an unbranded product when both have the same level of the marketing stimuli and product attributes.

Pride & Ferell() agree with this explaining that to consumers the brand name is as fundamental as the product itself. Consumers will buy products or services just because of the brand name and the recognition that they will get for having that brand. The brand creates the value for the product which in turn makes it superior to its competitors. However Elliott & Percy (2007) believe that there is more to brand equity than just the consumer aspect and the perceived value of the brand, there is the financial perspective of brand equity which considers the importance of the brands and the financial impact that this has on the company. If the perceived value of the brand is good then a consumer will choose this brand over competitors resulting in more profit for the company. The brand equity is however down to the customer’s perceived value of the brand, the attributes of the brand, their experience of the brand and their knowledge of the brand.

Fig 1.0 -Elliott & Percy (2007) How Strong Brands generate greater profitability

Aaker () goes on to explain that the brand loyalty of the customer base is often the core of a brands equity. The more the customer continues to purchase the brand and affiliate themselves with the brand over competitors who may have better products the more brand loyal they become. Brand loyalty is defined as buying the same brand repetitively because of a strong preference for it .Hoyer and Macinnis(2009)

Brand Knowledge

Brand awareness and brand image are two factors to consider of brand knowledge. The image of the brand is what draws consumers in to purchasing the product or service and the awareness creates the knowledge they consumer will have on the brand. The customers relationship with the brand helps identify the brand image Keller et al (2008). It is interesting to note that Sen (1999) agrees with Keller et al explaining that consumer’s awareness of a brand name is the first critical stage in the development of brand knowledge.

Brand Awareness

Aaker () defines brand awareness as the ability of potential buyer to recognise or recall that a brand is a member of a certain product category.Aaker () goes on to say that brand awareness involves a continuum ranging from an uncertain feeling that the brand is recognised to a belief that is the only one in the product class.Aaker () feels that this variety can be represented by four different levels of brand awareness.

Aaker () The awareness Pyramid

These levels of brand awareness will determine how effective branding is for the company. De Pelsmacker et al (2007) explains that the stronger the awareness of the brand is in the mind of a consumer, the greater the possibility that he or she will buy it and then in turn will continue to purchase the product again and again which will create a loyalty to the brand. Brand awareness is key to the decision making process of the consumer. The awareness of the brand highlight the brand image and how it can attract a consumer De Pelsmacker et al (2007). The image is the first thing a consumer notices about a brand whether it be the actual visible element or the intangible assets of the brand and the brand reputation. The awareness of the brand will play a major part the in the deision making process of the consumer De Pelsmacker et al (2007). It enables consumers the gain knowledge of the brand and the brand associations and when the decision is being made by the consumers the brand awareness that they have of a particular brand could be an factor that they consider as they do not know of the competitors Keller et al (2008).

The continued awareness of a brand is increasingly important for a brand as this can ensure familiarity with the brand for the consumers, which will in turn create comfortability and recognition. Keller et al (2008) suggest that repetitive marketing is key to the awareness of the brand. Aaker () continues the research on brand awareness by suggesting the brand recall and brand recognition are factors that implement brand awareness. Brand recognition is defined as when a consumer is able to identify a brand if it’s presented to them by a list of hints and cues Shimp (). Shimp () goes on to say that brand recall is when a consumer can rememeber a brand from memory with no reminders , this is where marketers what their brands to be. They what consumers to just remember their brand straightway for example when you are asked about mp3 players and the first thing you think of is an Apple Ipod showing that you associate Apple Ipods with mp3 players predominantly.

However Aaker() argues there is limitations to brand awareness as a brand asset can not by itself create sales for a company especially for a new product . This suggests that brand awareness is key to creating a advantage other competitors to consumers however it is not the only factor that will impact the consumer purchasing decision.

Brand Image

Brand image is another component of brand knowledge. Keller et al (2008) defines brand image as the associations that people have towards a brand. The power of the brand relies on the positivity and preference of these associations as well as with the consumer’s perception in the consumers’ mind. The image of the brand is therefore of extreme importance to the company as they have to ensure that the portrayed image visible or intangible elements match the characteristic that the consumer wants from the brand.

Brand Personality

The brand personality consists of a unique combination of functional attributes and symbolic values. Functional attributes consisting of the tangible product offering and symbolic values are the intangible properties such as ‘fun’ to use. Plummer () argues that for many product classes brand personality is a key element. Evans et al () suggests that just as humans have personality traits so do brands. The traits and characteristics of a brand can help consumers feel an affiliation with the brand, in which the consumer can feel like they trust the brand more and will continue to use the brand over competitors creating brand loyalty Aaker ().

Aaker () suggest that brand personality consists of five dimensions

Figure 2 – Aaker () Brand personality factors

The five core dimensions being sincerity, excitement, competence, sophistication and ruggedness. Associating these factors to a brand for a consumer can create the brand personality. Consumers will try to match their personality to the brand unintentionally Wee (2004)

However Hankinson and Cowking ()argue that for brands to focus to a greater extent on the symbolic values rather than on its functional attributes suggestion that these in turn will have a more effective impact on the brand and the personality of the brand. Kapferer (2008) recommends that for a brand the simplest way of creating the personality of the brand is by endorsing the brand with a famous person. However this can only be achieved if the famous person’s characteristics match the characteristics of the brand so that consumers will feel the connection and believe the celebrity when they say that this the most amazing product ever.

Endorsements

An endorsement is defined by xx () as

Celebrity endorsements

According to Friedman & Friedman, () a celebrity endorser is an individual who is known by the public for his or her achievements in areas other than that of the product class endorsed. The celebrity is using their position to promote and advertise a product for a fee. Celebrity branding is a type of advertising in which celebrities’ uses their status in society to promote a product, service or charity. Celebrity branding can take several different forms, from a celebrity simply appearing in advertisements for a product, service or charity to a celebrity attending PR events and using their names as part of the brand. Hollensen (2007). Kim and Na (2007) explain that celebrity endorsement is frequently used in advertisements to enhance the effectiveness of persuasive communication.

Celebrity endorsements can have such an impact on a brand. According to Kotler et al (2009) a celebrity endorsement can enhance both the brand attitudes and the company image. If the correct effect is made from the endorsement it can increase sales and profits for a company .However the credibility of the celebrity is also essential in the endorsement affect. The celebrity needs to be believed by the consumer. This leads to the match up hypothesis and the meaning transfer model.

There are many advantages to celebrity endorsement however there are some factors that can influence the effectiveness of the endorsement. For an endorsement to be successful the correct celebrity is to be use. Companies will use the Match up Hypothesis to ensure that the celebrity they choose is going to get the desired effect. Hoyer & Macinns () defines the Match up Hypothesis as the idea that the source must be appropriate for the product or service. The celebrity that is endorsing the product or service has the characteristics and qualities that the company wish to portray and it also suggests the celebrity needs to have an amount of belief in what they are endorsing. Kamins (1990) suggests that endorsers are more effective when there is a “fit” between the endorser and the endorsed product. Most of the empirical work on the match-up hypothesis has focused on the physical attractiveness of the endorser. The conceptual argument is that attractive celebrities are more effective endorsers for products which are used to enhance one’s attractiveness lead to higher brand attitude and purchase intentions Till & Busler (2000 p1-p13)

For the endorser to effectively convey the brand they have to be seen as a believable source for the product or service. Pringle () extenuates this by explaining that when the audience see that there isn’t any real connection between the celebrity and product/brand they naturally (and correctly) presume that the celebrity is only doing it for the money.

However Sengupta (2005) also argues that if there is a public scandal regarding the celebrity or if the celebrity has multiple endorsements it will have a negative impact on the brand. White et al (2009 pg 323)agree with sengupta argument but suggesting that it is crucial that companies be aware of the risks associated with using celebrities to endorse their stores and products. White et al (2009 pg324) go on to state that previous results provide tentative support for the commonly held belief that a decline in the celebrity’s image can impact the image of the brand, it is important that retailers carefully choose an endorser who currently has a good image and will likely be able to uphold this image in the future.

It is believed by Roderstein (2005) that celebrity endorsers could strenghten the communication message and are a direct determinant of the brand image or brand personality.process of the communication and the brand-equity management. Clear Objectives ought to be determined in order to observe the effectiveness of the endorsement deal. Roderstein (2005). The author feels that If celebrity endorsements are carried out effectively then the positive outcome for the brand could be enormous , the key to celebrity endorsement is to match the personality and characteristics of the brand to the personality and characteristics of the endorser so it is believable to the consumers. The brand also has to ensure that the celebrity matches the traits and characteristics that the brand wishes to portray to the public. There can be a negative impact on the brand if this is not measured correctly.

Meaning Transfer Model

McCrackens 1989 meaning transfer model suggest that celebrities’ effectiveness as endorsers stems from the cultural meanings with which they are endowed. The model shows how meanings pass from celebrity to product and from product to consumer .McCracken (1989)

McCrackens (1989) Meaning Transfer Model

The culture and chacarestistics of the endorsement must represent the value of the product or brand.

However there are some negatives to celebrity endorsements. In a society where we are becoming increasilying obsessed with celebrities, their lives are becoming under intense scrutiny in the media for us all to see. Kotler et al (2009). The cost of celebrity endorsement can also be an issue for brands and companies () it is very expensive to hire a celebrity to endorse a product

Consumer Buyer Behaviour

Powerful brands create meaningful images in the minds of consumers (Keller, 1993), the brand is a very powerful tool when it comes to consumer buyer behaviour at the decision making process. When marketing a product the company needs to be aware of the process a consumer goes through when deciding what product to buy. A consumer is faced with many different questions and decision when choosing a product. A company has to take all different aspects of a consumers decision making in to account when marketing a product.

According to Masterson & Pickton Buyer behavior is how a consumer purchases a product using a variety of different stages in making a decision (Masterson & Pickton).

When choosing a product the consumer is faced with lots of different decisions to make sure they buy the right product for themselves.

Using Engel, Blackwell & Miniard process of the buyers decision-making shows us how a consumer may decide on the product they want. The model is split in to five sections the first being the need or problem. The buyer knows that there is a difference from the current state to the actual state (Masterson & Pickton) and therefore it needs to be satisfied. This could be influenced by internal or external factors. The buyer will continue to decide what to buy by searching and discovering the different options available to them. This is called information searching. The buyer will then evaluate the different options available to them and which they feel is the best, the consumer evaluates the product on their individual need and individual circumstances. The factors that could attribute to the evaluating of the products are the cost, reliability and service (Masterson & Pickton). The buyer then makes the decision. This decision could be made with the influences of others or by the current situation for example a consumer is hungry and would like some chips to feel them up but they do not have enough money on them to buy the chips so they have to settle for a sausage instead. After the consumer has purchased the product, they will then evaluate their decision to see if they feel they have made the right one. If there are happy with their decision they will buy the product again if they are disappointed they will not reuse the product.

Figure – Engel, Blackwell & Miniard () process of the buyers decision-making

Nike

Nike and Tiger Woods

Nike Brand Image

Methodology

Research methods

A number of factors were assessed when deciding on which research strategies to use. The methods involved in the research have different strengths and weaknesses that need to be considered when managing the intention of the research. The choice to centre the research on brands, endorsements and consumer behaviour was made at the beginning of the study. The topic of a celebrity endorser’s behaviour is often a vocal point in the tabloids every day. The image that the media portrait of these celebrities after a scandal has emerged is enough to damage their reputation for a long while if not for ever. This behaviour has led a number of companies to drop their celebrities from representing and promoting the brand as to dissociate with their behaviour for example Wayne Rooney recently caused a major media backlash when he swore on live TV, not only was he punished by the Football Association but by one of the companies he endorsers Coca-Cola because of his recent behaviour. (REFERNCE) and this is why the research on Tiger Woods has been chosen by the author. As mentioned previously Nike decided to keep Tiger Woods as a celebrity endorser for their brand even though the media was determining to ruin him and his reputation. Nike was keen to express that they felt that Tiger’s behaviour would not have an effect on their company and its image as explained by Phil Knight the co-founder of Nike who said that the scandal surrounding Tiger Woods was “part of game” in endorsement deals and these indiscretions are a ‘minor blip’ for Tiger Woods Leonard (2009) . However the research carried out by this author is to determine whether that is the truth and that consumers separated the two. Did the opinions, views and feeling of consumers on the subject of Tiger Woods behaviour affect the Nike brand When the findings are analysed it will hopefully present important information for brands and endorsements and if it the behaviour of a celebrity endorsing a product has negative recogonisation on the image and reputation of the brand and is it worth it for the brand to keep the celebrity or drop them. The research will conclude whether Nike made the right decision or not.

Secondary Research

The literature used in this investigation has been composed through extensive reading in and around the topics mentioned above. Keywords were searched for which included branding, brand image, celebrity endorsers and consumer behaviour. Articles were sourced from reputable journals such as credo, Business Source Premier and Sage to guarantee a high degree of creditable findings for the literature review. As the main focus of the research is on Tiger Woods behaviour and the effect it has had on the brand Nike which was main focus of the media at the time of the scandal, a number of newspaper articles, magazines and blogs have enabled the researcher to gain more knowledge on the situation.

The secondary research will also enable the researcher to gain more information on the Nike brand and company. The research will be obtained from creditable sources such as the company profile of Nike from datamonitor, information from their website, books and journals on Nike. This research will provide the researcher with the opportunity of comparing the findings of the primary research to the aspects of the Nike Company that they wish to portray. These two forms of research will enable the researcher to identify whether Tiger Woods behaviour is representative of Nikes brand image and if it’s not then why have they kept him on to endorse their products.

The research will also try to obtain whether there has been a change in views and opinions from the time of the scandal to the present day. Did consumers of Nike feel negative towards Nike decision then but have now forgotten about it and continued to purchase from them and has time been a healer for Nike and Tiger Woods or are consumers impacted just the same now as they were back in November 2009.

Data Collection Method

The aims and objective of this investigation is to gain an insight in to what consumers feel and how they respond to a situation.

The epistemology considered appropriate for this study of views and opinions is

The approach to this research is a deductive approach as

As the main objective of this investigation is to gather the views and opinions of people the primary research was carried out by means of a questionnaire xxxx () defines a questionnaire as a techniques of data collection in which each person is asked to respond to the same set of questions in a predetermined order. Participants were asked to fill in a questionnaire that consisted of xx questions both closed and open questions. The questionnaire is intended to explore how people’s awareness of Tiger Woods behaviour affects their opinion of one of the world’s leading sports brand Nike. The aim is to indentify if consumers opinion has changed since the scandal in his life.It was identified in the proposal to this research that Questionnaires would be the best method for data collection as questionnaires are a highly structured method of data collection. Sapsford and Judd (1996).As mentioned previously the aim of this research is to find out people’s views and opinions on the topic so by using a questionnaire the data can be collected from a larger number of participants and evaluated effectively. This enables the researcher a more accurate view on the findings as the sample of the population used is more realistic. This method was also chosen due to the price, as this was the cheapest way to obtain the data from larger audience than any other method.

Limitations to the research method

However there are limitations and drawbacks to this method that the researcher had to overcome to ensure all data is correct. The response rate to a questionnaire can be very low Flick (2011) to ensure that this is not the case the researcher opted for the delivery and collection method of questionnaire administration Saunders et al (2009). The researcher will try to ensure that the questionnaire was completed there and then so that the response rate was high.

The questions will firstly identify the participant’s knowledge of the Nike brand and company. Then questions will then go on to assess what consumers feel about Nike and the company Image. The third stage will recognise whether the participant is aware of Tiger Woods, the scandal and his relationship with Nike. The final stage will ask participants to assess the values of Nike compared to Tiger Woods and see if they compare with the image that they believe Nike to portray

The constraints to this research have made it necessary to carry out the questionnaire using a sample. A sample is needed to ensure a feasible assumption on the findings. A sample is part of the total population Saunders et al (2009).Deciding on a suitable number of participants is more or less a matter of judgement. Saunders et al (2009). The more participates a questionnaire has the more precise the findings will be. The author used a convenience sampling method when choosing the participants of the questionnaire. Gravetter and Foranzo (2009) defines convenience sampling method as a type of non probability sampling in which the sample is chosen based on the access to participants that the researcher has available to them. The questionnaires were administered through a number of networks being university students at the University of Bedfordshire across both campus, Pohill and Park Square and local sports team were also questioned to ensure that a range of ages were obtained. A convenience sampling method was chosen due to the access to participants that the researcher has. Although a criticism of this method is the bias that the researcher and participants might have, the researcher ensured that the questionnaire was anonymous so that participants would be able to give a fair opinion of the subject. Inside the convenience sampling the researcher used a quota sampling technique defined by Brown and Dowling (1998) as an attempt to provide a representative sample , where she ensured that the population of the study comprises of 100 individual adults both a mixture of 50 men and 50 women to get a fair gender representation in the sample. The response rate to the questionnaire was 50% as 200 people were approached and asked to complete the questionnaire, to which some took the questionnaire away and agreed to send back and others only completed the initial part of the questionnaire which was not worth including in the findings as it would have given an unfair representation. The size of the sample is adequate enough for the researcher to justify the credibility of her findings as xxxxxx A final justification for this method is that the researcher felt that the participants had the best knowledge to form their views and opinions of the subject as the participants are involved with news and sports of which Tiger Woods is represented in and the researcher was aware of this, although this could be seen as impacting on the results the difference in age, gender and relationship status between the sample was sufficient enough to gain a representative finding .

Validity, Credibility and Reliability

How valid and reliable the study is refers to the research being conducted fairly and that the product represents as much as possible the experiences of those being studied Ely (1991). Baillie (1995) states that the terms validity and reliability are usually discussed in quantitative research x xx

A principal concern in any research is that the researcher must always be aware of ethical aspects that could be identified. Everyone who participates in the questionnaire did so under the understanding that the questionnaire is anonymous and the researcher cannot determine participant’s answers.

Credibility in this study will be enhanced by employment of triangulation, which consist of various data sources for example, theory research from books, specific research relating to the topic from journals and newspapers and questionnaires being carried out.

Validity is the accuracy of the results created by the process precisely answering the research question (reference). The method used should determine necessary information from participants from which an analysis can be carry out as regards to the investigating question. . However the researcher is determining the questions and in closed questions the answers as well, this can be seen as an inadequacy as this may not be a true reflections of how the participant perceives the question. For example the question asked regarding the qualities of Nike and the perception of Tiger Woods which are then subsequently compared to each other. The researcher felt that this was the best way to obtain the answer to this question xxxxxxx

Using questionnaires as a method for data collection can lack the validity of the results due to a number of factors such as the issue that participants may not fill the questionnaire in truthfully as they may answer the questions they way the feel the researcher wants them to. To ensure that this is not the case for the researcher she has made participants aware the all results are anonymous and has not asked for their name or contact details to make them feel more comfortable when answering the questionnaire which in turn will give an accurate response to the questions.

Reliablity

The comparison of the primary research and the secondary research will enable the author to establish the effect of Tiger Woods behaviour on Nike.

Findings/Analysis/Discussion

The survey was handed out to 100 respondents, whilst the author waited for the survey to be completed by the respondents to ensure that the results were gathered effectively instead of waiting for participants to take the questionnaires away and sending them back, as the response rate for this is significantly low (REFERNCE). The author spent four weeks obtaining participants for the survey.

The questionnaire was completed by 51 women and 49 men initially however throughout the questionnaire 7 participants did not continue as they felt they could not answer the questions as they were unaware of either Tiger Woods or his behaviour. The gender was asked to establish a fair opinion from both men and women, this will also enable the author to assess if men or women were effected more so than the other. The relationship status of each participant was asked to see if there was any correlation with the status of their own relationship and the opinions of Tiger Woods behaviour as married women could have a more negative opinion than a single male.

The awareness of Nike

The findings show that 100% of the participants knew about the Nike brand showing how popular at well known the trademark Nike tick and its ‘Just Do it’ motif is.

The perception of Nike

Comparing the perceived perception of Nike the brand and Tiger Woods

Has Tiger Woods Behaviour impacted negatively on the Nike brand to consumers

From the data the author can see that the majority of participants felt that their views and opinions on Tiger Woods had changed since the revelations of his extra martial affairs, with 67% of the respondents revealing that this was the case. This shows the author that the perception and image of Tiger Woods is

However although the majority of the participants had negative views on the behaviour of Tiger Woods and the controversy that he caused, it didn’t not seem to transfer to the representation of Nike. It seems that the participants felt that the Tiger Woods did not represent the values and characteristics of Nike as only 16% matched the characteristics completely, there was however a number of charteristics that did match both Nike and Tiger Woods.

INSERT TABLE HERE

Differences on opinions and views were noticed through a number of different factors such as the age range categories, relationship status and the gender of the participant. Findings showed that women, older people and married individuals had the most negative view on Tiger Woods behaviour and his relationship with Nike.A staggering 95% of married women were disgusted with Tiger Woods behaviour and felt very strongly against the fact that Nike had continued to keep him endorsing their products. These views are evident in the comments that are received from the married woman, with the majority of these women claiming that he is disrespectful and displaying unacceptable behaviour for a role model, where as the age range between 18-25 years old with 78% were the most relaxed and open minded on Tiger Woods and his behaviour with some comments claiming that people make mistakes. Older people (age range 66+) also had a high percentage with 75% of participants presenting negative results. These results show that the image and perception of Tiger Woods do not match up to the traits and attributes wanted from an endorser. Xxx states that a role of an endorser representing a company is to be a role model to its customers. This is something that the participants feel is not happening.

The continued use of Tiger Woods for Nike

Current Day opinions on the past subject

Overall opinion of the relationship between Nike and Tiger Woods on the Brand Image?

Conclusion

The research conducted was designed to investigate the reaction of consumers to the Nike brand after the negative press and behaviour of one of their top celebrity endorsers Tiger Woods. Nike took a big gamble to keep Tiger Woods as an endorser of their brand after the controversy that he had caused

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Free Essays

Analysis of Samsung Marketing and Brand Strategies

Introduction:

In this report we have evaluated the literature and actual brand strategies used by Samsung. Samsung Electronics Company is worldwide leading consumer electronics brands which have very high opponents in the same business field like HTC, Sony, Panasonic, and Nokia. With the help of its creative products and services it is attracting lot of customers.

It was founded in 1938 by Lee Byung-chull as a trading company. In 1969 it establish and developed the different business to electronic market that make Samsung flourish into the world’s leading electronic brand. Samsung became the leading electronic manufacturers in Korea by catering to the international market. It makes Samsung to be a champion to international market with high-tech products. Later on in 1993 Samsung became the world’s best popular because of joined into the LCD industry.

Samsung set up its branding strategy by Chairman Kun Lee who planned to originate universal program to make Samsung to be an international brand in 1996. For increasing its brand awareness in the world, Samsung paid budget to the investment in marketing and branding and it’s about US 3 billion. (Business Week,2006)

In addition, Samsung has spend lot of money in sports for its brand image for example, for sponsoring in Olympic Games Sydney 2000, In Athens 2004 Olympic Games furthermore, Samsung also supported tools and distributed 14,000 cell phones during the games. Afterwards, Samsung has joined Yahoo Company in strategic marketing. In 2001, Samsung is to be voted to the number one in 100 brands by Business Week. To highlight on its brand awareness, Samsung encourage the official sponsor of Chelsea, the popular English Premier League football club in 2005. To continue to increase perception of brand Samsung became the official sponsor of 2010 Guangzhou Asian Game.

MEANING OF BRAND

Brand is the identity of a product, sign, symbol or design and how it describes to key points like customers, staff and partners etc.

Main goals which a good brand includes:

Conveys the message purely.

Convince the buyer.

Confirms credibility

For success in branding we have to concentrates on requirements and needs of customers. With the help of branding we can convince the customers to great extent.

Strategies of Branding

Developing a brand strategy can be one of the most challenging steps in marketing plan process. It plays a vital role in creation of company’s identity.

Brand Image of Samsung

Brand imaging is an essential tactic for company’s marketing plan and consumer behavior research (Dobni & Zinkhan, 1990). A clear image of a brand enables consumers to know about the brand, use the brand, and talk about the brand. All these factors are beneficial for the brand in identifying it from any rivals in the market. Good brand image strategies can lead to a good brand performance (Roth, 1995).

Brand image has three components:

Product Attributes
Customer’s benefit
Brand Personality

Samsung Logo:

The first expansion of brand image of Samsung Electronics Company was started in 1993. Samsung Electronics Company has driven into a new corporate identity by changing its logo from the basic black bold type letters of the word Samsung with red star signs at the side into white Samsung word on a blue color background (Spaeth, 2007). The blue background was designed to be an elliptical shape which gives an impression of modernization and advance. It is determined to agree that Samsung has succeeded in the development of its brand logo.

Gardner and Levy (1955, as cited in Park, Jaworski, & Maclnnis, 1986) once stated that the brand will be successful in a long term could depend on a company’s strategies of choosing a brand image and to maintain the image over time. Samsung has clearly proved that it has driven on the right track as the brand is now widely well known around the world with its reputation of global electronics brand

Character:

Its character obviously describes that it is a strong brand approximately innovation, cutting edge technology and world class design. To clear its brand image, it reinforces Samsung’s strong connection to the brand community to customer; besides, it reinforces its brand image of always being in leading position of innovation and design.

(Martin Roll,2006.The global bestseller Asian Brand Strategy (“Best Business Books 2006” by Strategy Business magazine)

Another powerful development of brand image of Samsung was to design an impression of the brand with global sport events. Samsung became the official sponsor of the wireless technology in the Olympics when Seoul was hosted in 1998. By representing its brand into sport events, the brand will be greatly notice by lot of consumers. Nowadays also Samsung is using the same strategy. Samsung has decided to become an official sponsor for Chelsea football club since 2005/6 season and it was the second largest sponsorship signed by Samsung since the Olympics Games (Jones, 2005). By doing this Samsung logo is now appearing on every shirt of Chelsea players and it can be seen as an impressive way to maintain image of the brand.

Slogan of Samsung:

In this year, Samsung informed its all-new brand slogan “Turn on tomorrow”, to chase of a better future. This new slogan started from mid of July a series of promotions was showed to every customer to improve Samsung’s new brand strategy.

Country of Origin

Samsung has been involved to promote the country image of South Korea since Seoul Olympics in 1988 (Nebenzahl and Jaffe, 1991). The company image has to focus on the “country-of-origin” known as COO which is highlighted the impact of purchase behaviors (Martin and Eroglu, 1993). The perceptions of consumers on Korean products as overall image are still not considered as “high quality products” but known as a “good value products” (Nebenzahl and Jaffe, 1991).

Marketing Strategy

Samsung mission is to continue to become a world’s leader of digital convergence with the number one market share of most products segments. ( Ilse Jurrien, 2005). Samsung ambition is to boost sale volume in every segments of product.

In addition, Samsung objective is to stand on top of the world ranging electronic market; accordingly, it has team which is named as “Global marketing team”. This team separated from another part and divided in to three layers that are:

Product strategy team
Marketing strategy team
Regional strategy team.

Product strategy team

In Product strategy team managing market research , collection the information and analysis data of competitors in daily task.

Marketing strategy team

Marketing Strategy team’s main responsibility is to expand global marketing strategy for example to present the core message that Samsung want to communicate to customer and every promotional activities to international-wise.

Regional strategy team

Regional strategy team’s main job is to move the task from Marketing strategy team and managing to different regional. One attempt that appropriate in the United States does not mean that it would success in other countries. Regional Strategy team’s duty is to recover strategy concerning in regional demographics.

Market Driven Change

In earlier days Samsung’s attempt was promoting in own way that resulted in confuse information and obscurity brand image that make consumer confused in company. Afterwards, the blockbuster launched movie called “The Matrix” and Samsung have the opinion of that it was a perfect time to improve brand image under slogan “Digital All-Everyone’s Invited”. Moreover, Samsung choose to corporate with Warner Brother for product placement at “The Matrix”. Samsung’s important place on customer’s insight to new product development method. (Kinda,2008)

Target Market

Samsung has changed and emphasizes on the high-end target group and business which means Samsung spend budget to promotional in niche market like the main competitor’s Sony. That directly affects the brand image in high-class value and to certify higher margins and efficiency. (Business weekly,2002)

Market Shares

Product

Samsung’s
global M/S

Competitors

M/S

Year

Source

DRAM

40.4%

Hynix

19.8%

Q32010

[69]

NAND Flash

40.4%

Toshiba

33.1%

Q22010

[70]

Large-size LCD Panel
(revenue)

26.0%

LG Display

25.9%

Q32010

[71]

Active-Matrix OLED

97%

LG Display, AUO

1~3%

2010

[72]

Lithium-ion battery

18.7%

Sanyo

19.4%

Q12010

[73]

LCD Monitor

18.0%

Dell

12.8%

2009

[74]

Hard disk drive

9%

Seagate
Technology

31%

Q42009

[75]

Television sets
(LDC, PDP, CRT, LED)

17.2%

LG Electronics

14.8%

Q32009

[76]

Mobile phone

21.0%

Nokia

32.4%

Q32010

[77]

Digital camera

11.8%

Sony

17.4%

2010

[78]

Meaning of Brand Value

The success of brand is the goal pursued of companies whose attempting to lead the market. Brand value is one of significant criteria that enhance branding of the company. The uniqueness of the brand is influenced consumers in both directly and indirectly, hereby improving the company value (Melewar and Karaosmanoglu, 2006). The strong and successful brand was able to dominate and persuade decision making of consumers.

Samsung ranks 19th in the Top 100 Global brands in 2009 to 2010. That shows Samsung brand value up 11 percent from year earlier, according to annual report by global branding inter brand. The reason for this success is Samsung approach to develop in marketing strategy for different regions; moreover, to increase in perspective in brand, Samsung sponsored in Olympic Games and other sports such as sponsor Chelsea Football League in England, sponsored Texas motors speedway. (Interbrand,2010)

The growth of Samsung’s brand value is always put main emphasis to response demand and approach to experience in customers. Moreover the company focused on every detail of their brands, develop products, cohesive identities compatible in every products, every market round the world and every communicate to customers.(Business Week,2008)

To expand an integrated method to endeavors, the context of brand has to change to adopt culture, expertise and organizational systems include products, if senior management is using these assets and ability effectively (Doyle, 1998)

Strategies adopted by Samsung:

Creating Identity of the Brand.
Reaction from rival’s
Cost involved in repositioning of brand
Research and development

Best global brands of 2010

16

16

France

Luxury

21,860

4%

17

20

United States

Electronics

21,143

37%

18

17

United States

Tobacco

19,961

5%

19

19

South Korea

Electronics

19,491

11%

20

18

Japan

Automotive

18,506

4%

21

21

Sweden

Apparel

16,136

5%

22

24

United States

Business Services

14,881

9%

23

23

United States

Beverages

14,061

3%

24

22

United States

Financial Services

13,944

-7%

25

26

United States

Sporting Goods

13,706

4%

26

27

Germany

Business Services

12,756

5%

27

25

Switzerland

Beverages

12,753

-4%

28

28

Sweden

Home Furnishings

12,487

4%

29

37

United States

Financial Services

12,314

29%

30

30

United States

Alcohol

12,252

4%

31

31

United States

Transportation

11,826

2%

32

32

United Kingdom

Financial Services

11,561

10%

33

33

Japan

Electronics

11,485

10%

34

29

Japan

Electronics

11,356

-5%

35

34

United States

FMCG

11,041

6%

According to the table of Brand Value in Global brands in 2010,

Samsung was stable in rank 19th in last year and current that show it can manage marketing strategy in good brand value in crisis economic situation. In term of Sony the main competitor, in the chart of Brand Value showed it rank is up from 34th to 29th in 2010 ;nevertheless, Sony still stay behind of Samsung. And in Change of value Sony is -5percent and Samsung is 11 percent.

The reason of achievement to be in global brand of Samsung are many strategy that company chosen; for example, Samsung considered to customer experience that make it placed 2nd after Coca-Cola sponsorship in Olympic Games. Samsung assemble the organization for brand building and the key of brand building is employees and consumers. The employees received the emotional benefits from pride in being associated with the sponsorship and direct connection to the Olympic activities. In term of consumers, Samsung provided a new experience to the customers; for instance as a part of Samsung’s brand proximity program it put up in Olympic [email protected] Samsung, The Athens Olympic Sports Complex located in a 1,064 square meter entertainment complex which was a central company place for athlete, their families and viewer coming to the Games. The [email protected] give a wide range of activities; for example, the customers were received the opportunity to try out Samsung’s revolutionary products by themselves.

Brand Position

In term of Samsung company has position the brand position as innovation, cutting edge technology and high-class design. In marketing plan, Samsung created team of global marketing to develop to assign the identity of products. The design of product is the important part to attractive to consumer to purchase. Samsung present the different of leading of electronic to innovation, high-end and focus on niche market. In addition Sony focus on high-end and niche market according to, the group assessment that show in perceptual map.

In growing competition and more require consumer that CEOs facing these day, they have to know how to created more value into products and services because of nowadays, there are many competition, fast innovation and more demanding consumers. (Court et al.,1999)

According to, Samsung has developed technology to standing in leading of electronic market; for example, Samsung is the first brand of Thinnest Blue-ray player in 2009, Released the world’s first infrared video phone in 2009. That make Samsung is the No.1 in customer loyalty for 8 years in succession by Brand Keys of the USA

Brand Relationship

To created more value into Samsung product, the company chosen to communicated in campaign that satisfy with slogan; moreover, Samsung has joined the campaign with the movie call “The Matrix” to customer perspective in brand image is innovative and high technology. The company chooses the right time and right place to show the way of company.

The campaign in advertising, Samsung show the high-end and luxury design to the Television commercial. That makes customers absorb brand image of Samsung and effected to brand value in consumer’s mind.

Samsung continue to purchase budget to promote brand in advertising campaign and continue to sponsor in the Olympic Game. Samsung be concentrate in strong of brand image including selecting the distribution channel, to research and developing the products, creating the new technology to be the number one of the electronic world.

Customer Perspective

After evaluating the brand value, position and image the next step is the customer perspective of Samsung we get this information from different websites. The evidence shows that Samsung attracted lot of customers it creates a very good image in customer’s mind. In most of products and Brand value range confirms that the customer is trustworthy and satisfied with the brand. In eco-friendly blue earth phone are also embedded with solar panel which helps in making .Samsung growing up from 4th to 2th in mobile market share. The design of product of Samsung emphasis to approach the customer insight is very effective. Nowadays mobile phone is not used only for communicating purposes but also use as fashion accessories with latest models and technology. The customers require the mobile phone for self-image which includes design, function and reliable of product. Samsung come to stand in customer’s mind and gain more market share from its main competitor Nokia. (Business Time, 2010)

Strengths of Samsung

CDMA Handset market
Brand Position
Product Quality
Horizontal Integration
Core Competence
Distribution Network
Conclusion

Samsung has created lot of attraction among customers during last year’s and nowadays also by using different marketing strategies. The main goal of CEOs is to drive their brand to worldwide which shows that Samsung have good management of and intention to identify their brand to global whiles improve and develop the products among to premium quality with main competitor is Sony. The marketing strategies help to contribute to be a good brand image such as to sponsor in Olympic game; including, product placement in the movie. Samsung concerned to the environmental and launched the products that are eco-friendly.

Categories
Free Essays

Can Tesco’s brand equity be transferred to a supermarket’s own branded products?

Abstract

Developing the private brand product by the retail company has become one marketing strategy for improving its brand image and increasing profitability (Quelch and Harding, 1996). The retail company’s store image can help the company to make its customers loyal to the store brand and increase profitability of the company and hence contributes to the success of the retailers (Hansen and Solgaard, 2004). The major purpose of this research is to develop deeper understanding about the relation between cultural diversity and organisational performance. The current study also has an aim to explore the effective HR practice for managing a culturally diverse organisation in order to increase the productivity of the organisation.

This particular dissertation will be based on evaluating the relation between the image of the store and its own products private brand label. This dissertation will be researching the link between the attitude of the customers toward the retailer’s own brand and store image of the retailer (Baker et al, 2002; Mazursky & Jacoby, 1986). Even though, there are number of researches which have been done earlier showing the relation between store image and private brand label but focuses of all investigations were on the impact of private label on the store image (Lodish, 1998). But the study which I have selected for this dissertation is uncommon as the impact of store image on the private brand label is not common and sometimes provides mixed evidences.

The primary aim of this study is to perform critical analysis on the customers’ perception toward the retailer’s private brand label compared with national brand label. Here the researcher will be attempting to know if the image of the retailer’s store can helps the retail company to enhance its own private product brand label. The researcher will be adopting inductive research approach as there is not research hypothesis in this study and empirical research strategy as researcher will be participating in the data collection and observation process. The data collection method adopted will be both primary and secondary method and simple random sampling method will be used for sample selection techniques.

Chapter 1: Introduction

1.1. Research Background:

The trend of developing private label product by the retail company and contributing to the large part of global grocery is increasing every day. This is, in fact, a global phenomenon which can be seen in all most all retail companies around the world (Ailawadi, 2008; Pauwels, 2008; Steiner, 2008). Herstein and Gamliel (2004) have explained in their work that the owners and controller of quality of the private brand label are the retailers and hence, the gap between the quality of national brand and retailer’s private brand product has become less significant which in turn has become an pronounceable threat for national brands. Developing the private brand product by the retail company has become one marketing strategy for improving its brand image and increasing profitability (Quelch and Harding, 1996). The retail company’s store image can help the company to make its customers loyal to the store brand and increase profitability of the company and hence contributes to the success of the retailers (Hansen and Solgaard, 2004).

This particular dissertation will be based on evaluating the relation between the image of the store and its own products private brand label. Significant researches have been done for discovering the customers’ view toward the private brand label products and also to explore the customers’ attitude and preferences (Baltas & Argouslidis, 2007; Bellizzi et al, 1981; Dick et al, 1995). This dissertation will be researching the link between the attitude of the customers toward the retailer’s own brand and store image of the retailer (Baker et al, 2002; Mazursky & Jacoby, 1986). Even though, there are number of researches which have been done earlier showing the relation between store image and private brand label but focuses of all investigations were on the impact of private label on the store image (Lodish, 1998). But the study which I have selected for this dissertation is uncommon as the impact of store image on the private brand label is not common and sometimes provides mixed evidences. (Lee & Hyman, 2008). Foregoing literatures are not able to shade the light on the solution of the question like if the store image of the retail company can be transferred to the retailer’s own private brand label or not?. Therefore, this dissertation will be trying to explain the impact of the TESCO’s store image on its own private product brand label.

Again, the retail company are trying to involve their hand manufacturing process to for developing their boundary of the business and get recognised as manufacturer too. Therefore, they have started to produce products on their own name with their own private brand label. Now retail companies are trying to put their products quality comparable to national brand but with affordable price for the customers to divert them from national brand label. Now this has become important to know if the name of the company as good retailer can play any role to the uplift the brand name of its own product with private label. There are not enough evidence in the foregoing literatures that retailer’s brand image is transferable to its own product brand. Therefore, this dissertation will be designed to shed the light on the link between the store image and its private brands level.

1.2. The Research Question

Seeing the gap in the literatures as presented above, the developed research question is as follows.

Can brand equity be transferred to a supermarket’s own branded products: a Case study of Tesco Supermarket?

1.3. Research aim and Objectives:

The primary aim of this study is to perform critical analysis on the customers’ perception toward the retailer’s private brand label compared with national brand label. Here the researcher will be attempting to know if the image of the retailer’s store can helps the retail company to enhance its own private product brand label.

The major objectives that are aimed to achieve after successful completion of this research study are;

Evaluate the perception of consumers’ perception toward the retailer’s private brands level.
Understand the closeness of relation between retailer’s corporate brand and its private brand level.
Evaluate the extent to which the retailer’s corporate brand can impact on the customers’ confidence in buying retailer’s own brand label.
Identify the existing difference between national brand label and retailer’s private brand level

1.4. Rational for Selecting this Topic as Research Topic and Research Significance:

I have an aim of getting promotion and becoming marketing manager of the TESCO supermarket and hence to increase my competency and knowledge, I have chosen this topic related with marketing concept based on the retail company. To make my research process interesting and encouraging, I needed to find the topic from the area of my interest. As the marketing is the subject where my interest is engrossed, I have selected this research topic from marketing management. As I want to work to grow my professional career in retail company branding and hence to make my knowledge strong and competitive in the retail job market. This dissertation can give an opportunity to me to provide some potential recommendation for the company where I am working regarding the private brand label and place for improvement for TESCO.

1.5. Scope of this Study

For the achievement of objectives of this study, the researcher will be examining one retail company and will be surveying its customers. Even though it is very much important to consider more than one retail company to make this research study more realistic and accurate, I have selected only one company due to time and cost limitation. The selected company for this study is TESCO supermarket. I have been working in the marketing department of the TESCO supermarket for more than two years and therefore, thinking that my personal experience, knowledge of marketing style and relation with management of TESCO will be helping me a lot, I have selected this particular organisation for study. The needed data and information for this research can be available to me very easily if the selected company will be TESCO but I personally feel, it would be very hard to reach to all the necessary sources of data if the selected company would be other than where I am familiar with. Thinking this also, I have selected this company.

Chapter 2: Literature Review

2.0 Retailer Motivations for Private Labels

One of the early motivations for retailers to introduce private labels was to improve retailer gross margins. Competition between retail stores on the same or similar national brands is a major contributor to lower retailer margins (Steiner, 2004). According to industry sources, retailer gross margins on private labels are 20 to 30 percent higher than on national brands (Hoch & Banerji, 1993). Retailers also sought to strengthen their bargaining power with manufacturers through the actual or potential threat of private labels taking share from national brands, and so negotiate lower wholesale prices (Narasimhan & Wilcox, 1998). This outcome has largely been confirmed in the private label literature (eg Mills, 1999; Pauwels & Srinivasan, 2004; Scott-Morton & Zettelmeyer, 2004) although manufacturer responses may depend on the extent of customer loyalty to the national brand (Gabrielsen & Sorgard, 2007).

Another key motivation for retailers is to create competitive advantage through store differentiation by offering products unique to the store (Juhl, Esbjerg, Grunert, Bech-Larsen, & Brunso, 2006; Laaksonen & Reynolds, 1994; Quelch & Harding, 1996). Store differentiation in turn is expected to increase store patronage and create store loyalty (eg Quelch & Harding, 1996).

Nevertheless, there is significant support for the argument that private labels do create store loyalty. Richards, Hamilton, Patterson, & Portland (2007) reported that private labels play an important role in attracting customers from other retailers, and Anselmsson & Johansson (2007) found that the more private labels consumers buy, the more loyal they are to the store. Corstjens & Lal (2000) argued that high quality private labels create store differentiation and loyalty through customer ?inertia‘, while Sudhir & Talukdar‘s (2004) study found that private labels improve store patronage through store differentiation.

Private labels are also introduced to compete with leading national brands by creating brand loyalty. Private labels do take share from national brands, an exception to the accepted norm that consumer goods markets are stationary (Hoch, Montgomery, & Park, 2002). Private label brand loyalty, however, is driven at least in part by store loyalty (Anselmsson & Johansson, 2007).

2.2 Private Label Positioning

Consumer perceptions and attitudes to private labels are based in large part on perceptions of the quality, price and value of private labels relative to that of national brands. This positioning of private labels in the minds of consumers is obviously influenced by the positioning strategies of both retailers and manufacturers.

2.3 Consumer Attitudes to Private Labels

While many studies have attempted to identify private label buyers on the basis of demographic, socio-economic and psychographic segmentation variables, the evidence has been mixed (Dick et al., 1995) and remains inconclusive (Ailawadi, 2001). Consumer attitudes to private labels may be more useful than segmentation studies as a basis for identifying market segments (Myers, 1967). Researchers investigating consumer attitudes have examined attitudes to private labels with respect to factors such as quality, price and value. While some researchers simply highlight differences in consumer perceptions between these different brand types, others have drawn on the differences in an attempt to explain private label proneness and the success of private labels. This section briefly summarises the findings of studies relating to consumer attitudes to private labels spanning the past forty years. The determinants of these attitudes and preferences will be examined in the following section.

Consumer perceptions of private labels have changed as retailers have repositioned them over time. The reduction in the gap between own labels and national brands in terms of price and quality, together with the increasing promotion of retailer names and their own brands, has changed consumer perceptions of own labels and reduced perceived risk associated with their purchase (McGoldrick, 1984). Nevertheless, studies continue to show that private labels are perceived as inferior in quality to national brands. ?Private labels suffer from a lack of a strong, quality image? (Vaidyanathan & Aggrawal, 2000, p. 216).

In contrast to some of the earlier studies, Cunningham, Hardy, & Imperia (1982) found that shoppers shared similar perceptions of both private labels and national brands on all product characteristics such as quality, reliability, nutrition, appearance and taste regardless of which they purchased. However, private label users perceived private labels to be more favourably priced and national brand users rated national brands higher on quality. Interestingly, national brand buyers perceived the prices of national brands and private labels to be similar even though they were not, suggesting that their purchase decisions were driven by non-price factors.

2.4 The Effect of Store Image on Private labels

As the discussion above suggests, a number of researchers have highlighted the role of private labels in contributing to store image and retailer differentiation. Few studies have investigated the effect of perceived store image on consumer attitudes to private labels, however, despite the fact that store image is often mentioned as relevant. Dick et al. (1995), for example, suggested that because consumers still doubt the quality of private labels, retailers need to pay attention to private label quality and cues that signal quality such as packaging, brand image and store image. Ailawadi & Keller (2004) suggest that providing high quality national brands enhances consumer perceptions of the retailer‘s overall image, which in turn improves perceptions of the retailer‘s private label. The discussion that follows, examines the few studies that have specifically investigated the effect of store image on attitudes to private labels.

An early indication that store image affects attitudes to private labels is provided by Livesey & Lennon‘s (1978) study which found that the degree of private label acceptance is store-specific. Richardson et al. (1996b) investigated the effect of one aspect of store image – store aesthetics – on consumer evaluations of private label grocery products. They found that whereas consumers judge the quality of national brands to be the same regardless of store aesthetics, evaluations of private labels are influenced by store attractiveness. Citing from Liesse (1993) ?a national brand is a national brand everywhere?, Richardson et al (1996b) suggest that national brands have higher brand equity as a result of the marketing efforts of manufacturers. They surmise that an investment by retailers in store aesthetics will benefit all private labels offered since the effect is not product-specific.

In a more comprehensive study involving consumer attitudes to the private labels of three grocery stores across four product categories, Semeijn et al. (2004) found that consumer judgements of private labels are influenced by their perceptions of store image. Semeijn et al also found that store image can act as a ?risk reducer‘by reducing functional and psychosocial risk associated with buying private labels in certain categories. Adding to these findings, Vahie & Paswan (2006) reported that consumer perceptions of the quality of private labels in the apparel market are influenced by the store image dimensions of store atmosphere and store quality. Liu & Wang (2008) found that store image is a strong predictor of general attitudes to private labels in Taiwan, while store image does not affect attitudes to national brands. Looking specifically at service, Huang (2009) found that the quality of service offered by retailers is a strong predictor of the perceived quality of private labels in Taiwan. In a Spanish study, Guerrero et al. (2000) found that the perception of private label quality depends on the store, which again suggests that store image plays a role in private label attitudes. Against these positive findings, however, Lee & Hyman (2008) found that store attitude had only a weak effect on attitudes to private labels, although the authors note that the significance of the relationship may depend on which stores and store image factors are studied.

Chapter 3: Methodology

3.0 Research Approach:

Inductive and deductive aproaches are the two main approaches in research study.If the research study is proposed to proceed with the hypothesis set up, deductive approach is adopted in practice while inductivve approach is taken if the research is to be done without setting hypothesis.The approach of researh researcher will take here will be inductive but not the deductive because the research study is going to be carried out without hypothesis setting.Hence the approach is inductive but not the deductive one.

3.1. Research Strategy:

The two important research strategies used by the researcher are the theoretical strategy and the empirical one.If the writing of others is used not being involved directly in the data collection and observation of the evidence,it is called theoretical strategy.Empirical one is such research strategy in which researcher involves in observation or feels particular event to colect research data.In this research study, researcher will be involving the direct observation and collection of information and data for evidence. So,the research strategy here is said to be emprical but not the empirical.

3.2. Research Philosophy:

Positivism and phenomenology are the two major philosophies adopted in research study.Positivism gets derived from natural science and has allienation to deductive theory while phenomenology gets derived from the social science and has allienation to inductive theory .The research study here gets alliened to inductive theory and derived from social science so the research philosophy that will be taken by research in this research study will be phenomenology but not the positivism.

3.3. Data Collection Method:

The data collection method for this research study will be both secondary as well as primary as the researcher will be particiapting himself in the process of the data collection process as well as form the forgoing literatures published in other forms.

Primary data collection method takes long time to get response from respondents and even the responses may not be true but with the collection of secondary data no such problem is expected by the researcher.

As compared to the primary data colection method, secondary data collection method is cheaper and has fast and easy access of data collection as through company websites,university library etc (Dunsmuir and Williams 1992)

Due to the time and resource limitations with the researcher the secondary data collection method is chosen by the researcher here but not the primary one.

3.4. Data collection tools

For collecting the primary data, the reseracher will be forming questionnarie and distributing to the the customers of the TESCO supermarket and also the reseracher will be collecting the qualitative data by taking interview with some staffs of the TESCO supermarket. In this way both questionnare and interview will be the tool for primary data colleciton. The resercher has selected this method becuase the secodnary data collected might not be uptodate and may reuslt the conlcusion in the wrong outcome if used alone. Also primary data can be used for adding more literautres for future reserach. Other’s research may not be accurate so it is important to do own reserach by the reseracher.

For collecting secondary data, the reseacher will be studing others’ previous reserach, journals, articles, books publications, newpapers etc.

3.5. Analysis Techniques:

As we know the approach of data collection in this research study is inductive, the technique and of data collection and analysis must have a base on qualitative research type but not the quantitative.To conduct this research sample size chosen by the researcher will be small & it will be non random sampling due to the limitations of the time and many other resources.Data collected during the research study will be analysed in a systematic way.There exists different data collection techniques but the technique used by the researcher here will be the cross sectional but not longitudinal because there appears time and resource liitation to conduct research deeply.The research is not required to conduct frequently and update regularly but longitudinal research needs update at a particular time interval with the need of long time.

3.6. Sampling Techniques

In this study, I will be using simple prabablistic sampling technique so that the biasing in sample selection from the population can be avoided. Customers will be selection randomly in first come first serve fashion.

4.0. Research Resources.

All the resources needed for the research will be made available from the government publications,company profile,internet database,university/college library,stationery shop etc.

Research Schedule

The duration to complete the whole research actiivties will be presented in the chart form popularly known as GANT chart that contains lists of the activities in one axis ie.vertical one and time duration in other i.e.horizontal axis.The assumption made by the researcher to complete the research work is within the six weeks duration.Some important activities which will be involved in research study are mentioned below.

Introduction and background

The first part which appears in the research study is the introduction and backgroound of the research study.It is significant to know what research activity is and how this activity can be proceeded which provides lots of information and concepts in relation to the research topic.This section is supposed to be completed within about 4 days.

Literature review

This is the most important part in research which describes the things done in the related field by the researchers before.It is essential to conduct research in the systematic way.About 2 weeks period is allocated for conducting the review on literature.

Methodology

The another very important part in the research study is methodology or research procedure which consists of several other sections on it as research approach,research philosophy, research strategy, method of data collection and many more.The researcher needs to have thorough understanding of the methodology to conduct research in an effective way.The time allocated for this section by the researcheer is about 3 weeks.

Reference and bibliography

The final section of the research study is reference and bibliography.It has been separated time period of about 4 days.

Personal Reflection

Hopefully, the research study proposed to proceed based on the above mentioned framework will be an essential tool to complete my Master’s Degree in Business Administration in an effective way as this piece of work acts as a useful tip for wriring dissertation to me.It will be moreover advantageous for me for doing some research work in future on behalf of the company for its further business growth if I get opportuity to work in this organization.

6.0. References and Bibilography
Aaker, D. A., & Joachimsthaler, E. (2000). The brand relationship spectrum: The key to the brand architecture challenge. California Management Review, 42(4), 8-23.
Ailawadi, K. L. (2001). The retail power-performance conundrum: What have we learnedJournal of Retailing, 77(3), 299-318.
Ailawadi, K. L., & Keller, K. L. (2004). Understanding retail branding: Conceptual insights and research priorities. Journal of Retailing, 80(4), 331-342.
Anselmsson, J., & Johansson, U. (2007). Are the retailer motives of private label brands fulfilled?: Creation of brand value, brand loyalty and the effect on store image and store loyalty: Working Paper Series. Lund Institute of Economic Research, Lund University.
Baker, J., Parasuraman, A., Grewal, D., & Voss, G. B. (2002). The influence of multiple store environment cues on perceived merchandise value and patronage intentions. Journal of Marketing, 66(2), 120-141.
Batra, R., & Sinha, I. (2000). Consumer-level factors moderating the success of private label brands. Journal of Retailing, 76(2), 175-191.
Bell, D. R., Ho, T. H., & Tang, C. S. (1998). Determining where to shop: Fixed and variable costs of shopping. Journal of Marketing Research, 352-369.
Berges-Sennou, F., Bontems, P., & Requillart, V. (2003, June). Economic impact of the development of private labels. Paper presented at the First Biennial Conference of the Food System Research Group, Madison.
Bettman, J. R. (1974). Relationship of information-processing attitude structures to private brand purchasing behavior. Journal of Applied Psychology, 59(1), 79-83.
Brown, T. J., & Dacin, P. A. (1997). The company and the product: Corporate associations and consumer product responses. The Journal of Marketing, 68-84.
Burton, S., Lichtenstein, D. R., Netemeyer, R. G., & Garretson, J. A. (1998). A scale for measuring attitude toward private label products and an examination of its psychological and behavioral correlates. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 26(4), 293-306.
Choi, C. S., & Coughlan, A. T. (2006). Private label positioning: Quality versus feature differentiation from the national brand. Journal of Retailing, 82(2), 79-93.
Chowdhury, J., Reardon, J., & Srivastava, R. (1998). Alternative modes of measuring store image: An empirical assessment of structured versus unstructured measures. Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 6, 72-86.
Churchill, G. A., & Iacobucci, D. (2002). Marketing research: Methodological foundations. Orlando, Florida: Harcourt College Publishers.
Collins-Dodd, C., & Lindley, T. (2003). Store brands and retail differentiation: The influence of store image and store brand attitude on store own brand perceptions. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 10(6), 345-352.
Davies, G., & Brito, E. (2004). Price and quality competition between brands and own brands. European Journal of Marketing, 38(1/2), 30-55.
Dawar, N., & Parker, P. (1994). Marketing universals: Consumers’ use of brand name, price, physical appearance, and retailer. Journal of Marketing, 58(2), 81.
Guerrero, L., Colomer, Y., Guardia, M. D., Xicola, J., & Clotet, R. (2000). Consumer attitude towards store brands. Food Quality and Preference, 11(5), 387-395.
Hair, J. F., Black, W. C., Babin, B. J., Anderson, R. E., & Tatham, R. L. (2006). Multivariate data analysis (6th ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey Pearson Prentice Hall.
Herstein, R., & Gamliel, E. (2004). An investigation of private branding as a global phenomenon. Journal of Euromarketing, 13(4), 59-77.
Kapferer, J. N. (1986). Beyond positioning: Retailer‘s identity. Retail Strategies for Profit and Growth, 167-175.
Martenson, R. (2007). Corporate brand image, satisfaction and store loyalty: A study of the store as a brand, store brands and manufacturer brands. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 35(7), 544-555.
Martineau, P. D. (1958). The personality of the retail store. Harvard Business Review, 36, 47-55.
Myers, J. G. (1967). Determinants of private brand attitude. Journal of Marketing Research, 73-81.
Porter, S. S., & Claycomb, C. (1997). The influence of brand recognition on retail store image. Journal of Product and Brand Management, 6, 373-387.
Prendergast, G. P., & Marr, N. E. (1997). Generic products: Who buys them and how do they perform relative to each otherEuropean Journal of Marketing, 31(2), 94-109.
Richardson, P. S. (1997). Are store brands perceived to be just another brandJournal of Product and Brand Management, 6, 388-404.
Richardson, P. S., Jain, A. K., & Dick, A. S. (1996b). The influence of store aesthetics on evaluation of private label brands. Journal of Product and Brand Management, 5, 19-28.
Sethuraman, R. (2003). Measuring national brands’ equity over store brands. Review of Marketing Science, 1.
Simmons, C. J., Bickart, B. A., & Buchanan, L. (2000). Leveraging equity across the brand portfolio. Marketing Letters, 11(3), 210-220.
Sinha, I., & Batra, R. (1999). The effect of consumer price consciousness on private label purchase. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 16(3), 237-251.
Vahie, A., & Paswan, A. (2006). Private label brand image: Its relationship with store image and national brand. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 34(1), 67-84.
Vaidyanathan, R., & Aggrawal, P. (2000). Strategic brand alliances: Implications of ingredient branding for national and private label brands. Journal of product and brand management, 9(4/5), 214-228.

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Free Essays

Investigate the impact of brand association on consumer perception in tourist attractions in UK

ABSTRACT

Modern marketing has evolved. Companies are now with their new consumer-focused approaches to skills to the many needs and desires of modern consumers. Under this approach, consumer branding emerged as one of the most important activities to build a loyal customer base and establish an effective brand image.
The main purpose of this research is the most important impact of branding on consumer purchasing decisions based study. In addition, the author will determine the extent of correlation between the activities of surfing and buying behavior of consumers, and in view of the most important features and values, branding, companies may, in relation to the management of our valued customers by offering the often complex process of purchase decision. The author has to study the example Legoland UK as a real life, as leading companies in the United Kingdom ‘matches these concepts to use.
Through the use of different methods of data collection and analysis for the external and internal factors, which used to take the brand in the UK to the author noted that Legoland come to the improvement and expansion focused to meet the brand to the learning process, settings development process and the perception of consumers in the UK market for future market development. It has Legoland UK secured more than 50% market share in the UK. This success is the use of branding to the loyal and sometimes fanatical supporters of the beloved brand building will be attributed.
This dissertation has found that branding a major influence on learning and behavior educational process in which consumers purchase occur the activities. As a direct result, consumers are meaningful link to an image, brand or company, leading to sustainable revenue and long-term satisfaction of consumer needs and requirements.

CHAPTER 1

INTRODUCTION

1.1 BACKGROUND

There are few ways to describe brand can be express as a name symbol or combination or design of which is anticipated to point out the goods and also the service of the particular seller and the group which is for differentiate from competitors (Kotler 1991; p.442) these are the different characters of brand which we can call the brand identities and their entirety “the brand”. Something which is correlated to a particular brand in customer intelligence is known as brand association (Aaker 1991). The first notion of brand association is disclosed by Anderson in (1983:75) in the book architecture of cognition theory there is collection of complete form commemoration. These representations consist of nodes stand for thoughts accumulate in long-standing remembrance. These nodes are interrelated with connections of different controls, depends on the closeness of thought to which they belong. A brand association is a component part related to a specific brand. Business researchers carry out brand image research; normally create a list of declarations which are supposed to generate the core types of potential brand associations in the marketplace. Subsequently they conclude that level to which customers think brands are connected with these declarations, with query similar to “I’m going to read you a list of things that people have said about different brands of [PRODUCT]. When I read each statement, I’d like you to tell me which brands come to mind” (see Barnard and Ehrenberg 1990).

In the sport perspective, hard-line game among two franchises which at the same time create the league product which is reasonable competition played among franchises leads to annual competition (Gladden and Funk, 2002). The brand structural design of clubs and scale among in the team can be state” branded house”. In a view brand house the top brand is especially interlink and rules main brands like virgin etc . House of brands also small link among master, major brands(Aaker and Joachimsthaler, 2000).

1.2 RESEARCH RATIONALE

Modern period shows basic transforms in the marketing approaches used by corporations looking for prolong viable benefit. Think of more recent moment changes, the counsels of markers that those gathered makes use of sustainable competitive advantage. Of these companies were preparing for acceptance of morals as well as social science learning ought to be done to collect and there was given to the understanding of consumer buying behavior to Corporate. Of the field to establish the study of these he appointed to seek the consummation of bond of “greatest of the factors, according to consumer behavior to be enrolled, the knowledge of, and learning by the senses are concerned.
Companies change in focus from the product / the acts of the consumer oriented marketing activities in the thanked markers is bent. The direct and therefore is attributed to the shirt, the crowd appreciates adds a lot more of consumers with respect to display the 4Ps (the price of a profit foster the place) and have continued to implement the three additional HP layout of the body, procedures and the people (Kotler, 1999). Current Trend forum homogeneous product they show a rich man, who says a few functional differences of athletes to be greater with high most of all the forum currently intends to competitive. In his low product differentiation will be straight at the top of which at close quarters in the market place of today, so technological development is the production and distribution of ways. This proceeds the capacity, is no new technological sustainable competitive advantage have been reduced product differentiation are hard: (Levitt, 1983, Kotler, 2000) that a right known by fire, and has emerged as the key contemporary and Marketing Council of the active time for hatred hendrerit great (Kotler, 2000). The symbols associated with the brand values and products mentioned reason for the difference that the experience of the Council of Princes, as doers of the main ways to imitate the works of the greatest in the morning from the purchasing behavior.
There is an example call to blow in a consumer purchases through the proposal, Legal branding exercise meal. Tips online, 230 are almost competitive sector in abundance, and expand its quiet, fast approaching. There is competition for power in the Tourism Forum. A position, but attraction tourist areas, near 8, will be part of the sovereignty of the forum% in Britain, 2005 (OCC, 2005.)
For example, the choice of purchasing a fire behavior of tourists to Britain is not a place for tourists.
Britain has one of the best known brands of toys in the world, but things are not good. For many years the leading brands in Europe, progress, promoting learning and development is playing with a statement that the “Food for the soul.” Project sell colored stones in 130 countries, and argued that, on average, every person on the planet has 52 stones. They were years of steady sales growth of over 50 years and saw the little plastic blocks competition. Today’s children grow up faster. Even if people recognize, some commentators thought they had lost their way in an attempt to solve the problem. After the company released its first loss in 1998, has negotiated lucrative tie-ins with Disney, Harry Potter and Star Wars. Over a million Lego Hogwarts Castle in September sold in the first two Harry Potter films came out, helping the company to profitability in 2001 and 2002, but the company was too dependent on the titles collapsed and sell again, if there is no sample box-office hit Harry Potter movie was released.
To achieve this second brand extension strategies do not want development, as well as products Galidor, a series of cartoons based on some brands criticized because the data did not have to open a game of fantasy that some brands, the brand manufacturers have been known performed by children. Four escape from a second fire in 1969 and replaced by others. But parents believe that it is now produced more than stone for children from 18 months to 5 years, and the brand, sales in the pre-market by half.
The first part is the known association with Anderson (1983:75) Food and drink in the book of knowledge is an explorer in the entire collection form of memory. Reproduction of the nodes is established through a number of reasons for the long memory. These centers are assembled with links to the various controls depends on the closeness of thought which they belong. These are known for the connection associated by some to turn to. Company researchers turn to research to bear the image index used to those things that were said to be able to create a brand and the types of basic compounds on the market. Then, they consider it to be a partner than in flat districts will of the said it seems like the torches of the question. I know nothing of list of things I see the marks of different was said to [Product] whereas, amid the want to read the opinions of you say, in the mind of come to do (see Barnard and Ehrenberg 1990). Perspective games leads the hard line between the disputing game franchise at the same time were playing with mastery is a covenant between the product must be franchise (2002 and gladdened with the Funk) to annual competition. The structural design of the brand and scale associations in the state of team can be “the house of noted. Of the house of the coast of Italy to the brand and top brand and the particular which he rules and that the virgin of greater than the torches, etc. of the house of Brands also small link in the The Lord hath done greater (Thale, Aaker and Joachim, 2000)

1.3 PROJECT AIM AND OBJECTIVES

The primary objective of this study is to outline the basis that the brand loyalty plays important role in brand selection and how the different aspects control the brand loyalty. This research also examines that whether brand associations produce an impact on the buying assessment power of customers with respect to tourism industry of UK. As well as this research also determines that trust and dedication towards the brands influence on the consumer perception.

This study established the impact of brand association; different types of brand associations in different businesses have been studied. The impact on customers have been analyzed depend upon on dissimilar criterion and the category of brand association with the maximum impact on customer awareness and buying process have been estimated.

As the author has recognized, the significance of understanding brand and the impact on modern date markets is very important to the fitness and enlargement of the majority of industry. To begin to understand consumer’s behavior in terms of branding, the aim of this work is to a deep understanding of the process and the attributes that customers evaluating the brands and what the key drivers to win brand loyalty. This will be brought into focus by a critical evaluation of how brand has used this process to secure an 80% market share in the tourism sector in the United Kingdom. The primary objective of this study is to outline the basis that the brand loyalty plays important role in brand selection and how the different aspects control the brand loyalty. This research also examines that whether brand associations produce an impact on the buying assessment power of customers with respect to tourism industry of UK. As well as this research also determines that trust and dedication towards the brands influence on the consumer perception.

This study established the impact of brand association; different types of brand associations in different businesses have been studied. The impact on customers have been analyzed depend upon on dissimilar criterion and the category of brand association with the maximum impact on customer awareness and buying process have been estimated.

Following are the aims and objectives of my research;

To investigate the impact of branding has on the buyer purchase decision-making possess by reviewing its exercise by tourists to persuade the buy decision-making procedure of clients in the tourist industry in the United Kingdom.

In order to set a valid and sustainable research to achieve a non-bias and accurate understanding on the topic in question;

To find the customers loyalty with the brand name and to investigate whether a correlation between consumer identities and perceived brand identities is present;

To investigate the impact of branding on the consumer purchase decision-making process in the UK;

Set a valid and lasting about a non-bias and accurate picture of the problem in issue;
Present the key concepts behind the brand, its values and its use in modern marketing campaigns through a review of current literature on the subject;
Determine whether there is a correlation between customer experience and brand identities available;
Determine the impact of branding on consumer purchase decision process;
Review current situation brand through the implementation of both external and internal analysis;
critically review the impact of branding on an evaluation of the use of branding its market presence in the tourism industry in Switzerland to secure.

1.4 STRUCTURE OF THE DISSERTATION

CHAPTER 1

This chapter provides an idea about the selected issue for the dissertation in addition to the background of the subject. That talk would highlight the concept of branding as well as the growth point of the period and with the increasing demands of the commercial atmosphere of the past were examined at the end of the goal and basic research.

CHAPTER 2

This chapter illustrates the educational arrangement, the diverse theoretical as well as research on the concept of brand loyalty and customer satisfaction information and presentation to describe them as representatives of specific brand. First, to begin the call with detailed literature and provides quite unlike the rest of unequal model and approach to branding.

CHAPTER 3

That section examines the process of gathering information and examines the command mode in response to research applications, and address of the rewards of basic research. This chapter will begin with the beginning of the research process, and will talk about a lot of research philosophy and concepts. There will be more than proper study plan plus how facts are admitted.

CHAPTER 4

This section is concerned with the gathering of facts and its examination. We shall discuss the findings and the analysis of our research.

CHAPTER 5

This part is related to a final part of dissertation with conclusion and recommendations.

In the end there will be the list of references used in the dissertation.

CHAPTER 2

LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1 INTRODUCTION

In this chapter the author is discussing the prior work completed on the given subject. There shall be a best be understood, he intends to those who read different species and also the saw, and of those of consumers of knowledge change in the Purchase a teaching. The Little Chapter under the Murphy’s (1992) findings in the writings of to treat of the products, the less is seen, acceptability Tomorrow about the brand and sheep grows more dangerous and Offers.

2.2 THE INTELLECT BRANDING


A lucid approaching in the description of brand and, within the first to declare it must be noted that this literature. This is the review “products”. With respect to the Baker (2000) can be considered as the product of something which able to please the financial, psychological, or by necessity the power of functional meals.
Baker (2000) favors the definition of as much as should be noted that a “product” meets the necessary steps to above is determined from the “value. Complex process it is often the saw a lot of concerns by the divine most of all the nature of modern competitive Industries. He led the fight to the product offering that distinction and more of a difficult case 1, chap. To this approach the general problem to be used to the brand and highlight the Far and wide the societies of the tool and more in their products are filled: the marketplace. It allows organizations to the present core abilities, which have a function of consumers (Prahalad and Hamel, 1994).

In last markers, the very moment a company of the trunk distinguishes Products for sale (Levitt, 1983). If some tourist attraction, see an example of: Many say, to remove and markers have allowed the art-oriented market his or break into the market also the presence of the big marketplace. But other Do you believe this shift there was nothing new, but with the help the efficient money now effective brand and image. Thinking that brand has always been at the forefront of creative Advertising to the arts as a censure of custom advertising stunts like the “1984” commercial way of thinking, “Diverse Remember tourist attraction” of the war, the more recent commercial featuring to be done.

2.3 THEORIES ABOUT BRAND

What is the brand and accuratelyKotler (1999) terms is defined as the name of the brand and the shape of a sign or Device or what a thing of the same ensure that the goods / or of one or adorn identify the seller Group to bring up the difference and are of their competitors. “Wickius Field (1995) promotes the concept of a difference, Kotler (1999) I compare to the brand and sense of touch” hoped for the famous indicator of origin, and the promises the effect. In her Research she treats at length the comparison of consumer product and that the instrumental and the Branding positioning to the oblations of the process and the circumstances of their own social. She takes up that a mark of the multitude of untouched considers the fact I will guarantee to meet the consumer the expectation of. So much restricts the above literature, the impact of brand from the Consumer than the particular, the interpretation of belongs to the brand and their person will result from each. MacRae (1996)
But she rolled away the element of which introduces additional sword of the essence, which defines the or as the soul of your very reasons. MacRae (1996) support the definition of the age of twelve his flock when a man of so great a view as the element of Pellentesque of consumers, since each is equally important. This justifies the Information of this, console each element of, and / or adorn the position of the products of the forum is not directly society. That idea of the notion of which there is a clear brand and between drove the internal Working the fellowship of the exterior of the world to the brand and their consumers.
If some brand searches, it is easy MacRae’s (1996) Definition I see them in practice. The Note: relaxed and welcoming atmosphere branded Stores’ learned to be produced Position: who must all be in the discipline of the dispenser of the manual, which increases the power of Position: The moment of sharing the same commitment to match consumer brand and in order that. It allows Position: as to be wholly and consuming ullamcorper: and both are into the place of tourist attraction the matter of learning to the hotspot 16 35 forum, the year of the segment (Bajarin, 2005).

Branding Modern creature is untouched by the values of the good things of the material so the purchaser of the lowest costs of brand and of discretion required by another (Hanks and alarm, 1993). Reader, observe that which separates the faculty, especially S sword is “pure” product. The King, (1991) He adopts this from the work and the definitions of product- be better to competitors as we can readily express. The King, (1991) is to apply his making clear that a sword of the Award as it is a unique and untouched asset eternity. This he sets down a simple but powerful is the definition of a brand core identity of the meals. Kotler (1999) was conceived by the identity of matic can convey to us by recalling it known to the signification of the other six degrees of the target group. This is called the “six things are noticed the measure of Note: The ” Kotler’s (1999) the intellect you need for the saw can be seen in the middle of Ground between MacRae (1996) and Wickius’s Field (1995) school of thought. However, Kotler’s original simple definition seems to be clear, the definitions of the diverse opinions of spread of the Dimensions of the torches of a deeper understanding of which it can so much the brand and
than the symbols of catchy slogan in deliberation. Kotler provides for the creation of brand and
fellowship with the deep connection between the consumers.

2.4 BRAND MANAGEMENT

Considered in context, the basic are the names of the brand and consumers as soon as he is in Month by month, the process of editing a great quality and as guarantee for a time HIL Self-has been said. Therefore, the ball is nothing known to the forum to name than that of regular the name of the, it would be missing all the good pleasure to turn to the artist. It has challenged to Spermatophyta known to the series of deep meanings. In former times the target segment of can he expected all the forum Mark the dimensions of the six have established a strong relation within the Consumer Purchase a teaching.
Keller is founded in the 1993 Consumer salvation of Fire showing of his justice; the same produce a different effect, because the cognition of a note of the forum added Tomorrow the price of a reply. Plus some other things out of the two, it may all command is part of the brand and the censure of value brand and image data. brand and the knowledge of the shape of the plague in diameter genius of the intellect of Shem the situation in various (Percy, 1987) to lay down the image of Brand “It is also the number of the marks of a group of two in diameter to turn to the memory of associations (Keller 1993) in the context of an intelligent associations known to differ in function the price of Strength (Kaynak 2008).
Keller of the stock of associations in the brand and the three principal Categories: the Internet, usefulness and entertainment. Attributes are expressed glorify in writing the trademark a, as what it is to brand and from the Customer to consider, or. Opinion of each one interests to join together the jaws of a man that the properties torches to wait for jaws Mark all media. Brand was the rating for the most part known to the Status. According to Aaker (1996) these associations, and develop the trial is done, that He generates the element of key principles of equity point to create brand and Manage. Korchia (1999) recognizes 15 kinds of associations: the company to turn to other institution or by Custom persons to attribute things good for the typical consumers, the condition of typical usage of mass communication have the price of product quality, supply-related nature of the product, the benefits of an experimental functional advantages, with the advantages and the representatives of your entering. He was made to the quality in the accidents that product features. Product features are good as a reasonable benefits it is attached. Numerous works of various product groups joined to the torches of different characters. That by the carnal Volvo is the force of quality, but a BMW described according to the power and of administering the vehicle. Likewise of him is suitable to do the typical shampoo would make use of every day.
The other kind is a companion to the use of or known to regard the relevance depends either upon. is joined to, for instance, brand and quality of the hot tea of meeting friends of a private environment. That is to start or expand the use of day after the dinner, and after the meal with the guests, and / or day.

2.5 BRAND ASSOCIATION

Function is central to the faculty of the saw to the Lobortis of consumers. From the of complexity, to choose produces a similar oblations to the thousands of consumers to be of their own accord they try to excessive reading torches occur those which at that time. Assael (1993) by stating that the reason he favors the position of consumers, especially the participation of humble approach that they once is heavy to the use of trying to choose the Product that their current meals. And you shall know this from experience; pleasing to in times past confers benefit itself of the brand and consumers to join together. The Turks from the central Function is the saw of his power to deny the consumer information is to be sought, or a deficiency of the work is acknowledged, but by the sign which lead him to a have been enough the past.
It is necessary but to know the purchase is not always known to frequent in conjunction experience of the embedded is formed it can be otherwise the perceptions. From the consumer known to the benefit of a lot of to be able, without prior experience to buy Tomorrow and this Author ‘s character, contrary to the advertising campaigns, for filthy nakedness Corporate PR work or with the intention of the deep on the threshing floor of the place near the distribution Tomorrow at hand (Assael, 1998).
For to the partnership in the context of brand and can be the cause of differentiation to their natural ‘I give will eventually Deals in the state of competitive advantage. After Adcock (1998) the differentials of the process of creation of several individual differences, as we separately the flag products himself. That the quality of the single determine the quantity is called the “Spermatophyta., When all these men shall see it to the partnership of the higher prices demanded. Necessary things it is noted, however, that the difference is made at a price. Therefore, only the difference suffers the price of competitive advantage if the differential increases significantly within the Sales. Differential advantage they had offered troops, he is now doing other things according to competitors in the same market.

For example in the case of tourist industry competitor can easily capture customer with brand name. But Competition will be able, that a person, which is conjoined copy for the Mark
Just tourist attraction. Porter (1980) says that the cities of the moment of differentiation of the most important are required for the proper acquisition of “competitive to make fit, has been said in the Industry by differentiating their product line. If market segment players do nothing Differential advantage would have been, perhaps, are concerned with consuming to establish Pricing. (Foxall and Goldsmith, 1994). Branding, not a single view of the differentials, as can be had with the clash in the execution of the markers from the 4Ps Mix (Diaz out of the Rada, 1998). But the studies we have shown that more effectively and that the counsel of sustainable easily accesses some society is Focus brand and the process of differentiation than that Lobortis otherwise Pricing Profitability to get the (East 1997).

2.6 THE DEVELOPMENT OF BRAND EQUITY

After a desperate conflict of another the torches vary. Some into the interior of global culture, and for that reason the great honor of from the value, some to strangers about the consumers. In an attempt to put I accounted known, is called the sword of the value. Chay (1991) is defined as Brand was so great that from the set of behavior on the part of associations’s known to the throat, a vein of And he suffered Members of the parent brand and the standard of quantity or greater merit Margins which he might be known to the brand without a name to give to them is strong and sustainable Differential competitors any more (Chay, 1991, p.30). 30, makes clear link between the value of the product, that it may be a monetary fine or untouched by the name of this and his familiar. Aaker (1991) promotes the issue is in delves be preferred or from which the perspectives View brand equity. These include the financial perspective and the consumer-based and finally, his Perspectiva, known to the extension to perspective.

Finance officer is a view of value brand and how much do we measure to be determined of consumers wanted to solve about the mark. Will he give him sometimes signify the financial perspection ibus apart from the mark. With the just perspective, looking from the known to the One must consider, indeed, the head, as the expenses of advertising.

The consumer-based perspective is we should consider the have brought you the wealth of a certain Consumer affection of a sign directly. In this regard as is Let us giving a great experience in the consumer is being done for my family.

View brand and brand extension includes the extension of perspective is do you believe that Brand it is worth immersion pad for the beginning of product range wide. If view, any brand, the success of product most of all in on high the value of the brand and known chiefly through his brand and image. After Alreck and Settle there (1999) and develop brand and change the value of the critical, as his as far as the goods of reach can be considered as equity to turn you assert that all they can to increase cash flow in of the increase of the upper column, the forum of the Pricing of the solution.

2.7 THE COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE TO TURN TO FAITH

Meenaghan (1995) to be found by observing thrift among the tangible image of an efficient Product or purpose, and is for a declaration known to the faith of consumers. This Faith is thus defined by Oliver (1999) that it should rebury the root of either the study of repatronize the product of the product / service in the future by constantly repeating the or the same brand, bought the same brand he set flows into the courts of law, even if the labor of situational though the cause of switching the power of acting (Oliver, 1999, p.34).
Of thoroughly sifting the berries in the (1999) it can be concluded that the faith of brand and out of a right can be sufficient for the needs of a better greater than the athletes, doing the jaws. Therefore, Oliver he sets down the degree of being understood can be made simple, estimate natures in another forum, pellentesque consumer segment. Based on this concept Smart and Getting (1998) whether we undertake the thing to them suggesting that it is not uncommon products in irrational attachments to men than the people. It occurs to Levitt (1983), but Findings to us in the form of attachments to certain consumer products so that’s out of a right to find a company of the union between the studies tried to create of consumers. This links principally through creation is lead from the strain gives Species product, design and the end of the product packaging, and / or identity of the same known to be emulated. Coupled with the authority of the past to which he suffers more serious than From the Consumer, Levitt (1983) even exist at all not irrational consumer a seminal certain signs of plants at all. That follows, noting that, which to be this is the key attributes of competitive advantage from the competitive without these, they pricing would be the only use of a doer of the distinction of the Orders of consumers offers.
Now it is clear that the marketer is to build a sustainable modern primary goal Forms of faith between the jaws of his comrades, which, exclusive of each sales products. According to Oliver (1999), who is a faithful Welcome with the additional commitment in his own time and towards the expenses of producing his own brand of Hammer blowsIf you look fresh, together with his brand could have been Customer immediately see the twinkling of a faith. And yet playable and offer only the list Hello world! Is, and Store Sales represents 80% of branded furm, Britain
(Smith 2005). And yet a new report has always consistently tries to he neglected the rest of the maiden entrants Remains at the onset of the fidelity of tourist attraction. (Smith 2005) this is the true life of example is thrown back by Alreck’s were sitting (1999) to write the doctrine of the opinions. The relationship between a brand and pertain to the faith of consumers came to be the establishment of a strong link between the morrow, and the mark. If they use the sustainable isolate and that obedience can be a rival of competition to be created. Or the strength of brand and trademark is had, what, where, after “Consumer franchise,” This is not how many expand the faithful, nor any man would make EU will deny a rival brand and products (alia, of whatever Pricing policies) have attained had decreed in number. Cox And according to Kotler (1980) and Cowley (1996) sheaves Tomorrow a strong franchise is a degree of isolation from the use of competitors Impact damage of selling and promoting the financial products a new Tomorrow as is reckoned may be pleasing to the protection of the faithful than six times he returned Customer database. (And Thakor Kohl, 1996).
To focus on the things which, according to customer faithful be able to include other benefits increased Brand societies of the faith through the value becomes the tenor of these presents a number dispensed and experienced Customer an expeditionary force strategic consequences of the forum part of his master a special focus of Industry (Cowley, 1996, Kapferer, 1995, Kotler, 1999). Dun (1997) and Chevron (1998) Suggest and the moderns who according to search marketing collected at the least, the habit of consumer information can be. The container is connected the state of the quest that will eventually lead companies of their information into which we are to instruct tailored to specific need of consumers bought from the considered wishes to Sc. Graham (2001) presents more profitable things, product believes Add to Cart critical victory, he said to the brand and is the efficient management to such an extent by a certain brand and Tomorrow the whole is not the segment of the marketplace. This can be illustrated through a comparison of the legal branded meals. If some think of tourism, that the fact that the quality of brand through the head of a flash of lightning, and some perceive it, otherwise, with the participation of the online store with a great content provider and limited.

2.8 BRANDING BEHAVIOR

Section has reviewed previous letter that the reason it is asked to define receives the to explain and the offices of instrumentally good marketing tool used consequences of the differential and competitive advantage. To give light to the section of this letter it will endeavor of their beds, were struck with brand and consumer has in a teaching. The author of he wanted to effect through the use of consumer models of deliberation the university. But first of all we must gain a clear insight in the definition of consumer behavior to purchase were struck with them to understand is a good cheer.
In the defining character of the buying of the people can be Assael (1987) the four different Buying kinds of behavior to consumers. This carries into the four species of Consumer and the various degrees of involvement in the interval between the torches he concludes. Of consumers to buy in order to represent the opinions of complex behavior are described to extend their respect to the species, so that the beginning of product. This phase will eventually develop leads the habit of a positive to the product. These are the take to the time of the middle degree the last the form of ways to the election of knowing where he bought the work.
With respect to the example of Assael, you will see the consumer of this kind, takes part in most of all the amount of experience of acquiring of them full of torches available to escape from the knowledge of the various degrees of Differences there.
Assael (1987) classified consumer-consuming to show difference about the habit of reducing, upward in the use of shopping matters not, but to consider the difference of the torch. Hence, information for consumers, seeking the difference between the product presents is the sensitive power is not enough prices, even out of some. In this case the Consumer is turned in the forum so that the difference of this was not enough, and Consumer grace, could advantage in buying. As consumers, propose complex buying behavior of consumers with the dissonant-behavior to create by reducing attention to the personal opinions of the product. If sufficient, when, indeed, in short, this Status is transformed to the product offerings. These would instantly have a favorable result, mindful of acquire.
Assael (1987) were consumed to consider the common habit of consumers to buy to suffer is not the same on the kinds of the order of the former. According to their own trying to Seeking justice, according to the product information from all of the functionality or Properties, Consumer Sales Information of this kind are founded by a bed in a passive The banner of the very Promotional activities through the medium of television, radio or print Advertising. In this character as the Assael’s (1987) model to be able it seems, the humility of-level Investment products. This difference is consumer-type that the process of already trusting in a passive way than to have learned the heads of the embedded actively.
Variety of character-are the kites give the changes of last Assael’s (1987) model are contained. Typical of them Purchase the situation sorted to show low-level exposure to a forum with a great
Product difference. At the same time consumer of this kind and its point switching “to atisfy the diversity of their work. Now, we have completely which has been wounded to the reader to determine the brand and the sentence has in the consumer The author of the process model for making the decision of the Academy elected who has not only explains the process of consumer make judgments who do one thing understood, bought, aid to and out of the post-and pre-purchase the operation. So I bequeath to the author of Howard Seth- Seth, for making the decision and the example of Howard (1969).
To the copy of the key assumption is that the key is to determine the character of the published of consumers is to understand consumer for reflection. The Howard Seth-model he shows the cognitive process of deliberation is the process by which the spiritual consuming Information super, that he who causes to the flames. Uses to this investigation, and this page was last focus of the author’s copy of the three variables, because on the tops of relevance To determine the effect of deliberation in the saw some consumer.

2.9 CHANGE IN THE PROCESS OF THE DOCTRINE OF CONSUMER

The definition of in the most simple, to define the doctrine of the time of the process of Tomorrow Welcome in this respect they or the product exposed to methods of meals. The Branding all he can comprehend the process of advertising the appearance of counsel, between the audiovisual Forms of advertising. By learning from the authors of whether it be a conscious or not of the process, known to be explained consuming a strong affection. For sometimes, very thing, your soul is great brand. The doctrine of change in the process grows, because it himself. Consuming, with the vicarage the beginning of the Excellency of knowledge Copy the character changes his colleagues to think of his life, nib, which have learned to “vicarious” (Bandur, 1977) Looking at the tourism Industry may fight you to understand why the consumer he wished to reward a branded Store to say if he himself is able to get the same at a distance to set free, the file-sharing software that is. A brand name’s is the use of celebrities’ credence to the motion by consuming his lieutenant, the essence of each letter Login Celebrities who offers the services and in patience, family members, have introduced the product and (Thurrott, 2004).
Search for the consumer of the Academy can learn to view prices on the process to understand how the Tomorrow behavior to a change from the direct are exemplary and the last two Experience gathered by the corruption of buying, or information of any Likewise the sentence. This modification of the information is to do, that a series of especially in order to be saved significant sense of consumer associations. (Dodd, 1991). Foxall and Goldsmith (1994) hints at the next to it which was above offer the consumer associations Link who had enjoyed the image of the iron tools were known in relation to offer more advanced Promotional Brand image. And these are understood by any of physical and produced Pricing Lobortis. All the elements of the stock of retained from the consumer are open to study in detail some. “Well now is the form of Views and habits that link to torch.
It was found a letter from the Catalyst process he deals with in the creation of the said The evaluation of the responses of passion. By clinging to the consumer of memory is Span into the mind thee, when I will purchase some are opposed to. Thus, Let not the partaking at times the very process of the doctrine of the use of the key of effectively seeking to Philips The reason for consuming a weight that he created imprinted on the soul of consumers be recalled after the brand and the product of the election or (Conoway, 1994)

2.10 THE TORCHES OF THE PERCEPTION OF CHANGE IN THE CONSUMER

There is no refer Foxall (1980), where he defines the perception of the angels as “the process by which the stimulus, received and interpreted, and from the particulars in reaction, be the (Foxall, 1980, P.29). This is a great, to acknowledge the singular individually but in the process of Let not the partaking depends much upon the devouring a turn of the beliefs of individuals.
Foxall (1980) says of the perception of crucial importance to judge some. In which forum Branding used to be bought not only the products that in his own functional but For the first in the social identity in forcing out some of the psychological (Foxall, 1980). From all this he can work out these concepts can be conceived by two of determining the outlined Tomorrow to move to the perception of the fires. There are a sting of discrimination and their General and the stimulus, (Erde 1998).
Erde (1998) raise the question the fundamental, or whether, the opportunity of Consumer
“The Distinction of” between the various uses in the consumer to challenge. His results should show that the Customer if the brand and was introduced is, whether advertising, packaging, word, a finite markers of the mouth, or in any way affected by the stings of the rendering of the sentence Damage grow to the brand and the sublimity of the knowledge of all his abilities to learn.

SUMMARY

In assessing the attitudes towards brands, we must consider whether all of these settings on a conscious level or position, the branding can be on a subconscious level to stay again. Vecchio (1992) Sigmund Freud’s theory describe that individuals are aware of a rare occurrence, as are their psyche, their visual behavior. This suggests that to have an unconscious level, the consumer can beliefs, their attitudes toward products form. By recognizing Freud’s theories can be concluded that unconscious desires peace focused branding used on a primordial level. This may explain, to understand the primary use of sexual imagery, or the frequent use of age discrimination to the target customer segments to associate with certain brands. Brands as well execute precious roles for organizations. Firstly, they make simpler manufactured goods usage or tracing. Brands assist to systematize records and book-keeping records. A brand as well recommends the organizational official defense for distinctive characters or features of the product. The brand name can be sheltered throughout scheduled trademarks; manufacturing procedures can be defended through patents; and wrapping can be protected through copyrights and plans.

CHAPTER 3

METHODOLOGY

3.1 INTRODUCTION

In order to understand the methodology for the preparation of this work, in this chapter to determine how effective methodical philosophy can contribute to the successful production of a unbiased and critical dissertation process and undergo recorded by understanding where to relevant conclusions detailed in Chapter 5 to achieve. This section focuses on the purpose and authentication of the research conducted by the righteous is used to set goals and answer the central question of this work to comply.
The study design could be, depending on the choice of research approaches, either in real or experimental research. When research is still at an experimental stage, may also confirmed by the study’s design. It requires a large number of pre-think what and how research is done. Knowing what will happen, you must start the process of collecting data during the evaluation process. (Robson, 2002).
But it was not wrong with the company’s design for the real world, when researchers have a conceptual framework or theory developed so that you know in advance what to look for, and pilot projects to build what intensification is possible ‘(Robson 2002). And if the real world of survey research is a more flexible design would fit. The flexible design enables researchers to design research, work and “data collection and analysis of stranded ‘(Robson 2002). E Flexible pre is not as rigid as they take too much of the technical research.
Many authors define “research” should “be interpreted as an active, diligent and systematic process of research to discover and / or revision must be done. And this spiritual research to better understands the events, behaviors, or theories and practical applications to support these facts, laws or theories. The term is often used to study a collection of information on a specific theme to describe. ”

3.2 RESEARCH APPROACH:

The survey approach is mainly inductive, to see in writing a detailed analysis of the literature and depth of field, such as the impact of the mark in the process of consumer choice, rather than to test the hypothesis that understanding the pre-market schedule.
There was the possibility of a deductive approach, using a preconceived hypothesis testing is complete. “Now, however, that the extent of the studies focusing too much on speculation and not enough on other factors that may influence consumer choice. Studying means something to collect, produce and transmit knowledge about the subject studied. (Robson 2002) is both quantitative methods, qualitative methods were used to select one or both, depending on the object and purpose of the study.
Quantitative methods are commonly used when the study area can be measured, and the answers will be achieved through rational analysis. The method of rational analysis helps answer the issues examined. Although these methods can be useful tools for studying certain aspects of society, there are aspects that are difficult to study with these methods.
Qualitative methods are reflective and descriptive quantitative methods. Every phenomenon is considered to be formed by a unique combination of qualities and characteristics. Qualitative methods can interpret various phenomena and studied to better understand the problem. However, these methods have been criticized for being too subjective, which means that data collection and analysis of material depends largely on individuals. Choosing which method is dependent on the purpose and intent of the study concerned. (Robson 2002).
Since the survey is an attempt to better understand the motivations of individuals and subjects, the qualitative method is important for the study. It is a thoughtful approach, and thus a better understanding of the region. Another reason that the qualitative method is better, the problem is likely that there are often initially used in research if the issue of research is an important area of quantitative method is often when some problems were designed to test various hypotheses. (Dickson 1973)

Qualitative and quantitative research methods complement each other, despite their obvious differences. That can be considered as a continuum from purely quantitative to purely qualitative slightly from the fusion center. To control the two survey methods can be used in a project, either simultaneously or in absolute tranquility. That way you can get more information than with only one method and qualitative research with quantitative data to support. It is important to determine which methods are best suited to the specific needs of each study, to examine in detail the various comparisons between the two methods. Definitions of qualitative research is often blurred at best, if not vague, evasive and at worst. Problems arise because the field of qualitative research is very broad, so the definition extremely difficult if not impossible. Firestone A (1987) argue that qualitative methods, which are built in a post-positivist, phenomenological view of the world, and assume that “reality socially constructed through individual or collective definition of the state.” (Firestone 1987).
Firestone contends that the purpose of this research is to understand the current situation with regard to participants. It concludes that it is important for researchers “is immersed in the phenomenon of interest.”
“In quantitative research focused on collecting data to give reliable answers to important questions in detail so the reader is referred to. The typical qualitative study proto is ethnography, the reader’s understanding of the definition of these studies help the situation.” (WA Firestone 1987) Preissle Judith (2002) agreed that the summary of qualitative research is virtually nonexistent. Preissle recognize that qualitative research is also under other names, such as interpretive research, naturalistic research, phenomenological research, descriptive research known.
Qualitative research is a not-clearly-defined categories of research studies or models, all designed to elicit verbal, visual, tactile, olfactory and taste in the form of descriptive narratives as field notes, recordings or other transcriptions from audio and videotapes and other written texts and pictures or movies. (J. Preissle 2002) Qualitative methods have gained importance over the last ten years. Many researchers have already earlier quantitative research that were not, ie a reverse or find an alternative method of study. Recently, it was considered as a complement to quantitative research and as a direct result of increased importance in research management.
He argues that in practice depends largely on many seemingly quantitative data collected about how he grew, harvested when they were raised and from whom collected. “He has, however, that these data are still considered quantitatively if the type of distortion unambiguously when (usually by statistical tests) can be found or that the distortions tend to offset each other, so find fault definition tends to cancel or that bias is reliable (repeatable) or with special characteristics (quantitative measures), the differences in means and methods of collection. (David R. Harvey, 2002).

3.3 RESEARCH PHILOSOPHY

There are two types of research philosophies;
Positivism and

Phenomenology

3.3.1 POSITIVISM

Positivism defines as the only provable fact is valid knowledge. The basic principle of positivism is that all factual knowledge is based on the “positive” information gained from such experiences, and ideas that are everywhere in this area of demonstrable fact metaphysical. It is a position that the purpose of knowledge only to the phenomena we experience is indescribable. The aim of science is simply what we can observe and measure stick. Knowledge of everything would also keep a positivist, is impossible. Forms of Positivism include:
Social Positivism
Critical Positivism

Logical Positivism

3.3.2 PHENOMENOLOGY:

Phenomenology is a movement in philosophy that has been adapted by some sociologists to understand the relationship between the states of individual consciousness and social progress to investigate. As an approach to sociology, phenomenology is to show how human consciousness is involved in the production of social action, social situations and social worlds.
It is the knowledge that was discovered through an open, impartial description of the experience, without reason or explanation. In the 18th Century, German-Swiss mathematician and philosopher Johann Heinrich Lambert in the description of his theory of knowledge that would distinguish the truth from illusion and error is used. Phenomenological researchers often research on small groups, social situations and organizations through face-to-face techniques of participant observation.
Researchers decided to participate in two philosophies for the efficient use of study results. First, with a philosophy of positivism is in the sense that compliance with the social reality in terms of the impact of branding to consumers in a real-life market performed. Researchers is also a form of realist philosophy that those who want the external conditions, the causes of the most influential and behavioral characteristics of the consumer to understand the attractions to be understood.

3.4 RESEARCH STRATEGY

The Auteur approaches to the study and basically inductive in the sense that verify the presence of a literary work and see the complete in-depth analysis of the sector, the author, the effects of branding on consumer choice even buy, but see preconceived assumptions.
The Auteur has used the possibility of a deductive approach, in which tijdperk preconceived hypothesis. However, according to the Auteur This is the scope of the review should be limited by creating the ideas too, and not enough on other factors that influence the process can affect consumer choice.
The purpose of this research is among other things, they are met. According to McGee P (2005) strategy of basic research is usually assumed that if the study plan, it is better to know general information komen practical research is considered the start of the strategy and the provision of special circumstances. Qualitative research is the plan, which has often emphasized the words to some extent to the collection and analysis of information provided. (Brymer and Bell, 2003-2004).
In this study, the qualitative aspects of the research have allowed a further effect, because it is the subject of high quality research. Designed and certified annual reports of companies with a variety of magazines and media, magazines, etc. Keep Hold survey for this study. Because it is known that qualitative research tends een provide a wide range of research material.

3.5 DATA COLLECTION TECHNIQUE

According to Denscombe (2000-2001, p 83-158) these are the main methods for data collection; they are as follows:

Questionnaires
Interviews
Observation
3.5.1 ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF QUESTIONNAIRES INTERVIEWS AND OBSERVATION

Quantitative researchers seek to identify and cut some variables in a study to find, connections and causal relationships. We tested the environment in which data are collected to reduce the risk of other variables that prevention of a study to reduce protection, accounting for the observed correlations. Control (Rowan 1981). The data collected in natural resources. Care and the significance of data collection is controlled at the time of the survey.
According to the above advantages, says the research is useful for the interview, because researchers can benefit from access to information, because the category of people, the researchers were able to speak to win, and even the nature of the information given us. The researchers had to convince the right people when it comes to all organizations that study. It has been very difficult to get the right answers to the questions.
The approach of this project is the qualitative research that the reason the data cannot be used. Lack of financial resources and lack of time, there was no way that the participants of the inspection could take place. The survey does not require practice; this is why natural objects are no longer used. The only way to test the hypothesis of talks is to examine the documents. The researchers used the method of paper.

3.5.2 JUSTIFICATION FOR MY CHOICE OF DATA COLLECTION

In this study, primary and secondary data used to meet the requirements of the investigation to complete. In this dissertation, the most important information is by conducting interviews and reports and using case studies. All types of data and information from magazines, books, essays, research reports, web sites and data collected by other researchers on the same subject was part of this research in the form of secondary data. Reaching the research depends on the number of cases, such as handling and precise explanation of the subject studied. Research is dedicated to the secondary information collected to concentrate.
This thesis research based on data, facts and figures and information from the website of the company and handouts to the background of the company, the researchers selected case study examples are the sources of some of the data and interview was also one of the sources of data. Researchers said it was the most appropriate method for research to better understanding and a deeper understanding of the objectives, strategies and expected benefits of CRM initiatives of organizations to bring.
Denscombe (2000-2001, p. 136) summarizes the advantages of the method of the interview as follows:

DEPNESS OF INFORMATION: Interviews aid to obtain the comprehensive information

INSIGHTS: The research individual is able to get very close information according to the data.

EQUIPMENT: There is no such device is necessary to perform Interviews.

FLEXIBILITY: Interview is the mainly flexible technique of data collection.
Researcher has used questionnaire on the impact of branding on consumer purchase decision process as he determine.

The main point during the data collection was to the right group of people to be found for questioning. For this purpose interviews were held to different people who had come to UK as tourists. A study done by two groups of respondents, Group A is a tourist attraction not included Store in the United Kingdom and the B group to others. Both groups of those involved are working together in the UK. There will be a study for her opinion about tourist attraction in UK and how their image affects their purchase decision. Critically evaluate external and internal environmental factors that the sights.
This will be achieved through the use of scientifically proven business models to the validity and reliability of data to ensure production.

WHO ARE MY PARTICIPANTS

The first part of the questionnaire covers the main demographic data from which the profile interview to be determined. The results were divided into two groups, users and non users of LEGOLAND UK. The sample size of each group was limited to 50 participants.
Looking at the profiles of respondents to a group, you may initially think that is favorable to a slight preference for men LEGOLAND brand. Clearly the goal is to age of 21 to 30, and both groups together, particularly complex types of buying behavior, suggesting that both groups actually have a set of beliefs and attitudes toward the brand and consequently chose whether or not the benefit of the trademark.

3.6 LIMITATIONS OF RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

Quantitative methods have an objective approach, where data is monitored and measured the accumulation of events, the causes of behavior. Where as qualitative methods are summarized data from a different angle and try to understand and sense that the center of the evolving and dynamic nature of reality to be found.
Quantitative researchers try to identify and isolate certain variables in a study of the connections, relationships and causality to be found. You try to protect the environment, where data are collected in order to reduce the risk variables, in addition to reducing the prevention of a study of the correlations are observed. Control (Rowan 1981). In contrast. Qualitative researchers, a more holistic approach and documentation of cases and observations and interviews to conduct your research data will be collected as part of the natural resources. Care and the importance of data collection is arranged at the time of the study.
According to the above benefits, the study is useful for the interview says, because researchers can benefit from access to information, because the category of people, the researchers needed a chance to speak, even the nature of the information we provide win. The scientists had to convince the right people when it comes to all the organizations I study. It was very difficult to get the right answers to questions.
The approach of this project is the qualitative research that the reason the files could not be used. Lack of financial resources and a lack of time, there was no way that the participant’s inspection and could be completed. The study does not include the practical requirements, so natural objects are no longer used. The researchers used the method of paper.
In this study the primary and secondary data on the needs of the investigation is complete. This position is the primary information gathered from interviews and reports using case studies. All kinds of facts and information, magazines, books, essays, research reports, websites and data from other researchers on this subject a part of this research was collected through secondary data. Reaching the research depends on the number of cases, including insider information and precise explanation of the case study. The study is determined to focus on secondary data collected.

CHAPTER 4

FINDING & ANALYSIS

4.1 INTRODUCTION

In the first three chapters of this thesis, the author relies on a sound basis for the issue of branding, value and many functional applications in a modern economy and eventually buys the theoretical implications of the decisions of consumers.
This review was published by the scientific research on the subject and puts it over is with real examples. To determine the impact of the brand in a real life consumer segments, the author makes a critical issue in evaluating the use of tourist trade mark after the purchase decision of consumers to influence the tourism sector in Great Britain.
This chapter is mainly divided into four parts. The first part determines the effect of branding on the two most frequent users of the brand and non-users of the British brand through the analysis from a questionnaire with two examples of groups, their brand UK customers and non customers.
The second part of this chapter deals with external factors to determine tourism brand. This allows the creator to decide how to make the approach to brand building set in relation to those external factors.
In section three of this chapter the author examines the internal factors that determine the process, the process of branding in relation to its internal capabilities and resources.
In the last section of this chapter, the author will determine how the process of branding by external and internal forces, and how in turn are affected will influence the consumer in the purchase decision.

4.2 LEGOLAND

The LEGO Corporation started in 1932 in Denmark, initiated to import the building blocks in the UK. During LEGO products in themes, have spread fresh colours and patterns, garments, accessories, multimedia magazines and interactive game – that stay an image of American toys. Families as well as kids love together as they aid children be trained and rise; those are amusing, imaginative and educational.
LEGO, through 81% share of the toy structure sets group, has begun a movement to mark the formation of a figure of famous trademark family, adults as well as kids in 2005. Due to the increasingly familiar as Disney and Coca-Cola, the company expects to triple sales. The key to this strategy is to alternate locations.
The first guests are a number of LEGO Stores Now the goal posts, like the Mall of the Americas in Minnesota and most recently in London, Blue water Park, this full range of products, and met many great features interactive and hands-on Fun both parents and children. LEGO is a way to allow consumers access to the values in A LEGO-safe, sustainable commercial retail. The stores are “a comprehensive expression of brand, AT-families much wider range than the LEGO brand is and what it can DOEN.” In addition, the Business in Minneapolis in total sales of the brand increased in the region. n even greater expansion of the LEGO brand door are three parks in Billund, Denmark (1968), Windsor, United Kingdom (1996) and AA-recently opened in Carlsbad, California (1999). The two most recent Parks justified by the A-Very modest return on investment for the park as an independent investment met the expectation of a larger, non-quantifiable return on the goodwill of consumers and the image and reputation. Each park is part of the availability of a suitable location, the expected growth and the economy. Although this park was designed by moose met a local style, fully developed experience – things do not die door of the room high-speed racing. The parks are less hurried and collecting power-packed items met die often in the A-Science Museum.
LEGOLAND Parks are more than a great potential to offer consumers their favorite brands realized experience for them. They expect to attract 1.8 million visitors in-the Park. The success of the park is in relation to the trademark in the United Kingdom, where sales of LEGO products have increased by 13% after the opening of the Windsor Park
Furthermore; Lego may want to extend the concept of visitors and opened the fourth park in the near future. With an aggressive goal is the development of Lego brand building Other attractions such as the A-Trip LEGO Adventure Ocean Museum, which now exhibited in the Brooklyn Museum for children and a game room at the Oakland A’s stadium working to meet the Red Sox for a permanent exhibition and promotional tie-in to develop the Red Sox met.

4.3THE QUESTIONNAIRE

The following section presents the findings from the questionnaire distributed. In the analysis, the author seeks to highlight how legoland’s means of branding has affected both users and non-users of the tourists in UK.

4.4 RESPONDENT PROFILE

The first part of the questionnaire focuses on the key demographic data from which the respondent profile to determine. The results were divided in two groups, users and non users of legoland UK. The number of samples of each group was limited to 50 participants.
In the first group are the users that make up 67% of men, a male-oriented test group with 45% in the age of 21, 30 The dominant behavior of the consumer to the users of the LEGOLAND brand complex Buying Group to examine closely followed were available through the purchase. Followed for the second group of non-users, this sample group of mainly women, 58% with the majority were aged 21 to 30 largest consumer behaviors for this group through the complex Buying Group, followed closely by Dissonance reducing buying behavior type.
Looking at the profiles of respondents in a group, you can first see that a slight preference for men wearing legoland brand. Clearly the goal is the age group aged 21 to 30, and both groups together, particularly complex buying behavior types, suggesting that both groups basically a set of beliefs and attitudes towards fire and accordingly whether take advantage of the chosen brand

4.5 DATA FINDINGS

Following are the questions asked to different people in order to get all the information for the brand analysis. As it has been mentioned earlier that the mostly people were in the age from 21 to 30 years.

4.6 ANALYSIS

With regard to how they perceived the brand characteristics of both groups of consumers heavily influenced legoland users in the importance of a recognizable brand that clearly regarded as a brand that could satisfy their needs believed beats. 71% of respondents confirmed this by showing clearly that so much importance placed on the well-known brand in conjunction with a.
The non-users on the other side was a privilege to be associated with a famous brand in conjunction, are associated with 54% of the respondents in connection with a known brand, it was important, they claim. But in the choice of Legoland, was only less than half the respondents group was 43% that the label was important for them to choose whether they want to use the service or not.
It is clear that the preference of most users legoland strong brand in the hand, the dominance in complex buyer-types within the group confirmed. It was also clear that legoland efforts to represent their brand as seriously as possible, was clearly a factor in whether or not to choose the service.

4.6.1 BRAND BENEFITS

81% of users believe that brand further feature was important to them in the LEGOLAND brand choice, while only 46% of non-users are functionally important. Quality was also much less of a problem for non-users with only 22% of non-users that quality is an important factor for them. The brand of users, however, found that 62% of their important quality factor in the buying decision should be taken.
This shows that the brand is the basis of expert users to make a high quality level, where as non-users, especially for those who do not size of the product. The relative share of users, functionality and quality also indicates that LEGOLAND has paid particular attention to the size of the performance.

4.6.2 BRAND VALUES

84% of respondents are of the opinion that the image of a feeling of superiority is transferred, while 62% said that they felt more secure payments Tourist Attractions Legoland. These statistics are interesting because they see that a strong sense of latent Tourist brand equity group made this monster. If you look at the formation of Consuming beliefs, Einstellungen, and, Zehn Slott, the approval of the product, it has a sense of image and ensure the safety of the quality. These are factors fostering brand loyalty and competitive advantage.

4.6.3 BRAND CULTURE

87% of users considered that the image radiates competence Ben presented in relation to a much lower 59% of non-users. The interesting thing to note is that although the majority of non-users, making it a good brand that still prefer to visit. This may partly only 18% of non-users believe that shopping at Legoland safer than other places, explains that a significantly higher compared with 67% positive response from users. It ‘very clear on these two statistics indicate that users are not brand-less culture of the user. This explains the choice of non-market.

4.6.4 BRAND IDENTITY

The last two questions, the survey gives a sense of brand identity felt by Legoland and residential customers in the UK non-consumers. For the control group of users to meet 79%, the image of Legoland UK identity, while only 38% feel the same way the non-users. This may explain the choice not to buy. The questionnaire goes to show that 41% felt safe with the 25% does not care. This part of the study there was already evidence that the vast majority of users a strong sense of personal identity chip are a clear decision to buy. While a low 39% non-user to connect in the form of identity clearly shows a correlation between the perceptions of the signal, the active consumer Legoland UK determined.

4.7 RESULTS IN THE LIGHT OF LITERATURE REVIEW

From the above data collection it is clear that the brand name plays an important role in the sale and the success of the business. In the above findings Legoland brand has good reputation and loyalty according to the tourists visiting to UK. Though, nowadays here is amplified challenge for rising and keeping a brand name. Publicity, while the conventional medium to construct brand name, has developed into progressively less helpful.

In the light of previous research made by different researchers, my findings and results are very similar to their results and analysis.

For instance Assael (1993) by stating that the reason he favors the position of consumers, especially the participation of humble approach that they once is heavy to the use of trying to choose the Product that their current meals. Porter (1980) says that the cities of the moment of differentiation of the most important are required for the proper acquisition of “competitive to make fit, has been said in the Industry by differentiating their product line. If market segment players do nothing Differential advantage would have been, perhaps, are concerned with consuming to establish pricing (Foxall and Goldsmith, 1994). As in my findings the brand name and product prices are the way to the triumph of the trade. Other researchers like Chay (1991), Aaker (1991) and Alreck and Settle (1999) all supported my findings as the success of product is strongly associated with the brand name and its image and loyalty.

However there are some differences in my findings with reference to the previous research made in this field. For example, Oliver (1999) supported the brand faith and described that it is the only reason of success but in my findings there are many other reasons like product price and customers response are also important. Alreck (1999) and Smith (2005) strongly supported the view of brand image with the customer’s faith but in my findings there are many customers who do not go for the brand faith but they always try to find the better quality in low price. Graham (2001) presents more profitable things, which is totally opposite to my findings as my findings show that customers have strong sense of purchase.

It is clear from the discussion of my findings with reference to previous researches that mostly my findings are similar to their except some differences because of new market trends and globalization of trade and the impact of internet.

4.8 CONCLUSIONS DRAWN FROM THE SURVEYS

The survey was obviously analytical of the significance of the brand for the consumer market in the decision procedure. Obvious bulks of respondents that sense a connection among itself as well as the Legoland brand consumers have been decided. Non-users evidently small affecting or individual investment in the brand and seems to have been unaware, otherwise converted to become an association of consumer desires. One must notice so as to the six dimension of the concept of brand name crash on how customers outlook brand name. this should as well correct that there be established a clear distinction between different types of consumer behavior in every grouping of respondents. Despite the fact that the leading type of consumer behavior in both groups, the band behavior, so these are the dominant type of tourism for consumers, here is a high rate a lot elevated percentage (26% vs. 16%) of normal modes of buyers in the group of users of the chip, which exists in non-users. This shows that the behavior of consumers respond in a different way to the a range of dimension of importance that are represented by yield.

CHAPTER 5

CONCLUSIONS & RECOMMENDATIONS

5.1 CONCLUSIONS

The purpose of the above study is to determine the effect of brand choice has at the consumer purchase choice building method to determine, as well as all tourist attraction in buying the techniques of brand management, consumer decision-making rights of the consumers of tourism.
It appears so as that really connection among the effects of the surf with the consumer buying choice procedure. That’s the way the branding process of learning, creating beliefs and attitudes in the formation of unlike nature of buyer purchasing behavior influenced recognizable. It should be noted that even proof that there are 4 diverse kind of customer business patterns, type namely the compound or complex behavior, dissonance-reducing trading or purchasing behavior of species, common buying behavior type and variety-type behavior, which all have different reactions Branding appear to motivation. Consequently an individual could close to this is important for marketing people to fit into the surf on those 4 kinds of buyer behavior in order to maximize competency.
In terms of how branding of the tourist attraction used to influence consumer purchase decision, found that brand has taken at the meaning of branding benefits issued to a brand value and brand uniqueness focus. That is attained by enlarging the present brand image and its image of the tourist attraction to the store. That has successfully leaded to the dominance in UK marketplace for tourism. However, the author’s inquiry the sustainability of this brand, such in connecting with satisfies tourists in an extensive time, the requirements as well as desires of consumers of the brand exclusive. It is satisfied, but the brand and related products, consumer-friendly brand products.
Seen as the brand is also dominant in the industry, this is the dominant tourist market expansion. But with the advent of new tourist attractions as well as the emergence of new online travel provider, will this strategy in the long term sustainability.
Thus, the writer found it essential to separate the long-term health of the brand of their tourism brand image to the request of the brand individuality to broaden the requirements, desires as well as hopes, not only of non-users of the brand group The primary work on this study, however the remaining of the consumer part of the brand enthusiasts.

Categories
Free Essays

Explore the relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision amongst UK fashion retailers

Chapter 1

Introduction

1.1 Introduction

Marketers, nowadays, are confronted with increasingly multicultural marketplaces.

Globalisation of markets and international competition are requiring firms to operate

in a multicultural environment. In addition, migration patterns and communication

media i.e. satellite and televisions are developing multicultural mind sets in single

domestic markets and exposing consumers to alternative behaviours and activities

(Douglas and Craig, 1997 cited in Luna and Gupta, 2001).

United Kingdom is one of the biggest countries in the world supporting immigrants.

Immigration made up more than half of Britain’s population growth from 1991 to

2001 (www.bbc.co.uk 2008). The net difference between immigration and emigration

was 191,000 in 2006, which is expected to increase due to inflow of Eastern European

migrants (Statistics.gov.uk). These immigration patterns are making UK a multicultural country rather then homogenous and single cultured as it was in 1970s.

This inflow of immigrants from different cultures has brought diverse cultures

together in distinct country. Individuals from sundry cultures are living and working

together while possessing unlike mind sets and behaviour for similar products and

commodities. These contrasting mind sets are affecting high street retailers as they

have to serve diverse markets apart from local population including migrants from

Asian countries which are working here for years and recent migrants from Eastern

European countries.

The women’s outerwear market has been characterised in the past five years by

falling prices and rising volumes as women have adopted fast, throwaway, celebrityinspired fashion (Mintel 2008). The UK clothing market has many drivers; it is Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

sensitive and remains as multi-level and eccentric as has been increasingly the case

since around 1975, recognised as the emergence of the modern market (Hogg Bruce

and Hill 1998). This modern era is fairly been attractive and catching for marketers

and high streets retailers.

1.2 Significance of Study:

Several attempts by different researchers around the world have been made to

highlight the cultural influence on consumer behaviour (Jamal 2001). Most of the

research papers have focused on the influence of culture as a explanatory tool for

marketing purposes (Craig and Douglas 2005; Dmitrovic and Vida 2005; LeBlanc and

Herndon 2001) and very few researchers have spotlight the elements of culture and

their influence on consumer behaviour (Luna and Gupta 2001).

Furthermore these research studies regarding effect of culture on consumer behaviour

do not offer a framework in which literature can be adequately integrated, are not

firmly grounded in theory, or do not contain a full account of how specific cultural

dimensions affect specific consumer behaviour components. As a result, Douglas et

al. (1994) call for further research in this area stating that strong theoretical and

conceptual frameworks are needed, integrating constructs from the different research

subjects and disciplines.

Additionally, most of the cross-cultural studies in past had focused on different

cultural aspects and values. Very few works have been done on aesthetics and its

influence on consumer behaviour. Aesthetics is an important element of culture and

represents the idea of beauty and appearance in material culture (Hofstede 2000). It is

one of the visible parts of culture that gives an idea to outsiders about cultural values

and beliefs. It also plays an importance role in shaping new trends and consumer

behaviour in a society (Usanier and Lee 2005).

Moreover, market conditions are changing very rapidly now-a-days. Between 1975

and 1990, the total retail market grew from 40 per cent to 70 per cent (Jones and Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Hayes, 2002 cited in Priest 2005). Even with the current medium term jitters, the UK

clothing market have very attractive prospect.The UK clothing and fashion market

remains attractive because of its size and growth. Retail sales climbed 0.8 per cent in

January – a marked improvement on the 0.2 per cent fall recorded for December –

according to the Office for National Statistics. UK retail sales rose 1.2% on a like-forlike basis, compared with July 2006, when sales were up 3.4%. July’s growth was the

weakest since November 2006 and half the monthly average for the second quarter.

The three-month trend rate of growth fell to 2.1% from 2.5% in June, for like-for-like

sales, and to 4.1% from 4.6% for total sales, reflecting the continuing slow growth of

retail space (Retail week 2008)

Lastly, in the present situation of multi-ethnic groups with manifold and growing

demands for apparel in sole market, it is very thorny for retailers, marketers and

entrepreneurs to develop strategies. According to Jamal (2001), in a multicultural

market place, consumer of different ethnic groups coexists, interact and adapt to each

other. During this adoption process, demands changes and new commodities are

expected in market.

Fig 1.1: Research Pattern

Source: Adopted from Foxel et. al. (1998) Consumer Psychology of Marketing 2

nd

Edition p. 148

Values

and

beliefs

Aesthetics

(Material

Culture)

Life-Style

Self Concept

Consumer Behaviour

(Brand selection and

lifestyle products

SRC

Culture Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

This research paper opts to address the above-mentioned problems and future market

potentials by looking in to the cultural factors that influences the consumer behaviour,

as shown in figure 1.1. It will look in to consumer’s brand selection decision on the

basis of one of the cultural elements i.e. aesthetics. This element of culture is far

above the ground important for apparel brands and retailers and will be researched

with respect to self reference criterion (SRC).

1.3 Aims and Objectives

Consumers may allocate a portion of their purchase time and money to express their

personality and lifestyles (Kahle and Kennedy 1989). Consequently, an understanding

of the basic values and beliefs of consumers should improve our understanding of

unseen buying motives and provide specific guidelines for marketing strategy.

This research is intended to explore various cultural aspects that influence female

customers’ decision for different outerwear and clothing brands operating in UK. It

seeks to comprehend the influence of consumers’ back-home culture when they make

a decision to buy ready-to-wear clothing from apparel retailers.

1.3.1 Objectives:

The research objectives of this study are as follows:

1. Identify and explain the cultural factors that influence female consumers’ decision

and behaviour for casual in-home and outerwear clothing (Women’s outerwear

including coats, dresses, tops, T-shirts, jackets, trousers, jeans, blouses, skirts,

shirts etc. but excluding accessories (e.g. belts, hats, gloves), lingerie and hosiery

whereas in-home include casual skirts, jeans and tops)

2. Identify and describe the social pressure and motivation for shopping culturally

acceptable fashion wear Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

3. Explore the perception of female consumers from different cultures for wearing

cross cultural dresses

4. Identify the advantages and disadvantages for clothing fashion retailers to sell

multi-cultural outfit ranges

1.3.2 Research Question:

The primary research questions of this study are:

1. How cultural values affects self concept of individuals which in turn influence

consumer behaviour?

This dissertation will try to find relationship between consumer culture and behaviour

while focusing the aesthetical part of their value system. This paper will also spotlight

the concept of self image in individuals while discussing self-reference-criterion

(SRC). Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Figure 1.2: Research question

2. What are the implications of these cultural values for apparel companies operating

in United Kingdom?

From the result of consumer interviews and focus groups, this study will explore the

ways by which the retail apparel brands are affected and what would be the

implications in future for their higher sales and profitability.

1.4 Structure of Dissertation

This dissertation is divided into six (6) chapters. A brief description of these chapters

is presented hereafter.

Chapter1: This chapter covers introduction of dissertation and significance of this

study for different stakeholder. Research aims and objectives are also covered in this

chapter.

Pakistani Indian Bengali British Polish Italian German

Zara

M & S

Primark

Next

Top

Shop

Debenhams

Cultural Influence

Cultural Influence Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailer

Chapter 2: This chapter covers previous studies conducted in the field of topic in

hand. Culture, consumer behaviour and relationship between them are discussed in

details. The final part of this chapter covers significance of apparels and clothing in a

society followed by research question.

Chapter 3: This chapter entails description of research methodology involved in this

study. Research strategy, methods and context of study are important features of this

chapter.

Chapter 4: This chapter wrap-up the finding from the participants’ responses. These

findings are an analysed using content analysis method, which is explained in

methodology chapter.

Chapter 5: This chapter preset the findings of this reports with respect to the

literature review. Previous studies presented in chapter 2 are compared with the

results obtained in chapter 4.

Chapter 6: This is final chapter of report and presents a final conclusion of project.

At the end of chapter, brief recommendations and recommendations are given for

managers and retailers. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Chapter 2

LI T E R A T U R ERE V I E W

Dealing distinctive consumers in various countries is becoming a necessity for today

multinational organisation. These multinationals achieve their marketing objectives

whilst serving consumers in a country according to its cultural preferences and values.

These cultural values play an important role in consumer’s decision making and

choice of product. As mentioned by Poon (2003), economic and cultural differences

lead to substantial variations in the behaviours of consumers.

The relevant literature presented in this part will discuss the studies related to culture

and cross-culture, consumer behaviour and relationship in between them. It will also

highlight the studies which unfold the importance of culture in the selection of

apparels’ brands.

2.1 Culture

2.1.1 Concept of Culture

Culture, a thorny word, is translated differently in various civilisations around the

world. It is too complex to be defined in one line or paragraph. Authors around the

world have developed more then 164 different definitions of culture (Usanier and Lee

2005). It is a lens, shaping reality, and a blueprint, specifying a plan of action. At the

same time, culture is unique to a specific group of people (Fan 2008). Groups,

organisations and individuals identify and relate themselves with the culture they

belong. Civilisations use culture they inherit as guidance for their acts and beliefs.

Keegan (2005) elucidate the term culture as ‘ways of living, built up by a group of

human beings, which are transmitted from one generation to another’. This means that

culture identify the ways of life, actions and symbols of past generations and their Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

significance to present civilisation. Hofstede (1991) view culture as “the collective

mental programming of the people in an environment. Culture is not a characteristic

of individual; it encompasses a number is people who were conditioned by the same

education and life experience”

Culture acts like glue, binding together individuals, groups and civilisation in a

patterned way (Kluckhohn 1962). Without this patterned way of living, it is

impossible for people in a society to live together. It collectively defines the

boundaries of actions and values carried by a society. Cultural orientation has been

the central construct used in psychology and other social sciences (Oysermann et al.,

2002) in order to understand and define society and culture (Aaker and Maheswaran,

1997; Aaker, 2000). As mentioned by Goodenogh (1971) cited in Usanier and Lee

(2005), culture is set of beliefs or standards, shared by a group of people, which help

the individual decide what is what, what can be, How to feel, what to do and how to

go about it. This makes culture important in individual and groups psychological

developments while shaping their norms, values and rituals.

Culture can be defined in terms of national culture, sub-culture and counter-culture.

Whereas national culture is collective fingerprint of a country, sub-culture is practiced

by smaller number of people. National culture and sub-culture are coherent by values

but apparently different (Keegan 2006). Counter-culture is a culture or sub-cultures

whose values and beliefs are apposite or in disagreement to that of national culture

(www.bl.uk 2008).

2.1.2 Importance of Culture

Culture drives behaviour of members in a society. It is the most important block of a

civilisation that defines and explains its origin and history (Lukosius 2004). Culture is

concerned with the development of coherent viewpoints which bring a cumulative

effect to ‘otherwise’ isolated experiences of a group, making them feel special yet

allowing others to have a parallel experience (Veltman 1997). Individuals and groups

usually associate themselves with the culture they belong to and feel proud of it. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

According to Craig and Douglas (2005), culture has a profound influence on all

aspects of human behaviour. Its impact may be subtle or pronounced, direct or

oblique, enduring or ephemeral. It is so entwined with all facets of human existence

that it is often difficult to determine how and in what ways its impact is manifested

(Jamal 2001). Adding to the complexity of understanding culture is its inherently

dynamic nature.

Fig 2.1: Cultural importance framework

Source: Adapted from Mooij (2005), p. 106

The impact of culture can also be viewed in every day life of individuals in a society.

According to Hofstede (1997), culture influences behaviour through its manifestations:

values, heroes, rituals, and symbols. This influence is visible at personal level as well

as organisational and group levels. Culture influences change and evolves as the

political, social, economic and technological forces (Usunier and Lee, 2005). Figure

2.1 presents a framework that highlights the importance of culture in individual’s

social participation, which is affected by individual behavioural domain. The

behavioural domain possesses visible and non-visible culture, values and beliefs,

religious base and concept of heroes.

Language

Material culture

Institution/Family

structure

Visible Culture

Values

Beliefs

Non-Visible

Culture

Individual Behavioural

Domain

Individual Social

Participation Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

2.1.3 Manifestations of Culture

Hofstede (1991) defined four main manifestations of culture in his famous Onion

Model shown in fig 2.2. According to him, values, rituals, heroes and symbols reflect

important parts of culture and need to be studied in order to understand it. These

manifestations are important to study because different cultures perceive different

things differently.

According to Mooij (2005), symbols are words, gestures, pictures, or objects that

carry a particular meaning recognised only by those who share a culture. Symbols are

at the outer most layer of onion model and include dressing and hair styles, special

hand or face gestures, status recognition and pictures possessing some meaning for its

viewers. Usunier and Lee (2005) describe heroes as persons, alive or dead, real or

imaginary- who thus serve as a role model for common societal behaviour. These can

be fantasy figures or real heroes. Rituals are the collective activates considered

essential for culture and are carried out for their own sake. These three manifestations

are visible and are termed as expression of culture that an outsider can observe (Mooij

2005).

Fig 2.2: The onion model

Source: Hofstede, G. (2000) Culture Consequences, Comparing Values, Behaviours, Intuitions and

Organisations across Nations, 2

nd

edition. p. 11

At the core of culture are values and are defined as broader tendencies to prefer a

certain state of affairs over other (www.trompenaars.com 2008). Developmental

psychologists believe that values are among the first things children learn, not

Values

Symbols

Heroes, Stories

Ritual

P r a c t i c e s Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

– 12 –

consciously but implicitly (Mooij 2005). Members of a society are not conscious of

the values they hold, but act according to them.

It is important to note that value system is placed firmly in mind of child by the age of

10, and they act according to that in later stages of life. These cultural values, in

which child is brought up, play an important role in evaluation, organisation and

selection of commodities and brands. Not only it steer members of society to choose

from alternative choices and brands but also affect their consumption patterns. The

value system, once developed, is very difficult to change and affect individual

throughout there life (Douglous 2006).

Salter (1997) further elaborates the concept of culture after the values that arise within

the way of life of people. According to him, these values give members of society

solidarity, identity and authoritatively judge what is good or bad, real or false, not

only in art but in everyday life. So it can be argued that these judgements or

perceptions of external stimuli are jointly accepted in individuals from same cultural

background or civilisation.

2.1.4 Elements of Culture

There are four major elements of culture explained by Usunier and Lee (2005) i.e.

language, institutions, material productions and symbolic productions. These elements

are further divided in to sub-elements. We will discuss only three elements which

have relevance to this research paper including language, aesthetics and institution.

A county’s language affects people’s thoughts and mental representation and is one of

the building blocks of culture (Usunier and Lee 2005). Language illustrates culture

and it reflects all manifestations of culture, the expressions and the values. According

to Mooij (2005), there are two ways of looking at language i.e. either language affects

culture or language is expression of culture. In both views, language plays an

important role in culture related studies. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Fig 2.3: Elements of Culture

Source: Adopted from Luna, and Gupta (2001) “An integrative framework for cross-cultural consumer

behaviour” International Marketing Review Vol. 18 No. 1, 2001

Aesthetics are the ideas of beauty, taste and appearance mainly expressed in colours

and fine arts (Blocker and Flint 2007). Aesthetics play an important role in selections

of ensigns and related commodities. Lastly, institution reflects the idea of family

structure in a society (Usunier and Lee 2005). Institution plays and important role in

spending of capital and product range required by a family.

2.1.5 Sources of Culture

The national culture is not always the main source of culture when regarded as

‘operational culture’ (Goodenough 1971 cited in Mizik and Jacobson 2008). Man is

an intelligent animal and learns cultural values and activities from society around him.

He learns from people around him, adopt things and then respond accordingly. Some

of the main sources of culture which help individuals to act in a pertinent way are

family, religion, social class and language. Usunier and Lee (2005) gave a framework

to explained ten (10) different sources of culture, which are shown in figure 2.4.

These factors affect an individual’s personality directly and indirectly, modify and

design behaviour while determining new values.

Language

Material culture Institution/Family

structure

Symbolic Productions

CultureRelationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Fig 2.4: Sources of culture

Source: Usunier and Lee (2005) Marketing Across Culture, 4

th

edition. p. 11

2.1.6 Cross Cultural Studies

There are two main types of cross culture studies, etic and emic. Etic approach looks

at a culture while comparing it with other culture. Researchers, who use this method,

try to find common elements between diverse cultures and then compare them for

further understanding. According to Luna and Gupta (2007), this approach is

commonly used in typical cross-cultural psychology and other comparative social

sciences.

However, there is another point of view for cross-cultural studies i.e. emic

methodology, which focuses upon the understanding culture from the view point of

subject being studied (McCracken 1988). Researcher studying consumer behaviour

from emic methodological views are more inclined towards the culture which subject

hold rather then general national culture. Emic methodology is more appropriate for

Sources of

culture

Profession

(specialised

education)

Nationality

Group

(ethnicity)

Corporate

culture

Family

Religion

Education

(general)

Social Class

Sex

(male/female)

Language Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

the studies apt for multicultural consumer studies. So it can be argued that the etic and

the emic philosophies seem to refer to similar constructs but from different perspectives

(between-cultures versus within-cultures).

As explained by Luna and Gupta (2007), consumer ethnocentrism is a construct often

studied by cross-cultural researchers. The construct could be viewed as an

instrumental value (Rokeach, 1973), as used by Shimp and Sharma (1987). In their

study, Shimp and Sharma (1987) found that consumers’ ethnocentrism determines

their perceptions of domestic versus foreign values (cognition), as well as their

attitudes and behaviour.

2.2 Consumer Behaviour and Decision Making

2.2.1 Consumer Behaviour

The field of consumer behaviour is complex, changing and is in flux. Perspectives

from different disciplines around the world cross-fertilise with it to obtain required

data. Consumer behaviour’s researchers include different theories from diverse

subjects to conclude results. So it can be argued that consumer behaviour is series of

actions and reaction to certain stimuli.

As commercial global integration unfolds in the world’s marketplaces, decision

making is becoming increasingly complex for consumers. The introduction of new

products and brands in market has not only confused customers with a massive

display of choices but also has created scarcity of places in retails stores. Brands are

now commonly assessed by customer mind-set measures (e.g., awareness, attitudes)

(Mizik and Jacomson 2008).

Consumer behaviour encompasses consumers and their reaction to environment.

Customer reaction is the key elements in consumer behaviour. Consumers recognise

that they have a need; search for a product that can meet heir need; use the product to

satisfy their need; and then dispose of the product once it has met the need (Wells and

Prensky 1996). Hence, the central concept in consumer behaviour is exchange. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

According Solomon et. al. (2006), consumer behaviour is defined as the study of the

processes involved when individuals or groups select, purchase, use or dispose of

products, service, ideas or experiences to satisfy needs and desires. This definition

demonstrates consumer behaviour as a study of process which starts from product’s

selection till its disposal.

On the other hand, American Marketing Association (AMA) defined consumer

behaviour as the dynamic interaction of affects and cognition, behaviour, and

environmental events by which human beings conduct exchange aspects of their lives.

This definition elucidates consumer behaviour as a dynamic and changing, involves

interaction between individuals and groups and finally hold exchange.

Consumer decision-making style, in simple terms, can be defined as “a mental

orientation characterizing a consumer’s approach to making choices” (Sproles and

Kendall, 1986, p. 267 cited in Lysonski, Durvasula and Zotos 1996). This definition

looks at just one aspect of consumer behaviour i.e. making choices.

All of the above definitions explain consumer behaviour and decision making from

different angles but focus on one thing i.e. the consumer’s mental cognitive process.

Consumer behaviour mental process involves the thoughts and feelings people

experience and the actions they perform in consumption process. It also includes the

things in environment that influence their thoughts, feelings and actions (Peter and

Olson 2005).

2.2.2 Understanding Consumer Behaviour

Consumer decision making process is complex and ever changing. It varies from

individual to individual, group to group, organisation to organisation and across

country borders. This understanding of consumer behaviour affects the level and

intensity of exchange between marketers and consumers. Consumer behaviour subject

has gripped the attention of researchers in recent years. The popularity of

customisation has hanged the focus of marketing from macro consumer behaviour to Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

micro consumer behaviour. It is impossible to satisfy the needs and wants of a society

without cramming consumer values and the road to consumer values, attitude and

behaviour is culture.

According to Lysonski, Durvasula and Zotos (1996), consumer decision making can

be categorized into three main approaches: the consumer typology approach (Darden

and Ashton, 1974; Moschis 1976); the psychographics /lifestyle approach

(Lastovicka, 1982; Wells, 1975); and the consumer characteristics approach (Sproles,

1985; Sproles and Kendall, 1986; Sproles and Sproles, 1990).

The unifying theme among these three approaches is the tenet that all consumers

engage in shopping with certain fundamental decision-making modes or styles

including rational shopping, consciousness regarding brand, price and quality among

others.

Fig 2.5: The pyramid of consumer behaviour

Source: Solomon M. et al (2006) Consumer Behaviour: A European Perspective, 3

rd

Edition, p. 24

Cultural anthropology

Macroeconomics

Demography

Semiotics

Sociology

History

Social Psychology

Microeconomics

Human ecology

Developmental psychology

Clinical psychology

Experimental psychology

Macro Consumer Behaviour

(Social Focus)

Micro Consumer Behaviour

(Individual Focus)Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

– 18 –

Fig 2.5 shows the pyramid of origin of consumer behaviour and interdisciplinary

influences on the study of consumer behaviour. These disciplines explain the

importance of consumer behaviour as a whole.

2.2.3 Consumer Decision Making Processes

Consumer behaviour is outcome of mental processes and judgements that individual

goes through every time before taking an action. These processes are explained by

researchers around the world in various ways and steps, such as AIDA by Strong

(1925) cited in Kotler (2003), Hierarchy of effects by Lavidge and Gary (1961) cited

in Antonides and Raaij (1998) and Innovation-adoption model (Rogers (1962) cited in

Kotler (1999). Most of these processes generally include need recognition, search for

alternative, evaluation of alternatives and action (Foxall et al 1998). Some researchers

have divided this process in further sub-steps (Wells and Prensky (1996), Solomon

(1999), Peter and Olson (2005), Solomon et al (2006)), but the idea remains the same.

2.2.4 Factors affecting consumer behaviour

A number of researchers have given several explanations of different factors affecting

consumer behaviour. Wells and Prensky (1996) explained different factors including

demographics, personality, psychographics, lifestyle, values and reference groups,

which affect consumer behaviour. It is worth mentioning here that all of these factors

are affected directly or indirectly by culture. Other factors that influence consumer

behaviour at the point of purchase are price, product perception, brand loyalty,

celebrity endorsement and people using product (Kotler 2003).

2.3 Relationship between Culture and Consumer Behaviour

Culture and consumer behaviour are intimately knotted together and “untying the

rope” is almost an impossible task (Lukosius 2004). Anthropologists have long

theorized about the influence of culture on decision making (Stewart, 1985).

Consumer culture is premised upon the expansion of capitalist commodity production

which has given rise to a vast accumulation of material culture in the form of Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

consumer goods and sites of purchase and consumption (Featherstone 1990). This

expansion of material culture has raised desire of leisure and expectations in

consumers.

The empirical study conducted by Henry (1976) shows that culture is underlying

determinant of consumer behaviour. Culture affects consumer behaviour, which itself

may reinforce the manifestations of culture (Peter and Olson, 1998). Culture

influences behaviour through its manifestations: values, heroes, rituals, and symbols

(Hofstede, 1997). These are the forms in which culturally-determined knowledge is

stored and expressed. This knowledge in-turn reflects consumer living style, attitude,

and behaviour. Each cultural group possesses different cultural manifestations which

are important for marketers to assess consumer behaviour, as shown in figure 2.6

(Luna and Gupta 2007).

Fig 2.6: Relationship between culture, marketing and consumer behaviour

Source: Luna, and Gupta (2001) “An integrative framework for cross-cultural consumer behaviour”

International Marketing Review Vol. 18 No. 1, 2001

The analysis of culture also offers some useful starting points for consumer attitude

and behaviours. Some recent studies have explored the influence of national culture

on cultural value perceptions (Overby et al., 2004; Furrer et al., 2000). But these are Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

largely limited to consumer contexts. For example, in a cross-cultural consumer

context, Overby et al. (2004) find that consumers’ national culture influences the

content and structure of value perceptions through the way customers attach meaning

and importance to various aspects of a firm’s products. This show that consumer’s

national cultures, in which they are brought up, hold utter importance in their

selection and perception of products and services.

2.3.1 Culture, Consumer Behaviour & Brand Selection Decisions

Consumers often choose certain products, services and activities over other because

they are associated with specific life style. This lifestyle reflects trend and fashion

expression and influences the choices made by consumer in their own anticipatory

consumption or the purchase of aspired lifestyle products (Brandon 2003 cited in

Forney, Park and Brandon 2005). These life styles techniques are provided by

different brands around the world (Kotler 2003). Consumer preferences for specific

brands are growing stronger day by day. Brands are one of the important factors that

influence groups to accept or reject an individual in a society.

An important study conducted by Aaker and Schmitt (1997) found that both

individualist and collectivist consumers use brands for self-expressive purposes (as in

McCracken, 1988). Moreover, this study clearly shows the difference of two cultures

i.e. eastern and western, as eastern consumers are more collectivist then western. Both

of these use brands, however, in different ways: collectivist consumers use brands to

reassert their similarity with members of their reference group, while individualist

consumers use brands to differentiate themselves from referent others.

Moreover, those who cannot keep up with the latest brand styles and knowledge

forms the ‘‘out’’ groups and those that can keep up are seen as members of the groups

as ‘‘cool’’ and ‘‘popular (Auty and Elliot 1998). The influence of brands is increasing

gradually in the form of consumer satisfaction to preference and repeat purchases and

then to next level i.e. brand loyalty. These branding decisions are influenced by

consumer behaviour which is reflection of individuals’ culture. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

2.3.2 Cultural adoption and reinforcement:

According to the empirical study conducted by Henry (1976), culture is underlying

determinant of consumer behaviour and it affects consumer behaviour, which itself

may reinforce the manifestations of culture (Peter and Olson, 1998). According to

Nguyen and Barrett (2008), individual from a sub-culture adopt manifestations from

mainstream or dominant culture. These adopted manifestations became part of

consumer mind set and reinforce further behaviour. Framework in figure 2.7 explains

cultural adoption and reinforcement process, which holds its very importance in study

of immigrants’ culture.

Figure 2.7: Framework of ethnic and mainstream cultural affects on consumer behaviour

Source: Adopted from Wines and Napier (1992) “Towards an understanding of cross-cultural ethics: A

tentative model” Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 11, Iss. 11. Pp. 831

2.3.3 Self Reference Criterion (SRC):

Self reference criterion is the unconscious reference to one’s own cultural values or

one’s home country frame of reference (Lee 1966). It was introduced from

managerial point of view to handle cultural differences and eliminate the root cause of

international problems, but it can also be used from consumers’ perspective. Culture

is subjective (Schutte 1999) and the people in different cultures often have different

ideas for the same object (Usanier and Lee 2005). When travelling overseas, it is

virtually impossible for a person to observe foreign culture without making reference,

Mainstream

Culture

Consumer values &

attitude sets

Values

& Ethics

Attitude

Reinforcement

Adoption

Consumer

Behaviour

Cognitive

Non-Cognitive

Ethnic/

Sub-Culture

Adaptation Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

perhaps unconsciously, back to his own cultural values. Individual’s opinion about

another culture is also heavily influenced by the media (Peter and Olson, 1998).

Through the tinted glass of parent culture, individuals see things in a foreign culture

not as what they are, but according to what he sees in them according to his own

perception (Fan 2008). For example, dog is man’s best friend in west but in Arab

countries it is considered as a filthy animal. This explains the differences in consumer

behaviour in different cultures about same object.

Moreover, McCort and Malhotra (1993) cited in Luna and Gupta (2007), describe

number of studies on the effect of cultural values on information processing issues

such as perceptual categorization, perceptual inference and learning. An individual’s

behaviour is result of that individual’s cultural value system for a particular context

(Loader 1999). Figure 2.8 explains the influence of demographics and personality

development on lifestyle, self concept and eventually on consumer behaviour.

Fig 2.8: Demographics & personality variables with lifestyle, self concept & consumer behaviour

Source: Adopted from Foxel et. al. (1998) Consumer Psychology of Marketing 2

nd

Edition p. 148

2.4 CLOTHING AND FASHION APPAREL

Clothing is primarily a mean of communicating, not personal identity, but social

identity (Noesjirwan and Crawford (1982) cited in Auty and Elliott 1998), which

strengthen the idea of cultural bond and group belonging. Researches conducted in

clothing behaviour have shown that consumers differ in attitudes, values and

expectations of clothing. Clothing is a way by which people identify themselves with

Demographics

Personality

Life Style

Self Concept

Consumer

Behaviour

S R C Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

a social class, project or group of people. Researchers have proven the construct of

symbolic meaning of clothing and its use in social environments (Hwang, 1996; Horn,

1975 cited in Alexander, Connell and Presley 2005). Clothing used positively

contributes to one’s feelings of pleasure and satisfaction.

Fashion is defined as currant mode of consumption behaviour or in other words style

or styles being worn by consumers of clothing (Evans 1989). Fashion, like all other

industries move in cycles (Miller and Merrilees 2004) and defined by consumers as

exciting, continuously changing and display of status, contribute to self confidence

and personally development (Evans 1989). This is a way by which consumers define

themselves as who they are and how they want others to perceive them. It is a way by

which individuals relate themselves with a group, celebrity, culture or country.

“Amongst the functions of fashion is to create uniformity amongst equals whilst at the

same time differentiating status and background, signposting preferences and

commitments. Reflecting the resulting market complexity, fashion forecasters have

developed a range of detailed and colourfully named descriptors to differentiate

consumer groups, identify, and recognise trends” (Priest 2005).

Fashion clothing means different things to different people from various backgrounds.

Consumers attach different perceptions to fashion which may be not same as their

family and friends’ beliefs. The use of fashion clothing enhance consumer’s

confidence and self-image concept. Empirical study conducted by Cass (2004) proved

that fashion apparel increase confidence and satisfaction among individuals. The

study presents a framework and proves that materialism, gender and age are important

antecedents of consumer involvement in fashion clothing and plays an important role

in enhancing consumer confidence.

According to Shim et al. (1991) clothing is an extension of the bodily self and has

important symbolic meanings in social interactions. Fashion concept is often a

manifestation of self image. There is an increase desire of self-expression (Evans Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

1989) and fashion is one of the most important methods for it. Figure 2.9 shows the

impact of fashion clothing on consumer confidence.

Fig 2.9: Fashion clothing impact on consumer confidence

Source: Cass (2004) “Fashion clothing consumption: Antecedents and consequences of fashion

clothing involvement” European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 38, Iss. 7. p. 869

2.5 PROBLEM IDENTIFICATION

As mentioned earlier in chapter 1, most of the cross-cultural studies in past had

focused on various cultural aspects and values. Very few works have been done on

aesthetics and its influence on consumer behaviour. Aesthetics is an important part of

culture and represents the idea of beauty and appearance in material culture. It is one

of the visible parts of culture that gives an idea to outsiders about cultural values and

beliefs. It also plays an importance role in shaping new trends in society.

Furthermore, studies conducted by various researchers specifically focused on the

cultures of various countries rather then various cultures in a single country, as it is in

case of Great Britain. The immigration trends in UK have made it a diverse cultured

country, while making it difficult for retailers and business to handle multi-ethnic

customers.

This research will identify the differences or gaps between the preferences and

choices of these consumers belonging to different cultures and answering the question

Materialism

Age

Gender

Fashion

clothing

involvement

Consumer

Confidence Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

“How does culture influence buying behaviour of female consumer for apparels and

clothing?” It will help identify the aesthetical part within the cultural values and

believes while focusing on visible aspect of material culture i.e. clothing and apparels.

Furthermore, this study will look into the different aspects of culture that influence

consumer’s buying behaviour and implications of these differences for women

clothing brands in Great Britain i.e. Zara, M&S, Next, Top Shop, Primark and House

of Frazer. The multicultural environment requires fashion retailers to be more flexible

and responsive when designing outfits. This study will help these retailers to achieve

multi-cultural consumer’s satisfaction via knowing their preferences and offering

diverse clothing ranges.

Figure 2.10: Research question

Pakistani Indian Bengali British Polish Italian German

Zara

M & S

Primark

Next

Top

Shop

Debenhams

Cultural Influence

Cultural Influence Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

– 26 –

2.6 Summary

This chapter has discussed in detail the previous studies explaining the concept of

culture, consumer behaviour and relationship between them. Moreover, the

importance of fashion and clothing with respect to consumer confidence was also

discussed. At the end of chapter, the gap within the previous studies is identified

which will be the focus of this research by using the methodology explained in next

chapter.

Here the 1

st

research question is revisited i.e. How cultural values affects self concept

of individuals which in turn influence consumer behaviourThis is done through the

exploration of relationship between culture and consumer behaviour and its impact on

self image i.e. Self Reference Criterion. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Chapter 3

ME T H O D O L O G I C A LAP P R O A C H

This chapter will elucidate the research strategy and design used for the data

collection. The context of study, data collection among main-stream and ethnic

participants and the methods of data analysis are also explained. In the end of chapter,

limitations of are presented.

3.1 Research Strategy

This project is intended to explore the values and attitude of individuals from western

and eastern cultures. On the basis of these values and beliefs, consumer preferences

within clothing and apparels will be explored. These preferences will help determine

the idea of beauty and appearance within that culture. For this reason, the inductive

theory method is used. An illustration of this method is given in figure 3.1.

Fig 3.1: The concept of induction

Source: Bryman and Bell (2003) Business research methods p. 11

In this method, the researcher on the basis of findings and observations deduce a

result that draws generalised inferences. In other words, with an inductive stance,

theory is the outcome of research (Bryman and Bell 2003). This dissertation also

constructs generalisable results on the basis of research conducted.

3.2 Research Design

There are different kinds of research designs available, but for this study comparative

design is used. Hantaris (1996) has suggested that such research occurs when

Findings Theory Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

individuals or teams set to examine particular issues or phenomena in one, two or

more countries with the express intention of comparing their manifestations in

different socio-cultural setting (institutions, customs, traditions, value systems,

lifestyles, language, thought patterns). According to him the main aim of this study

design is to seek explanations for similarities and differences to gain a greater

awareness and a deeper understanding of social reality in different national contexts.

Moreover, the typical forms of comparative research design are qualitative i.e.

ethnographic or qualitative interviews on more then two cases (Bryman and Bell

2003), which are discussed in section 3.3.1.

Usunier (1998) further classified the comparative study in to two approaches.

According to him cross-cultural approaches are the one which compare national

culture and local customs in various countries. An example of this approach is

Hofstede (1984) study, which conducted research on IBM in more then 40 countries.

The second approach is intercultural approaches which focus on the study of

interaction between people and organisations from different national/cultural

background. This research project is more focused on intercultural approaches as it

will look into interaction of people from different cultural backgrounds and their

influence on each other.

3.3 Research Methods

Historically qualitative research has been given less than a fair sense of appreciation

and has been criticized for lack of scientific rigour, small samples, subjective and

nonreplicable efforts (Goodyear, 1990). Today, researchers and buyers of research

still see qualitative research as the provision of a homogeneous data collection method

based on group discussions or in-depth interviews (Wright 1996). This method has

proved to be beneficial for exploratory as well as for non-quantitative researches.

Qualitative approach is selected as in this research there are more exploratory

objectives which need deep insight analysis of consumers’ behaviour. Qualitative

research emphasises more on words rather than quantification in the collection and

analysis of data (Bryman and Bell 2003). The research methods used for this study are Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

primary research methods secondary research methods. Primary research is carried

out with the use of qualitative research tools, which was in accordance to the

objectives

Not only that qualitative method helps to identify people’s attitude towards a product

category through group brain storming, it also assist exploring customers behaviour,

lifestyles, needs and desires in a flexible and creative manner. Another reason of its

preference is that researcher can ask probing questions to clarify something they do

not fully understand or something unexpected and interesting that may help to explain

consumer behaviour (Dibb & Simkin 1997).

3.3.1 Primary Research Methods

The primary research methods used are interviews and focus group. These two

methods are used in semi-structured pattern (Bryman and Bell 2003) as they give a

deep understanding of market trends and people’s behaviour. Among the different

interview methods, semi-structured interviewing is focused. This term covers a wide

range of instances and typically refers to a context in which interviewer has a series

of questions that are in the general form of an interview schedule but is able to vary

the sequence of questions. Moreover Semi-structured interview also covers in-depth

interviews (Bryman and Bell 2003).

The second primary research method used is focus group. The focus group method is

a form of group interview in which: there are several participants (in addition to the

moderator/facilitator); there is an emphasis in the questioning on a particular fairly

tightly defined topic; and the accent is upon interaction within the group and the joint

construction of meaning (Merton et al. 1953). This technique help researcher to

develop an understanding about why people feel the way they do (Hutt 1979). Focus

group also offer research opportunity to study the ways in which individuals

collectively make sense of phenomenon and construct meanings around it (Wilkinson

1998) Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

3.3.2 Secondary Research Methods

Secondary research included the material from secondary research reports (Mintel,

GMID, Snapshot and Fame), books, articles, journals and newspapers related to

culture, brand identity and personality, consumer behaviour and UK fashion industry.

This data from secondary sources was used parallel with primary research for

valuable results.

3.4 Context of Study

This research is based on study of western and eastern cultures in Britain. For this

reason, it was conducted in London, a city which is famous for attracting different

immigrant groups from different parts of the world, as it won’t exist without mass

immigration (www.britishlibrary.co.uk 2008). Moreover, according to 2001 census

survey, more then 20% of Londoners are from an ethnic minorities (www.bbc.co.uk

2008), which make it suitable for ethnic minority studies and researches.

3.5 Participants of Study

The sample size consisted of a 13 eastern (Asian, 8 Pakistani and 5 Indian) and 12

western consumers (white, 3 Italian and 9 English). For the purpose of this research,

they are termed as “ethnic participants” and “mainstream participants” respectively

(Jamal 2003). All of 25 participants were female and were randomly selected on the

basis of social relations in both communities. Out of 13 ethnic minority participants, 5

were born and educated in UK whereas rest 8 came from Pakistan for educational

purposes and had been in UK for 1 to 4 years. These ethnic participants are bilingual,

single and their age ranges from 21-27 years. Out of total 12 mainstream participants,

9 were born and educated in UK whereas rest 3 came to UK in past 3-4 years from

Italy. All of these participants are single and involved in education or working

activities. Moreover, mainstream participants had exposure to ethnic participant’s

culture during their stay in London. Most of interviews conducted for this study were Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

inside british institute of technology and e commerce from students whereas focus

groups were conducted at university Halls and at researchers’ home facility.

3.6 Data Collection among Ethnic Participants

Data among female ethnic participants was collected through interviews and focus

group discussion. Total 8 interviews were conducted each lasting for an average of

10-15 minutes. 4 interviews were tape-recorded and transcribed with permission

whereas rest 5 were written in detail after they were conducted.

Name Age Nationality Profession

Marital

Status

Interviewee-1 23 British-Pakistani Student/Doing job Single

Interviewee-2 22 British-Pakistani Student Single

Interviewee-3 24 Indian Student Single

Interviewee-4 24 Pakistani Student/Doing job Single

Interviewee-5 26 Pakistani Student Single

Interviewee-6 21 Indian Student Single

Interviewee-7 24 Pakistani Student Single

Interviewee-8 23 British-Indian Student/Doing job Single

Focus Group

Participant-1

27 Indian Student Single

Focus Group

Participant-2

23 Pakistani Student Single

Focus Group

Participant-3

26 Pakistani Student/Doing job Single

Focus Group

Participant-4

21 British-Pakistani Student/Doing job Single

Focus Group

Participant-5

24 British-Indian Student/Doing job Single

Table 3.1: Ethnic participants’ demographic details

A focus group within these ethnic participants was also conducted with 5 members to

get maximum feedback on consumer behaviour, while they perform daily life Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

functions as member of group or community. Open ended questions were used for

probing purpose during 30 minutes session of focus group. The demographic details

of ethnic participants are given in table 3.1.The detail questions asked from ethnic

participants are given in appendix A.

3.7 Data Collection among Mainstream Participants

The data among mainstream participants was collected in same manner as for ethnic

participants. 7 interviews were conducted with one focus group. None of the

interviews were tape recorded but written in detail after they were conducted. Each

interview lasted for an average of 10-15 minutes.

Name Age Nationality Occupation

Marital

Status

Interviewee-1 21 British Student/Doing job Single

Interviewee-2 22 British Student/Doing job Single

Interviewee-3 24 British Student Single

Interviewee-4 24 British Student/Doing job Single

Interviewee-5 26 British Student Single

Interviewee-6 21 British Student Single

Interviewee-7 28 Italian Professional worker Single

Focus Group

Participant-1

25 British Student Single

Focus Group

Participant-2

23 British Student/Doing job Single

Focus Group

Participant-3

25 British Student Single

Focus Group

Participant-4

24 Italian Student Single

Focus Group

Participant-5

23 Italian Student Single

Table 3.2: Mainstream participants’ demographic details

A focus group of 5 people was also carried out while using open ended questions. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

This focus group lasted for 30 minutes. The demographic details of mainstream

participants are given in table 3.2. The detail questions asked from mainstream

participants are given in appendix B.

3.8 Method of Data Analysis

The method of data analysis used in this research is content analysis. According to

Bryman and Bell (2003), content analysis is an approach to the analysis of documents

and texts and is further classified into semiotic and qualitative content analysis or

ethnographic content analysis. The term ethnographic content analysis (ECA) was

first used by Aitheide (1996) and comprises a searching-out of underlying themes in

the materials being analysed while illustrating extracted themes-for example, with

brief quotations from newspaper articles or magazines.

Qualitative content analysis offers an important method for the cultural studies

because it enables researcher to analyse values, attitude and behaviour (Kabanoff,

Walderse and Cohen 1995). Furthermore, content analysis is highly flexible, nonreactive and transparent research method (Bryman and Bell 2003). It allow researcher

to gather information about social groups that are difficult to access and observe

(Maylor and Blackmon 2005).

3.9 Limitations

This section will present limitations of research methods and whole research study.

Some of the limitations of research methods are as follows:

1. The research methods used in this study are primary and secondary, which have

some limitations.

a. More time is required for primary data collection whereas reliability and

validity are major issues in secondary data collection methods (Bryman and

Bell 2003). Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

b. Interviews takes a lot more time then questionnaire and some time require

physical presence of researcher.

c. Major issue with focus groups is that there is the possibility of groupthink i.e.

people expressing an opinion which is in line with the rest of the group even if

that opinion is at odds with their own personal one (Dibb & Simkin 1997).

2. Likewise above-mentioned limitations of research methods, content analysis

method also have some disadvantages. It is accused of being too much

‘atheoretical’ (Bryman and Bell 2003) and most of the times cannot explain the

answers of question ‘Why’ (Maylor and Blackmon 2005)

Limitations within research study are:

3. Due to lack of time, limited numbers of participants were interviewed. Inclusion

of more participants would have increased the level of validity and reliability.

4. Limited numbers of questions were asked from participants of interviews and

focus groups. Detail interviews and focus groups would have given more handy

results on cultural influence on participant’s behaviour.

5. Participants from other nationalities in mainstream and ethnic cultures might also

have included for further deep understanding.

6. The participants selected for this study had similar demographical data i.e. single

and students. Data strength would have been increased with the selection of

varied demographic participants.

3.10 Summary

This chapter has discussed in detail the methodology of research design, data

collection techniques and participants’ description. Furthermore, the method used for Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

depicting findings of collected data and its analysis is also explained. The next

chapter will cover the outcomes of data gathered and its implications. Based on the

results, first three objectives of this study (given in section 1.3.1) will be met. The last

objective i.e. implication of this research study for high street retailers will be given

in conclusion and recommendations. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Chapter 4

FI N D I N G S

This chapter will present the results of interviews and focus groups gathered during

this research study. It is divided into two sections. The first section elucidates the

results from interviews from two different cultural participants’ i.e. ethnic participants

and mainstream participants. The second section covers the findings of focus group,

also from ethnic participants and mainstream participants. These results are analysed

using the content analysis method explained in methodology i.e. section 3.8.

4.1 Findings from interviews

During the research study, semi-structured interviews were conducted among 15

participants from ethnic and mainstream cultures. Both interview groups were asked

the same questions apart from minor changes in selection of apparel preferences,

which were changed with respect to their cultural norms and values. For the

convenience of participants, they were also shown the pictures of other groups’

cultural apparels.

As stated in previous chapter, aesthetics are the ideas of beauty and appearance in

material culture. The interview questions were designed according to research pattern

given in figure 1.1, to assess the participants’ involvement with apparel aesthetics,

attachment with their values and beliefs, life style patterns in different seasons and

their preferred apparel brands. They were also questioned to assess the level of

confidence and peers pressure while wearing eastern or western clothes.

The interview questions were selected from surveys conducted by O’ Cass in 2004

and 2000, Flynn and Goldsmith in 1999, Auty and Elliot in 1998 and Richins and

Dawson in 1992. The main theme of these questions was to assess involvement and

attachment with their cultural values and beliefs and its impact on consumer

behaviour. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

4.1.1 Ethnic Participants Interviews

Total 8 ethnic participants interviews were conducted, 4 of which were tape recorded

and transcribed. One of the interviews is given in appendix C. These participants

were from Pakistan and India and age between 21-27 years. Moreover, these

participants are in UK for past 1-4 years and going through their undergraduate and

post-graduate degree programmes in different universities. The interviews were

conducted in a time period of 2 weeks. The findings from ethnic group are explained

and analysed hereafter.

The 1

st

two questions of interview were taken from Aron O’ Cass’s (2004) research to

assess the involvement in apparels. The first question was about an average

percentage of total monthly budgets spent on apparels. The answers were in range of

20pc-30pc, which shows participants’ interest at a significant level in apparels. As

interviewee 4 added:

Yes, I am fashion-oriented and like to buy clothes which ever I think

will suits me. In the winter or summer season’s start, I plan with my

family for shopping and buy whatever is ‘in’ fashion. Some times my

spending is more then what I had planned from my budget, but I

manage it with my forthcoming monthly budgets.

According to Kotler (2003), consumers plan ahead for the purchase of ‘shopping

goods’ only, which require high level of involvement. Furthermore, in order to

measure the involvement in 2

nd

question, participants were given a scale from 1 to 5,

1 being lowest level of involvement and 5 being highest level of involvement. Most

participants fall in the range of 4, which verify the result of 1

st

question.

The next block of questions was about the consumer preference for winter and

summer clothing. These questions were asked in order to check consumer preferences

within their cultural clothing and apparels. A very interesting dilemma is noted in the

replies of these questions from British born immigrants and the immigrants staying Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

for a short period of time. According to interviewee 2, from London:

Well, I usually wear Shalwar-Kameez (a Pakistani Dress) at home.

That is more casual, comfortable and relaxing. But I think it is more

about my values, parents and the relative who are visiting our palace.

They expect me and my sisters to be more Pakistani and culturally

bound. As far as university or work place clothing is concerned, I am

free to select what ever I want, but within my religious and cultural

limits.

As shown in graph 4.1, 87% of British-Pakistanis and British-Indian participants were

more inclined towards jeans or trousers with shirt or ‘Kurta’ (a type of embossed

shirt) as out-of-home dresses. Moreover, 75% of participants rejected any western

dress at home including jeans, as shown in graph 4.2. These replies clearly indicate

that the migrants are trying to go along with the mainstream culture of UK while

practicing the norms and values of their previous cultures. These values are fed in the

minds of children in the early stages of youth and are practiced through out the life

span of individuals.

Ou t-o f-H ome App a rels

13%

87%

Ethnic Apparel

Mainstream Appareal

Graph 4.1: Out-of-home apparel selection by ethnic participants Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

– 39 –

Ou t-o f-H ome Ap p a re ls

75%

25%

E thnicA pparel

Mainstream Appareal

Graph 4.2: In-home apparel selection by ethnic participants

The participants were also questioned to assess their attachment with their cultural

values. They were asked the reason to choose those dresses. Most of the participants

put their weight in categories of fashion, practicing social norms and following family

traditions, as shown in graph 4.3.

38%

25%

6%

31%

Fashion

Tridtion

Celebrity Endorsement

S oc ial Norm s

Graph 4.3: Values preferences by ethnic participants Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

– 40 –

These answers clearly indicate attachment with social values as well as desire to keep

pace with ‘in’ fashion. This is due to the peer pressure, which further raise the

question of confidence in individuals.

When it was enquired that in which dress do they would feel more confident i.e. their

native cultural dress or mainstream cultural dress; most of the answers were vague

and unclear. According to one interviewee 8:

It all depends on situation and circumstances, for example, if you are

going in a party or celebration where all of your close relative will

wear Sari or Kurta, you can’t wear jeans or skirt in between them.

Obviously you will feel confident looking like hem, not a separate

identity. Same is the case when you go for job.

The peer pressure directly affects the confidence level in individuals. The fitting of

apparels, brand name and ‘in’ fashion are at secondary importance. Cultural values,

norms and rituals hold the most important place in ethnic minority groups, who are

pushing to keep their culture alive.

The final segment of questions was asked to assess the brand loyalty. Most of the

respondents said they are brand loyal and purchase from Next, H&M, MKone and

Doherty Perkin0073. According to them, they prefer these brands as they are fashionoriented and keep the latest inventory of clothes. Participants also showed high level

of interest in buying their ethnic minority clothes from these brands. This response is

support the idea that respondents would go for increased shopping from places which

take care of their interests.

4.1.2 Mainstream Participants Interviews

Total 7 mainstream participants were interviewed whereas none of the interview was

tape recorded. The participants were from England and Italy and age between 22-28

years. These participants were students and doing their postgraduate or undergraduate Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

from universities. The same questions were asked from mainstream participants apart

from minor changes in dress choices. The data was collected for a period of 2 weeks

and is explained henceforth.

Even though the involvement in clothing brands was found at level 3 (from scale 1-5,

1 being lowest and 5 being highest involvement) in mainstream participants, but the

spending was between 15pn-20pc, which is quite less then ethnic participants. This

indicates that the high level of involvement do not suggest amplified spending.

The next questions were asked in order to check consumer preferences within their

cultural clothing and apparels. The major preferences during summer season were

mini skirts, sleeveless shirts, jeans and hot pants whereas for winter season were

jumpers, coats, jeans and jerseys or sweater. It is important to note that unlike ethnic

participants, mainstream respondents were more determined to practice their cultural

values and beliefs at home, work place or any social gatherings by wearing their

preferred clothes. Graph 4.4 shows mainstream participants in-home and out-of-home

apparel preferences.

InH ome&Ou t-o f-H omeAp p a re ls

14%

86%

E thnicA pparel

Mainstream Appareal

Graph 4.4: In-home & out-of-home apparel selection by mainstream participant Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Moreover, when it was enquired that why do they wear their preferred clothes, the

answers were fashion and fashion, tradition, celebrity enforcement. Because of the

impact of these traditions and values, majority of participants rejected any possibility

for ethnic cultural clothes, as they do not relate to them.

37%

19%

31%

13%

Fashion

Tridtion

Celebrity Endorsement

S oc ial Norm s

Graph 4.5: Values preference by mainstream participants

According to these participants, they will not look good in these dresses and their

confidence will be shattered. According to interviewee 6, from Oxford:

It is impossible for me to wear Asian clothes, not at all. I have never

tried them on me and I don’t think there is any chance that I would

look good in it. Also, I don’t want to be bullies by my friends. They will

not accept it even if it is fashion or culture, until and unless it is

planned.

As mentioned by her, there is no chance that their peer groups accept it even if it is

‘in’ fashion. These responses clearly indicate a hard line drawn between eastern and

western culture by mainstream participants. The pressure from peer group and the

idea of ‘self image’ is very much visible from these answers and holds utter Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

importance. Also the major brands identified by mainstream participants for shopping

were Next, Top Shop, H&M, MKone, and Gap. According to these respondents, they

don’t hesitate to buy from other brands in high street if better things are available

from them.

Lastly, the respondent’s involvement level in mentioned brands was found healthy,

even if these brands sell ethnic cultural wears. This shows a high level of brand

loyalty within mainstream participants. According to one interviewee 3, from London:

I live near-buy South-hall, one the biggest shopping markets of Asian

clothes in London. Some times I visit it with my mother or sister for

routine shopping. There are a lot of things that you can use casually

like sandals, flip flops, summer tops and jumpers and especially

jewellery. I have bought a lot of my things from their and no doubt that

I will buy them, if these things are available in high-streets brands.

It is important to note there that participants showed their interest in buying the

commodities which match their own culture from an ethnic shopping mall; the

implication is that mainstream cultures accept to buy possessions from places where

ethnic cultures buy. This also shows that mainstream cultures adopt, accept and adjust

with ethnic cultures.

4.2 Interview questions tabulation

In order to assess the popular and non-popular themes, the interviews were divided in

5 different domains. The comparison of ethnic and mainstream cultures by using this

coding technique is given in table 4.1. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Themes

Ethnic Participants

Responses

Mainstream Participants

Responses

Domain 1: Involvement in

apparels. (2 Questions)

High level of involvement at

4 (1 being lowest and 5 being

highest)

20pc-30pc monthly budget

spending.

Moderate level of involvement

at 3 (1 being lowest and 5

being highest)

15pc-20pc monthly budget

spending.

Domain 2: Preference for

winter and summer clothes.

(2 Questions)

Different preferences for inhome and outdoor wears

Same preferences for in-home

and outdoor wears.

Domain 3: Attachment

with cultural values. (2

Questions)

Positive towards fashion and

following social norms

Positive towards fashion,

maintaining identity and

following social norms

Domain 4: Confidence and

peer pressure. (4 Questions)

Mixed opinion for western

clothing.

Increased level of confidence

with western cultural clothes

at job or work place and

Asian clothes in eastern social

gatherings

Highly positive towards peer

pressure.

Strong negative opinion for

Asian clothing and apparels.

Decreased level of confidence

and shattered self image with

Asian clothing.

Highly positive towards peer

pressure.

Domain 5: Brand loyalty (3

Questions)

Positive towards brand

loyalty

Aim for increased shopping if

these brands keep Asian

clothes.

Moderate signs of brand

loyalty

Interest in brands found

healthy if they start keeping

ethnic wears.

Table 4.1: Interview questions tabulation Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

4.3 Findings from Focus Group

During two focus group sessions, questions were asked from 10 participants from

ethnic and mainstream cultures. Both groups were enquired the same question apart

from minor changes in selection of apparel preferences, which were changed

according to their cultural norms and values. Alike interview sessions, pictures of

other groups’ cultural apparels were also shown to participants.

The question were structured according to research pattern given in figure 1.1, in

order to assess the participants’ involvement with apparel aesthetics, attachment with

their values and beliefs, life style patterns in different seasons and their preferred

apparel brands. They were also questioned to assess the confidence and peer pressure

while wearing eastern or western clothes.

The focus group questions were similar to those of interview questions and were

selected from the same surveys conducted by different authors mentioned earlier. The

main theme of these questions was to assess involvement and attachment with their

cultural values and beliefs and its impact on consumer behaviour.

4.3.1 Ethnic participants’ focus group

Ethnic participants’ focus group included 5 members from Pakistan and India and age

between 21-26 years. These Participants are living in UK for past 1-4 years and going

through their post-graduate and undergraduate programmes in different universities.

This focus group was conducted at researchers’ home premises and had duration of 30

minutes. The findings from ethnic focus group are explained and analysed henceforth.

Most of the participants spend an average of 20pc-25pc of their total monthly budget

on apparels. The big amounts are spent on seasonal sales or monthly special offers in

big stores. According to the respondents, they look for sales or offers through out the

year and save considerable amount of money from these benefits. It is important to

note here that the budget mentioned by these participants is less then the budget cited Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

by interviewed participants. Social pressure within the group led to a precise budget

figure rather then estimated numbers. Moreover, the hunt for sales promotions in high

streets shows a high level of involvement and interest in apparels and clothing.

The preferences of clothes, in-house and out-of-home, were identical to those of

interviewed. According to the respondents, they wear Shalwar-Kameez or Kurta at

home whereas jeans, trousers or full-sleeves shirts for work or university purposes.

The reasons mentioned by these participants were also similar to the interviewed

respondents i.e. keeping the native culture alive at home whereas participating and

sharing equally with mainstream culture. These answers show a resistance from

members and groups of ethnic cultures to completely accept and practice mainstream

or counter culture.

Moreover, all members of group unanimously declined to wear western clothes such

as mini-skirts, hot pants or deep necks. According to them, these clothes will not be

accepted by their family or friends and certainly will shatter their confidence in social

gatherings, even if they are ‘in’ fashion and accepted by society at large. The agreed

behaviour of whole group for western clothes shows a high level of peer pressure and

strong commitment with their values and beliefs.

At the end, the group as enquired for their loyalty towards high street brands. Most of

the participants buy from Next, Debenhams, New Look, Primark, Top Shop and

Doherty Perkins. All the participants had encountered sale experience from these

brands once or more. Increased interest and elevated buying were mentioned by group

members if these brands start keeping ethnic cultures dresses and apparels.

4.3.2 Mainstream participants’ focus group

Mainstream participants’ focus group included 5 members from United Kingdom and

Italy and aged between 22-27 years. 3 of these participants were born and living in

UK whereas 2 participants came from Italy last year i.e. 2007. This focus group was Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

conducted in British institute of technology and e commerce Halls for duration of 25

minutes. The findings of this focus group are as follows:

According to the respondents, the average monthly budget spent on apparels is

between 15pc-25pc, which is slightly less then ethnic participants’ budget. The

members showed their interest in buying dresses and apparels from sales as well as in

normal shopping days. According to these participants, they don’t just wait for

seasonal or monthly sales but also go along with fad and fashion and buy what ever

they think will suits them. These answers show a high involvement in apparels

throughout the year.

The preferences of clothes, in-house and out-of-home, were identical to those of

interviewed. According to them, the major preferences during summer season were

sleeveless shirts with jeans or trousers, mini-skirts and hot pants whereas for winter

season were jumpers, coats, jeans and jerseys or sweater. When it was enquired that

why do they wear their preferred clothes, the answers were to look fashionable and

following cultural and social norms. These answers indicate a strong sense of

association with ‘in’ fashion and their cultural values and beliefs.

Moreover, these respondents were also determined to wear their native cultural

apparels at home, work place or any social gatherings. Because of the impact of these

social gatherings and norms, most of participants rejected any possibility to wear

ethnic cultures apparels. According to these participants, their close friends and

family members will not accept them in those dresses. From these responses, it is

clear that peer pressure plays an important role in buying behaviour of society.

Lastly, the important brands identified by the mainstream participants for shopping

were Next, Top Shop, H&M, Zara, Debenhams, asos and Gap. The respondent also

showed interest in these brands even if they sell ethnic cultural wears. This shows a

high level of brand loyalty within mainstream participants. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

4.4 Summary

This chapter has discussed the results of interviews and focus groups. Participants’

involvement, interest and association with cultural values and beliefs were also

discussed. In addition, these results and findings were assessed by using content

analysis method. Moreover, these results have helped meeting the 1

st

three objectives

given in section 1.3.1. The next chapter will discuss these objectives and obtained

results with respect to the literature review presented in chapter 2 followed by

conclusion and recommendations. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Chapter 5

DI S C U S S I O N

This chapter will analyse the finding with respect to the literature review presented in

chapter 2. Based on the research objectives, literature review and findings, the

discussion will advance to examine three concepts: the effects of culture on

consumers’ selection of apparels and wears followed by effects of clothing and

fashion apparels on self image and confidence. Lastly, the influence of culture on

consumer behaviour and brand selection decision will be discussed.

5.1 Culture and its influence

The visibility of sub-cultures (Keegan 2006) in mainstream culture is noticeable in

this research. These sub-cultures are practiced according to the native national

cultures of consumers. Consumers act and behave according to these sub-cultures’

values and beliefs and pass them to next generation. Moreover, the selection of

eastern dresses by ethnic participants and western dresses by mainstream participants

for social gatherings reflects profound group pressures for cultural coherence. These

group pressures are concerned with development of unique experiences for

individuals, which makes them feel special as well as part of their native society

(Veltman 1997).

The dilemma of in-home and out-of home apparels’ selection reflects motivation of

eastern participants to keep a balance between ethnic and mainstream cultures. This

balance helps them to maintain their social identity as a mainstream cultural member

as well as allowing them to buttress manifestations and values of ethnic culture

(Hofstede 1991). These values are fed by immigrants in the minds of their children at

young age (Douglous 2006), so that new generation can keep these traditions alive.

These traditions also allow them to go parallel with mainstream cultural values. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Furthermore, the reasons mentioned by ethnic as well as mainstream participants for

the selection of their preferred clothes are similar i.e. ‘in’ fashion, keeping up their

cultural identity and pursuing social norms. According to Salter (1997), norms and

values arises within the way of life of people and give them solidarity and identity.

Hence, relationship with native culture gives a sense of identity and cohesion within

individuals. Moreover, individuals’ selection of ‘in’ fashion was also found to be in

accordance to the cultural values and beliefs, which strengthen the Salter (1997)

social norms concept.

Moreover, when the individuals from ethnic culture were inquired if they could use

some western culture apparels (jeans, tops, jerseys, jumpers and etc), a positive

opinion was received. According to Nguyen and Barrett (2008), individual from a

sub-culture adopt manifestations from mainstream or dominant culture. These

adopted manifestations became part of sub-culture and consumer mind set while

reinforcing further behaviour. The adoption process is shown in figure 2.7 and is

clearly support by this study.

5.2 Effects of culture and apparels on self confidence

Empirical study conducted by Cass (2004) proved that fashion apparel increase

confidence and satisfaction among individuals. Participants of this study also showed

a high level of confidence in wearing fashion apparels and wears in social gathering.

Confidence in participants was found significantly low and shattered while going for

out of fashion and old clothing apparels.

Moreover, as mentioned by Shim et al. (1991), clothing has important symbolic

meanings in social interactions. These social interactions are family, relatives, peer

groups and other social groups within society. Social gatherings in ethnic or

mainstream culture represent their traditions and values. Aesthetics, clothing and

apparels are one of the ways by which these traditions and values are visible to outer

world. Participants showed their concerns for odd or culturally unacceptable apparels

in social gathering and interactions, as these will not be accepted by stakeholders. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

There is an increase desire of self-expression (Evans 1989) and fashion is one of the

most important methods for it. Fashion concept is often a manifestation of self image.

This self image is projected in society with apparels and wears used by individuals.

Also, the participants of this study showed a positive relationship between self image

and apparels. Some participants never tried opposite culture’s clothes as they thought

that they will not look good in it. The imagination of bodily self-image did not allow

them to wear those apparels.

Here the concept of self reference criterion (SRC) is revisited in figure 5.1. Self

reference criterion is the unconscious reference to one’s own cultural values or one’s

home country frame of reference (Lee 1966). Individuals grown up in different

contexts possess negative and unfavourable feelings for customs and values of

opposite cultures, especially the ones which are unacceptable in their native culture.

Participants of this study also showed a strong negative response to the apparels

which are undesirable in their national cultures.

Fig 5.1: Demographics & personality variables with lifestyle, self concept & consumer behaviour

Source: Adopted from Foxel et. al. (1998) Consumer Psychology of Marketing 2

nd

Edition p. 148

Moreover, as mentioned by Loader (1999), an individual’s behaviour is a result of that

individual’s cultural value system for a particular context. Demographic and

personality development milieus play an important role in shaping concept of self

image and life style patterns. These personality and demographic traits are

strengthened in initials childhood stages of ethnic and mainstream participants’,

where parent and peer group appreciate culturally acceptable clothing and apparels.

These personality traits and life style patterns have permanently shaped their

behaviour towards opposite cultures

Demographics

Personality

Life Style

Self Concept

Consumer

Behaviour

S R C Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

5.3 Culture, consumer behaviour and brand Selection

Brands are one of the important factors that influence groups to accept or reject an

individual in a society. Most of the participants of study were found brand loyal and

regular buyers from specific brands. Among the most mentioned brands are Next,

Doherty Perkins, Gap, MKone, Top Shop and H&M. All of these are well known

brands and exist in every famous high street of UK. It is important to note that no one

mentioned M&S, one of the biggest high street brands. Consumers often choose

certain products, services and brands over other because they are associated with a

certain life style (Brandon 2003 cited in Forney, Park and Brandon 2005). None of

the participants wanted to be associate with M&S as it is considered for old

generation life style in UK.

The study by Aaker and Schmitt (1997) shows difference between eastern and

western consumers decision for brand selection. As eastern consumers are more

collectivist then western, they use brands to reassert their similarity with members of

their reference group. This study paper proves the previous research in this regard.

When it was inquired from ethnic participants, if they would still buy apparels from

theses brands, if they start keeping ethnic apparels, a highly positive response were

received. These positive answers from ethnic participants show their high association

towards these brands as majority of their social groups will buy from these them. The

association with these brands will make them confident and satisfied in social

gatherings and interactions.

Moreover, individualist consumers use brands to differentiate themselves to referent

from others (Aaker and Schmitt 1997). This statement was found contrary in this

study as healthy involvement in above-mentioned brands was identified even if they

sell ethnic apparels. Mainstream participants will buy western apparels from these

brands as eastern or ethnic apparels will not b accepted by their peer groups. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

5.4 Summary

As mentioned by Poon (2003), economic and cultural differences lead to substantial

variation in behaviour of consumer. These differences guide societies and civilisation

to varied way of life and value system. This chapter have looked into these

differences with respect to literature review presented in this report. The next chapter

will present conclusion and finally the recommendations for managers, entrepreneurs

and researchers for further studies in this regard. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

Chapter 6

CO N C L U S I O N&RE C O M M E N D A T I O N S

6.1 Conclusion

With growing migration patterns throughout the world, it is becoming difficult for

entrepreneurs as well as for researchers to depict and meet demands of society. These

migrations, which result in interaction between different cultures, play an important

role in moulding consumer needs and wants. Consumer values systems, attitudes and

mind-sets are modifying accordingly with the changes in society. These values,

beliefs and attitude plays important role in our daily lives and shape them

accordingly. Our feelings, involvement, and reactions towards certain objects are

developed and silhouette by members of society.

This dissertation has sought to discuss the factors that effect consumer behaviour in a

multi-cultural society. The differences between eastern and western cultures are

highlighted in this report while focusing their values and attitude towards apparels

and clothing. The influence on consumer behaviour is then analysed from the

participants’ feedback is and linked to the previous studies conducted in this regards.

Revisiting objectives of this dissertation report, first 3 targets of this dissertation are

achieved and examined in discussion and analysis chapters. The last objective, i.e.

advantages and disadvantages for retailers, is explained here. One of the main

advantages for keeping cross-cultural apparels will be higher turnover which in turn

will boost sales of company. Higher sales will bring more profit for retailers in high

streets. Another advantage for retailers would be brand reorganisation amongst

different buyers from different countries. This will reduce entry barriers in those

countries. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

These benefits will also bring some disadvantages with them. One of the main

disadvantages will be issue of brand reposition in UK market. According to Aaker

and Schmitt (1997), individualist consumers use brands to differentiate themselves to

referent from others. The focus of new position would be to attract more and more

customer, keeping brand superiority and uniqueness at side. This might repel

hardliner western customers who wanted to buy from these brands for differentiated

products.

6.2 Recommendations

Suggestion for managers and retailers are presented in this section based on the

finding and discussion. Suggestions for researchers are as follows.

1. This study was conducted in West London, amongst the students and part time

jobbers. Further research can include other areas of London, Birmingham,

Manchester and Bradford, as these cities have high ratio of immigrants from

different countries. Diverse answers from participants of these cities can further

clarify relationship of culture and consumer behaviour. Moreover, recent

immigration trends can base further research in this regards. The immigrants from

Eastern Europe include Poland and Lithuanian citizens.

2. Further study in self reference criterion needs to be carried out. This concept can

unveil consumer understanding of different objects and commodities. Moreover,

it can help in development of frameworks that elucidate culture and its influence.

Further studies on SRC are very much necessary for deep insight into aesthetical

element of culture.

3. Some of the participants mentioned religious factor for selecting apparels.

Religious beliefs play a very important role in individual’s life. It is very difficult

to separate culture from religion and its influences. Religious factor become more

important while conducting research on Eastern or Asian values and beliefs. This

aspect of culture can be carried out in future researches on culture and its

influence. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

4. Cultural influence on brand loyalty is discussed very briefly in this report. Culture

plays an important role in binding consumer emotions, feelings and attitude

towards a brand. These cultural influences on brand loyalty and attachment can be

carried out in further researches.

Moreover, some of the important recommendations for retailers and managers are

also presented here.

1. As mentioned before, keeping cross-cultural apparels in different outlets would

increase their sales and ultimately profits. This will increase store traffic which

can influence brand sales.

2. The cross-cultural traffic might hit the existing customer’s perception for brand

negatively. Hard-line mainstream customers might not like to shop from outlets

where ethnic consumers buy apparels. For this reason, separate outlets can be

introduced in ethnic consumer’s majority areas. This will increase profits while

safeguarding brand’s position in consumer mind. Relationship between consumer culture and brand selection decision: Study on UK fashion retailers

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How has Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) contributed towards the evolution of Brand communications?

Introduction

Over the couple of previous decades, research on IMC (Integrated Marketing Communication) has generated immense discussion leading to interesting contribution to the evolution of IMC as a strategic means that can develop firms to be more valuable in achieving their brand communication objectives (Madhavaram et al. 2005).

Kitchen et al. (2004), describes the IMC as an endeavour to come together, combine and synergize elements of the communications mix to act as strength and offset the weakness of other element. The need for attempt to combine and synchronization of communication mix has found place in twenty-first century interactive market place where marketing and its communication strategy are in transition (Schultz and Schultz, 1998).

Factors influencing need for IMC

The emphasis on IMC has been driven by continues international changes in the marketing communication surroundings and the call for efficient marketing communication. Sophisticated customer database, cost of emerging customer attainment, disintegration of mass media, change in costumers way of reacting to traditional marketing mix and approaches are the major global changes which instigate the emergence of integrative communication strategy (Reid, 2002). Below describes are the key issues influencing the traditional marketing communication changes as suggested by Shimp (2000):

Decreasing confidence in mass marketing because of communication means and diluted consumer loyalty.
Ever increasing dependence on hugely targeted marketing methods based on developing relationship marketing communication in business.
Increasing pressure on agencies and others which are suppliers of marketing communications to influence and become brand conscious rather than just a supplier of communication services.
Increased focus on return of investment on marketing and communication services demanding greater accountability of marketers and their measurement of substitute consumer attainment and relationship activities.

On an international level, it can be distinguished that fundamentally there are three factors which has changed the traditional marketing communication strategy; deregulations of market-place, globalization and individual preference of consumption (Holm, 2006). These factors depend mainly on development of technology and the current market-place is dominated by the consumers’ interaction through rapid development of information technology which will drive e-commerce (Schultz and Schultz, 1998). Marketers are not in position to push their strategy to the customers instead there is need for pulling information form consumer end to marketer. This situation influence marketers the need to regulate and emphasize marketing strategies to change from tactics to strategy according to the change in market-place reality (Holm, 2006).

Recession in global economy and increasing competition has had an impact on client agency relationship (Brown, 1997). Financial gain, client sophistication, disillusionment with brand and advertising and disillusionment with agencies has necessitated IMC to be supposed as the key fundamental which will complement client-agency relationship and maximise their cost effectiveness by integrating their communication methods (Brown, 1997). Apart from technological development and consumer awareness, internal communication has key strategic role and advantageous for organisations when assessing knowledge sharing (Kalla, 2005). Therefore the integrated structure of internal communication drives organization to reap benefit of all dimensions of knowledge sharing within an organization. Furthermore, internal integrated communication spread beyond the corporate communication activities to the all form of internal and informal communication taking place within an organisation. Market based approach as suggested by Stewart (1996) indicates that marketing communication design and its execution required to be keeping customer focus in mind that how organisation is delivering value to the consumers’. This approach cannot be executed by centralized communication function of contemporary marketing communication method.

IMC: solution to contemporary marketing communications problems

According toSchultz and Schultz (1998) IMC is not considered just as a marketing concept but as a whole strategic business process to map and develop, implement and evaluate in a structured method to develop a brand communications program with customers and other external and internal stakeholders. Author suggests that the most important factor of this definition is that this system is driven by customer data and consumers brand contacts and awareness as this methodology focuses on customers’ assessment and their present and future potential value for the organisation (Schultz and Schultz, 1998). IMC suggests the coordination of message in one sound, one voice between various media and message as a whole facilitating the effectiveness of organizations marketing effort to include and use broad consumer information in defining communication strategy (Sisodia and Telrandhe, 2010). As opposed to traditional marketing which employs a push strategy, IMC employs both push and pull strategy. The IMC concept is not limited only to simultaneously using multiple media in which success of every activity depends upon every communication activities used by the firm creating synergy and one voice (Raman and Naik, 2006).

Schultz and Schultz (1998) have acknowledged four level of integration of IMC for an organization to be fully integrated. Cross functionality through tactical coordination generate high level of competence by achieving synergy along with increased individual communication efficiency. Organizations tend to go beyond the coordination to focus on customer driven, approach as opposed to corporate driven which is found in traditional marketing communication. The next level of integration requires the application of information technology which not only enables solutions but also drive the change in paradigm of marketing communication. IT-based marketing communication incorporate data based system and can be described as the IT development has put good old time of marketing communication far behind (Holm, 2006). The final level of integration represents the involvement of top management of the organisation as it includes and provides the structure of resource planning and execution with arrangement of organization (Schultz and Schultz, 1998). As discussed in previous four level of coordination of IMC approach, it is perceived either theoretically or practically IMC offers considerable value to the clients and agencies (Eagle et al., 2007).

It has been found that integrated communication approach is being executed as a practice as a result of changing consumer behaviour and market development with greater demand for commitment and effectiveness in every communication activities (Eagle et al., 2007).

To quote an example, dLife an integrated network of multi-media communication channels aimed to enhance the living of American with diabetes portrays a perfect model of rising IMC trend. Started in late 2004, dLife used IMC approach to reach the target audience and set itself (dlife.com, dLife direct mail marketing, dLife radio and TV, dLifeEducator, a focused marketing for the community of Hispanic diabetes dLifeLatino and dLifeRetail a collaboration with pharmaceutical business) as the sole integrated patient and consumer education and communication source to effectively reach diabetic community (Stokes, 2009).

dLife’s integrated marketing was innovative and informative which won several awards like national Health Information for executing perfect marketing plan through various modes of communication channel viz. innovative documentary “The Story of Insulin” along with public campaign regarding blood glucose test using slogan “Test! Don’t Guess”. Using integrated approach dLife also used multimedia channels like television shows hosting guests and celebrities and comedians, radio spots and website which contained mail option and enquiries. Stokes (2009) believes that dLife display how sponsorships with public relation attribute organisations to develop new relationship with patients and marketers.

For any news channels it’s not easy to maintain interest in viewers’ 24-hours to remain occupied. CNN is one such example to use IMC as an influential marketing and communication means with variety of traditional journalism and latest marketing strategic tool to create steady audience. CNN used the tactics of retaining old and traditional marketing strategy like CNN Newsroom broadcast and with leading journalists planned to organize programs according to their specialism e.g. The State of Union John King and Larry King Live etc) with CNN.com as their advanced website filling the gap of ongoing social media. Through website’s iReport section which facilitates for viewers to access current news from any platform, website’s correspondent blog section audience can read, react and comment at any stage during live broadcast which have some famous blogs like Paging Dr. Gupta blog and Anderson Cooper 360 blog etc. news on cell phone are made available via CNN mobile, viewers can tweet @CNN breaking news, video and audio contents can be accessed through podcast section and multi-lingual section for foreign language speakers allows CNN to capture wide section of audience. By using different media and latest technology CNN is able to produce single brand with same message and CNN dominates in the news channel industry.

Conclusion

Rapid technological development, internationalization of global economy, deregulation, current customer driven market-place and changing consumption pattern has changed the perception of behaviour and brand value through direct communication. This scenario has instigated marketers to rethink their objective and strategies to the realities of current marketing and communication approach. Keeping this fact, communication needs to shift from tactics to strategy. Strategically focused integrated marketing communication can drive business to develop powerful and attractive brand and brand equity as dominant factor for the success of organisations. Communication of the significance of the brand in the current customer driven market-place will instigate marketers towards collaborative, strategic and coordinated approach to managing their communication and marketing objective with minimal resources and marketing funds. Integrated marketing is being adopted as both an up-and-coming strategic management concept, and as marketing and communication approach for developing brand value.

References

Brown, J. (1997). Impossible dream or inevitable revolutionInvestigating the concept of integrated marketing communications.Journal of Communication Management. 2 (1), p70-81.

Eagle, L. and Kitchen, P.J. and Bulmer, S. (2007). Insights into interpreting integrated marketing communications: A two-nation qualitative comparison. European Journal of Marketing. 41 (7/8), p956-970.

Holm, O. (2006). Integrated marketing communication: from tactics to strategy. Corporate Communications: An International Journal. 11 (1),

Kalla, H.K. (2005). Integrated internal communications: a multidisciplinary perspective. Corporate Communications: An International Journal. 10 (4), p302-314.

Kitchen, P.J. and Brignell, J. and Li, T. and Jones, G.S.. (2004). The emergence of IMC: A theoretical perspective. Journal of Advertising Research. 44 (1), p19-30.

Madhavaram, S. and Badrinarayanan, V. and McDonald, R.E.. (2005). Integrated marketing communication (IMC) and brand identity as critical components of brand equity strategy: A conceptual framework and research propositions. Journal of Advertising. 34 (4), p69-80.

Raman, K. and Naik, P.A. (2006). Integrated Marketing Communications in Retailing. Retailing in the 21st Century, p381-395.

Reid, M. (2002). Building strong brands through the management of integrated marketing communications. International Journal of Wine Marketing. 14 (3), p37-52.

Schultz, D.E. and Schultz, H.F. (1998). Transitioning marketing communication into the twenty-first century. Journal of Marketing Communications. 4, p9-26.

Shimp, T. (2000) Advertising and Promotion: Supplemental aspects of integrated marketing communications. 5th edition. Dryden Press Tx.

Sisodia, S. and Telrandhe, M.N. (2010). ROLE OF INTEGRATED MARKETING COMMUNICATION IN MODERN INDIAN BUSINESS. Journal of Arts Science & Commerce ISSN. 1 (1).

Stewart, D.W. (1996). Market-back approach to the design of integrated communications programs: A change in paradigm and a focus on determinants of success. Journal of Business Research. 37 (3), p147-153

Stokes, A.Q. (2009). Living the sweet (d) Life: public relations, IMC, and diabetes. Journal of Communication Management. 13 (4), p343-361.

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What are the Characteristics of Beiersdorf’s brand portfolio

Introduction

As seen in the Beiersdorf’s Brand-Product Matrix, Beiersdorf’s brand portfolio contains eight brands namely: Labello, Nivea, 8X4, La Prairie, Juvena, Eucerin, Hansaplast/Elastoplast, and Florena. Amongst these brands, the most prominent is the Nivea brand, which the company uses as the umbrella brand for broad skin care and personal care. Most brands have sub-brands. They include Nivea, La Prairie, Eucerin, Hansaplast, and Florena). The other remaining brands have no sub-brands.

Nivea, being the umbrella brand and the most dominant brand, has fifteen sub-brands with each sub-brand extensively extended so as to meet the specific needs of the customers based on gender, age groups, and functional benefits. The sub-brands are: Nivea Cream, Nivea Visage, Nivea Beaute, Nivea Hair Care, Nivea Body, Nivea Soft, Nivea Hand, Nivea Sun, Nivea Deodorant, Nivea Intimate Care, Nivea Baby, Nivea Lip Care, Nivea Bath Care, Nivea for Men, and Nivea Visage Vital.

Ucerin, as a brand, also has several sub-brands. They include Face Care, Hair Care, Deodorant, Body Care, Lip Care, Hand Care, Foot Care, Sun Care, and Anti Age.

Hansaplast’s sub-brands are: Plaster, Wound Care, Foot Care, Scar Reducer, Sport, Insect Bites, and Pain Relief.

The sub-brands within Florena are: Face Care, Body Care, Hair Care, Skin and Hand Cream, and Florena for Men. La Prairie has only three sub-brands, which are: Skin Care Treatments, Fragrances, and Color. 8X4 is known for the Deo Sprays and Roll-ons, Labello for the Lip Care, and Juvena for skin care.

If we keenly consider the above brands, we realize that similar sub-brands are offered. Nivea and Ucerin offer almost similar products. This is a very important strategy in market coverage. Here, the company widens its target group as it targets different consumers, market segments, and channel distributors. In so doing, the company maximizes its coverage for both the available customers and the potential customers. This ensures that none of the customers is ignored. The company has also achieved in maximization of overlap. This ensures that there is reduced or no competition among the brands themselves.

Beiersdorf’s brand portfolio characteristics come with various benefits. First, the risks are lowered. The company operates within a wider market range as it maximizes the coverage on customers. The umbrella brand Nivea has good image that makes the sub-brands to enjoy benefits of reduced risks.

In case of a contamination or loss of image in one brand, the other brands do not suffer. Even if a product within the umbrella brand fails to meet the expectations of the customers, the other products do not suffer from the same. This is because; the company has committed itself in improving the brand image and has succeeded in attracting customers’ confidents in the products. Beiersdorf Company also enjoys great economies of scale. Due to the existence of the parent brands, the costs incurred in production, research and development, distribution, market research, etc are greatly reduced. With this portfolio, the focus on the segmentation strategies is also enhanced. Over the years, Beiersdorf Company has been seen as the market specialist. Its products have globally emerged as market leaders.

The extension strategies at Beiersdorf Company are Line extensions, and Category extension. Line extension has been used in the introduction of new products so as to target the potential customers and market segments in the same product class. In such a case, the parent brand is made use of. Category extension has also helped the company to conquer different product categories.

As a result of the extensions, the company has enjoyed various benefits, among which are: good image creation, risk reduction, great efficiencies in packaging, labelling, production, and marketing. Also, there are high chances of gaining distribution, as the cost of introductory and marketing are greatly lowered. The costs of developing new brands are also eliminated. At the same time, consumers are assured of varieties of products.

1. David A. Aaker and Erich Joachimsthaler said, “The challenge is to create a brand team where all the sub brands and brands fit in and productive” in The Brand Relationship Spectrum. Discuss the Beiersdorf’s Brand architecture strategies on the basis of brand relationship spectrum.

The business environments today have radically changed the roles of brand managers as they are faced with global changes, channel dynamics and market fragmentations. The high costs in creation of new brands put a lot of pressure on the brand assets. Due to these complexities and pressures, the brand managers are faced with several challenges that call for proper understanding of both the relationships and structures. “Brand architecture” gives the ultimate solution. According to Aaker and Joachimsthaler (2000), brand architecture is defined as the organizing structure of the brand portfolio where the brand roles and the nature of brand relationships are defined. Well-defined brand architecture can minimise wastage, confusion, and market weakness; as it promotes synergy, leverage, clarity, and opportunities.

The Brand Relationship Spectrum

On the basis of brand relationship spectrum, Beiersdorf has adopted the “Branded House Strategy”. Here, Nivea is the umbrella brand. Nivea provides the global umbrella under which a wide product line operates. The products include Nivea Body Care, Nivea Face Care, Nivea Hand Care, Nivea Men’s Care, Nivea Sun Care, Nivea Bath Care, Nivea Lip Care, and Nivea Deodorants. With this kind of brand architecture strategy, there is a lot of clarity, synergy, and leverage.

Beiersdorf enjoys maximum clarity, as the customers know exactly what is offered. From a branding perspective, it is very easy to understand the brand since all the products within the brand communicate the same message. This enhances clarity as compared to several individual brands where each brand has its own associations. Customers easily know, understand, and recall the brand. Communication partners and the employees also benefit greatly from the clarity and the focus on a single dominant brand. As compared to other strategies, the question of brand priorities or the need to protect the brand does not arise.

In addition, Beiersdorf enjoys maximization of synergy. Participation in one product market, say, Nivea Face Care, creates associations and visibility which helps other products like Nivea Body Care, Nivea Men’s Care, among others. Innovations and improvements in quality of one product enhance the brand in other products as well. Furthermore, an exposure of the brand in one product creates visibility, which enhances the brand awareness in all the other products. In most contexts, there is a lot of input and efforts in umbrella brand Nivea so as to build its overall image.

This strategy provides room for more cost effective means in launching of new products and brand extensions. When a new product is to be introduced into the market, the promotional costs are greatly lowered. Due to the existence of the same brand name, new products always have increased chances of customer acceptance since they carry the same brand name. Building of the new product awareness from scratch is totally eliminated. In terms of brand promotion, Beiersdorf enjoys economies of scale. The resources are channelled more effectively due to the fact that only one brand is promoted.

One of the disadvantages of this strategy is the possibility of brand dilution. If not properly monitored, there can be dilution of the umbrella brand Nivea when product proliferation occurs. All products may not have the same positioning theme. Any deviation from the umbrella brand’s positioning will result into the dilution of the main positioning theme of the entire branded house. The company may also be forced to forgo a lot of market opportunities when the opportunities fail to fit into the positioning of the parent’s brand.

If one brand fails, there can be adverse negative impacts on the entire branded house due to the fact that all the products carry same brand name. Any controversy that involves a single product can adversely affect the other remaining products. With the branded house strategy in a large market share, it becomes extremely difficult to maintain the quality position or the good image of the umbrella brand. The ability of the company to target specific groups is also limited as compromises are always required.

The brand name adds value to the new products due to its value position, the credibility, and the communication efficiencies resulting into cost advantages. Beiersdorf’s master brand always makes the products more appealing to the customers, thereby making the brand equity to be leveraged in the new context. Nivea offers great visibility to its new products. At the same time, there are great reductions in the costs of promotions and advertisements, packaging and displays, and brochures, as the prior brand building efforts are adopted and used directly.

Beiersdorf’s Nivea brand has excelled in meeting the varied needs of the customers due to its relevance. The position of the brand is high and proper, with the high products’ value forming the basis of pricing. Nivea brand equity is strong as a result of the perfect marketing strategies, which include advertisements and promotions. Due to its excellent products, we deduce that the company properly understands the needs of the consumers as it monitors its sources of brand equity.

2. Though all the brands in Beiersdorf’s portfolio were carried as independent identities, all these brands were further extended rigorously across various product categories.” [Section: “Evolution of Beiersdorf AG’s Brand Portfolio”, para 11 of the case study]. How did Beiersdorf employ its brands as strategic growth vehicles?

The Ansoff Growth matrix

Market penetration

Beiersdorf Company always concentrates in selling its existing products into the existing markets. In so doing, the company has managed to achieve the following:

There has been an increase in the market share of the company’s products. Considering the Nivea brand as an umbrella, the company has very competitive strategies in pricing, and marketing (including sales promotion and advertisements). Other brands like Ucerin, Hansaplast, Florena, and La Prairie have also managed to maintain the market share.
There has been security in dominance of the growth markets – the strong image, which the Nivea umbrella brand has created in the market, has resulted in the security in the dominance of the growth market. Even though the company faces stiff competition from other larger companies in the region, it has managed to thrive as a result of the great image of its Nivea brand.
The company maximizes on the increased usage of its products by the existing customers. Nivea brand products have always made the market to be unattractive for its competitors. This is as a result of the great satisfaction that customers derive from the Nivea products. These products are always associated with quality and reliability. This is an image that always appeals to the customers. Also, the company heavily invests in market research and innovations, as it releases into the market the tailor-made products. The company’s management team is highly competent. The brand managers always understand the customer needs. They always try to maintain the relevance of the products through constant inspections. The company understands that Nivea brand forms its bulk for sales. It therefore tries by all the possible means to ensure that the brand remains relevant, as its quality remains high.
Market Development

This is the strategy applied when the company wishes to sell its existing products into new markets. Beiersdorf Company has greatly achieved in applying the market development strategy, especially for its Nivea brand.

The company continuously exploits the potential geographical markets. The great expansion of Nivea into the global market attests to this. The company’s products have been the market leaders in various countries including China, Russia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Saudi Arabia, Bulgaria, Romania, Ireland, Guatemala, Belgium, Netherlands, Switzerland, Portugal, France, UK, and USA, among others.

The company achieves this by:

Creating new distribution channels, which ensure that the product is made available in the desired geographical location. The company has opened up various stores in various parts of the world.
Product exportation – In the absence of Beiersdorf’s products in an area identified as a potential market, the company always resort to exportation of the products to that specific location.
The company has in most cases used the pricing policy so as to attract the potential customers. This has greatly helped in the creation of the market segments.
Finally, the company concentrates on its good image as it uses unique packaging to uphold its perceived quality and value. The consistency in the packaging style greatly helps in maintaining customers’ view on the quality of the product.
Product Development

This is the growth strategy where firms aim at introducing new products into the existing markets. This is the strategy, which Beiersdorf Company has greatly succeeded in applying.

Since the establishment of Nivea as a broad skin care and personal care brand, various products have been introduced into the market. This has been greatly accelerated by the great quality and satisfaction, which is associated with the Nivea brand.

In introducing new products under the existing brand name Nivea, the company always enjoys economies of scale, as there are great reductions in costs. The new product also enjoys great acceptance and positive perception in terms of quality and service. The new products that are developed always appeal to the market.

Diversification

This growth strategy involves the introduction of new products into new markets. This strategy is very risky and companies always avoid it. Beiersdorf Company is not left behind. In this case, the company moves into a market, which it has no experience about. Just incase the company is compelled to use this strategy; then, it must assess the risks and have a clear idea of the possible gains.

3. Kevin Lane Keller said, “Building a strong brand involves maximizing all then characteristics” in The Brand Report Card. Evaluate the success of Nivea brand as a true global brand using the ten parameters given in the article quoted.

Keller (2000) gives ten parameters saying that a successful brand is one that excels at delivering the benefits customers truly desire.

This first parameter is quite evident in the case of Nivea brand. A range of products offered under the umbrella brand Nivea completely satisfies the varied needs of the customers. The Nivea For Men face care highly meets the demands of its consumers. In 2006, it emerged as the best product in Chinese men face care market. The key drivers include NIVEA SUN, NIVEA FOR MEN, NIVEA deodorant, and NIVEA body. NIVEA FOR MEN has been the market leader in various parts of the world including Russia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Saudi Arabia.

Nivea Deo has been the market leader in Croatia, Romania, and Thailand. NIVEA SUN has likewise been the leading brand in Norway. In the men’s shaving products category, Nivea products have always been in the lead in Germany. These products include the creams, the gels, and the foams; which highly satisfy customers’ demands.

The rapid growth in the Nivea brand is an indication of customers’ satisfaction with the brand’s products. In 2003, NIVEA SUN emerged as the market leader in Italy where it continues to extend the lead to date. This also confirms the great satisfaction, which the consumers derive from the Nivea products.

The introduction of NIVEA VISAGE YOUNG into the young market segment in 2003 has created a very big impact. Greatest successes of Nivea brand in the year 2003included the outstanding performance of Nivea Lip Care, which took the market lead in UK. NIVEA FOR MEN also became the leader in the after-shave and the facial market in Poland and United States. NIVEA VISAGE has always been the strongest brand on face care market in various parts of the world including Bulgaria, Romania, Ireland, and Guatemala.

Other Nivea products that have registered impressive market leads due to great customer satisfactions includes the Nivea Hands which took the lead in Belgium, Netherlands, Switzerland, and Portugal in the year 2004. NIVEA FOR MEN came into the records as the first brand in Asia to launch complete whitening range for men. In every subsequent launch of Nivea’s products, there is a great advancement in the skin care item. The Active Firming, which is the most advanced men’s skin care item, was launched in 2005 in France and UK, before it captured the entire world market.

For a new Nivea product to be introduced, the customer needs must first be considered. This is why all the new products perform extremely well in the market. They completely satisfy the needs of the customers. The Nivea men’s products are tailored especially to the needs of men’s skin.

In the second parameter Keller (2000) says that the brand should stay relevant. Strongest brands have their brand equity tied to the quality of the product or the service. In the above discussion, we have seen that Nivea upholds quality as customers derive great satisfaction from the various Nivea products. It goes without saying; therefore, that Nivea brand has remained relevant in the market. Other intangible factors considered in brand relevance include user imagery or the type of person using the brand. In most cases, all the users drive great satisfaction from Nivea products, a key indicator of the brand’s relevance. Another factor is the usage imagery or the situation in which the brand is used. Nivea brand has proved to be relevant in all the situations. Nivea has maintained its good image, which represents quality, sincerity and competence. Nivea brand has managed to stay on the leading edge without losing site of its core strengths.

The third parameter, is that the pricing strategy should be based on consumers’ perceptions of value. It is always difficult to achieve a perfect balance of product quality and cost, as the producer would always aim at maximizing the profit while the customer aims at lowering the expenditure. However, at Beiersdorf, managers try to understand the relationship between the product quality and price. This is very important to the company since, if the company continues with the production of high quality products and charges low prices on the products, it risks running at a loss. At the same time, if the company charges higher prices which do not match the quality of the product, then, it risks losing customers. The fact that Nivea brand continues to generate profit to the company and at the same time remains the market leader; is a perfect indication that the product quality and the price are greatly linked.

The image which Nivea brand displays automatically improves the value of the brand. Nivea brand, being a world leader in customer satisfaction, has a great value. With the improvement in the quality/value of the Nivea products, there has been a remarkable link with the pricing. The quality of the product and the price are always directly proportional.

The fourth parameter is the brand position. A well-positioned brand always attracts attention of the customers. Even in the peak of competition, such brands keeps up with the competitors by creating both points of parity and points of difference, which helps in acquiring advantages over the competitors. Nivea’s product quality and superiority has made it extend its global market lead beyond what the competitors can achieve.

Considering Consistency in the brand as the fifth parameter, In order to maintain a strong brand, there must be a balance between the continuity in marketing activities and the necessary changes that are needed so that the brand remains relevant. The brand must maintain its image, and the marketing strategies must not confuse customers either through sending conflicting messages or otherwise. Since the introduction of Nivea’s first advertisement in 1912, titled “With the likeness of a Lady,” Nivea has not had any conflicting or misleading advert.

As per another parameter Nivea brand portfolio and hierarchy always makes sense. Nivea is the umbrella brand under which several product operations take place. The sub-brands under the umbrella Nivea brand in most cases target different market segments. With the common brand name Nivea, there is maximum market coverage thus contributing to equity of the portfolio.

In addition, the brand makes good use of a full range of marketing activities in building the brand equity as dictated by the seventh parameter. The company spends heavily in promoting the brand and at the same time concentrates on the brand quality. This has helped in building the brand equity.

Nivea brand managers always understand the importance of the brand to customers. This is why there is a lot of innovation and constant introduction of new products, which satisfies the customers’ desires. Before an introduction of a new product, an extensive market research is carried out which reveals to the brand managers the exact desires of the customers. The company then embarks on production of a product, which is in line with the customers’ needs. The company heavily invests in the Nivea brand through extensive research, innovations, marketing and promotions. The quality and image of the brand has not changed.

Due to the overdependence of the company on Nivea brand, brand audits are always carried out at depth. This is done to ensure that the quality and relevance of the brand remains intact, as any slight change may lead the company into great losses. Nivea brand is successful according to the ten parameters.

4. Discuss the role of Nivea as an umbrella brand. Identify the critical factors that Beiersdorf utilised to successfully extend the Nivea brand.

Roles of Nivea as an umbrella brand

The main role of Nivea as an umbrella brand is the addition of value to the products operating under it. It also contributes toward the addition of value to the new products that are introduced into the market, and operating under the umbrella brand Nivea. It achieves this through: addition of links which contribute to value positions; provision of credibility; sharing the visibility; and generation of communication efficiencies. By so doing, Nivea brand facilitates new product acceptance. These roles are discussed hereunder.

Enhancing the Value Proposition

Over the years, Nivea brand has built a great image that is appealing to the customers. The quality, consistency, and customer satisfaction of Nivea brand has stood the test of time. Because of this, new products introduced under the umbrella Nivea brand are highly accepted by the customers. In so doing, Nivea brand improves the image of the new product, and at the same time reduces the risks that may be perceived by the customers. The probability of the new product in gaining distribution and trial is also increased greatly.

Generation of Communication Efficiencies

The introduction of a new product calls for the creation of distinct packaging, promotions and advertisements. This is costly considering both the time and the economic aspect.

However, with Nivea as the umbrella brand, there is great reduction in packaging and advertisements costs. This greatly reduces the cost of introducing a new product and the follow-up programs in marketing. This results into great enjoyment of the economies of scale. The synergy also tends to be high.

In general, an umbrella brand is very important as it completely eliminates the costs in developing a new brand and the associated risks. At the same time, it enhances great efficiencies in marketing (advertisement and promotional) expenditures. It also allows for efficiencies in packaging and labeling.

Provision of credibility

After enhancing the value preposition, Nivea brand creates credibility in the products that operate under the umbrella brand. Customers will always consider the new product as reliable. At the same time, customer risks are eliminated. This great credibility is as a result of the Nivea products, which have maintained their credibility over the years. Customers do not worry about the new product as there is always a preformed opinion on the new product which is created by the umbrella brand.

Visibility

The umbrella brand Nivea provides great product visibility for the new products introduced under the brand name. Visibility makes it possible for a new product to, not only gets an offering considered, but also implies positive organizational and production attributes.

Other than the aforementioned roles, Nivea brand enhances the perception of Beiersdorf company image as it improves its strength, uniqueness, and favourability. To customers, the umbrella brand conveys the deep company meaning and at the same time assures the customers of variety of quality products. The brand increases the market coverage as it also gives room for subsequent extensions.

The critical factors that Beiersdorf utilised to successfully extend the Nivea brand

Beiersdorf Company actively engages in evaluation of the customers’ desires before it can introduce any new product into the market. The company spends on extensive market research, innovation, and application of technology in creation of the new product. This is the main reason why the Nivea brand has a great image and the associated customer satisfaction. Nivea products are tailored according to customers’ desires. This is the main reason for its extension.

Nivea brand is well positioned and always attracts the customers. Due to Nivea’s product quality and superiority, it always conquers the market. This has favoured the brand in terms of competition from other companies. Beiersdorf Company employs a unique packaging for Nivea products that is highly attractive. This brings clarity in the brand and minimises the chances of brand confusion.

Beiersdorf Company has also invested greatly towards extension of the brand. The company extensively advertise its Nivea brand also participate in other marketing strategies so as to maximize the awareness on its umbrella brand. The end result is the increase in sales. This directly creates extension. The company has enjoyed great and consistent marketing strategies over the years.

The great improvement in value of the Nivea brand is another strategy for its extension. The overall image of Nivea brand depicts quality and competence. Customers always look for quality so that they can derive maximum satisfaction from the product.

The prices of Nivea products are average considering the product qualities. Customers would always find it very economical in using the Nivea products.

The competence of the management team at Beiersdorf Company plays a very important role in Nivea brand extension. The brand managers always know and deeply understand the importance of the brand to the customers. This puts the customers at a very high position of enjoying great satisfaction from Nivea products.

Nivea brand has always remained consistent in quality and price. Due to this consistency, the company finds it very easy to extend the product. With the good brand image that already exists, it is very easy to develop a new product, as the costs are greatly lowered.

5. Kevin Lane Kellar and Sanjay Sood said, “Brand extensions, however, can be a double-edged sword……..” in Brand Equity Dilution. Discuss the challenges in extending the Nivea Brand.

On the basis of the study of Kellar and Sood (2003), brand extensions in the Nivea brand has come with a series of challenges. When a brand extension fails to be successful, there is great damage posed to the umbrella brand. This can result into great loses if the extension is not prorely monitored. Brand extensions therefore pose great risks of brand equity dilution. The continuous extension into sub-brands for Nivea greatly weakened the Nivea’s strong brand image.

Because of the great image of the umbrella brand Nivea, there was a high customer acceptance to its sub-brands. As the extension continued, there was the dilution of the brand image as a result of the presence of Nivea brand across almost all the heterogenous products. Beiersdorf company was faced with major challenge in launching Nivea into new areas due to the brand equity dilution. This created a lot of dificulties in ensuring the maintenance of loyalty to the brand core values.

A case of inconsistency can be depicted in the Nivea brand extension. Some of the Nivea products gave customers an experience which is not consistent with the expectations of the umbrella brand. This changed the customers’ impressions about the entire brand leading to equity dilution. For instance, the expansion of Nivea Hair Care into colorants diluted the brand equity. Also, the Nivea’s brand philosophy, which was strongly based on gentle skin care, could not allow for the use of chemical treatments in the product.

Also evident was the presence of Nivea in contrasting product categories. The two products which greatly fell under this situation were the NIVEA VISAGE and NIVEA VITAL VISAGE. These sub-brands were posed with greater challenges in trying to preserve their respective product identities.

However, Nivea’s strong image has played a very important role. Its strength dictates that for there to be a noticeable brand dilution, there must be a very strong experience which is unambiguous and easily identified. Most of the negative effects of brand extension for the Nivea parent brand have weak expoerience and mostly ambiguous thus are ignored. Another factor that has saved Beiersdorf Company from brand equity dilution is the diagnosticity. Customers’ evaluations of the extension products bear little influence to the parent brand, as the extensions of the Nivea brand are not indicative of the quality of the parent brand. Some of the unsuccessful failures can be linked to lack of adequate awareness among customers. Due to the fact that consumers might not have heard the extension product or service, the parent brand survives. It is also evident that the brand extension has greatly improved the sales and at the same time reinforced customers’ knowledge about the parent brand Nivea. This is why there has been a remarkable increase in sales of the Nivea products as the products conquer the global market.

6. “Beiersdorf’s success in establishing Nivea as a broad skin care and personal care brand presented the company with a new set of issues and challenges.” [Section: “Nivea a Flagship Brand”, para 23 of the case study]. Identify the challenges Beiersdorf would face in Umbrella branding its flagship brand.

Beiersdorf Company has been majorly known for its great Nivea brand. The brand formed over 70% of the company’s consumer segment’s sales. Nivea has emerged as the Beiersdorf’s giant in terms of sales, products, and geographical reach. The growth of Nivea brand from 1990 to 2006 is remarkable. The capitalization on the Nivea brand included the launching of a series of Nivea brand extensions globally. The rapid growth in Nivea’s portfolio from six sub-brands in 1993to fifteen sub-brands in 2006 is an enough evidence of the company’s capitalization on Nivea brand.

Establishing Nivea as a broad skin care and personal care brand faced the Beiersdorf Company with a set of challenges. The company over-relied on the umbrella brand Nivea that exposed it to major risks. Any loss of consumer confidence in the flagship Nivea brand would make the company more vulnerable due to the fact that Nivea formed the bulk of the company’s sales. Even though the company capitalized on the growth of the flagship Nivea brand, this one-sided capitalization of growth could not be a successful strategy in the long run. In turn, the over-dependence on the Nivea brand was highly accelerated. This overdependence also exposed the company to some risks. Even though the company experienced smooth growth, there was a slow decrease in the growth rate as illustrated in the IBS research by Sonpal, Dadhwal, and Catterjee (Annexure VIII, p 21).

The continued brand extensions placed the parent brand at a great risk as it could lose its great image. The unsuccessful brand extensions could also dilute the Nivea brand equity. This would put the company at great disadvantages with its competitors like the P&G and the L’Oreal, which offered a wider range of brands within the same region. If by any chance, a brand extension fails to meet the varied demands of the customers, the umbrella brand suffers greatly. If the company greatly relied on the umbrella brand, various risks emerge. The company can experience great losses as a result of the overdependence. With continued extension into sub-brands, the strong image of the parent brand stands higher chances of being weakened. Nivea also experienced the same scenario. Because Nivea had built a strong image, its sub-brands were highly accepted into the markets. However, increased extension polluted the market with Nivea products. This led to the dilution of the Nivea brand image and also affected the ability of the company to launch new products under the same umbrella brand as a result of equity dilution.

Be that as it may, Nivea brand has successfully established itself as a successful skin care brand in the market. This made the company to leverage its strong brand equity. The company then focused on developing the core business areas. Regardless of the company’s financial strength, it limited the number of its brands as it maximized the concentration on research and development. Since then, the company has managed to have independent sets of brands that are strategically positioned in terms of the functional benefits.

The great focus on innovation practiced by Beiersdorf Company resulted into improved product lines. This has accelerated the growth of the company even in saturated markets. This is also the main reason why Nivea brand has a strong image to the customers. The launch of three Nivea products; Nivea for men, Nivea Sun, and Nivea Deodorant helped the company in reviving the market.

The use of an umbrella brand has made the company to lay more emphasis on the marketing and promotion strategies. Without the proper promotion and marketing of the parent brand Nivea, the company may experience a decrease in sales. This is very dangerous due to the overreliance of the company on Nevia brand. There is great application of technology and innovation in Nevia products so as to boost the brand name and at the same time increase the sales. The company has been constantly engaging in extensive advertisements since 1912. Also, Beiersdorf Company has been very keen on the advertisements so as to avoid chances of both conflicting and misinforming statements. Indeed, the company has been presented with a new set of issues and challenges resulting from its success in establishing Nivea as a broad skin care and personal care brand.

References

Aaker, D. and Joachimsthaler, E. (2000) ‘The Brand Relationship Spectrum: THE KEY TO THE BRAND ARCHITECTURE CHALLENGE’, CALIFORNIA MANAGEMENT REVIEW, 42(4).

Dadhwal, V., and Chatterjee, C. (2009). Beiersdorf AG’s Brand Architecture Strategies: Challenges in Nurturing an Umbrella Brand Nivea. IBS Research Center.

Keller, K. (2000) ‘THE BRAND REPORT CARD’, HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW, pp. 147-156.

Keller, K. and Sood, S. (2003) ‘Brand Equity Dilution: Brands may be less vulnerable to the Vagaries of extension than is commonly feared’, MIT SLOAN MANAGEMENT REVIEW.

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Free Essays

Behavioural brand loyalty requires deep attitudinal attachment to the brand. Discuss the evidence for and against this statement.

Introduction

The ultimate aim of all brands as well as those who market them is to build up a large, solid following of customer who are loyal to the brand, discussing it and favouring it in purchasing decisions where it is involved. The question that needs to be answered by all good brand promoters then is how to gain this loyalty and this favour from customers. Jeff Bezos (2004), founder of Amazon.com believes that “A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person.”, in that both are built through achievement. But the simile doesn’t end there, like a person’s reputation the brand isn’t just a single definite object, but a subjective concept which is considered differently from different perspectives. The question is: Is this difference of perspective merely superficial and intellectual, or does it evidence a subjective and personal attachment to, or resonance with the brandEach side of this argument has solid evidence, logic and supporters to back it up which will be considered in the course of this piece.

Further through the interview quoted above Bezos points out that “If you [the brand] do build a great experience, customers tell each other about that.” ‘A great experience’, something which carries emotional weight, is required for customers to demonstrate behavioural brand loyalty and engagement by promoting the brand themselves. This interaction, which is very important to many brands, is the result of what Keller and his contemporaries (2001, 2008) deem ‘Consumer Based Brand Equity’. Literally meaning that part of the value of the brand lies in the heads of individual consumers. It is gradually built up subjectively through advertising and product performance which the customer sees as beneficial and relevant to them (Keller 2001). The ultimate aim of this process is to achieve a strong customer-brand ‘resonance’ where the brand is seen by the customer as an engaging and personally rewarding choice for them. This resonance is achieved through objective judgements as to the usefulness of the offer made by the brand, as well as subjective choices based on feelings and attitudes to the brand.

According to the model one of the major benefits of achieving resonance over a period of time is brand loyalty, with customers repeatedly buying brands which gain their judgemental and emotional approval telling others about their satisfaction with it. Emotional Branding by Daryl Travis operationalizes the model and presents extensive real life evidence of it in practice in the form of case studies of successful brands which have aimed their brand messages at customers’ emotional sides.

The nature of the link between customer satisfaction and brand loyalty is important for marketers to understand, Bloemer and Kasper (1995) find that loyalty begins in the sub-consciousness and is developed and increased through habitual manifestation and discussion of the loyalty as the customer develops attitudes of loyalty and even, in their words, ‘commitment’. As human judgement and emotion are complicated things, this is a complex process for businesses to go through. Many theorists believe that customers rarely have individual, attitudinal attachments to the brands they buy, positing instead that the best way to gain customers is simply to promote brands widely so that they are thought of when buying decisions are made. This is the view subscribed to and considered by the Authors of Brand Advertising as Publicity (Ehrenberg et al., 2000) where the colours are very much nailed to the mast. Ehrenberg has a long history of supporting the non-attitude based objective publicity based model of marketing, as well as criticising the opposing model.

A very relevant conference paper of Ehrenberg’s, with an equally descriptive title, is New Brands: Near Instant Loyalty (Ehrenberg & Goodhardt, 2000), a summary of research showing that new brands gain loyal customers much more quickly than previously thought. The inference is that knowledge of the brand and its functional usefulness mean that the customer comes back to it, without any drawn out process where attitudinal attachment or resonance is built up.

Loyalty rates are another proven consumer trend which back up the views of Ehrenberg and others. Romaniuk and Sharp have shown that consumer loyalty lines up with market share (2004) and that the likelihood of purchase is closely related to the likelihood of recalling the brand in the situation (Romaniuk et al. 2004). This fairly direct brand awareness – buyer behaviour association is not a new one, so support for it dates back to the sixties (Assael & Day, 1968). However, the wide spread of evidence for these associations can be seen as a result of their age as well as their efficacy. In reading this evidence we must also consider, that individual attitudes viewed on a large scale normalize creating trends and rules of thumb as it were, which can be read and theorized. This basic tenet of social studies means that logically evidence of generally applicable rules does not diminish the likelihood of individual attitudes factoring in to them, Assael and Day noted this in their work. What this work did do though is open the way for the popular, widely evidenced and broadly applicable Dirchlet model of purchase choices and buying behaviour (Goodhardt et al., 1984) which itself provides the logical basis for Ehrenberg’s criticisms outlined above.

In general, those who support the idea of attitudinal loyalty, and whose work favours this perspective, see consumer loyalty as a gradual and individual process of aligning oneself personally with the brand. Whereas a less attitudinal reading means a more immediate one with more or less universally similar buying motivations. Though there is more historical support for the latter argument this is due to its age and traditional acceptance. Further to this, not all of the evidence in support of the latter view precludes the former one (eg. Assael and Day 1968). It can be inferred from this that the characterizations of loyalty based on universal rules and those based on subjective attitudes are not irreconcilable, though there are numerous problems as Romaniuk and others point out.

Bibliography

Assael, H. and Day, G. S.,(1968). ‘Attitudes and awareness as predictors of market share.’ Journal of Advertising Research 8 (4), 3-10.

Bezos, J. (2004) Jeff Bezos on Word-of-Mouth Power [online] Bloomberg Businessweek [viewed 17/06/2009]. Available from: http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/04_31/b3894101.htm

Bloemer, J. M. & Kasper, H. D. P (1995) ‘The complex relationship between consumer satisfaction and brand loyalty’ Journal of Economic Psychology (16) 2 pp. 311-329

Ehrenberg, A. S.C., Barnard, N., Kennedy, R., & Bloom, H. (2000), “Brand Advertising as Publicity,” Journal of Advertising Research,

Ehrenberg, A. S.C. and Goodhardt, G (2000), “New Brands: Near-Instant Loyalty,” in 40th Annual Conference of the Professional Market Research Society. Toronto, Canada: Professional Market Research Society.

Goodhardt, G. J.,Ehrenberg, A. S.C and Chatfield, C. (1984), “The Dirichlet: A Comprehensive Model of Buying Behaviour,” Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, 147 (part 5), 621-55.

Keller, K., Aperia, T. and Georgson, M. (2008) Strategic brand management: a European perspective. Essex: Pearson Education Ltd

Keller, K. (2001). ‘Building Customer-Based Brand Equity.’ Marketing Management. 10(2), 14-19.

Romaniuk, J and Sharp, B., (2004) ‘Conceptualising and measuring brand salience.’ Marketing Theory 4 (4), 327-342.

Romaniuk, J., Sharp, B., Paech, S. & Driesener, C. (2004) ‘Brand and Advertising Awareness: A Replication and Extension of a Known Empirical Generalisation’ Austalasian Marketing Journal 12 (3) 70-80

Travis, D. (2000) Emotional Branding: How Successful Brands Gain the Irrational Edge. Michigan: Prima Venture

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Free Essays

Brand loyalty depends on brand elements

Introdction

A brand is a design, term, name, or any feature used to identify the products or services of a seller from the ones of other sellers in the market (Jacoby and Chestnut, 1978). Although there is a large body of research on brand loyalty in marketing literature, the relationship between brand loyalty and brand elements has not always been well documented or understood. In this essay, the contention of whether brand elements play a significant role in influencing the loyalty of consumers shall be raised. First, a definition of brand loyalty and brand elements will be outlined, followed by arguments for and against the claim that brand loyalty is dependent on brand elements. In so doing, this essay will draw on marketing and consumer behaviour literature as well as case studies from well-known brands to illustrate the arguments.

Brand loyalty has been considered as the conscious or unconscious decision of a consumer to continually repurchase a brand (Keller, 2007). Brand loyalty has always represented one of the top priorities for a brand. Brand giants such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi for example, frequently bring out brand loyalty promotions such as “My Coke Rewards” and “Pepsi Stuff” in order to retain its committed consumers (Dick and Basu, 1994). Conversely, brand elements refers to the different components that make up a brand. These can include both internal and external elements. Internal elements, for example, include brand personality and promise whilst external elements refer to associations, image and positioning of a brand.

Building from these two key concepts, it may be argued that brand loyalty can only be achieved if a number of effective brand elements are firmly in place. Some have argued that external elements such as brand positioning are critical in cultivating trust between the consumers and the brand (McCole, 2004). Brand positioning refers to the aspects of the brand used in the specialization of the organization, its target market, the unique value of the company and the benefits a consumer would acquire from buying its products and services. Brand positioning also expends effort in differentiating a company over competitors. It is therefore possible that it is only once a consumer acquires greater knowledge and clarity of a company’s specialization, unique value and potential benefits, that he/she will be more likely to repurchase the product and therefore ensuring brand loyalty (Aaker, 1995). In a similar vein, the element of brand promise can also be seen to play a major role in brand loyalty. Brand promise refers to the particular element that consumers expect to be delivered by the company each time the consumer purchases an item and/or service. By this definition, brand promise is a multi-level element as it involves factors such as expectation, interaction of employees to meet these outcomes and delivery (Cowley, 1991). If each of these elements is in place, consumers are much more likely to express loyalty to the brand.

An additional argument that supports the claim that brand loyalty is dependent on brand elements can be drawn from examining one of the internal elements; brand personality. Every brand can be said to carry its own unique brand personality. Brand personality personifies the brand in terms of human characteristics and traits (Kapferer, 2008; Aaker, 1995). A brand without personality and warmth, for example, is likely to garner zero loyalty from consumers and will be much more sensitive to prices (Uncles & Goodhardt, 2004). A positive and distinctive brand personality on the other hand, is much more likely to elicit favourable outcomes such as increased preference, usage and loyalty (Aaker, 1997).

There is a well-established body of literature that highlights that a clear brand personality not only enhances brand preference but improves loyalty (Kressman et al 2006) but also allows consumers to express and project their ideal selves to others (Belk, 1988). The brand becomes an extension of the consumer’s self. Brand personality, can therefore be shown to play a critical role in allowing consumers to connect on a personal level with a brand and hence be more likely to leave a long-lasting positive imprint that leads to repurchase and gradually builds up brand loyalty.

However, it may also be argued that brand loyalty can also be build up, independent of brand elements. This argument focuses on the importance of strategy, rather than brand elements. An example to illustrate the importance of strategy can be seen from the changes that have occurred in marketing over the last decade. For example, due to the advances of web 2.0 and social networks, traditional marketing practices of examining consumer trends, conducting focus groups and assessing demographics have been supplemented by social media marketing on social networks, videos and blogs. The number of companies and businesses leveraging the social network platform to connect with consumers via fan pages is increasing every day and global companies such as Coca-Cola, Mercedes-Benz, Starbucks, Disney, New York Times, Red Bull, to name a few, are now prominent fixtures on social networks. Coca-Cola, for example, allowed two of its fans who created the brand’s Facebook fan page to continue to manage it on Facebook. It is not surprising therefore, that Coca-Cola has now amassed over thirty-four million Likes worldwide. Starbucks has similarly demonstrated the importance of a social media marketing strategy in the creation of “My Starbucks Idea”, a site that allows consumers to submit suggestions that are reviewed and often implemented. As market research has indicated that more than 80% of individuals who “Like” a brand or product on Facebook are loyal consumers (DDB Worldwide, 2010), new strategies of social media marketing and innovative fan pages are increasingly becoming important in the success of a brand. Elements such as brand image and personality may have been important ten years ago, but brand loyalty can now be independent.

One may also adopt a perspective that unites the opposing arguments and postulates that brand elements are important, but not requirements of brand loyalty. Instead, a number of other factors are important such as in the case of “Spurious Loyalty” in which customers may repurchase a brand due to situational constraints or out of convenience. Moreover, it has also been suggested that brand loyalty contains a considerable degree of pre-dispositional commitment towards a brand that has nothing to do with the brand elements (Punniyamoorthy and Raj 2007).

As there are no specific theories and approaches that address the question of brand loyalty and brand elements, it is difficult to provide a definitive answer. However, over the course of the essay, it has become apparent that brand elements do play a pivotal role in brand loyalty and that consumers are likely to repurchase a brand because they perceive the brand to serve their product needs by offering the right features of the product, price, quality and image as well. However, it has also become clear that brand loyalty is grossly influenced by decisions that take place independent of brand elements. In conclusion, a balance between both arguments would definitely be most effective for addressing the claim. In the future, a greater body of work is necessary to aid researchers, scholars and marketers to come closer to understanding the multi-dimensional nature of brand loyalty.

References

Aaker, D. 1995. Building Strong Brands, Free Press, New York.

Belk, R. W. 1988. Possessions and the extended self. Journal of Consumer Research, 15, pp. 139-168.

Cowley, D. 1991. Understanding Brands, Kogan Page, London.

DDB Worldwide & OpinionWay Survey. Facebook and Brands. October 2010.

Dick, A. S. and Basu, K. 1994. Customer Loyalty: Toward an Integrated Conceptual Framework. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 22, pp. 99-113.

Jacoby, J. & Chestnut, J. 1978. Brand Loyalty: Measurement & Management, Wiley, New York.

Kapferer, J. 2008. The New Strategic Brand Management, Kogan Page, London.

Keller, K. 2007. Strategic Brand Management, Prentice Hall, New Jersey.

Kressmann, F., Sirgy, M., Herrmann, A., Huber, F., Huber, S., and Lee, D. 2006. Direct

and indirect effects of self-image congruence on brand loyalty. Journal of Business Research, 59, 955-964.

McCole, P. 2004. Refocusing marketing to reflect practice: The changing role of marketing for business”, Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 22 Issue 5, pp.531 – 539.

Punniyamoorthy, M and Prasanna Mohan Raj. 2007. An empirical model for brand loyalty measurement”, Journal of Targeting, Measurement and Analysis for Marketing, Volume 15, Number 4, pp. 222-233.

Uncles, L & Goodhardt, M. (2004), Understanding Brand Performance Measures: Using Dirichlet Benchmarks, Journal of Business Research, Vol.57, Issue12, pp.1307-1325.

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Free Essays

Select a consumer product/brand that has a large market in the UK and research its associated marketing programme and environment

Overview

This document is related to marketing and its various concepts. It is about the external environment in which a product or brand operates, the marketing mix and the overall marketing applications and environment.

In order to illustrate the application and how these things affect practically, a real world brand has been selected and all these concepts applied and analysed with respect to the particular brand. The assignment illustrates how marketing principles, tools and methods are employed within an organisation and how effective these strategies and actions prove to be. The brand selected for the purpose of analysis is Coke of which around 260 million products are sold every year in UK.

Assessment Task

You are to select a consumer product/brand that has a large market in the UK and research its associated marketing programme and environment.

The Brand-Coca Cola

Introduction

Coca-Cola is a worldwide global brand that exists in more than 200 countries. It is known for making carbonated soft drink generally known as Coke. Coke has been the top most consumer brand in UK throughout and was the leader in 2009 and 2010 as well (Source: The Nielsen Company). Coke is produced by the Coca Cola Company that also makes drinks for sports, juices etc. Coke is made from the extracts of coca leaves. The origin of the brand is United States. Coke is the industry leader and has the largest market share in United Kingdom and world over (Daily Mail, 2010). The company is involved in both related and unrelated diversification. Coke is a range brand that in turn has a product line under it in the form of diet Coke, Coca Cola Vanilla, Coca Cola Cheery, Coca Cola Zero and also comes in the flavours of coffee, lemon and lime.

The greatest focus on the brand is on the health aspect of its customers and this is the reason that the brand has decided to move towards the production of products made from natural raw material instead of synthetic ones (Daily Mail, 2010). The motto of the brand is to provide its consumers with life full of happiness and refreshing moments. It aims to provide the best value for people’s money in the form of a quality and tasteful product at affordable price. The brand provides employment opportunities to many people around the world thus adding values to their lives and improving their lifestyles and living. The brand has a proactive and learning approach.

Part ‘1’- The product/brand’s macro and competitive environments

Macro Environment

The macro environment consists of the overall external environment in which a product, brand or company exits. It consists of all the external forces which affect the performance of a brand or product but are not under control such as the overall political factors, cultural state, environmental factors etc. For this, the PESTAL analysis is used to study, understand and analyse the forces existing in the external environment and their overall affect. PESTEL analysis stands for political, economic, socio cultural, technological, environmental and legal forces that exist in the external environment and are uncontrollable that affect the firm externally. Research has claimed that organizational scanning technique is linked with improved organizational performance (Newgren, et al, 1984; Dollinger, 1984; West, 1988; and Murphy, 1987). The first component of environmental change, complexity is defined as a measure of heterogeneity or diversity in many environmental sub-factors such as customers, suppliers, socio-politics or technology (Lane & Maxfield, 1996:217; Chae & Hill, 1997:8 and Chakravarthy, 1997:69). Since complex and turbulent environments can be desirable, but since many businesses are uncertain about how to cope with such situations, it makes sense to identify ways to handle such environments. Many believe that identifying a causative link between environmental variables and management action is not possible because of the complexity of variables and the chaotic nature of environments (Winsor, 1995:181). However, recent research has stressed the inter-relationship between an organisation and its environment (Polonsky, Suchard & Scott, 1999:52). Organisations co-exist and co-evolve with their environments and therefore are able to influence the environment to a greater extent than previously thought (Brooks & Weatherston, 1997:13). Organisations shape their environments by influencing their industries or collaborating with each other, thereby gaining some control over some part of their environments. The environment is thus not completely determined by external forces, but can also be influenced by the organisation (Anderson, Hakansson & Johanson, 1994, in Ford, 1997:229).

Competitive Environment

Competitive environment consists of the factors affecting the competitive position of the firm. It consists of the competition a product or brand faces in terms of both; direct and indirect competitors, suppliers, buyers etc. For this, Porter five forces model best suits to analyse the effect and present situation of the competitive position of the firm. There is continuing interest in the study of the forces that impact on an organisation, particularly those that can be harnessed to provide competitive advantage. The ideas and models which emerged during the period from 1979 to the mid-1980s (Porter, 1998) were based on the idea that competitive advantage came from the ability to earn a return on investment that was better than the average for the industry sector (Thurlby, 1998). Porter (1980a) defined the forces which drive competition, contending that the competitive environment is created by the interaction of five different forces acting on a business.

You are required to write a report on the product/brand’s macro and competitive environments, so what you have presented is not required. You have written a literature review/essay on PESTEL and PORTER, both covering about 500 words. Not needed. You are only required to go straight into the product’s macro and competitive environments. Even though it is recommended to insert a bit of theory, it does not have to own its own chapter, or be composed of about 500 words in a 3,000 word report.

PESTEL analysis for Coke

Figure 1 on the below shows the forces affecting a firm externally.

Figure: 1 ( shell-livewire.org)

Political

Coke comes in the food category of consumer products. Favourable state policies and a stable government with no war, unrest is necessary for the production of Coke. A sound governmental policy is necessary so that the necessary infrastructure facilities, investment opportunities, skilled labour and manpower, technology advancement, distribution ease, resources and access to raw materials is possible and the necessary plant and production set up can be installed and executed properly. Changes in governmental regulations regarding production, policy regarding transfer of money across countries etc affect the company and all of these are determined by the political state. The ability to enter into strategic alliances also depends on the political conditions set by the state.

Economic

A strong economic environment with low interest rates, high GDP growth rate gives boost to any business and is helpful in generating sales and profits. Same is the case with Coke. If the overall economic environment in which a brand exits is healthy, growing and developing, the consumers have high demand, more disposable income and thus they spend more on consumer products which means more business for Coke. This also involves less spending on R&D by Coke and more innovative products can be introduced. It also helps to achieve economies of scale and scope. This also means better chances of business and penetration in emerging markets.

Socio Cultural

As Coke is a family brand that is meant for people of all ages, gender, occupation, lifestyle etc it is bought equally by individuals and families. Particularly, in countries where there is a broad family structure, it is consumed more and so is by youngsters and teenagers particularly by students. As the world is seeing more and more societal changes for example more women joining the work force, students living outside their homes etc, Coke has seeing tremendous growth as it is a time saving, quality and tasty beverage. People’s view regarding health is also changing dramatically and they are becoming more health conscious day by day. That is why Coke came up with and introduced Diet Coke meant for people who are diet conscious, have some health related issues such as diabetes or are generally more aware about healthy food products. Another evidence of changing societal and cultural aspects is that Coke has decided to come up with alternative to synthetic elements used in Coke. One such element is sodium benzoate which is addictive in nature and is the major constituent of Diet Coke. Research showed that this element is primarily responsible for damaging DNA in of yeast cells and causing children to become hyperactive. In light of increasing pressure, Coke has decided to come up with natural elements and stop suing this particular material in all its products including Diet Coke and Sprite.

Technology

Advancements in technology help a business in improving its functions, management, processes, distribution network, marketing techniques etc. It helps save both cost and time and exert less effort. Technology is also a vital part of Coke and has led to advancements in its marketing practices and techniques as Coke now makes use if the internet and indulges in e-commerce, m-commerce etc. which has become a medium of advertising and selling. Technology also helps in effective supply chain management for Coke and integrates all the functions and processes of the brand. Technology also helps to innovate and make products more appealing and attractive to customers. Technology has led to introduction and advancement in machinery which has enabled Coke to produce more number of products and thus fulfil the increasing demand conditions. Coke CCE UK employs state of the art technology which produces quality products in no time. It produces Coke cans faster than bullets come out a machine gun.

Environmental

Every brand has to look up towards the safety of the society and environment it operates in. It has to adhere to universal environmental laws and regulations. Coke is no exception in this regard and works actively towards the betterment and protection of society. The production of plastic bottles and cans are an example of this as they are bio degradable and easy and safe to dispose off. It also participates in corporate social responsibility and conducts various activities that focus on creating awareness, education, improving social welfare and providing facilities and benefits to the people and society and climate protection. That is why it pays special attention to the need and importance of recycling and disposal of its products. In order to preserve the natural resources and climate, Coke has constantly been reducing the amount of water used in its products in an effort to preserve water.

Legal

Like all other industries, Coke also has to adhere to legal procedures and regulations set by the government. Without abiding to these laws and regulations, Coke cannot carry out its business. These include accounting principles, transparency and reporting standards, taxation laws, and foreign firm restrictions as all these form part of the legal environment and is mandatory for all firms operating in the industry to abide by. So changes in any of these things also affect Coke and the way it does its business.

There is no actual evidence, or reference that supports any of your analysis. They seem like something a non academic would write by having known Coke all their life. In order to present a good quality work, you must present “ good range of issues identified; evidence of clear thought and subject perception.”, When writing such, I would recommend looking for actual evidence of PESTEL from the company’s annual reports. There is always talks on their political issues (you should have spoken about Saudi there), and when doing such, you should reference appropriately, so the writer knows your arguments are well justified and have been obtained from somewhere.

Porter five forces model for Coke

This model is used to access the competitive position of the brand and see where it stands relative to its competitors.

Existing rivalry among firms

Rivalry among existing firms is high as Coke has both direct and indirect competitors. The industry is generally regarded as duopoly and the small firms are not significant. The biggest competitor of Coke is Pepsi which enjoys the same kind of image, brand loyalty, customer base and geographic reach as Coke. Both of these brands compete head to head with each other and thus rivalry is intense among them. They mostly compete on the basis of differentiation and advertising and not on pricing strategies. Competition between them is at a global level as both are multinationals.

Figure: 2 below shows the five forces model.

Figure: 2 Source: Marketingteacher.com

Bargaining power of buyers

The major buyers of Coke not only include end customers who buy from retails stores, vending machines etc but also include restaurants, fast food chains, cafes in schools, colleges and universities. Thus, the bargaining power of buyers is high as there are many buyers of the product.

Bargaining power of suppliers

The bargaining power of suppliers is low because the raw materials that Coke requires are general and easily available such as sugar, caffeine etc. Switching costs from one supplier to another are also very low. Threat of forward integration is low as well.

Threat of substitute products

Threat of substitute products is high in the form of both direct products and in the form of other non alcoholic drinks like; Pepsi and indirect substitutes such as water, tea, juice, energy drinks, coffee etc. Switching costs are also low. Also, all the products are almost the same in terms of value and pricing. Thus, product for product substitution, generic substitution and related substitution are all there in this industry.

Threat of new entrants

Threat of new entrants is low due to several barriers to entry. Firstly, it involves huge capital investment setting up bottling plants, machinery etc. The market is already mature and saturated with market leaders. Coke has achieved economies of scale and scope. Its ingredients are rare, valuable and difficult to imitate. Customers are very brand loyal and it’s difficult to have the same brand image and equity as Coke. Coke has agreements with distributors and suppliers in every region and no other company can enter into agreements with them. Also, for a new entrant it’s not easy to spend so much on advertising campaign the way Coke does as it has a strong financial muscle.

Just like I wrote in relation to PESTEL. You show that you do have an understanding of relevant theories as they have been incorporated accurately. However, the main issues you are analysing are not necessarily backed up with evidence, which may then affect the student. How do you know they have substitute products, except for what you can readily think ofHow do you know they are actually substitute productsWho told you soWhat new substitute products have come up recentlyWhat recent issues have they had with suppliersWhat are the current strategiesWhere are the referencesWhat are the new most recent threats to Coke?

Part ‘2’ – The marketing programme elements (marketing mix elements) currently employed

Marketing Mix

Marketing mix or the 4 P’s or 7 P’s of marketing refers to the tactics and strategies of product, price, placement, people, processes, physical evidence and promotion of a brand. These are all part of the marketing plan and help create brand image, equity and loyalty among the target market segment. It defines how a product or brand is positioned. traditional market research and traditional marketing mix models are too simplistic to understand complex marketing situations, as such models assume linear relationships between mix variables and the resultant outcomes (McGlone & Ramsey, 1998:248 and Tedesco, 1998:5). Since the simplistic approaches recommended by traditional theories can be dangerous, marketers should consider the overall environmental position when designing their strategies and adopt non-traditional marketing methodologies (Wollin & Perry, 2004:568). The classic 4Ps of marketing have been questioned as inadequate (Van Waterschoot & Van den Bulte, 1992:91), and developed further into the 7Ps of Booms and Bitner (in Zeithaml & Bitner, 2003:24) and of Christopher et al. (in Palmer, 1994:32). However, the 4Ps is still the most common model of the marketing mix (e.g. Kotler & Keller, 2006:19)

I have a feeling that if I did have the time to count, the number of actual theories (that were not requested for) would exceed the actual company analysis (that was requested for).

Marketing Mix of Coke

Product

Coke is a non-alcoholic, soft carbonated drink that is made from the extracts of coco leaves. It has a distinguishing taste and is of great quality and taste. Apart from the regular Coke, it also has other variants such as Diet Coke, Coca Cola Vanilla, Coca Cola Zero, and Coca Cola Cheery along with special types of Coke that comes in lime, coffee and lemon. The concentrate which is the sole of the product is manufactured by the company itself and then sold to licensed bottlers who later produce the finished product by making a mixture of the concentrate, sweeteners and water. It is then poured into cans and bottles and sold. The brand name is well known, famous, recognised and recalled by virtually everyone in UK and around the globe.

Figure: 3Source: marketingteacher.com

The product’s logo, design and colour are all well known and people associate themselves with this brand. It’s a symbol of lifestyle. The brand is among the highest equity brands. The product keeps on innovating to maintain its attractiveness and appeal. It comes in glass and plastic bottles as well as cans of different sizes and capacities in order to suit the needs of everyone be it individuals or big families, parties etc. Coke even comes as Coke Mini which is a can of 7.5 ounce. The brand is known for its great quality and taste. It gives special attention to the health and safety aspect of its consumers and that is why is moving towards the use of all natural elements used in production. The introduction of Diet Coke and focus on recycling and safe disposal of the product are also given great importance. The design of the bottle has a great appeal and is known as the Contour bottle. It is distinctive in nature and looks smart, hip and trendy. It serves to fulfil the physiological or basic needs of its consumers. Figure 3 above shows the elements of a marketing mix.

Price

Coke is seen to be involved in competitive pricing in order to better compete with its competitor Pepsi but it does not compromise on quality. The price of Coke is fixed but it occasionally comes up with seasonal discounts and pricing, bundling, volume discounts, etc in times of holiday season or other such events. Coke does not indulge in discriminatory pricing however it offers wholesale pricing when selling to fast food chains such as McDonalds, restaurants etc.

Placement

A distribution channel is a non-linear system that can be stable, periodically oscillating, or chaotic (Priesmeyer, 1992:79). Distribution network of Coke is very extensive and that is why it is available everywhere. It makes sure that Coke is easily available to everyone by making use of supermarkets, retail stores, vending machines, restaurants etc. The company has contracts with distributors and suppliers and occupies the best shelf space in every store and market. It can be found everywhere. It works all over the globe by making use of franchising.

Apart from the Promotion subchapter below, no other marketing mix element has been reported with actual proof. Even the promotion subchapter below does not contain any references, therefore where did you get your information fromThey all seem to be based on the understanding of the writer and nothing else. This is an academic report, and as such needs market report. For instance Datamonitor, Mintel or KeyNote would have been very crucial in understanding the soft drinks market which Coke operates in, and thus assist you in conducting a better analysis.

Promotion

Promotion has been the biggest success factor behind Coke. Coke spends heavily on advertising and is involved mainly in above the line promotion. Initially modes of advertisement were newspapers, radio, billboards and providing customers with free samples and coupons of Coke. Today, Coke relies mostly on television advertising as it has both high frequency and reach and involves both audio and visuals. Coke always comes up with new and innovative adverts and makes special advertisements for every region it operates in that are suited to the local culture and needs. Coke also has brand ambassadors and spends heavily on promotion. Coke makes use of glittering generalities which are very persuasive in nature. It is involved in the sponsorship of many events particularly related to youth and sports. The major events sponsored by Coke include Olympics, FIFA World Cup, Cricket World Cup and The Football League. Many movie and television serial producers also promote Coke in their productions.

Part ‘3’ – Your fully justified recommendations in respect of the revised marketingprogramme elements needed to improve market size and/or profitability

In light of the above analysis, there is no doubt that Coke is one of the biggest, strongest and most successful consumers brands present not only in UK but everywhere on this planet. It has a huge and loyal customer base and is the market leader.

Recommendations

But there are certain things that Coke needs to focus and improve upon in order to be more productive, efficient and earn more profit margins.

Firstly, it needs to work upon its brand image in certain countries such as Saudi Arabia and the parts of Middle East. In these parts of the world, Coke is banned and boycotted as Coke keeps on making timely investments in Israel. These countries only allow Pepsi to be sold within their premises and thus Coke is losing on a very big chunk of the market and Pepsi is making its strong hold there.
Secondly, it should focus more on its distribution channels and make them wider and more effective as Coke is still not widely and easily available as Pepsi.
Thirdly, it needs to work more on its advertisement campaigns as Pepsi has an edge over Coke in this aspect. Coke should also advertise and sell more through online channels and advertise on social networking websites such as Twitter, Facebook etc.
The company should make sure that the consumers are well aware about all its latest promotions and activities such as bundling offers, discounts, special offers, price cuts, timely offers etc. The company should also revise its segmentation strategy and form even small target market segments so it can better and effectively understand the drastically changing needs and wants of its customers and be able to fulfill and satisfy them.
Coke needs to diversify into other conventional and non conventional products thus engaging both in related and unrelated diversification (non-carbonated products) so that it has a broad and diverse portfolio of products and it can do this easily by making use of its brand name and equity.
Establishing a feedback mechanism is also very necessary.
Coke needs to pay special attention to the markets in which its performance is declining such as Thailand and Indonesia and should try to penetrate more in the emerging markets which are the biggest market for consumer goods today.

The requirements were for “Your fully justified recommendations in respect of the revised marketingprogramme elements needed to improve market size and/or profitability” And as such, each recommendation you have provided should have been backed up with actual problems, and references to these problems. These problems should have been highlighted as the major threats of your market research, and not just brought up in the recommendations chapter. One of your recommendations is “establishing a feedback mechanism is also very necessary”. How is that justified in anywayWhy is it essential to establish a feedback mechanism, who said soAnd what makes you feel it is important. If it is you, then why should it be an actual recommendation for an organisation. There is a reason why we only have 14 writers out of up to 200 applications, and it is because we need to trust everyone to provide the best quality written work. I cannot risk damaging the reputation of our site Essays by sending this work to the client. I would hate to think of the consequences.

Conclusion

There is no doubt that Coke is one of the largest and most successful consumer brand in UK and globally. It occupies the largest market share and deals with external and internal pressures effectively. Its marketing plan and mix is very good and has helped to enable Coke to stay competitive and compete with Pepsi in the best possible and efficient manner.

As everything has pros and cons, a bright and dark side, some advantages and disadvantages; same is the case the Coke. There are some aspects on which Coke lags behind and they require its immediate attention if Coke wants to stay on the top and further increase its market value, market share and size and increase in profitability.

References:

Aaker,D. (1991), Managing Brand Equity: Capitalizing on the Value of a Brand Name, Free Press, New York, NY.
Aaker, Jennifer (1997), “Dimensions of Brand Personality”, Journal of Marketing Research, 34 (3), 347-356
Amirkhan, J.H. (1990), “A factor analytically derived measure of coping: the coping strategy indicator”, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol. 59 No. 5, pp. 1066-74.
Batra, Rajeev, Donald R. Lehmann and Dipinder Singh (1993), “The Brand Personality Component of Brand Goodwill: Some Antecedents and Consequences” in Brand Equity and Advertising, ed. David A. Aaker, Alexander Biel, Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 83-96.
Ben Delaney, (2007), The Marketing Mix.
Chandy, R., Tellis, G. J., MacInnis, D., & Thaivanich, P. (2001), What to say when: Advertising appeals in evolving markets. Journal of Marketing Research, 38, 399–41
Dacin, P.A. and Smith, D.C. (1994), “The effect of brand portfolio characteristics on consumer evaluations of brand extensions”, Journal of Marketing Research, Vol. 31, May, pp. 229-42.
Davis, F.D. (1989), “Perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and user acceptance of information technology”, MIS Quarterly, Vol. 13 No. 3, pp. 319-39
Doyle, Peter (2001), Marketing Management and Strategy, 3rd edition, New York.
Fernandez, Colin (2008,. “DNA Damage Fear”. London: The Daily Mail.
Gerard J. Tellis. (2006), Modelling Marketing Mix, University of Southern California.
Hanssens, Dominique M., Leonard J. Parsons, Randal L. Schultz. . Market Response Models: Econometric and Time Series Analysis ,2nd ed. Kluwer Academic Press, Boston, M,2001.
Michael Porter, (1990), The Competitive Advantage of Nations.
Porter, Michael E.(1980) Competitive Strategy. New York: Free Press
Tellis, G. J. (2004). Effective advertising: How, when, and why advertising works. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage
Terwiesch, C, 2005, Product Development as a Problem-solving Process. in S. Shane, Blackwell Handbook on Technology and Innovation Management, forthcoming
Simon , Kucher & Partners (2004), Power Pricing, WHU Koblenz.
Singh V., K. Hansen, R. Blattberg. 2006. Market entry and consumer behaviour: An investigation of a wal-mart supercenter. Marketing Sci. 25(5) 457–476.
Shankar, V., R. Bolton. (2004), An empirical analysis of determinants of retailer pricing strategy. Marketing Sci. 23(1) 28–49
Rajendran, K. N., & Tellis, G. J. (1994). Is reference price based on context or experienceAn analysis of consumers’ brand choices. Journal of Marketing, 58, 10–22
Wen-fei L. Uva, (2001), Smart Pricing Strategies, Department of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1021820/Diet-Coke-drop-additive-DNA-damage-fear.html 30-12-2010

http://www.shell-livewire.org/why-u-need-a-business-plan/PEST-analysis/ 30-12-2010

http://marketingteacher.com/lesson-store/lesson-five-forces.html 31-12-2010

http://marketingteacher.com/lesson-store/lesson-marketing-mix.html 31-12-2010

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Free Essays

Brand Loyalty Depends On Brand Elements

Introduction

A brand is a design, term, name, or any feature used to identify the products or services of a seller from the ones of other sellers in the market (Jacoby and Chestnut, 1978). Although there is a large body of research on brand loyalty in marketing literature, the relationship between brand loyalty and brand elements has not always been well documented or understood. In this essay, the contention of whether brand elements play a significant role in influencing the loyalty of consumers shall be raised. First, a definition of brand loyalty and brand elements will be outlined, followed by arguments for and against the claim that brand loyalty is dependent on brand elements. In so doing, this essay will draw on marketing and consumer behaviour literature as well as case studies from well-known brands to illustrate the arguments.

Brand loyalty has been considered as the conscious or unconscious decision of a consumer to continually repurchase a brand (Keller, 2007). Brand loyalty has always represented one of the top priorities for a brand. Brand giants such as Coca-Cola and Pepsi for example, frequently bring out brand loyalty promotions such as “My Coke Rewards” and “Pepsi Stuff” in order to retain its committed consumers (Dick and Basu, 1994). Conversely, brand elements refers to the different components that make up a brand. These can include both internal and external elements. Internal elements, for example, include brand personality and promise whilst external elements refer to associations, image and positioning of a brand.

Building from these two key concepts, it may be argued that brand loyalty can only be achieved if a number of effective brand elements are firmly in place. Some have argued that external elements such as brand positioning are critical in cultivating trust between the consumers and the brand (McCole, 2004). Brand positioning refers to the aspects of the brand used in the specialization of the organization, its target market, the unique value of the company and the benefits a consumer would acquire from buying its products and services. Brand positioning also expends effort in differentiating a company over competitors. It is therefore possible that it is only once a consumer acquires greater knowledge and clarity of a company’s specialization, unique value and potential benefits, that he/she will be more likely to repurchase the product and therefore ensuring brand loyalty (Aaker, 1995). In a similar vein, the element of brand promise can also be seen to play a major role in brand loyalty. Brand promise refers to the particular element that consumers expect to be delivered by the company each time the consumer purchases an item and/or service. By this definition, brand promise is a multi-level element as it involves factors such as expectation, interaction of employees to meet these outcomes and delivery (Cowley, 1991). If each of these elements is in place, consumers are much more likely to express loyalty to the brand.

An additional argument that supports the claim that brand loyalty is dependent on brand elements can be drawn from examining one of the internal elements; brand personality. Every brand can be said to carry its own unique brand personality. Brand personality personifies the brand in terms of human characteristics and traits (Kapferer, 2008; Aaker, 1995). A brand without personality and warmth, for example, is likely to garner zero loyalty from consumers and will be much more sensitive to prices (Uncles & Goodhardt, 2004). A positive and distinctive brand personality on the other hand, is much more likely to elicit favourable outcomes such as increased preference, usage and loyalty (Aaker, 1997).

There is a well-established body of literature that highlights that a clear brand personality not only enhances brand preference but improves loyalty (Kressman et al 2006) but also allows consumers to express and project their ideal selves to others (Belk, 1988). The brand becomes an extension of the consumer’s self. Brand personality, can therefore be shown to play a critical role in allowing consumers to connect on a personal level with a brand and hence be more likely to leave a long-lasting positive imprint that leads to repurchase and gradually builds up brand loyalty.

However, it may also be argued that brand loyalty can also be build up, independent of brand elements. This argument focuses on the importance of strategy, rather than brand elements. An example to illustrate the importance of strategy can be seen from the changes that have occurred in marketing over the last decade. For example, due to the advances of web 2.0 and social networks, traditional marketing practices of examining consumer trends, conducting focus groups and assessing demographics have been supplemented by social media marketing on social networks, videos and blogs. The number of companies and businesses leveraging the social network platform to connect with consumers via fan pages is increasing every day and global companies such as Coca-Cola, Mercedes-Benz, Starbucks, Disney, New York Times, Red Bull, to name a few, are now prominent fixtures on social networks. Coca-Cola, for example, allowed two of its fans who created the brand’s Facebook fan page to continue to manage it on Facebook. It is not surprising therefore, that Coca-Cola has now amassed over thirty-four million Likes worldwide. Starbucks has similarly demonstrated the importance of a social media marketing strategy in the creation of “My Starbucks Idea”, a site that allows consumers to submit suggestions that are reviewed and often implemented. As market research has indicated that more than 80% of individuals who “Like” a brand or product on Facebook are loyal consumers (DDB Worldwide, 2010), new strategies of social media marketing and innovative fan pages are increasingly becoming important in the success of a brand. Elements such as brand image and personality may have been important ten years ago, but brand loyalty can now be independent.

One may also adopt a perspective that unites the opposing arguments and postulates that brand elements are important, but not requirements of brand loyalty. Instead, a number of other factors are important such as in the case of “Spurious Loyalty” in which customers may repurchase a brand due to situational constraints or out of convenience. Moreover, it has also been suggested that brand loyalty contains a considerable degree of pre-dispositional commitment towards a brand that has nothing to do with the brand elements (Punniyamoorthy and Raj 2007).

As there are no specific theories and approaches that address the question of brand loyalty and brand elements, it is difficult to provide a definitive answer. However, over the course of the essay, it has become apparent that brand elements do play a pivotal role in brand loyalty and that consumers are likely to repurchase a brand because they perceive the brand to serve their product needs by offering the right features of the product, price, quality and image as well. However, it has also become clear that brand loyalty is grossly influenced by decisions that take place independent of brand elements. In conclusion, a balance between both arguments would definitely be most effective for addressing the claim. In the future, a greater body of work is necessary to aid researchers, scholars and marketers to come closer to understanding the multi-dimensional nature of brand loyalty.

References

Aaker, D. 1995. Building Strong Brands, Free Press, New York.

Belk, R. W. 1988. Possessions and the extended self. Journal of Consumer Research, 15, pp. 139-168.

Cowley, D. 1991. Understanding Brands, Kogan Page, London.

DDB Worldwide & OpinionWay Survey. Facebook and Brands. October 2010.

Dick, A. S. and Basu, K. 1994. Customer Loyalty: Toward an Integrated Conceptual Framework. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 22, pp. 99-113.

Jacoby, J. & Chestnut, J. 1978. Brand Loyalty: Measurement & Management, Wiley, New York.

Kapferer, J. 2008. The New Strategic Brand Management, Kogan Page, London.

Keller, K. 2007. Strategic Brand Management, Prentice Hall, New Jersey.

Kressmann, F., Sirgy, M., Herrmann, A., Huber, F., Huber, S., and Lee, D. 2006. Direct

and indirect effects of self-image congruence on brand loyalty. Journal of Business Research, 59, 955-964.

McCole, P. 2004. Refocusing marketing to reflect practice: The changing role of marketing for business”, Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 22 Issue 5, pp.531 – 539.

Punniyamoorthy, M and Prasanna Mohan Raj. 2007. An empirical model for brand loyalty measurement”, Journal of Targeting, Measurement and Analysis for Marketing, Volume 15, Number 4, pp. 222-233.

Uncles, L & Goodhardt, M. (2004), Understanding Brand Performance Measures: Using Dirichlet Benchmarks, Journal of Business Research, Vol.57, Issue12, pp.1307-1325.

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Moving from prescribing medications by brand name to INN

Abstract

Drug prescription is not only a routine in medical use functioning, but also plays pivotal role in improving the health status of patients seeking such services. The nature and efficacy of pharmacy services depends on the extent of professionalism, which define the methods and ethical standards with which one carries out such duties.Furthermore, pharmaceutical services vary from one place to another, and often governed by the prevailing state laws. This research paper therefore, presents a detailed discussion of two main aspect of pharmacy. The first section entails the shift in the drug prescription methods, from the initial brand based method to the modern based on the active ingredient making up the medicine. The second section outlines the contribution of a pharmacist in influencing the brand of medicine that can be prescribed in a clinical process.

Introduction

The efforts aimed at changing the health care provider’s prescribing behaviour to achieve consistency with the ever changing best medical practises is the chief challenge ensuring the safest dispensation and use of medicine. Due the emergence of new data about the use of drugs such as their effectiveness, dosing options, side effects, indications as well as contraindications, the existing pharmaceutical options also keep on evolving (Garcia-Gollarte et.al, 2012). As a result of the new changes in the medical practises, there are resulting gaps between the prescription options based on evidence, and the usual practises in most clinics. For example, other than the common error of under dozing and over dozing, the prescribers may occasionally give particular medicines for wrong conditions.

Biological Medicines and Biosimillar medicines

The biological medicines are also referred to as biologics, and consist of organic compounds made through biotechnological mechanisms. The biologics appeared for use in the 1980s, and have since then advanced to bring improvements in the treatment of many diseases. Their uses as alternative medicine have revolutionized the treatment of diseases, which has led to the improvement of health status across billions of people in the world. Consequently, this category of drugs has become popular since their introduction, a process whose end has seen the diminishing power of the original biological medicine. There are many manufacturing companies, who have acquired the permission to manufacture similar brands of the original biological medicine, commonly trending the medical market as biosimillar medicines.

As a result of the existing complexity in the process of manufacturing the original medicine, the biosimillar medicines do not qualify for the generic class of medicine (Dylst, Vulto & Simoens, 2013). This is mainly due to the fact that this category is not typically identical to the original medicine. There are concerns regarding the authenticity and the effectiveness of the process of differentiating between such biosimillar medicines and the original biological medicines. These concerns are based on the extents of similarities observed when such drugs are used, as compared to the original biological medicines.

For example, under same conditions of a particular patient, when a biosimillar is compared with Infliximab, the uses of biosimilars have manifested the same therapeutic efficacy, as well as the incidences of drug related events. In addition to the similar levels of therapeutic efficacy, biosimilars are equally tolerated by the body system, and also comparable in terms of their safety issues. It is the complexity in their manufacturing processes, in tandem with safety concerns that the ongoing monitoring derives its basis (Declerck & Simoens, 2012).

Concerns regarding the use of biosimilar drugs

The concerns rose over the issues relating to safety, efficacy and the cost of using the biosimilars have resulted into the urgent need for a change of prescription method from the initial brand name to the use of active ingredients. This is because of the compromise of such brands, in which certain biosimilars do not recognize the copied brands, and thus creating confusion.

The key concern that has been raised through the Pharmacovigilance involves the criteria wit which one can use to draw a line between the original biological medicine and the biosimilar medicines. There are a plethora of biosimilar medicines that after manufacturing have been approved by the European Medicines Agency. Such approvals have derived their bases on the abbreviated programs, in which the manufacturing process was purely based on copying the formula of those biological medicines already in the market. Some of these biosimilar medicines in this category exist in the market, despite lack of approval by the regulatory bodies, under the legal regulatory frameworks within Europe. Their lack of approval has therefore led to the ultimate doubt about the validity of such medicines, especially the possibility of adverse reactions occurring as side effects.

The cost of purchasing the biosimilar medicines has also raised major concerns in the pharmaceutical industries in the Europe, just like other parts of the world. The relative low cost of acquiring such medicines has led into a perception by many people, that the existence of cheaper alternatives could be derailing the development of the industry. Consequently, there is an increase of pressure to prescribe the cheaper and new alternatives among patients, who may not afford the original biological medicines. Furthermore, such pressures have led to the increased use of such alternatives without any critical attention paid to the criteria of prescription and application of brand names.

Transition from the drug brand name to the INN system of drug prescription

The recent decades have been epitomised by a major burden of chronic diseases, not only among the European member states, but also across the globe. In order to curb the ever growing menace of such diseases among populations, the concerned authorities such as the World Health Organization, through respective governments have had to act. The chief aim of such action by the WHO, through respective governments have been to facilitate, and enforce laws to ensure that all professional health workers and patients access the safest, high quality, modern and affordable medicine to improve the health status of their people. Biomedical studies over time have identified the biological medicines as one of the most effective categories of medicine that can meet this criterion.

However, the main challenge in the provision of such biological medicine has been manifested on the means of identification by both patients and pharmacists during prescription. Surveys have further pointed out that the method of prescription plays a pivotal role in limiting the resulting confusion during the identification of drugs from place, particularly from one country to another within Europe (CDC, 2012). For instance, over the recent decades, the method of prescription has been based on the brand name. There are a number of factors that determine the brand name for a particular medicine, such as the location or trans-border movements within Europe.

Such variation have therefore been a core ingredient in breeding the much confusion when prescribing drugs from one place, especially for patients who may be new in such places. A particular brand name for a medicine used at one point may either be unfamiliar, or used for a different medicine in another place (Rotenstein et.al, 2013). Consequently, the need for a more standardised system of naming and prescribing drugs across the globe, including the European member states becomes an indispensible discourse. The European member states, in tandem with the world, have therefore joined the movement from prescribing medications by brand name to the INN International Nonproprietary Name (INN). Currently, there is a legislation process, whose purpose is to prevent doctors from brand prescription, but rather an active ingredient in the medicine, to allow easy determination by the patient.

The International Nonproprietary Name (INN)

The International Nonproprietary Name is a special term in healthy sciences and medicines, which is given to pharmaceuticals for purposes of easy identification. Having been initiated by the World Health Organization, the INN system of identification began to operate in 1953, for the benefit of not only the health workers such as pharmacists, but also help patients identify their medication with ease. The ease of identification was based on the common aim of the system for the generation of convenient common names for the existing pharmaceutical substances. In this case, each name generated under this system becomes unique for a global recognition of the substance as a public property. Consequently, the INN given to each pharmaceutical can have wide uses for the manufacturers and users, as well as the process of generic prescription in studies regarding drug use (CDC, 2012).

The use of the International Nonproprietary Name in the drug prescription process functions to harmonise the communication regarding the medical activities among health professionals, drug consumers and patients. As a result, this system helps to prevent potential occurrence of medication errors. A medication error refers to any resulting misconception in the processes of drug prescription, dispensation, administration as well as monitoring the use of a particular drug. Medication errors are a major cause of most adverse reactions in patients, whose prevention can easily be achieved through accurate use of the relevant drugs.

The accuracy can also be achieved through a process of synchronization, in which a single drug can retain a single identification from one place to another. A prescription method, based on the active ingredient as the common component of a particular drug, such as the INN system, has been enforced through a new legislative body referred to as the European Union Pharmacovigilance Legislation. Pharmacovigilance is a process, which consists of scientific activities of detecting, conducting an assessment of the adverse risks, understanding, and the establishment of potential prevention measures for the resulting adverse reactions (CDC, 2012).

The European Medicines Agency

Responsibilities

The chief responsibility of the European Medicines Agency is to obtain and report the relevant data regarding adverse drug reactions, resulting from medical errors. Such reports are gathered and submitted to the Eudravigilance, a database that stores all the relevant data for medical errors among the European member states. Moreover, the database system is designed in such a way that it does not only receive the relevant information on adverse drug reaction, but also processes, stores and avails upon demand, the stored information after electronic submission.s

The database run by the European Medical agency also permits users to conduct a critical analysis of the data herein, and enables one t make accurate conclusions regarding the data collected in determining the prevailing medical trends in different regions of Europe (Declerck, & Simoens, 2012). In the modern system, there are legislative measures, which ensure that the data regarding medicines are stored and undergo general processing, during which drugs should maintain a standard description using the active ingredient, other than the initial brand name.

In addition to the data reception, storage, and analysis through the Eudravigilance database, the legislative body also has a role of coordination among the European member states. The coordination role between different medicine regulatory authorities across Europe also involves all the individual Pharmacovigilance centres, as well as the patient safety authorities. The main aim of this role is to ensure that there is mutual flow of relevant information among the member states, so as to enhance communication of the occurrence of adverse drug reactions.

The Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee (PRAC) is also a legislative committee charged with a duty of offering the requisite recommendations for all medicine regulatory frameworks within the EU (Allen & Ansel, 2013). The recommendations made by the Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee function to enhance further safety issues, resulting from inappropriate use of medicines in various regions across the member states
(O’Connor, Gallagher & O’Mahony, 2012). While formulating these recommendations, the committee takes into considerations, including risk management issues, to monitor the extent of effectiveness, with which various mechanisms help to eradicate the occurrence of medication errors and adverse drug reactions.

Role of a Pharmacist in Determining a Drug Prescription

Pharmacists have the most critical role in determining the type or brand of medication to prescribe. This is because they are the base of the powers for dispensing the drugs for patients, in a normal clinical routine (Gibberson et.al, 2013). When lack of professionalism occurs in the dispensation of medicines for patients, there are higher chances of adverse medical reactions resulting from medical errors. Each year, the occurrence of medical errors, emanating from inappropriate prescription and dispensation of medicines by unprofessional pharmacists has caused harm to at least 1.5 million people. Furthermore, the loss incurred in terms of the cost of treating the injuries caused in hospitals runs at higher levels of at least $3.5 Billion each year. However, these cost estimates do not take into account the additional cost in terms of the extra wages and salaries incurred while causing and correcting such messes (Spinewine, Fialova & Byrne, 2012).

Throughout history, pharmacists have played a pivotal role in ensuring an improved patient health through appropriate prescription and dispensing of the right brand of medicine. Through improved disease management techniques and therapy practises, effective spending in healthcare activities, and enhanced adherence leads to improved quality of life (Haga et.al, 2013). In order to influence the brand of medicine to prescribe for a particular patient, the pharmacist should acquire a deeper comprehension of the patients’ medical condition. Most often, the pharmacist relies entirely on the information obtained from the technician, which helps them provide additional base for the patient’s safety (O’Connor, Gallagher & O’Mahony, 2012).

In order to obtain the required accuracy, it is important for the technician to observe strict adherence to the system based procedures when obtaining the information regarding a patient’s medical condition. In cases where the technician experiences unusual or any form of abnormalities, it is their responsibility to inform the pharmacist, to enable them prescribe and dispense the right brand of medicine (Allen & Ansel, 2013).

The Scope of Practise in Pharmacy

The scope of practise for different pharmacists varies from one country to another, depending on the prevailing state laws. The governing board of pharmacy also plays a pivotal role in determining the extent to which professional pharmacists can exercise their powers, and ability to influence the type of prescription. There are sets of regulation in various countries, which permit the pharmacists to exercise their powers as professional within specific areas within the medical care system (Law et.al, 2012).

On the other hand, other countries have laws that encourage a broader approach to service delivery within the medical service delivery. The pharmacist may therefore take part in different parts of the medication, ranging from diagnosis, prescription, drug dispensation as well as monitoring. The pharmacist therefore has a wide range of options and opportunities, during which they can influence the prescription of a given medicine (Abood, 2012).

Job Satisfaction

Job satisfaction is another aspect of enabler, through which pharmacists acquire an opportunity to influence the prescription. In the modern world of health care system, the practise of pharmacy has advanced from the initial practise of dispensing medicine and offering counselling sessions to offering more detailed clinical patient care services. In cases where a pharmacist meets restraining conditions in which they are unable to offer a wider spectrum of services to their patients, they often lack satisfaction from their jobs (Allen & Ansel, 2013).

Eradication of fraudulent prescription

The main source of medical errors often emanate from fraudulent prescriptions, some of which are out of human intervention, while the rest may be unintentional. In order to take control of the process and make the relevant decision regarding the prescription, pharmacists should understand what constitutes fraudulent practises and work towards eradicating them. Fraudulent prescriptions are caused by legitimate practises, in which patients decide to make alterations to their prescriptions to suit their personal interests (Declerck & Simoens, 2012).

In such cases, the patient may show preference for a particular brand of medicine, and insist that they be treated with the same. In other experiences, patients may also alter prescriptions depending on the cost incurred, in which they either opt for cheaper brands, or prefer more expensive brands due to their perception of higher quality and efficacy. A pharmacist may use their influence in such cases to discover the fraud and alter the prescription, and dispense the right medicine depending on the patient’s conditions (Cornes, 2012).

In addition to cases of alteration, pharmacists also have the technical and professional skills to discover the validity of prescription pads. One of the most conspicuous methods of identifying the validity of such prescription pads may involve subjecting the contact information to a rigor of scrutiny, to determine if they bear the name of the bearer. Such details may include the surnames, contact phone number as well as the registration number (Campanelli, 2012). Professionally, stealing a prescription pads translates into an automatic medical error and a potential adverse reaction. In situations where the pharmacists discover such anomalies, there are a number of professional measures that can be employed to influence the brand of medication prescribed and dispensed.

Pharmacists ensure that they apply strict rules, in which only the state authorised individuals or prescribers can write prescription orders. The state authorized person is defined by the state a trained physician, dentist, veterinarian, podiatrist, as well as other state registered practitioners. For instance, there are states with strict rules in which other health professionals such as physician assistants and nurses to participate in conducting prescriptions under supervision or instruction by the pharmacist in charge. Similarly, other states also permit a sense of autonomy for the mid-level practitioners (Law, et.al, 2012).

The pharmacist therefore has a duty to understand the prevailing laws regarding the state provisions on drug prescription, before determining one. This helps them avoid cases of assumption, in which they perceive that every prescription given for the controlled substances is inappropriate. A pharmacist who obtains a prescription whose validity attracts signs of doubt or appears invalid in any way, it is professional to undertake affirmative steps aimed at establishing the authenticity of the prescription holder (Cornes, 2012). In cases where the pharmacists have doubts about the contact information, they may have to use the prescriber’s contact office, other than the patients contact information. A telephone call to the office creates an additional time in the prescription process, during the concerned parties may address the gaps in the existing prescription. This way, the pharmacist not only gets a chance to influence the types of medication prescribed, but also adheres to the legal requirements, including state laws regarding the use of drugs.

References

Abood, R. R. (2012). Pharmacy practice and the law. Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

Allen, L. V., & Ansel, H. C. (2013). Pharmaceutical dosage forms and drug delivery systems. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Campanelli, C. M. (2012). American Geriatrics Society Updated Beers Criteria for Potentially Inappropriate Medication Use in Older Adults: The American Geriatrics Society 2012 Beers Criteria Update Expert Panel. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 60(4), 616.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC. (2012). CDC grand rounds: prescription drug overdoses-a US epidemic. MMWR. Morbidity and mortality weekly report, 61(1), 10.

Cornes, P. (2012). The economic pressures for biosimilar drug use in cancer medicine. Targeted oncology, 7(1), 57-67.

Declerck, P. J., & Simoens, S. A. (2012). European perspective on the market accessibility of biosimilars. Biosimilars, 2, 33-40.

Dylst, P., Vulto, A., & Simoens, S. (2013). Demand-side policies to encourage the use of generic medicines: an overview. Expert review of pharmacoeconomics & outcomes research, 13(1), 59-72.

Garcia-Gollarte, F., Baleriola-Julvez, J., Ferrero-Lopez, I., & Cruz-Jentoft, A. J. (2012). Inappropriate drug prescription at nursing home admission. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, 13(1), 83-e9.

Gibberson, R. A. D. M., Yoder, C. D. R., & Lee, C. D. R. (2012). Improving Patient and Health System Outcomes through Advanced Pharmacy Practice. A Report to the US Surgeon General. University of the Incarnate Word Pharmacy Review, 1(2).

Haga, S. B., Burke, W., Ginsburg, G. S., Mills, R., & Agans, R. (2012). Primary care physicians’ knowledge of and experience with pharmacogenetic testing. Clinical genetics, 82(4), 388-394.

Law, M. R., Ma, T., Fisher, J., & Sketris, I. S. (2012). Independent pharmacist prescribing in Canada

O’Connor, M. N., Gallagher, P., & O’Mahony, D. (2012). Inappropriate Prescribing. Drugs & aging, 29(6), 437-452.

Rolland, Y., Andrieu, S., Crochard, A., Goni, S., Hein, C., & Vellas, B. (2012). Psychotropic drug consumption at admission and discharge of nursing home residents. Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, 13(4), 407-e7.

Rotenstein, L. S., Ran, N., Shivers, J. P., Yarchoan, M., & Close, K. L. (2012). Opportunities and Challenges for Biosimilars: What’s on the Horizon in the Global Insulin Market?. Clinical Diabetes, 30(4), 138-150.

Spinewine, A., Fialova, D., & Byrne, S. (2012). The role of the pharmacist in optimizing pharmacotherapy in older people. Drugs & aging, 29(6), 495-510.

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Smythson of Bond Street Brand Positioning

Smythson of Bond Street is a British luxury leather goods and personalized stationery brand. It is a synonym of exclusivity, discreet good taste, elegance, and British heritage. It was founded in 1887 in London and ever since, the brand has received clients such as the Queen Victoria, the Royal Family, Grace Kelly, and Madonna. Besides that, Smythson is positioned as the “British Hermes” according to its current CEO Andy Janowski; whom along with the new Design Director Rory O’ Honlon wants to consolidate the brand as an “iconic British luxury leather goods brand”.

They want to raise their global awareness and the brand’s image by highlighting Smythson’s expression of contemporary classicism, its 125 year heritage, and unique craftsmanship. Smythson offers a variety of luxury leather goods such as handbags, clutches, wallets, travel accessories, books and diaries, home accessories, covers for high-tech tools, and high-end stationery; all products with minimalist designs that fit Smythson’s aesthetics.

Plus, customers customizing and engraving options go from gold stamped initials to personalized motifs and monograms. Furthermore, the brand appeals to high-end customers both men and women looking for exclusive, high quality, detailed leather accessories, who value first class stationery and paper goods. On the other hand, possible competitors for Smythson are Luxury brands such as Burberry and Gucci. First, Burberry is also a British luxury brand that wants to penetrate the market by highlighting their British Heritage.

Unlike Smythson, Burberry has a ready-to-wear line and it does not carry stationery goods. Second, another competitor could be the Italian brand Gucci, because it also sells luxury leather goods but the brand images are different. Gucci appeals more to customers looking for sexy, glamorous, and extravagant goods, while Smythson is targeted towards a more conservative, classic, yet fashionable customer.

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Case Assignment: Disney the Happiest Brand on Earth

REPORT 1 CASE ASSIGNMENT: Disney The Happiest Brand on Earth In 2006, Disney’s Pixar released the hit movie Cars, which grossed $462 million worldwide. Since then, Cars merchandise has generated over $2 billion in sales each year. Pixar has since created a series of Cars shorts to be aired on the Disney Channel with a subsequent DVD release. A Cars sequel is in the works for 2011, and an online virtual gaming world is set to release 2009. In 2012, Disney’s California Adventure theme park will open its 12-acre Cars Land attraction.

At Disney, the brand is the name of the game, and cross-platform success of the Cars franchise is by no means the exception to the rule. Disney also has the Jonas Brothers, Hannah Montana, High School Musical, the Disney Princesses, Pirates of the Caribbean, and the list goes on and on. The man behind the magic is Disney’s CEO, Bob Iger, who has lead a dramatic revitalization of the Disney brand since succeeding longtime head Michael Eisner in 2005. When he first took the post, his strategy shifted Disney’s focus around its stable of “franchises. These franchises are distributed across Disney’s multiple company platforms and divisions, such as Disney’s various television broadcasts platforms (the Disney Channel, ABC, ESPN), its consumer products business, theme parks, Disney’s Hollywood Records music label, and Disney’s publishing arm in Hyperion, just to name a few. Iger’s franchise strategy has been supported by the other major move he made upon first becoming CEO. On his first day on the job, Iger told the board that revitalizing Disney’s animation business was a top priority, which would be improved through the purchase of Pixar.

As part of Iger’s franchise strategy the deal made perfect sense, as many of Disney’s latest TV shows, Disneyland rides, and merchandise were based on Pixar characters. Finding a new market to push the Disney franchise became a priority as well. With the Disney brand growing flat, it was becoming evident that Disney had missed some opportunities for broader success due to a narrowing of its target market, which was at the time largely associated with younger children.

Iger’s first move was to broaden Disney’s viewership by moving the Disney Channel from premium to basic cable and launching local versions in key global markets. Then, Disney began pushing franchises to capture the rapidly growing tween market. Putting its support behind the Disney channel’s High School Musical and Hannah Montana and the Jonas Brothers, who were emerging out of Disney’s music label, Disney quickly generated a series of franchise juggernauts in the tween girl market.

Though Disney’s focus has remained on family-friendly fair, Iger has shown a new willingness to look to even broader markets if they fit with the Disney brand. Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean, the first Disney film with a PG-13 rating, based off the classic theme park ride, played a major role in refocusing the brand, and it also helped expand the Disney appeal to older kids and even adults. The Pirates and Cars franchises also provided preliminary steps for Disney’s latest endeavors to crack the tween boy market, one traditionally difficult for media companies to sustainably capture.

Their efforts focus around the new Disney XD channel, which has a broad range of offerings, such as potential new franchises like the science fiction action-adventure show Aaron Stone and showcases of new musical talent. Disney will also be able to leverage ESPN to create original sports- based programming. The channel will be accompanied by a Disney XD Web site, which will promote the channel’s programs, as well as offer games and original videos, social networking, and online community opportunities.

As it continues to expand and provide new franchise offerings, Disney looks to have relatively strong momentum, even in the midst of rising economic challenges. As Steve Jobs, Apple CEO and Disney board member, puts it, “Family is a renewable resource,” and right now, Disney is making the most of it. SOURCES: Richard Siklos, “Bob Iger Rocks Disney,” Fortune, January 19, 2009, 80–86; Peter Sanders, “Disney Focuses on Boys,” The Wall Street Journal, January 8, 2009, available at ttp://online. wsj. com/article/SB123137513996262627. html (accessed January 14, 2009). 1. Do a brief market opportunity analysis for Disney, identifying the major markets that Disney has expanded into. 2. How does Disney’s cross-platform franchising help create sustainable competitive advantage? 3. Describe the marketing mix for one of Disney’s franchises. 4. Describe the major components of Bob Iger’s strategic plan when he first became CEO.

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Changing Paradigms of Rebranding Strategies

According to the AMA (American Marketing Association), Brand is a name, term, sign, symbol, design, or a combination of all used to uniquely identify a producer’s goods and services and differentiate them from competitors. Specifically, a brand is a name “yahoo. com” logo, jingle ‘bus 2 minutes’, “Maggie”, slogan ‘sense and simplicity’, “PHILIPS”, package design, spokesperson, color Red color,” Vodafone” which consumers associate with a specific product. REBRANDING-WHAT IS IT?

Rebranding occurs when a product or service developed with one brand, company or product line affiliation is marketed or distributed with a new and different identity. It is usually more than simply a change in brand’s logo and other superficial changes and should involve radical changes to the brand name, image marketing strategy and advertising themes. In order to complete Rebranding, several areas should be reviewed including positioning, personality, cluster of values, logo, company, identity and vision prior to the building of a brand.

Rebranding can take place for a new product, a mature product, or even developing products. In some cases, a total rebrand may not be necessary but rather a partial rebrand. When a brand has been firmly established but may be outdated or needs refreshing due to new products or services, partial Rebranding may be more appropriate. It is critical that the brand value that’s been developed over the years not be eliminated. Subtle changes to update it may be all that is necessary to get the message across and revitalize sales.

It is important to differentiate between Rebranding of a product versus repositioning of a product. Repositioning may involve a change in any of the marketing mix elements in an effort to respond to declining sales or market share. The goal in repositioning is to target existing products at new markets or segments. Repositioning may be part of Rebranding campaign. In contrast, Rebranding should involve a total change to fundamental company elements such as mission statements, values and widely recognized logos in an effort to have the company’s brand accurately reflect what it offers.

WHEN SHOULD REBRANDING OCCURS: Rebranding is appropriate and essential under several circumstances in order to ensure success in product and service delivery. Often, a company has adapted their products to keep competitive in the marketplace to the extent the company’s brand may no longer accurately reflect what if offers. In this case, a major brand overhaul is necessary. A large quantity of acquisitions or merging of companies may require Rebranding in order to adequately reflect the new, large company.

When is Rebranding necessary? DRIVERS OF REBRANDING: The two major reasons of rebranding are: corporate restructuring and modifying the external perceptions. The following text highlights more drivers that call for rebranding exercise: • Outliving the usefulness: Sometimes, a brand might outlive the purpose for which it was created. In such a scenario, it is more suitable to change the name of brand and then continue or prune the product depending upon the market requirement. Values change: Sometimes, the value that promoters want to display to the audience through the brands change, and that is why they decide to change the brand name as well. • Mergers and acquisitions: Cases like the merger and acquisitions force the corporates to dawn a new identity for themselves, as it was seen in the case of Air Deccan and Kingfisher. However, while conducting the rebranding exercise, the companies should conduct a thorough analysis of the values and the attributes for which the brand name of the merging companies stand for and then only a new name should be adopted or the old one should be changed. Confused brands: In the case of UTI bank which changed its name to Axis bank, the brand UTI was associated with many other instituted in different streams financial strength, had to go for rebranding. CONSIDERATIONS FOR REBRANDING: • Through analysis of the target market: A company indulging in a rebranding exercise will not like to indulge into the exercise at the cost of its existing customers. Therefore, a thorough analysis of the profile of the existing customers is warranted. The rebranding exercise may attract new segments of the market but should not drive away the existing segments being served by the market. Nature of brand equity: A thorough analysis of brand equity and the nature of its standing in the eyes of its stakeholders should be conducted before going for dropping an already well established name, because if the new name fails to live up to the expectations of the stakeholders, it may result in a huge loss in terms of the sales and goodwill of the firm and through these two elements, on the value of the firm. • Project Management: It is generally the marketing department who takes up the leadership role in implementing the rebranding exercise and tries to seek out and surmount the challenges ahead.

However, in many cases, it is the board of directors with the external ad agency who decide upon the rebranding exercise and implement it. • Staff Involvement : The staff involvement is seen at various levels of the organization and they are basically consulted to suggest and brain storm on the new brand name and the like. • Customer Involvement: Though not many organizations go for customer feedback before rebranding themselves, feedback is sought in a more subtle and discreet way from the customers. Since confidentially is a concern for such an exercise, the rebranding campaign was not made more broad based.

OBSTACLES: • Time consuming: Most of the organizations found brand building time consuming and they failed to estimate the exact time for conducting the exercise. • Internal Resistance: Employee morale is greatly affected by the attitudes associated with the organization they work with, so many a times a change in brand name greatly affects their motivation and willingness to work for their responses. PREREQUISITES OF A SUCCESSFUL REBRANDING EXERCISE. • Clear Vision: The top management should have a clear vision about the organization and the direction in which it wants to take the organization.

It also should have a fair idea as to what does it want to achieve through the rebranding exercise. • Engagement of staff: The staff should be engaged at all levels across the organization to have a feeling or unanimity and oneness towards the entire exercise. • Thorough Planning: The rebranding exercise should be thoroughly planned and if need be, contingency plans should be prepared for any crisis. Rebranding is a difficult exercise to execute and it requires a lot of planning and a very minute detailed setting of goals and milestones in the execution phase to ensure the smooth implementation of the rebranding exercise. Adequate Resources: Adequate resources should be provided to the organization in terms of manpower, money and other resources. The complexity in execution; especially in the communication process calls for expert intervention in the entire process and the dispassionate observation and wide knowledge of the experts becomes a necessary in such projects. • Communication: The communication with the stake holders should be consistent, clear and multilateral to win their confidence towards the entire exercise. Impact on the Financial Markets: A firm exists for the maximization of shareholders wealth and it is therefore very important for the organization, to study the short term impact of the rebranding exercise on the financial markets and the organization should plan as to how it is going to deal with the short term impacts on the stock market prices of the rebranding exercise. TYPES OF REBRANDING EXERCISE: 1) Reiterating: These companies need not change their brand name, their names are strong enough and the brand essence has not changed over a period of years. ) Renaming: Some companies may go for renaming themselves to display the change in the ownership structure and to reflect the new owner’s identity in the name or the logo of the company. 3) Redefining: Some companies may go for redefining the qualities and attributes attached to it. It is done to give the company a new direction and also convey to the stake holders a change in the ownership pattern and the new direction of the company. 4) Restarting: These organizations feel a need not only to change the attributes attached to their brands but also the brand names ltogether. This happens when an existing brand departs from or enters into a new product line. 5) Abstract Brand Name: Companies normally go for an abstract brand name, because their abstraction lends them the flexibility of getting associated with other products also. Moreover, it is also seen that service organizations prefer more abstract names as they want to convey more complex messages than the product based organizations. REBRANDING SUCCESS: Several well-known companies have attempted Rebranding in recent years.

In some cases the Rebranding effort has been all encompassing for the company and in other cases a few changes were all that were necessary in order to ensure success. Hindustan Unilever limited: Hindustan Lever, a 51. 6 per cent subsidiary of Unilever plc formed in 1956, is the largest FMCG Company in India. It operates in two segments — home and personal care products such as soaps, detergents, oral care products, hair care products, skin care products, cosmetics, deodorants and fragrances, and food and beverages such as tea, coffee, wheat flour, salt, ice creams and culinary products.

With a turnover of over US$ 2200 million in 2003, HLL employs over 40,000 people across the country. Coca-Cola India: Coca-Cola is a leading player in the Indian beverage market with a 60 per cent share in the carbonated soft drinks segment, 36 per cent share in fruit drinks segment and 33 per cent share in the packaged water segment. In 2004, Coca-Cola sold 7 billion packs of its brands to more than 230 million consumers across 4,700 towns and 175,000 villages. The company has doubled its volumes and trebled its profits between 2001 and 2004. Coca-Cola continues to re-affirm its commitment to India through active ‘Citizenship Efforts. All its plants in India partner with local NGOs to alleviate local community issues in numerous small ways. It boasts of impeccable credentials on quality. Coca-Cola has succeeded in spite of an extremely price-sensitive consumer with entrenched beverage consumption habits – tea, nimbu-paani (lemonade) and a fragmented and geographically dispersed retail market, and a high tax environment. Intel India: Intel India was established in 1988 in Bangalore, and has now grown to include the maximum number of Intel divisions in any country outside the United States.

India’s increasing IT and engineering talent pool, has ensured that the majority of work done at Intel India is software and hardware engineering; and has also established the Intel India Design Centre, as Intel’s largest non-manufacturing site internationally. Intel has over 2,000 employees, of whom 1,200 work at the development centre. Significant market development groups include education and Intel Capital, which helps Intel make strategic investments in technology and online start-ups. Intel has invested US$ 60 million in infrastructure in India. REBRANDING FAILURES:

For every successful Rebranding story, there is at least one corresponding failure. The example given below outlines some of the reasons why Rebranding does not always succeed. New Coke: One of the most infamous rebranding failure stories in history is that of New Coke. On April 23, 1985, Coca-Cola Company took one of its biggest risks by announcing it was changing the formula for the world’s most popular soft drink. The outcry which followed was heard around the world. The motivation behind the formula change was a shrinking market share which the company believed to be the results of its arch rival Pepsi-Cola.

During the 1970’s, the “Pepsi Challenge” campaign seemed to erode the coke market even further. The company felt compelled to do something as it appeared consumers; particularly the baby boomer market, had a preference for sweeter drinks. Coke experimented with a new sweeter formula and market tests indicated the new formula was preferred overwhelmingly to both regular Coke and Pepsi. A first hint of pending disaster was when focus groups indicated indignation upon finding out they were tasting a possible new Coca-Cola and threatened to stop drinking coke altogether.

Nevertheless, the company relied heavily on the market analysis and research and launched new coke in April of 1985. Initial results were promising but the backlash that followed almost took the company down. The company did not factor in the rich, cultural history tied to the original coke. Even though taste tests continued to indicate a preference for the sweeter drink, brand loyalty was staunch for the classic coke and consumers boycotted the new coke as a result. With in 3 months, coca-cola was forced to bring back classic coke, which resulted in a resurgence of sales to bring coca-cola to the fore front once again.

Eventually, New Coke became Coke II and is virtually unavailable in distribution today. So what went wrong? Research was extensive, leadership supported the rebranding and an extensive advertising campaign was launched. Perhaps the company should have listened to that minority segment in the focus groups who were offended that Coca-Cola would even think about changing its formula(which it actually did any way when it changed from a sugar sweetness to a more inexpensive high fructose corn syrup sweetener). This was a hint of the cultural backlash that would result, particularly from the southern U.

S. where coke was a part of the regional identity. Perhaps the launch was not successfully implemented. Pepsi was able to strategically maneuver advertising by claiming they had won the cola wars prior to the official launch of New Coke. In addition, Coca-Colas CEO was unprepared for the “launching news conference resulting in alienation of reporters. He could not answer simple questions about the taste change. What ever the reason New Coke is now history and coke classic with other coke products maintain a lead in overall sales.

Volume for the classic brand has risen 24 percent since 1984 making it the No. 1 soft drink in the land since 1987. It is interesting how loyal consumers can be to a brand once you take it away temporarily. The rebranding failure actually led to revitalization of the existing brand and a newfound respect by company leadership for the “culture” surrounding the original Coca-Cola product. MISTAKES MADE WHEN REBRANDING: • Lack of True Change: It is important to remember that rebranding signals change. Your brand is more than your logo or corporate colors.

Simply repacking the goods and providing some new designs will not get results you need. Putting a new cover on an old book doesn’t make it new. Brands include every thing from customer perception and experience to quality, look and feel, customer care and retail and web environments. Make sure the changes instilled are all encompassing or customers will catch on quick and make a fast departure. • Lack of Quality Research: Research is required in order to be able to establish a plan for rebranding. Current and prospective customers must be involved when creating solutions.

Knowing customer attitudes and desires is essential in order to deliver the product they want in the way they want it delivered. In addition, research should be interpreted currently or the rebranding efforts can take a wrong direction. Coca-cola performed extensive research but discounted a portion of it which ultimately became very important foreshadowing of things to come. • Ignoring Brand Equity: By ignoring existing brand equity when rebranding, a company faces the risk of alienating and subsequently losing existing loyal customers. This was evident during the attempted rebranding of coke.

The company assumed all customers would like and want the taste of new coke because they didn’t understand the extent of the current brand loyalty. AT & T took this into consideration after merging with Southwestern Bell to ensure customers were comfortable and unconcerned about any loss of service. • Basing Rebranding on Advertising: Just as rebranding is not simply repacking the product, neither is it simply the advertising campaign. Brand strategy should be the core item leading advertising; advertising should not lead brand strategy.

Interestingly, some rebranding efforts may not include traditional advertising. Make sure the rebranding campaign is more than advertising or nothing will change for the company. • Inability to Analyze the Positioning: The literature revealed that ‘Repositioning’ is one of the most important drivers for rebranding. Positioning is not what company does with the product; it’s all about what they do with the mind of the target audience, and what customers think about the company. So, it is vital for rebranding to clarify and refine the positioning.

Both the present as well as desired positioning of the company should be apparent. • Lack of Top Level Support: Even though the rebranding may be born in the marketing department, it should be owned and supported by the top level managers especially the CEO. The CEO (Chief Executive Officer) is the only authority who can drive change in all the functional areas across the organization. The CEO needs to set the vision and lead rebranding to ensure that Product, Service & People are aligned and determined to deliver the implied promises through rebranding. CONCLUSION:

As branding trends continue to evolve, rebranding success seems to depend on the ability to adapt to the rapidly evolving media environment and taking advantage of new opportunities to reach the target audience. In order to remain competitive, companies will need to embrace “hot” media to spread the message to younger and techsavvy customers. New methods include blogs, pod casts, mobile phone-based programming, and social networks. However, a balance must be maintained with traditional methods of media in order to reach and retain the existing customer base. In order to rebrand successfully, key steps need to be taken in the process.

Companies who embrace the elements of rebranding usually are able to obtain their goals. Companies who fail to address all of the elements of rebranding often make mistakes and succumb to failure. So does rebranding work? Yes, and NO. It works when it is based on quality information, has the support of leadership and employees, is well-planned, provide adequate training, is integrated throughout the whole company, has a well-balanced multi-media advertising campaign that communicates the brand message consistently across multiple platforms, is customer driven, and is evaluated on an on-going basis to determine if alterations are need.

When these elements are not present, the chance of rebranding success diminishes rapidly. EXHIBITS |IBM | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | Hindustan Lever Limited |Hindustan Unilever Limited | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | Indian post | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | [pic] [pic] [pic] PHILIPS | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | |COMPAQ | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | HUTCH |Vodafone | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | |APPLE | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | KFC | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | | AIWA | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | KODAK | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | |SATYAM |MAHINDRA SATYAM | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | VIDEOCON | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | |CANARA BANK | |Old New | |[pic] |[pic] | |JET AIRWAYS | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | BANK OF BARODA | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | RELIANCE | |Old |New | |[pic] |[pic] | [pic] BIBLIOGRAPHY: • Kotler, Keller, Koshy, Jha. “Marketing Management”, 13th Edition, Pearson Education. YLR Moorthi, “Brand Management, The Indian Context”,2006, Vikas publishing house pvt ltd. • Bhavishya, The journal of futuristic managers, Jan-Mar 2008. • Dr. M. A. Azeem, Prof. T. Venkat Ram Raj, December-2008,”Rebranding – A business imperative”, Indian Journal of Marketing, Page no: 15-21. • M. Saeed, Ravinder vinayek, Narender kumar, September-2008, “Rebranding: An emerging brand marketing strategy (Trends, Issues and challenges)”, Indian Journal of Marketing, Page no: 3-10.

WEBLIOGRAPHY: • http://blong. styleapple. com • http://images. google. co. in/imgres? imgurl=http://remade. files. wordpress. com/2008/01/canarabankbeforeafter. jpg • http://www. mobilepandit. com/2005/12/07/rebranding-reliance-infocom • www. thehindubussinessline. com ———————– Change in Service Name Change Change in Product Acquisitions & Mergers Change in market Place New Product Launch Rebranding

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Position/Competition/Branding of Apple Iphone

LIBERTY UNIVERSITY MMPG: Position/Competition/Branding of Apple iPhone OLAMIDE O. BELLO 11/20/2012 STRATEGIC MARKETING MANAGEMENT (BUSINESS 520) PROFESSOR: DR. ANDREW HONEYCUTT Smart Phone Market Samsung, the Korean tech giant, is the leader in the Smartphone following the third quarter, extending its lead over Apple (Gartner’s report released on Wednesday this week). The Android-based Galaxy smart phones have a very strong sales compare to Apple which makes android the lead in the global Smartphone market accounting for 32. percent of the worldwide market share (UCStrategies Staff). Google acquired Android Inc. in 2005, after 2years, Google declare android distribution public in late 2007. Today Android is leading the smart phone market(UCStrategies Staff). The strengths: Decentralized Distribution: Android found strength in mass distribution, pleased companies such as HTC, Samsung and Motorola by offering them competitive platform for free, this help reduce the production cost and pass the savings to the consumer.

With such competitive platform at a reduced price, consumer can easily change to android phone cheaply with no contract and android works on any mobile operator(The Next Web). The weaknesses: Mixed Results: Since different carrier and manufacturers do have freedom to used android, this brings no standard and control to android usage. Crappy hardware can depreciate the value of the android and lead to terrible experience. With different manufacturer customize android with no universal standard create consumer confusion.

So decentralized distribution is also the android weakness(The Next Web). Product Branding Branding as been defined as “a name, term, sign, symbol, or design, or a combination of them, intended to identify the goods or services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those competitors”(Kotler). Apply is great at branding compare to other competitor, it takes less than a second to identify apple iPhone just by the look and the logo unlike other competitors. Apple OS only runs on apple phone and there is not third manufacturer involved.

Also Case Study will describe why Apple Inc. is a very successful company.

Apple brands brings intense, active loyalty, positive, accessible reaction, point-of-parity ; difference, deep and broad brand awareness to iPhones (Kotler p. 249). With Apple branding, iphone design and functionality become difficult to compromise. References The Next Web Retrieved from http://thenextweb. com/mobile/2011/11/14/androids-strength-is-also-its-weakness-decentralization/ Unified Communication Strategies: Samsung Leads Global Smartphone Market Retrive from http://www. ucstrategies. com/unified-communications-newsroom/samsung-leads-global-smartphone-market. aspx Marketing Management by Kotler Keller

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Boucheron Luxury Brand’s Market Research

HISTORY The House of Boucheron is French family dynasty founded by Frederic Boucheron in 1858. Four generations of the Boucheron family helped the brand to become a worldwide leader in Haute-Couture Jewelry market, expanding the brand to the four corners of the globe. Frederic Boucheron was the first jeweler to move to Place Vendome which he did in 1983. Legend has it that he chose 26 Place Vendome, where Boucheron remains to our days, because it was sunniest corner of this square. He believed that the diamonds in the windows will sparkle all brilliantly. Czar Alexander III was a client, as was his son, the doomed Nicholas II.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother was especially fond of Boucheron tiara which she inherited from Lady Greville, who originally purchased it from the House. Her grand son Prince Charles passed the tiara onto his wife Camille, Duchess of Cornwall as a wedding gift. Queen Elizabeth of England also has a collection of Boucheron jewels as did Wallis Simpson the Duchess of Windsor. American royalty are also collectors of Boucheron creations. Household names like Astors, Vanderbilts and Rockefellers have returned again and again to this jeweler for exceptional pieces of High Jewelry.

Actors and artisits have also been fans of Boucheron since it opened its doors 150 years ago. Caroline otero, the temptress known as La Belle Otero, when she was a cabaret dancer at the return of the 19th century was a Boucheron enthusiast as was the famed theater actress Sarah Bernhardt and the writers Oscar Wilde and Marcel Proust. Why film stars including Greta Garbo, Rita Hayworth, Penelope Cruz, Cameron Diaz, Kristin Scott Thomas, Rachel Weisz and Diane Kruger have all come under the Boucheron spell of spectacular creations. TIMELINE: 858- Frederic Boucheron opens his first store in the Galerie de Valois at Palais Royal, during the heyday of the Second Empire. 1866- Boucheron creates its atelier. 1867- Paris Universal Exhibition: Frederic Boucheron wins his first Gold Medal only 9 years after opening his firs boutique. 1878 – Paris Universal Exhibition: The Foliage necklace, a sapphire and diamond set with a central sapphire of 159 carats, created for Mrs. H. Mackay, wins the Grand Prize. 1883- The Russian Prince Felix Yousoupoff purchases a corsage decorated with 6 detachable diamond bows during one of his visits to Paris. 893- Frederic Boucheron moves to 26 Place Vendome in the residence of the Countess of Castiglione. He opens the largest boutique on the square. 1898- Boucheron opens a store in Moscow, later transferred to St. Petersburg in 1911. 1902- Frederic Boucheron dies, his son Louis cucceeds him. 1921- Boucheron is commissioned to make tiara for Lady Greville; it was later given to England`s Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. 1928- Louis Boucheron is asked by the Maharajah of Patiala to Set the stones of his treasure, which are brought to the Place Vendome boutique by the private guards of the Prince. 930- The Shah of Iran asks Louis Boucheron to assess the Imperial Treasure of Persia and issues a decree naming him Official Curator and Guardian of the Treasure. 1959- Louis Boucheron dies, leaving his sons Fred and Gerard in charge of the business. Edith Piaf, the most popular French Singer of her time, purchases a Boucheron watch for the love of her life, Marcel Cerdan. 1962- Fred Boucheron retires, leaving his brother Gerard as head of the establishment. 1970- In the 1970s the best selling snake line was created. 1973- Boucheron`s first boutique opens in Japan. 980- Gerard Boucheron retires and Alain Boucheron becomes a president and General Director. 1988- Boucheron launches its first women`s fragrance in a ring shaped bottle. 1994- Boucheron takes of a new development in the sector of fashion accessories: The Boucheron Eyewear Collection. Boucheron sells to Schweizerhall. 2000- Gucci Group acquires the House of Boucheron. 2002- Boucheron launches the “Beaute geois” collection. 2003- Boucheron launches the “Not Bourgeois” collection 2004- Gucci Group is fully acquired by PPR. Jean-Christophe Bedois is appointed CEO.

The “Jaipur” High Jewelry line and the “Dechainee” collections are launched. 2005- Launch of four new jewelry lines: Trouble, Quatre, Diablotine, Vingt-Six. Boucheron opens its firs boutique in Shanghai and its first flagship in Dubai. The start of the “Trouble Desir” High Jewelry Collection. 2006- Boucheron and Alexander McQueen collaborates together to create a limited edition Novak bag that incorporates the snake motif of Boucheron`s Trouble line. Boucheron opens its first boutique in Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur. Launch of the “ Exquises Confinces” line. 008- Boucheron marks its 150th anniversary with a yearlong celebration. CONCEPT AND UNIQUENESS The concept of Boucheron is to appeal to high-end customers who look for something unique in their jewelry. Through meeting target customers standards about design, materials, price and brand Boucheron has created a market for luxury haute couture jewelry. Customers also appreciate the fact that all collections are manufactured in small quantities and that stones of the highest quality are used; in addition to diamonds, also sapphires, amethysts, emeralds, coral, onyx, and jade. We wanted to develop innovative and creative way to introduce our rich heritage and approach to fine jewelry in way that enchants, amazes and amuses. We have a rich history that is beautifully brought alive. ” Jean Christophe-Bedos, President, Boucheron The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) has announced in 2011 that Boucheron has achieved certification by meeting the ethical, human rights, social and environmental standards as established by the RJC’s Member Certification System. “RJC warmly congratulates Boucheron on its certification.

The successful verification assessment of Boucheron was conducted by Philippe Arnaud from KPMG France, one of the independent third-party auditing firms accredited to the RJC’s Member Certification System” Michael Rae, RJC’s Chief Executive Officer. “Since 1858, Boucheron has adhered to the highest standards not only in the spectacular designs of its creations but also in upholding its strong ethical code. The RJC certification corresponds to the House’s continued endeavor to embody excellence and responsible business practices both internally and externally; a commitment we share across the PPR Group” Pierre Bouissou, Boucheron’s CEO

BUSINESS STRATEGY With the understanding that the conservative way was not an option, Boucheron plays on its long history of rousing the passions of sensual desire. This attitude has driven Boucheron’s design and delicate craftsmanship and resulted in a heritage of enthusiastic stories and myths. Today it could motivate an entirely new approach to the market. The House’s individual legacy sharped a way to connect the new luxury consumer on a essentially more personal, more passionate and less superficial level.

Boucheron has formed a marketplace approach that brings many industry innovations – a new service that redefines how the HNWI can experience and enjoy luxury jewelry; an exclusive retail concept that can voyage to the client rather than sit and wait for them; and product idea that raises the craft of the brand to the peak levels of art and business When Boucheron has entered the US market the first element of the strategy was a “Desir”, a collaboration with the creators of Spiegelworld, that brings alive the rich history of Boucheron in an personal and inspirational 100 year old hall of mirrors.

It was launched in New York in August 2008 and was set to benefit from a sellout three-month run at the South Seaport before opening two-year tour of US’s most significant Luxury markets. “Set in a turn of the fin-de-siecle nightclub, Desir is meeting place for showgirls and soldiers, bejeweled courtesans and maharajahs, a carnival world devoted to the pursuit of beauty, clever seductions and breathtaking displays of acrobatic wonder. It is a sparkling merry-go-round where the last love affair is merely an entree to the next encounter.

More than any show in New York I can think of, Desir, with its cavalcade of professional beauties, does inspire thoughts of a time when well-dressed admirers queued up at dressing-room doors bearing gifts of flowers and jewelry. As for me, I’m thinking of coming back with a bouquet of catnip for that charming, fluffy-haired Persian who stopped the show when it walked a tightrope. ” Ben Brantley, New York Times. Additionally to the show there was the Boutique Desir, a traveling boutique where, guests can find out Boucheron’s universe and its creations; can touch, try and familiarize themselves with the pieces in a private ambiance.

Clients were then invited to the exclusive Bar Vendome, a VIP lounge where they could get pleasure from an memorable evening under the stars. Boucheron chose to launch their products in the BRIC countries as well, which consists of some of the most emerging markets in the world today. Additionally, the Middle East and India are also two extremely important markets for Boucheron, partly due to the strong responsiveness for jewelry. The sales in these countries are larger than in the western countries and the luxury company is exploiting the new wealth of the generations with high luxury awareness and taste.

MARKETING MIX Product: Boucheron sells hand-made haute-couture luxury jewelry made from fine materials like gold, platinum, diamonds, emeralds and sapphires. Along with every purchase the buyer receives superior service and is entitled to service which assists users with exclusive services like delivery and customization. One of the Boucheron`s specialties is color. Clients easily can distinguish Boucheron’s line of jewelry by its designs. Its signature is visible in the form of motifs like floral, peacock feathers and snakes. Boucheron produces: * Necklaces * Pendants Bracelets * Brooches * Cufflinks * Earrings * Rings * Wedding Jewelry * Watches * Perfumes (18 editions) * Sunglasses Price: Boucheron prices range: Rings from 2. 000 eur up to 30. 000 eur Earrings from 4. 000 eur to 41. 800 eur Necklaces from 12. 000 eur to 1. 000. 000 eur Brooches from 5. 000eur to 10. 400 eur The prices vary with the different collections and the materials that are used in them. Place: Boucheron jewelry is very selectively distributed. It is available at company-owned boutiques and flagship stores like London Jewelers, Goldsmiths, and Colette.

They recent store was opened in Doha`s West Bay community in Middle East. In keeping with its global design concept, the space is decorated using its signature aubergine and gold colour palette and affluent wooden decor. The Doha boutique domiciled Boucheron’s iconic most collections, along with a range of exquisite high jeweler’s creations. Boucheron locates its stores in luxury shopping districts, famous “Golden Triangles” of large metropolitan areas and opens relatively few stores.

Today, Boucheron operates more than 50 boutiques and over 100 certified retailers worldwide in addition to an online sales website. The boutiques are, intimate and have a luxury feeling. All sale locations can be found on www. boucheron. fr . Promotion: Boucheron acquires much publicity from sales to celebrities like: * Chanel Iman * Diane Kruger * Natalia Vodianova * Kira Knightley * Julianne Moore * Raquel Zimmermann * Anne Hathaway * Mary-Kate Olsen * Natsha Poly * Lily Donaldson * Salma Hayek * And many others As well Boucheron has collaborated with Vertu.

Boucheron launches diverse collections at different times and only makes a certain number of some jewels in order to keep a prestigious image and be a focus for HNWI. Boucheron has an own website for publicity which features product descriptions and prices. Mostly promotion is running in Fashion Magazines like Vogue. POSITIONING Seeking to embody the opulence and grandeur of Parisienne life, Boucheron draws often upon iconic French women, each epitomizing a facet of the golden age, to act as muses in the creation of distinct sets of jewelry.

Each woman has its own distinctive way of wearing jewelry, which is the privilege of a woman, but she can vary own excitement strategy. Blink of an eye, the center will become a decorative pattern of brooches, pendants into earrings, necklace, or a deduction into a multifaceted hairpin. Boucheron blends the art of seduction and a charm with a woman`s desire to wear jewelry. Boucheron has positioned itself as the top-of-the-line targeting HNWI. Boucheron achieving this by using only the finest materials to create their products which are all handcrafted ensuring that every product is of perfect quality.

Boucheron will launch different collections each featuring different materials and designs which make the collections unique and prestigious; their most expensive line ever was a necklace Julia which cost 800,000eur and Boucheron snake necklace for Maison du Chocolat which costs 900. 000 eur. Boucheron collaborated with VERU luxury mobile phone maker, to extend their success and increase awareness in the luxury product world. Boucheron offers superior and personalized service to its clients, guaranteeing customer satisfaction and loyalty. They also position hemselves by showcasing the celebrities who own their products as an indication that their products are for the rich and famous. Boucheron has flagship stores all over the world in 50 countries however they open relatively few boutiques solely in luxury shopping districts of large cities and thus are considered selectively distributed. Boucheron boutiques are decadent, small, intimate venues which offer personalized service to clients wishing to make a purchase. Boucheron house very successfully preserves a prominent image with its ultra-luxurious products and superior service through its positioning.

TARGET CONSUMER The Boucheron jewelry is a highly luxurious product, which doubtlessly is made to fit the extremely wealthy population of this world. The main customers are rich and found in the urban areas, who are constantly searching for the extraordinary products. Furthermore, their flagship stores are situated in the finest areas, in order to attract the highly rich international shoppers. CONSUMER-BASED BRAND EQUITY PYRAMID Brand Salience For Boucheron achieving right brand identity involves brand salience. Only richest people are aware of Boucheron because promotion is quite narrow.

However their target consumer for sure can recall and recognize this brand. So conclusion here is that Brand salience is more depth than breadth. This basically means that even thou there are not yet many people knowing Boucheron, but those who do, they know all insights of it, can easily remember it and realize what this brand is about. Brand Performance The product itself is at the heart of brand equity, as it is the primary influence of what consumers experience with a brand, what they hear about the brand from others, and what the brand can tell customers about the brand in their communication.

Brand Performance relates to the ways in which the product or service attempts to meet customers` functional needs. This is on top level for Boucheron brand. It is crucial to contribute to customers` desires, wants and needs. Boucheron brand highly represents all what their HNWI customers want to have for paying a high price. The product is highly durable; it has distinctive logo, premium pricing and quality handcraft. All customer services provided for clients by Boucheron also attributes to brand`s performance. Brand Imagery

Another variable CBBE Pyramid is second type of brand meaning which involves brand imagery. Imagery deals with such a properties of a product, which meets customers` psychological needs. It is more about what people think of it, how they see it. Boucheron imagery is extremely individualistic and stylish. When customer is buying Boucheron cell he/she buys a beauty of it. As of Boucheron customer has a strong judgment of a brand as high quality luxury product. Credibility is high and customer see Boucheron as superior, advantageous brand. Brand Judgments

Brand judgments focus upon customers` personal opinions and evaluation with regard to brand. This involves how consumer put together all from performance and imagery association to make kind of an evaluation. Boucheron clients evaluate this brand as a high quality luxury brand. Brand Feelings This variable shows emotional response with respect to Boucheron brand. It shows what feelings are evoked by the marketing strategy for the Boucheron and how does it affect feelings about themselves and relationships with others. Customer of Boucheron is for sure status-conscious person.

Customers of Boucheron have a unique and warmth feeling about the brand. It can be exciting due to special relationship of beauty and handcraft in brand`s products. Customer feels it is trendy and relates to special status and therefore social approval. Customer feels high security within this brand due to all advantages provided. As Boucheron makes consumer feel better self-respect, pride, fulfillment and accomplishment also occurs. Brand Resonance Final variable of pyramid shows brand relationships with a customer based on Salience, Performance, Imagery, Judgments and Feelings.

As for Boucheron even if general awareness is low the behavioral loyalty is very high, customer want to get back to this brand, consequently repeat purchase is possible. Brand loyalty is necessary but not sufficient for resonance to occur. Within Boucheron brand customer is not returning to this brand again due to, for example, scarce of substitutes. Boucheron attained their main goal- strong personal attachment to brand. SWOT ANALISYS FOR BOUCHERON STRENGTH * Masterpiece of design and craftsmanship * Innovative brand Strong reputation (Products have established strong reputation in their field) * Global expansion (Includes significant growth over last 10 years) * Customer service * Control of Quality WEAKNESSES * Extremely high production price (which leads to high product price) * Limited access as distribution is exclusive and limited * Not enough practical promotion and advertising OPPORTUNITIES * Emerging markets * Mix Boucheron styling with some big Fashion Brand like Gucci * Change of consumer lifestyle (growing demand from young and senior people) THREATS Increasing Quality of Competing Products and Number of those * Importance of counterfeiting COMPETITORS * GRAFF * VAN CLEEF ; ARPELS * PIAGET REFERENCES http://luxurysociety. com/articles/2012/01/the-latest-boutiques-burberry-bally-boucheron http://www. luxury-insider. com/luxury-news/2010/03/boucheron-jewellery-show-at-mandarin-oriental-hk http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Boucheron http://www. verybest. com/cat/49/jewelry/235/2/ http://jewelhistory. com/2010/10/27/in-and-around-town/ http://www. mycompanion. cz/en/list/boucheron-paris-boutique

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Brand Recognition and Brand Loyalty

Brand Recognition in relation to Brand Loyalty Introduction “Brands are the most valuable intangible asset for companies” claims Bayu Sutikno of the University of Gadjah Mada in Indonesia (2011, p. 319). The world is filled with brands and everyone is trying to portray a message. It is the job of the consumer to decide what brand they prefer and what brand they do not care for. Likewise it is the job of the marketer to persuade the behavior of the 7 billion consumers in the world everyday.

Out of that persuasion, marketers create a following of such brands, which results in brand loyalty in the end resulting in profitability for the producers and satisfaction for the consumer. The Design The design of the brand is the first aspect a consumer will recognize. Consumers are trained to look for details in brands and the products produced and consciously, and more often unconsciously, make inferences about a brand and/or product presented (Karjalainen and Snelders, 2010, p. 7). There are two main ideas behind the design of a brand, the values it portrays and the physical layout that is presented.

The values portion is most important because it creates connection with the consumer but physical looks can attract new consumers before they can infer said values of a brand. Values can be noticeable as simply as in the brand logo or more difficult what a brand stands for on an emotional level. One example of values represented in the brand slogan is that of Caterpillar, the heavy equipment manufacturer and their newly developed clothing and apparel line. Karjalainen and Snelders, authors of “Designing Visual Recognition for the Brand,” explain Caterpillar’s slogan, “Industry leading comfort and performance” (2010, p. ). From their boots to t-shirts to trucks and loaders, they focus on creating comfort for the consumer. For example, in the boots, they add soft insoles and added insulation and then to the equipment, they created soft interiors with noise and dust preventative measures (2010, p. 6). Just through their slogan, they communicate with people that their brand is going to be the most comfortable and then they back it up by taking measures to incorporate those values into their products. Communication of such values is best done the physical layout and representation of the brand.

The Volvo and Nokia case, described by Karjalainen and Snelders, highlights the importance of implicit and explicit features of brands and products. Implicit features are the features that are subtle and not always stand out to the consumer but can have an unconscious effect of delight or disgust. While on the other hand, explicit features are the major features that are visually appealing or unappealing to the consumer. They emphasize the importance that lead products that are going to be the representation of your brand must focus on the features and the features must to tied to the values you aim to achieve (2010, p. ). Tina Lowrey’s article, “The Relationship between Script Complexity and Commercial Memorability,” concurs and differs with the same ideas as Karjalainen and Snelders. Lowrey states that if a message is too complex the consumer will not be able to recall all the features and thus most likely forget the product. But if the message is simple then consumers can recall products easier (Lowrey 2006, p. 8). . Also she states that the use of single/limited words then consumer can better associate brands and images (Lowrey 2006, p. 8).

The Self Cornwall’s, et al. , article, “Sponsorship-Linked Marketing: The Role of Articulation in Memory” mentions the role of sponsorship in NASCAR and how they use brands such as “Texaco” who would be closely associated with racing, but they also use brands such as “Cheerios,” who has nothing to do with racing cars (2006, p. 312). But through sponsoship, many people see these brands and the imagery creates links in the consumers mind. As Corwall, et al. , goes on to explains that it is the role of the marketer to create connections

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Case Questions for Product and Brand Management

American Express 1. What explains the American Express card’s success over the past fifty years? 2. What challenges face the American Express card in 2008? 3. Delineate and rank in order the various growth options open to the American Express card. 4. How is an imminent economic recession likely to affect the revenues and profits of the American Express card? Red Bull 1. What created Red Bull’s success? What is the core franchise and benefit? Has the product’s positioning changed over time?

What is the role of alcohol mixing in Red Bull’s success? 2. What is Red Bull’s success formula? For which kind of product/beverage categories will this formula work? How does Red Bull know when to turn on the advertising? What metrics would you use to make this judgment? 3. Why did the first UK launch go awry? 4. What changes were made for the US market? Should other changes be considered? 5. Assume tough competition is coming. How can Red Bull affect its franchise? What actions would you recommend? 6. What should Coke’s competitors do?

Coke? Pepsi? Anheuser-Busch? 7. If you were an investor in Red Bull, would you take your money and run or wait for the long haul? Starbucks 1. What is Starbucks’ strategy? 2. Given your assessment of its competitive premise, how should it leverage its resources and capabilities to achieve its growth objective? 3. How will you respond to McDonald’s offer? 4. Now that Starbucks is entering India, what branding strategy would you recommend to the Starbucks management to establish the Starbucks brand in the Indian market?

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Related Literature of Brand Preferences on Mobile Phones

How to resolve Conflict Conflicts may be solved using three simplified ways: 1. The win-lose method – The protagonist assumes an ether I lose or I win attitude. Explanation: the win-lose method is a kind of method in resolving a problem or case wherein, one party will have the possibility of winning the case or they will lose on the case. 2. The win some–lose some method – One party attempts to get the most of the other using the primary tactical work of bargaining. It is also called as “compromising stance”. Explanation: the win some-lose some method is a kind of method wherein one party is aggravate because he/she is compromise in a certain problem or case. For example I am a driver. And accidentally my car was bumped in a sari-sari store. The store-owner suggested that I will only pay the damages so that I will not be on jail. Because I am in a compromised position, I should pay the damages so that I will not be jailed.

In my part I “win some” because I will be not jailed anymore but “lose some” because, I’ve lose some money in paying the damages. 3. The win-win method – A process where both parties attempt to get the sources/causes of disagreement together in the hope of getting a solution that would together benefit them not only as individuals but also as organization. Explanation: the win-win method is to find a solution that is acceptable to both parties, and leaves both parties feeling that they’ve won, in some way, after the event.

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The Brand Before Revitalization

The brand before revitalization (Part A) Brand: Hui Lau Shan (Local Dessert Chain) History of Hui Lau Shan Hui Lau Shan (??? ) is a famous chain of dessert shops based in Hong Kong. It specializes in dessert soups, snacks and desserts. Hui Lau Shan is well known for its use of mango in its products. The first shop opened in Yuen Long, New Territories in the 1960s. It was known for its turtle jelly and herbal teas. However, Hui Lau Shan emphasizes its fruit desserts and snacks. Since the 1990s, the chain has expanded. Moreover, it has focused on the mainland market. Logo

Hui Lau Shan’s logo is a letterform that is readable. The logo just is the brand`s name, Hui Lau Shan (??? ). It is use of Chinese Calligraphy that can show its long history. A majority of herbal tea shops are used to use the same form to design their logo. It is costly to promote its brand because there is a heavy visual competition. On the other, the use of Chinese calligraphy may be too old fashioned for young customers. It cannot attract young guy`s attention. However, other desserts shops have realized this truth, such as Honeymoon Dessert (???? ). Its logo is more fashionable and seems to be smart.

Problems: 1. Use of Chinese calligraphy is old-fashioned design. 2. The logo has never had representative characteristics. Solution: 1. Using a new font style, such as Cooper Black. Cooper Black is commonplace in the food packaging and logo of some food products. It can get up customer`s appetite. 2. Designing a special symbol that is a shape of mango. It is a representation of its mango desserts. Target customers Its target customers are kids and young people who like to eat desserts. When they feel thirsty, they prefer to buy a drink, likes cool mango dessert soup.

In the same case, the middle-age people and the elderly will prefer to buy a bottle of water. They don`t like the sweet taste and pay more attention to their health. The brand after revitalization (Part B) Brand: Hui Lau Shan (Local Dessert Chain) Logo and logotype: First of all, I select the use of combination mark that includes symbol and logo. The left logo (Chinese version) has a shape of mango that can gain the label effect. Everyone would realize that its mango desserts are well-known and delicious. Then, I use the font style likes Cooper Black as it is commonplace in package of food products. Since 1960” shows customers that it was a long history firm. Secondly, the right that is logotype (English version) also is two shapes of mango. It gets the label effect too. The special font style can catch young customer’s attention since it is new and unique. Taglines: The first tagline is “best mango in town” that claims that the best mango desserts are totally in Hui Lau Shan. If you want to taste the best, you have to come to Hui Lau Shan. The second is “sweet is life” that wants to promote the dessert culture. It says that eating desserts become your custom. It may like coffee culture and become a trend. Re-positioning:

In order to attract more young guys, I decided to change the old-fashioned style. I prefer to use cartoon characters in some applications, such as business card, cup, paper napkin, etc. It also determined to focus on its mango desserts (main product). The signature color is yellow that is the color of mangos. The typeface is Cooper Black. Application strategy: I am going to use the new logo and logotype in business card, cup, paper napkin and making up the stores. I also designed several mango cartoon characters. They are pretty cute and active. They contribute to a fresh and younger image, and they can attract the attention of kids.

Moreover, I would promote the revitalized brand through TV advertisements, promotions. At the first day, I would put a full page advertisement in the newspapers in Hong Kong. After, we will give customers some coupons and “buy 1 get 1” promotion. Conclusion: Hui Lau Shan will become a new dessert chain and be more famous in Hong Kong. In the visible future, I can see it will be the best mango desserts store in Hong Kong. It is because it more focuses on its mango and invents many new mango desserts. It has a fresh image and become more pleasing to the eyes. It help young people to accept an old shop in Hong Kong.

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Jesters Pies

The report examines an in depth analysis of the Jesters Pies and its brand equity in the market. The report also looks at the brand associations of the product through which it is being recalled by the consumer.

Interviews will be taken by consumers of Jesters Pies in order to get an understanding of the brand association. This will show what consumers feel, think and do with the brand. The report will also look at the elements that make the brand up and make it was it is which includes the logo, URL , name and slogan. This is an important part of a company because if these elements aren’t used in a correct way then there is a higher chance the brand won’t be as successful. Having an effective name, logo and slogan can have a huge effect, just look at Nike and their ‘tick’ symbol.

The third part of the report will focus on the Jesters marketing programme. This includes an analysis on the product, pricing, communication and distribution of the brand. This is more about how the company operates in actual business rather than what the consumers think about the brand of the company.

Finally to wrap the Jesters report up recommendations will be made to the CEO of the company. These will be based on the consumer knowledge and marketing evaluation. These recommendations will be made so the company can use them in the future to help improve their business and overall brand.

Company Profile

Jesters are a franchising company in New Zealand who are specialist in making and selling pies. Their menu ranges from the traditional Beef Pie to the not so traditional Spud Delux. Their company motto sums them up pretty well; “serious about pies”. Jesters are New Zealand wholly owned and managed Pie Company. However the first original concept of it was started in Perth in 1997 when the idea of making the finest, healthiest pies in the market, was first created. Jesters pride their Jaffle Pie range to be of good quality, fresh, taste and health.

Jesters are located in four cities nation wide which includes Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and Dunedin. With the first being opened in 2002 at Lynn Mall shopping centre. The business is spreading fast with 34 stores being opened in Western Australia and many more planned.

The reason for success Jesters feel is because of the niche $1 billion fast food industry, which they feel, is growing fast. Also because of the uniqueness of the brand and products for sale are new and interesting for the consumer.

With over 15 varieties of pies Jesters feels there is something for everyone. The company also caters for your family or a party along with the sit in restaurant layout. The company promises to the customer…”you’ll never stop at one!” (Jesters, about Jesters, 2007)

Analysis of Marketing Mix

Product

Jesters Pies is a unique company in the New Zealand market. Even though the product they are selling is just a pie, which can be brought from any bakery, it is the first to sell them in a fast food style restaurant. Jesters Pies offers 15 varieties of pies which appeal to a wide variety of customers. This is important because you want to cater to as many people as possible so you get more customers. Jesters also diverse their product from other pies by confidently saying that theirs are the healthiest and finest in the market. Another attribute of the pies is that the filling is low fat, lean meats and fresh vegetables, which you probably couldn’t say about your local bakery pie. The final attribute of the product is no artificial colourings, preservatives and MSG are used. This is a good look for the product as it has become so important for consumers in recent times to eat healthy, fresh food (Jesters Pies, 2007).

Price

Pricing is very important for a brand as it can create associations in the mind of the consumer. It can also be used to build brand equity. So a company needs to price its products correctly in order to get the most out of the consumer. Jesters’ pies are ranged from $3.50 to $4.10. With the $3.50 pies being the classic beef, mince and bacon and egg and the more expensive pies are the fancier ones with more ingredients such as the Popeye which contains spinach mushroom and feta. The pricing strategy they have I feel is good as the consumer gets what they are paying for. The pies are more expensive than the bakery, but are of much better quality and better ingredients are used.

Distribution Channel Distribution can have a huge effect on the equity and success of a brand. Distribution is so important because it is the process of getting the product to the consumer. Jesters use a direct channel method to distribution where they sell their product straight to the consumer through their stores. This is probably the most effective way for a brand like Jesters .Jesters Pies stores can be found around New Zealand and in some parts of Australia. They are located in four cities in New Zealand. However all the stores in the Auckland area are found a long way out from central Auckland, with only one store being located in the CBD. However they do have stores located throughout the country so their distribution is pretty good.

Promotion/Marketing Communication Promotion and marketing is very important for almost every brand in any industry. Without it you would not be able to get your product into the market and gain awareness from your potential consumers. Jesters have not done a huge amount of advertising that we could recall or find. From what we did find was mostly advertising for magazine and billboards. This could be one reason for the fact that their brand awareness amongst consumers is not very strong. Television is the strongest form of media and is the best for developing a brand image and creating awareness. However even without this the brand seems to be getting more popular which could be put down to things such as word of mouth. With a bit more promotion and marketing the brand could become very popular as it is a unique fast food outlet.

Brand equity for Jester Pies Brand equity is an intangible asset that depends on associations made by the consumer. There are various perspectives from which to view brand equity.

Brand equity just does not include the value of the brand, but it also includes the value of proprietary technologies, patents, trademarks and other intangibles like manufacturing know how (article 1). So in case of jesters pies, jesters jaffle pies are not oven baked like traditional pie, but they are cooked in a unique jaffle pie makers using ultra-thin light puff pastry and finest quality natural ingredients. Therefore the the difference in technical know how adds to the brand equity of the product. (article2.)

Another way to measure the brand equity is the financial aspect of the brand. In this case one way to measure brand equity is to determine the price premium that the brand commands over a generic product. In case of jester’s pies, the pies are priced at $ 3.40 which is normally higher than most of the pies in the market place. As jesters pies have positioned itself as a quality product and people are also willing to pay more for a quality product, it commands high brand equity.

Brand equity also represents the added value endowed to a particular product or a service as result of past investments in the marketing of the brand. (Article 1). In case of jesters pies it commands very good brand equity due to its advertising and promotion. Jesters pies has used three mediums of advertising that is print radio and TV.

Brand equity also helps the brand to grow globally.( article 1) As jesters pies is a successful brand in Australia, it can use its good brand equity to expand further in new Zealand and other countries as well.

Brand Associations These are the things that consumer relates or associate when they think about the brand. It can be how the brand makes them feel, what they think of the brand, what comes to their mind when they think of the brand or even what they do with the brand.

The interviews were limited as we only interviewed four people, however the information we got back was good as all consumers had pretty similar answers. This shows that the consumers are all getting similar associations with the Jesters Pies brand. From the answers to the interviews we came up with the following brand associations.

• People are aware of the jesters pies because of its logo and the colours used in it. • Most of the people when asked about jesters pies, they have a positive response like, ‘good quality for the price’. So they provide incredible value for money by giving fresh, quality natural ingredients. They also provide fresh vegetables, lean meats and guarantee every pie meets health standards. • People are also attracted towards jesters pies are because of the variety of the pies and value meals the company provides. • People associate jester’s pie as specialised pie outlet. • Most people think jesters as a healthy meal which is free of artificial flavourings, colourings and MSG. • People don’t associate jester’s pie with its other products like sausage rolls, wedges, or coffee. But they feel that some changes can be made by introducing chips to the menu.

Recommendations This report has analysed the Jesters Company. It has looked not only the marketing programme side but also the side of the consumer. From what we have found from looking at these components the following recommendations can be made-

• Firstly from what was gathered in the interviews not a lot of the consumers had seen much Jesters advertising and if they had it wasn’t very effective. Jesters should start advertising through the most effective medium, TV, this will increase brand awareness. • Another recommendation follows on from the previous one. Jesters need to develop more awareness amongst its target customers. From people we have spoken to a lot of them were unaware of Jesters pies and the brand itself. In order to be successful brand awareness needs to be built up amongst the potential customers. • Another issue gathered from the interviews was that the people who consumed Jesters said they were limited because of the lack of restaurants in handy locations. Perhaps to get more out there in the market they could locate some stores in key areas like around universities and more locations in the CBD

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BMW

In the BMW’s future strategy, it strongly focus on expand of the potential market. For example, China and Russia. In terms of brand promotion, BMW Group, will seize the opportunity, and vigorously advise and expand public awareness network. At the same time, BMW also advertise their ambitions and sense of responsibility to society. In the automotive manufacturing area, BMW Group proposed to advertise new product concepts and environmental protection.

BMW believes that with further development of the industrial era, the traditional energy sources will become a bottleneck restricting the development of society, as with the development of traditional energy sources will gradually disappear. All of these above are only general publicity, from the details; BMW also has many methods of influence to advertise the brand promotion. In the past, BMW through the sponsorship of 007 series of films to lead more people know about BMW. Nowadays, Now, BMW further into the ranks of social charity and welfare to go.

I believe that in the future, more new ways to promote the brand BMW will also be generated in the process. From BMW’s advertising trends, while BMW focus on its own personality and the brand image. BMW also changed their advertising strategies, slowly trying to go into the market culture. For example, in China, BMW will be promoting the brand through the action to protect the local cultural heritage. In short, any successful brand or product can not be divorced from the success of advertising and publicity. BMW case, other brands also do so.

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Brand Communication

Journal of Consumer Marketing Emerald Article: Brand communities for mainstream brands: the example of the Yamaha R1 brand community Reto Felix Article information: To cite this document: Reto Felix, (2012),”Brand communities for mainstream brands: the example of the Yamaha R1 brand community”, Journal of Consumer Marketing, Vol. 29 Iss: 3 pp. 225 – 232 Permanent link to this document: http://dx. doi. org/10. 1108/07363761211221756 Downloaded on: 08-10-2012 References: This document contains references to 47 other documents To copy this document: [email protected] com

Access to this document was granted through an Emerald subscription provided by Dublin City University For Authors: If you would like to write for this, or any other Emerald publication, then please use our Emerald for Authors service. Information about how to choose which publication to write for and submission guidelines are available for all. Please visit www. emeraldinsight. com/authors for more information. About Emerald www. emeraldinsight. com With over forty years’ experience, Emerald Group Publishing is a leading independent publisher of global research with impact in business, society, public policy and education.

In total, Emerald publishes over 275 journals and more than 130 book series, as well as an extensive range of online products and services. Emerald is both COUNTER 3 and TRANSFER compliant. The organization is a partner of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) and also works with Portico and the LOCKSS initiative for digital archive preservation. *Related content and download information correct at time of download. Brand communities for mainstream brands: the example of the Yamaha R1 brand community Reto Felix ? Department of Business Administration, University of Monterrey, San Pedro Garza Garc? , Mexico Abstract Purpose – The purpose of this study is to understand consumers’ product use, practices, identity, and brand meanings in the context of a brand community dedicated to a mainstream Japanese motorcycle brand. Design/methodology/approach – A qualitative research approach was used in the form of netnography (i. e. ethnography adapted to the study of online communities). Findings – On the product level, consumers experience multiple con? icts and negotiations of meaning related to the use of the product. These ? dings are reproduced on the brand level, where members of the brand community present a more differentiated look on the brand, accompanied by lower levels of admiration and identi? cation with the brand, as in previous reports of brand communities for brands such as Apple, Jeep, or Harley-Davidson. The results suggest that consumers for mainstream brands may be more prone to multi-brand loyalty instead of single-brand loyalty. Practical implications – Marketers should monitor motivations, attitudes, and decision-making processes on both the product and the brand level.

Further, non-company-run online communities such as the Yamaha R1 forum bear the risk of community members transmitting brand information in a way not desired by the company. Thus, marketers should consider sponsoring an entire discussion website, a forum, or part of a forum. Originality/value – Whereas previous studies on brand communities have concentrated predominantly on highly admired and differentiated brands, such as Apple or Harley-Davidson, this study investigates consumer practices, identities, and negotiations of meaning on both the product and brand level for a less differentiated mainstream brand.

Keywords Brand community, Brand loyalty, Netnography, Identity, Consumer behaviour, Brand management Paper type Research paper An executive summary for managers and executive readers can be found at the end of this article. Introduction to brand communities and literature review Community-based brand relationships in marketing literature have been discussed commonly with a focus on brand communities. A brand community is a “specialized, nongeographically bound community, based on a structured set ? f social relationships among admirers of a brand” (Muniz and O’Guinn, 2001, p. 412). Brand communities have been found to be crucial in order to understand brand loyalty (Fournier and Lee, 2009; McAlexander et al. , 2002, 2003). They are based on a shared interest in the brand (Algesheimer et al. , 2005) and, more speci? cally, on the three characteristics of consciousness of kind, shared rituals and traditions, and a ? sense or moral responsibility (Muniz and O’Guinn, 2001). As a positive outcome of brand communities, consumers may engage in cocreation (Schau et al. 2009), and religious-like relationships between consumers and brands may evolve, as documented in the case of the Apple Newton brand ? ? community (Muniz and Schau, 2005; Schau and Muniz, 2006). The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available at www. emeraldinsight. com/0736-3761. htm Journal of Consumer Marketing 29/3 (2012) 225– 232 q Emerald Group Publishing Limited [ISSN 0736-3761] [DOI 10. 1108/07363761211221756] Because of their geographical independence, brand communities can exist in the form of local clubs or interest groups (Algesheimer et al. 2005; Schouten and McAlexander, 1995), entirely on the Internet (Kozinets, ? 1997; Muniz and Schau, 2005), or in combined form (Kozinets, 2001). Further, brand communities have emerged for virtually any product, such as cars (Algesheimer et al. , 2005; Leigh et al. , 2006; Luedicke et al. , 2010; McAlexander ? et al. , 2002; Muniz and O’Guinn, 2001; Schouten et al. , 2007), motorbikes (Schouten and McAlexander, 1995), computers (Belk and Tumbat, 2005), groceries (Cova and Pace, 2006), or movies and television series (Brown et al. , 2003; Kozinets, 2001).

The common denominator of the brands patronized in brand communities is a clear and unique positioning in combination with consumers who strongly identify with the brand. Consumers de? ne themselves by the brands they consume as well as the brands they do not consume, and brands are clearly classi? ed into “our brands” ? and “other brands” by the community (Muniz and Hamer, 2001). In other words, members of a particular brand community are not only supposed to be more loyal to the own brand, but also substantially less loyal to competing brands.

This phenomenon has been described as oppositional brand ? loyalty by Muniz and O’Guinn (2001) and may lead to enhanced intergroup stereotyping, trash talk targeted at members outside the community, and emotional pleasures from news about a rival’s failure (Hickman and Ward, 2007). In extreme cases, oppositional brand loyalty can turn into active consumer resistance or anti-brand communities (Hollenbeck and Zinkhan, 2006; Luedicke et al. , 2010). However, brand communities are not free of oppositional forces and negotiations of meaning coming from inside.

Rather, brand communities may embrace consumers who are 225 Brand communities for mainstream brands Reto Felix Journal of Consumer Marketing Volume 29 · Number 3 · 2012 · 225 –232 critical with the brand or the product in general, and it would thus be overly optimistic to expect equally high levels of loyalty from all visitors of a brand community. For example, Kozinets (1999) classi? es members of virtual communities according to the identi? cation with the consumption activity (or brand) and the intensity of the social relationships with other members of the community.

Whereas insiders show both high levels of brand identi? cation and social orientation towards the community, other members may have lower levels of brand identi? cation (minglers), lower levels of social relationships with the community (devotees), or both (tourists). Especially consumers who are simultaneously members in competing brand communities in the same product category may have high levels of participation in the communities, but without showing high levels of brand loyalty or admiration for the brands (Thompson and Sinha, 2008).

In an application of these segmentation approaches to a sample of videogame players (Settlers of Catan) and a Swatch brand community, Ouwersloot and Odekerken-Schroder ? (2008) ? nd one segment of community members who are highly interested in the product, but not in the brand (36 and 7 percent, respectively) and a second segment including consumers who are neither interested in the product, the brand, or social relationships, yet still prefer to remain in the community (15 and 7 percent, respectively).

Thus, it can be argued that consumer responses, such as satisfaction or loyalty, operate not only on the brand, but also on the product level (Torres-Moraga et al. , 2008). In the following analysis of an online brand community for a Japanese mainstream motorcycle brand, it is shown how consumers negotiate product and brand meanings, and how identity construction and brand attitudes are affected. The analysis is divided into a ? rst part on issues related to the activity and practices of riding a sports bike and the identity of sports bike consumers in general, and a second part on brand attitudes and how brands mediate identity construction. as chosen as the primary data source. Yamaha is one of four mainstream Japanese motorcycle brands with worldwide sales of US$12. 5 billion in 2009 (Yamaha Motor Co. , 2009). As a comparison, Harley Davidson’s same year consolidated sales from motorcycles and related products were US$4. 3 billion (Harley-Davidson, 2009). The Yamaha R1 forum is primarily dedicated to Yamaha’s top-of-the-range sport bike, the Yamaha R1, but there are also members subscribed to the forum who either have motorbikes from different brands, such as Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, or Ducati, or who currently do not have a motorbike.

As of June 14, 2010, the R1 forum had 107,249 subscribed members and more than four million postings in approximately 265,000 threads. The threads in the forum are organized into ? ve different sections: 1 Community 2 R1-related discussion 3 Technique, racing, and stunt discussion 4 Marketplace/classi? ed. 5 Misc. section. After starting reading threads in the Community section, it was possible to identify preliminary themes and issues by further browsing through the postings. At a very early stage of the research, evidence was found for more complex and ambiguous brand relationships than in previous studies on brand communities.

Following a purposive sampling approach (Lincoln and Guba, 1985; Wallendorf and Belk, 1989), reading and downloading posts were continued as long as analysis of the postings generated new insights and did not lead to redundancy (Belk et al. , 1988). At a later stage of the study, the forum’s search engine was used to immerse more systematically into the data. Over the period between August 2006 and June 2010, around 10,000 postings were read, of which approximately 300 were downloaded. Organization, analysis, and ethical procedures In a ? st step, downloaded postings were pre-classi? ed into different categories and reoccurrences were coded by assigning one or several codes to the statements in the postings. Using an iterative approach, jumping back and forth between coded and uncoded statements facilitated the interpretation of the data. Codes were then condensed into more meaningful constructs and subsequently into interpretive themes in order to obtain relevant layers of meaning and richly textured interpretations (Arnould and Wallendorf, 1994).

This procedure allowed a grounded, hermeneutic interpretation to emerge from the data that did not strive for representativeness, but rather for analytic depth and relevance. In order to impede the tracking of forum members’ identities, user names were changed to generic member names, such as “forum member 1. ” Deviating from Kozinets’ (2002) recommendations, permissions from community members to use direct quotations were not requested. The reason for this decision was twofold: First, in an initial attempt to contact community members, only one response out of ten emails sent was obtained.

If only those postings had been used that responses had been received for, the pool of usable data had been reduced signi? cantly. And second, Langer and Beckman’s (2005) reasoning was considered in that postings in an internet community forum are intentionally public postings, comparable to readers’ letters in a newspaper, and that it would be highly unusual to seek 226 Method Netnography was used to explore brand relationships and identity construction for an online community of a mainstream Japanese motorcycle brand. Netnography has been de? ed as “ethnography adapted to the study of online communities” (Kozinets, 2002, p. 61) and has been used in consumption contexts such as the X-Files (Kozinets, 1997), Star Trek (Kozinets, 2001, 2006), wedding messages (Nelson and Otnes, 2005), cars (Brown et al. , 2003), and consumer gift systems (Giesler, 2006). Similar to traditional ethnography, netnography is open-ended, interpretative, ? exible, metaphorical, and grounded in the knowledge of the speci? c and particularistic (Kozinets, 2002). However, netnography is usually faster, simpler, and less expensive than traditional ethnography (Kozinets, 2002, 2006).

Further, it has been argued that new online communication technologies have “expanded the array of generalized others contributing to the construction of the self” (Cerulo, 1997, p. 386), and netnography as a tool of analyzing online communities is thus able to integrate the broadened spectrum of agents involved in the construction of individual and collective identity. Data collection Because of its size and relevance for the motorcycle community, the Yamaha R1 forum (www. r1-forum. com) Brand communities for mainstream brands Reto Felix Journal of Consumer Marketing Volume 29 · Number 3 · 2012 · 225 –232 ermission to use direct quotations in this context. However, Kozinet’s concerns about adequate ethical procedures in netnography research are certainly valid, and the pragmatic issue (non-responses for permission requests) ? nally was the one that complicated following his recommendations. The product level: practice and identity Although recreational motorcycling in general is considered a high-risk leisure time activity, there are different segments within the motorcycle community that distinguish themselves in attitudes and behaviors related to riding style and speed.

On one extreme of street bike riding are the easy-rider oriented owners of choppers or touring bikes who prefer to ride at moderate speeds and enjoy the immediate experience with the environment. On the other extreme are sports bike enthusiasts who prefer a fast, competitive riding style that is often accompanied by the exhibition of riding skills and risky stunting maneuvers such as performing wheelies (Haigh and Crowther, 2005).

Commercial sports bikes aim to be copies of racing bikes used by professional riders at the Moto GP or Superbike competitions, and a modern liter bike, available at dealerships for under US$15,000, accelerates from zero to 200 km/h (125 miles) in less than ten seconds and reaches speeds in excess of 290 km/h (180 miles). A complete safety gear, consisting of helmet, leather gear, gloves, and boots, is considered an obligation for any sports bike rider by some, but lead to mock comments by others, ridiculing the “power ranger” out? t of sports bike riders. An important number of psychological and social con? cts are derived from the inherent nature of sports bike riding. Physical, functional, ? nancial, psychological and social risks form a complex, multilayered ? eld of tensions and constraints that are constantly negotiated by the individual, both internally and externally, and rarely resolved with simple heuristics. The actual or anticipated implications of an accident are dominant in many of the comments on the R1 forum, as the following sequence of succeeding narratives related to accidents and quitting riding suggests: I quit riding one time in my life.

I was just getting married, building a house, etc. [. . . ] and coincidentally I was involved in a string of near misses: cars cutting me off, almost getting side swiped by an idiot who didn’t know how to turn into his own lane, getting run off road and up over a curb through a gas station parking lot by a garbage truck who just decided he wanted to cut across two lanes with no warning. It was my opinion that there was just some bad energy around me right then, and with all the other stress in my life maybe it was adding to the problem. I don’t know.

I hung it up for a few years, then got back into it when everything felt right again. It still feels right [. . . ] all the while I’ve witnessed bike wrecks, been close to others’ fatal accidents, laid my own bike down at a track day, etc. [. . . ] but it still feels right for me. My single rule is that as long as my head is in the game, then it’s “right“. If my head is constantly focusing on crashing, dying, etc. [. . . ] then it’s time to take another time-out. Shouldn’t be riding if you can’t focus on what you’re doing. Period. No shame in that (forum member 1).

I’ve seen bad accidents but also I believe its mental. With so many, “I’ve gone down” threads, it can eat your con? dence away and make riding not fun. If it ain’t fun, that’s a good time to step back and let time rebuild your enjoyment (forum member 2). [. . . ] Subscribed [. . . ] (forum member 3). Personally everyday that I wake up and am fortunate enough to ride I tell my wife I love her I get my brain focused and I always keep reminding myself that this could be my last ride and I think that is half the reason I ride so responsibly on the street.

I don’t want to have a last ride I love this sport. I have been down once very hard and that was a wake up call but I can’t give up what I love and to all my friends and fellow riders if I do go down and don’t get up please keep riding for me cause I would do the same (forum member 4). The con? ict between the hedonistic and aesthetic pleasures of riding a bike and the inherent risks involved in the activity becomes salient in forum member 2 comment about how riding a motorcycle should be related to fun. Speci? life events, such as those mentioned in forum member 1 narrative, amplify these tensions and may lead to important changes in attitudes or behaviors. However, these attitudinal or behavioral changes are frequently dynamic and unstable in time. For example, the decision to quit riding is in many cases a temporal one, and forum members compare riding to an addiction such as drinking or smoking. This addiction-like need to ride a motorbike then becomes an important factor in identity construction: From the point of view of the individual, riders do not choose riding a motorbike in order to signal certain values.

Rather, as expressed by forum member 4, the activity forms a natural part of the self and is just there, similar to early conceptualizations of gender or race in the essentialist identity logic. Riding a bike is elevated to a mission that does not leave room for choices, and fellow riders are encouraged to honor the dead by continuing the mission and keeping the spirit alive. The inherent trait of being addicted to motorcycles is assessed critically in a re? ective discourse by many riders. For example, forum member 5 explains that he is aware of the multiple con? cts that surround his hobby, but apparently resolves these con? icts by stating that riding is the most important thing in his life, and that he has learned that riding makes him happy. The shared consciousness and discourse related to themes such as the risk of experiencing a severe accident, losing a fellow rider, or problems with girlfriends, spouses, or the family in general, leads to a collective identity that is constructed, complex, and deprived of precise classi? cations. The brand level: attitudes mediating identity construction

The negotiations of meaning related to the practice of riding a sports bike are reproduced at the more speci? c brand level. Whereas previous research on brand communities has been largely focused on communities with extraordinary high levels of brand loyalty and commitment, members of the R1 sports bike community show a more ambiguous and differentiated relationship with the Yamaha brand: I’m really faithful to Yamaha, but when sitting on a new R1 and a new GSXR1000 side by side, I have to say I like the Suzuki. The R1 just feels so much [. . . bigger. I don’t know. Also, the magazines bitch about the suspension [. . . ] yet how many serious track people leave suspension stock anyway? Regardless, I’m too poor to buy a new bike, so I’ll continue riding my 02 R1 on the track (forum member 6). Faithfulness in this context is not experienced as absolute loyalty to only one brand. Rather, it is legitimate to question publicly the qualities of the favorite brand. Contrary to what might be expected, forum member 6 receives very few objections from the community members, and a relatively ational, attribute-based discussion of the merits and disadvantages of different motorcycle brands and models follows. In general, discourses presented by the forum members include few elements of real enthusiasm and emotional commitment for the brand. Apparently, community members perceive both the products and the brands in the sports bike category as little differentiated. This does not mean that R1 owners are dissatis? ed with their bike 227 Brand communities for mainstream brands Reto Felix Journal of Consumer Marketing Volume 29 · Number 3 · 2012 · 225 –232 r the Yamaha brand in general. Rather, the speci? c situation of the sports bike community suggests customers who are highly satis? ed with their brand, yet nevertheless would switch to another brand easily. It has been suggested that brand loyalty can be measured by asking individuals how likely it is they would recommend the brand to a friend or colleague (Reichheld, 2003). Because people new to sports bike riding frequently ask for advice on the forum, a great number of posts are related to what bike from which brand would be recommended.

Typical answers include statements such as “any of the new bikes are great” (forum member 7) or “I’ve spent some time on all the bikes and seriously there is no true winner, no matter what you get nowadays is a rocket out of the crate and you will be getting a good bike! Each has its ups and down but overall I could see myself on any of them really! ” (forum member 8). Rather than showing indifference, consumers like and actually buy any of the important sports bike brands.

Using the conceptual partition of the awareness set into an evoked set, an inert set, and an inept set (Narayana and Markin, 1975; Spiggle and Seawall, 1987), it seems that R1 community members place most of the important sports bike brands into the evoked set, whereas the inert set is relatively small. Instead of a highly committed loyalty to one single brand, as in previous accounts of brand communities, the Yamaha R1 brand community is, if anything, prone to multi-brand or split loyalty (Jacoby, 1971; Jacoby and Kyner, 1973). Identity is thus less de? ed by a speci? c brand, but rather by the activity of riding a sports bike itself. Wherever brand personalities in? uence decision making, it seems that these criteria are exclusive rather than inclusive. That is, the consideration set is not formed by the inclusion of a speci? c brand or set of brands, but rather by excluding unattractive brands. For example, in the R1 forum, some members distance themselves from Suzuki, one of Yamaha’s main competitors, because they don’t identify with the people who ride Suzukis: Yes, gixxer is by far the “squid bike” all the ? st time riders and newbies love the gixxers [. . . ] Their mentality and unfriendly attitude is because they are young, dumb, and think their bike is the best ever (forum member 9). the brand and clash with the otherwise positively perceived performance and quality of the product. The identity of the R1 brand community is further formed by the relationship with two other groups of motorcycles. On one hand, most forum members seem to admire the more exclusive Italian sports bike brands, such as Ducati and MV Agusta.

On the other hand, the relationship to Harley Davidson is not marked by a clear distinction of acceptance versus rejection pattern, but rather by a complicated and sometimes ambiguous pattern of mixed emotions toward the brand and its users: There are a lot of douche bag riders, Harley and sportbike alike, but I will admit I’ve ? ipped off quite a few Harley riders. I’ve gotten less camaraderie from Harley riders than anyone, but those are just the young wannabies, the old guys are usually cool tho, hahaha (forum member 10). In motorcycle slang, Gixxer stands for Suzuki’s GSX-R line of super sport motorbikes.

Forum members do not reject the Suzuki brand because of issues with the quality or performance of the product, but rather because of the characteristics of the riders who use the brand. Squid, an expression that, according to some forum members, is a combination of the two words “squirrel” and “kid,” describes irresponsible motorcycle riders who overestimate their riding skills and frequently wear inappropriate and insuf? cient riding gear. By claiming that the Suzuki GSX-R series is the typical squid bike, attributes of the consumers are ascribed to the brand.

Thus, brand identity is built on exclusion (“this is not how we want to be”) rather than on inclusion. Further, meaning transfer in this case deviates substantially from the traditional symbolic consumption process. Symbolic consumption suggests that individuals transfer the symbolic meaning of a brand to themselves, and subsequently the audience, such as peers and signi? cant others, assigns the attributes of the brand to the individual (Grubb and Grathwohl, 1967). However, meaning in the example above is transferred in the reverse direction, from the user to the brand.

Negative attributes of Suzuki brand users (such as being squiddish, dumb, and inexperienced) are transferred to 228 Here, forum member 10 develops a differentiated look toward Harley-Davidson riders by explaining that the less friendly Harley riders are typically those that are younger (and thus less experienced), whereas the older riders seem to be more open. Both positive and negative feelings co-exist at the same time as the result of a cognitive evaluation that avoids simple stereotyping found at other brand communities.

Many R1 forum members perceive the Harley-Davidson brand as both cool and obsolete at the same time, and this ambiguity toward the brand is replicated for the users of the brand, where Harley-Davidson riders have been experienced as both cool and authentic riders or as ignorant and unfriendly “weekend warriors. ” Thus, brands in the R1 community are not iconic symbols that unambiguously communicate attitudes and lifestyles of brand users to the larger audience via the meaning of the brand.

Rather, brands are complex, multidimensional entities that gain meaning only in the reciprocal relationship with the brand user. Unconditional single-brand loyalty and “we” versus “us” stereotypes are replaced in large part by ambiguous, differentiated, and often critical attitudes toward the own brand. Brand identity is based on exclusion (Suzuki is a typical brand for squids) instead of inclusion, and within a relatively large evoked set, multi-brand loyalty is more common than religious-like brand worshipping described for, e. g. the Apple Newton. Conclusions and managerial implications

Brand communities have sparked the interest of marketing researchers and practitioners alike because of the high levels of brand loyalty and commitment observed in previous studies on brands such as Apple, Jeep, or Harley Davidson. However, the results of this qualitative study suggest that instead of single-brand loyalty, consumers for mainstream brands may be more prone to multi-brand loyalty. As forum member 8 (see citation above) expressed it, “[. . . ] no matter what you get nowadays is a rocket out of the crate and you will be getting a good bike!

Each has its ups and down but overall I could see myself on any of them really! ” The case of the Yamaha R1 brand community thus presents preliminary evidence that speci? c industry conditions may shape the relationships consumers have with their brand, and more speci? cally, that multi-brand loyalty is more probable to occur for low levels of brand differentiation (Felix, 2009) combined with more choices (Bennett and Rundle-Thiele, 2005). It follows that from the point of view of a company, having many members in a speci? c brand community does not necessarily translate into a highly loyal customer base.

Rather, under certain Brand communities for mainstream brands Reto Felix Journal of Consumer Marketing Volume 29 · Number 3 · 2012 · 225 –232 conditions, higher levels of participation may actually increase the likelihood of adopting products from competing brands, especially if individuals are simultaneously members in several brand communities (Thompson and Sinha, 2008). The results of this study suggest that marketers should monitor and track consumers’ motivations, attitudes, and decision making processes on two levels: On the product level, it is important for marketers to understand barriers and con? cts related to the general use of the product. In the speci? c case of a sports bike, the physical risk (in the form of experiencing a severe accident) is probably the most important issue, which in turn may lead to substantial social tensions, especially with family members. For other products, such as clothing, computers, or food, the motivations why consumers may or may not consider a speci? c product category may be different, but it remains essential to understand these reasons. On the brand level, it is important for marketers to understand the degree of brand identi? ation in the community as well as the way how consumers perceive a consciousness of kind, share rituals and traditions, and experience a sense of moral responsibility ? (Muniz and O’Guinn, 2001). In a world of online consumer-to-consumer communications, companies are increasingly losing control over their brands. It is therefore important for marketers to get involved in the process of image building and brand positioning in online communication platforms. Non-company-run communities, such as the Yamaha R1 forum, bear the risk of community members transmitting brand information in a way not desired by the company (Stokburger-Sauer, 2010).

Marketers thus should try to integrate consumers by either sponsoring an entire discussion website, a forum, or part of a forum (Pitta and Fowler, 2005). Finally, an unobtrusive and authentic way of increasing a company’s involvement in a noncompany-run forum is exempli? ed by a company that provides motorcycle braking systems. One of the company’s employees invites Yamaha R1 forum members to ask him brake related questions and explains that he is on the forum not to sell, but to educate riders about brakes in general.

By choosing a nonselling approach in the R1 forum, the company manages to gain credibility in the community and to build customer relationships that are more consumer-focused and authentic than many of the hard-selling approaches at the dealerships. The employee’s thread on brake questions has more than 600 postings, which is signi? cantly above the forum’s average of around 15 postings per thread, and evidences the interest of the community in a direct contact with company representatives. The example also suggests that online communities are not limited to relationships between consumers and the brand and between consumers and consumers.

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Ouwersloot, H. and Odekerken-Schroder, G. (2008), “Who’s ? who in brand communities – and why? ”, European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 42 Nos 5/6, pp. 571-85. Pitta, D. A. and Fowler, D. (2005), “Internet community forums: an untapped resource for consumer marketers”, Journal of Consumer Marketing, Vol. 22 No. 5, pp. 265-74. Reichheld, F. F. (2003), “The one number you need to grow”, Harvard Business Review, Vol. 81 No. 12, pp. 46-54. ? Schau, H. J. and Muniz, A. M. Jr (2006), “A tale of tales: the Apple Newton narratives”, Journal of Strategic Marketing, Vol. 14 No. 1, pp. 19-33. ? Schau, H. J. Muniz, A. M. Jr and Arnould, E. J. (2009), “How brand community practices create value”, Journal of Marketing, Vol. 73 No. 5, pp. 30-51. Schouten, J. W. and McAlexander, J. H. (1995), “Subcultures of consumption: an ethnography of the new bikers”, Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 22 No. 1, pp. 43-61. Schouten, J. W. , McAlexander, J. H. and Koenig, H. F. (2007), “Transcendent customer experience and brand community”, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Vol. 35 No. 3, pp. 357-68. Spiggle, S. and Seawall, M. A. (1987), “A choice sets model of retail selection”, Journal of Marketing, Vol. 1 No. 2, pp. 97-111. Stokburger-Sauer, N. (2010), “Brand communities: drivers and outcomes”, Psychology & Marketing, Vol. 24 No. 4, pp. 347-68. Thompson, S. A. and Sinha, R. K. (2008), “Brand communities and new product adoption: the in? uence and limits of oppositional loyalty”, Journal of Marketing, Vol. 72 No. 6, pp. 65-80. ? Torres-Moraga, E. , Vasquez-Parraga, A. Z. and Zamora? Gonzalez, J. (2008), “Customer satisfaction and loyalty: start with the product, culminate with the brand”, Journal of Consumer Marketing, Vol. 25 No. 2, pp. 302-13. Wallendorf, M. and Belk, R.

W. (1989), “Assessing trustworthiness in naturalistic consumer research”, in Hirschman, E. C. (Ed. ), Interpretive Consumer Research, Association for Consumer Research, Provo, UT, pp. 69-84. Yamaha Motor Co. (2009), “Annual report”, available at: www. yamaha-motor. co. jp/global/ir/material/pdf/2009/2009 annual-e. pdf (accessed June 14, 2010). About the author Reto Felix is an Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Monterrey, Mexico. He received his Master’s in Marketing and PhD in Business Administration from the University of St Gallen, Switzerland.

He has been a Visiting Scholar at the Marketing Group, Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley, and has published in journals such as Journal of International Marketing, Journal of Brand communities for mainstream brands Reto Felix Journal of Consumer Marketing Volume 29 · Number 3 · 2012 · 225 –232 Business & Industrial Marketing, and Journal of International Consumer Marketing. Further, he has presented his research at conferences hosted by the Association for Consumer Research, the American Marketing Association, the Academy of Marketing Science and the Society for Marketing Advances.

Reto Felix can be contacted at: [email protected] edu. mx Executive summary and implications for managers and executives This summary has been provided to allow managers and executives a rapid appreciation of the content of this article. Those with a particular interest in the topic covered may then read the article in toto to take advantage of the more comprehensive description of the research undertaken and its results to get the full bene? ts of the material present. The topic of brand communities has provided the focus for much marketing literature.

Brand communities transcend geographical boundaries and contain people who exhibit passion for a particular brand. These individuals also display similarities in consciousness while “shared rituals and traditions” is another cornerstone of their social relationships. Some scholars have even noted the propensity for “religious-like” associations to develop. Evidence shows that groups can be based locally, online or a combination of both. A wide range of products has supplied the inspiration for brand communities to form. In addition to strong consumer identi? ation with the brands, “clear and unique positioning” is viewed as a common characteristic among brands concerned. Brand loyalty can be fervent to a degree that an “us and them” mentality often arises with regard to other brands. Bonding within the community can generate stereotypes and outsiders are treated with some disdain. Any failure of competitor brands is cause for celebration. It is, however, a misconception to assume that brand communities are always homogenous. Signi? cant internal differences appear to be the rule not the exception.

Relationship intensity with other members is subject to variation because some are loyal to the brand while others may identify more closely with the product. Levels of social orientation can similarly differ. Researchers have also pointed out the possibility of some individuals lacking interest in brand, product and social relationships yet remaining in the community. Others might become involved with different brand communities in the same product category, resulting in further dissemination of loyalty. Felix explores the topic in a study of an online Yamaha brand community principally devoted to the Japanese manufacturer’s R1 luxury sports otorcycle. Yamaha is one of the world’s leading brands in its category and in 2009 boasted sales of $12. 5 billion. At the time of the study, there were 107,249 registered members in the R1 forum. Some members did not currently own a motorcycle, while others possessed a different brand. The author considers netnography as the most relevant study method for the investigation of brand relationships and “identity construction of an online community”. This approach is regarded as ethnography adapted for the purpose of exploring online communities. Among other things, netnography has been commended for its ? xibility, 231 open-endedness and interpretative qualities. Different researchers have used the approach in a variety of study contexts including cars, consumer gifts and TV programs. Following initial analysis of messages posted on the forum, the threads were arranged into ? ve different sections respectively labeled as: Community; R1-related Discussion; Technique, Racing and Stunt Discussion; Marketplace/ Classi? ed; and Miscellaneous Section. Analysis of the threads enabled messages to be coded and then organized into “interpretive themes” so that appropriate “layers of meaning” could be identi? d. Message themes were analyzed at the product level to ascertain factors which in? uence practice and identity. In general, considerable risk is associated with riding a motorcycle for leisure purposes. But the variation in attitudes towards factors like speed and riding style means that different segments exist within the biking community. At one end of the continuum are those who ride around at moderate speeds to savor the experience with the environment. Positioned at the other extreme are bikers whose penchant for high speed is often accompanied by an aggressive style of riding.

Such individuals are also likelier to ? aunt their biking skills through dangerous maneuvers like pulling wheelies. According to Felix, riding a motorcycle gives rise to various risks and con? icts that can be physical, functional, ? nancial, psychological or social in nature. The activity is therefore highly complex and generates a web of “tensions and constraints” that the individual must constantly address internally and externally. Concern about accidents is a recurring theme with community members referring to “actual or anticipated implications” in that eventuality.

Message content reveals that con? ict exists between knowledge of the intrinsic risks associated with bike riding and the grati? cation derived from it. Forum members suggest that such tensions may prompt attitude or behavioral changes, albeit sometimes ? eeting in nature. This occurs because riding a motorcycle is almost addictive and an important aspect of identity construction. Some comments imply that it is a “mission” that simply has to be ful? lled. Even though members are aware of the con? icts which surround this pastime, the desire to ride is the main driving force.

Analysis reveals a “shared consciousness” about issues including serious accidents, loss of a fellow biker, and problems relating to the family. The author ascertains a collective identity that is complex in nature but dif? cult to categorize precisely. An examination of meaning at the speci? c brand level reveals a relationship between forum members and the Yamaha brand that is “ambiguous and differentiated”. Instead of absolute loyalty to the brand, it is more evident that people engage in balanced debate about its qualities and those of other motorcycle brands.

Members apparently perceive little differentiation between brands and may switch to another brand even if they are highly satis? ed. Many studies have noted that some consumers can display loyalty to multiple brands and there is some evidence of this tendency here. Messages seeking advice on future purchases are frequent and members typically recommend a range of brands they consider decent. In the opinion of Felix, this indicates that riding a sports motorcycle de? nes identity much more that the speci? c brand of bike. Another signi? cant ? nding is how decision making seems in? enced more by exclusive than inclusive brand criteria. A Brand communities for mainstream brands Reto Felix Journal of Consumer Marketing Volume 29 · Number 3 · 2012 · 225 –232 key example is the negative perceptions of the Suzuki brand among some R1 forum members. The interesting fact about this hostility is that is has little to do with product quality concerns. Instead, such evaluation arises because members question those who ride Suzuki sport bikes. With regard to identity construction, meaning is normally transferred from brand to individual. Here, however, it is the negative traits of Suzuki riders that re transferred to the brand. Some con? ict with positive perceptions of the product subsequently occurs. That brands are complex and multidimensional is further illustrated by the contrasting ways in which R1 members relate to Harley Davidson. Positive and negative feelings exist simultaneously as the brand is regarded as cool yet obsolete. Contrasting statements are likewise directed at Harley Davidson riders. One important deduction is that ambiguity surrounds brand meaning, attitude and lifestyle conveyed within this community. This study indicates that consumer-brand relations might be shaped by “speci? industry conditions”. Marketers are also alerted to lack of clear brand differentiation and the possibility that multi-brand loyalty will ensue, even when a large brand community exists. Understanding what in? uences consumer attitudes, motivations and decision-making at both product and brand level is essential. Certain factors may encourage or deter choice of a particular product, while it is equally important to be aware of brand identi? cation levels and collective sensitivities among consumers. Given the revealing nature of online communication, Felix suggests that ? ms might gain greater insight into consumer thinking by becoming actively involved in non-company forums. An unobtrusive approach is considered vital though. The aim should not be to sell but to build authentic consumer-focused relationships with an emphasis on providing advice or information. ? (A precis of the article “Brand communities for mainstream brands: the example of the Yamaha R1 brand community”. Supplied by Marketing Consultants for Emerald. ) To purchase reprints of this article please e-mail: [email protected] com Or visit our web site for further details: www. emeraldinsight. com/reprints 232

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Vertu Luxury Branding

VERTU presentation for “Branding for Luxury Products” course. HISTORY The VERTU originally started in 1998 in Great Britain, now wholly owned subsidiary of Finnish company Nokia. The same year founder and Chief Designer, Italian Frank Nouvo began putting his ideas for Vertu on paper and the board of Nokia gave the project a green light. Frank Nuovo was a design strategist at Nokia from 1995 to 2006, when he left to become Vertu’s lead designer full time. Also in 1998 the company made it a company principle of hand making their products with “exotic, rare and naturally durable materials”.

In 1999, their characteristic V form was established, and it is still highly visible across the Vertu product portfolio. In 2000 Vertu began taking shape as a company, locating their headquarters in England, and started an extensive Research and Development- project and decided on some of the parts that would go into the phones as well as some design decisions, such as the use of sapphire crystals as a design-tweak. Three years in to operations, Vertu was granted the Vertu Concierge Service as a patent and this is still one of Vertu’s edges in the luxury cell phones market. Vertu launched what they themselves call the “… irst ever luxury mobile phone” near the Eiffel tower in Paris in 2002, the Vertu Signature. With the first phones now available on the newly created market for luxury phones, Vertu also had the opportunity to offer one of their customers help through the concierge service, with a flight from London to New York. In 2005 10. 000 concierge requests was made according to Vertu, a figure that is, and should be (due to their customers privacy), hard to confirm. In 2003 they open their 50th retail location. By 2010, Vertu had more than 90 own boutiques and was sold in over 600 locations in almost 70 ountries, worldwide, according to Nokia`s financial statement for 2010. In 2007 Vertu went on a joint venture with Ferrari, creating an special edition phone marking the car company’s 60th anniversary. CONCEPT AND UNIQUENESS The concept of Vertu is to appeal to high-end customers who look for something unique in their mobile phones. Through meeting target customers standards about design, materials, price and brand Vertu has created a market for luxury mobile phones. The additional services, such as the Vertu Concierge give customers an elevated experience. Vertu aims to enhance and enrich customers’ lives through the services and products we offer. This enrichment will now further extend to the experience in our stores with a focused, tailored approach to customer interaction. ” by Perry Oosting, President of Vertu BUSINESS STRATEGY Nokia’s first idea was to create a phone that was completely contrary to the company’s mass phone distribution and enter the luxury market by creating the subsidiary company Vertu. In order to keep the luxury image and status of Vertu, the phone was not associated with Nokia’s mass mobile phones.

During the recession in 2009, the CEO Perry Oosting, announced that Vertu was launching cheaper phones and accessories as a tool to keep up the market shares and survive the recession. Late 2011, the new CEO of Nokia, presented the new strategy; to use a new operating system from Microsoft for their smartphones. This resulted in a giant downfall in market shares. As mentioned above, Vertu’s flagship stores are located at the most exclusive shopping districts, amongst other Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, in order to be associated with the same luxury atmosphere as the neighboring brands.

Vertu also put a huge emphasis on the store layout, everything from special glass for the display cases, to the floor and lightening. For the ultimate luxury experience, they also provide high personal service with top skills. For the exclusiveness and status of the luxury phone, it was chosen to be launched in connection with fashion shows at Paris fashion week and was thereby becoming to be viewed as a fashion brand instead of a technology brand. This was a strategic move to strengthen the image if the brand. Vertu chose to launch their products in the BRIC countries, which consists of some of the most emerging markets in the world today.

Additionally, the Middle East and Japan are also two extremely important markets for Vertu, partly due to the strong technology awareness in these areas. The sales in these countries are larger than in the western countries and the luxury company is exploiting the new wealth of the generations with high luxury awareness and taste. In order to gain greater market share in the British and Hong-Kong market, Vertu has numerous joint ventures and partnerships with jewelry stores, such as King Fook Jewelry in Hong-Kong and Goldsmiths in Harrods, London. We understand communications technology. We believe now that we understand the luxury industry. It will take something for competition to match that. ” – Nigel Litchfield, former president of Vertu, 2002 MARKETING MIX Product: Vertu sells hand-made luxury phones made from fine materials like gold, platinum and sapphire. Along with every purchase the buyer receives superior service and is entitled to free ‘concierge’ service which assists users with exclusive services like restaurant and hotel reservations, priority bookings, and a global recommendation network.

Price: Vertu prices range from $5,000 to over $300,000. The prices vary with the different collections and the materials that are used in them. Place: Vertu phones are selectively distributed. They are available at company-owned boutiques and at other various company-selected luxury stores like London Jewelers, Goldsmiths, Tourneau and Colette. Vertu locates its stores in luxury shopping districts of large metropolitan areas and opens relatively few stores. The stores are small, intimate and have a luxury feel more like that of a jewelry store than a cell phone store.

All sale locations can be found on vertu. com. Promotion: Vertu acquires much publicity from sales to celebrities like David Beckham, Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow. As well Vertu has collaborated with big brands before like Ferrari, Boucheron and Audemars Piguet. Vertu releases different collections at different times and will only make a certain number of phones in order to keep a prestigious image and attract buyers. Vertu has a website for publicity which features product descriptions and photos of celebrities who own Vertu phones. POSITIONING

Vertu was a pioneer in the luxury cell phone market and has positioned itself as the top-of-the-line targeting high-net-worth individuals. Vertu accomplishes this by using only the finest materials to manufacture their products which are all handcrafted ensuring that every product is of perfect quality. Vertu will release different collections each featuring different materials and designs which make the collections unique and prestigious; their most expensive line ever was the Signature Cobra designed by Boucheron, only eight were made and they cost $310,000 each.

Vertu will often collaborate with other luxury brands, like Boucheron, Audemars Piguet and Ferrari, to extend their success and name in the luxury product world. Vertu offers superior and personalized service to its clients, including a free concierge service anywhere in the world, guaranteeing customer satisfaction and loyalty. They also position themselves by showcasing the celebrities who own their products as an indication that their products are for the rich and famous.

Vertu has locations all over the world in 70 countries however they open relatively few boutiques solely in luxury shopping districts of large cities and thus are considered selectively distributed. Vertu boutiques are decadent, small, intimate venues which offer personalized service to clients wishing to make a purchase; the other stores licensed to sell Vertu products are also luxury stores like Tourneau Watches and London Jewelers in the United States, Bandiera Jewelers in Canada, Colette in Paris and Ernest Jones in London.

Vertu very successfully maintains a prestigious image with its ultra-luxurious products and superior service through its positioning. VERTU SERVICES VERTU brand offers services that are unique, independent and carefully customized to the particular needs and desires of their customers. All services are integrated into gadget. VERTU CONCIERGE Vertu Concierge is added directly to the customer`s handset, offering luxury assistance and enrichment. The service is offered by voice call or email, and access through a dedicated key on the cell.

At the moment of VERTU phone registration and activation of VERTU Concierge service, initial “fitting” call is proposed. It can be done immediately at purchase time or later up to client`s choice. The “fitting” call gives an opportunity to have full explanation of services offered by Concierge, as well as client can express her/his needs and desires which will be matched to this service. This includes the establishment of personal preferences, the range of the service they would wish and significantly, the sort of contact they wish to receive from Vertu.

The Vertu Concierge Classic service offers the client with 24/7 access to a team of lifestyle managers, situated within a network of global centers covering all the main time zones including London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and San Francisco. Vertu Concierge also has managers on the ground in major destinations in order to create close relationships with specialist suppliers of goods and services specifically for Vertu clients. Many customers choose to use Vertu Concierge for their travel and lodging requirements as Vertu has protected exclusive opportunities for its clients.

Vertu Concierge can contact the widest network of hotels, restaurants and airlines, and can as a result meet the exact preferences and expectations of their customers. Vertu Concierge clients may also ask for support with purchases ranging from small luxury items to accompaniments to their property range. Vertu Concierge is available in English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Arabic, Japanese, Mandarin and Cantonese. Vertu Classic Concierge is included free of charge for one year from the date of purchase of a Vertu handset. VERTU CITY BRIEF

Vertu City Brief is a global digest of information covering more than 200 cities and destinations worldwide. Launched in September 2009, it is now one of Vertu’s most utilized services. Independently written for Vertu by experts in their respective fields, Vertu City Brief is available on Vertu handsets in English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Arabic, Japanese and Simplified Chinese. Refreshed and updated on a regular basis, Vertu City Brief allows the user to hit the ground running on arrival in an unfamiliar territory or to explore new or exciting opportunities in their home town.

If the customer does not see anything which exactly meets their requirements, Vertu City Brief is the perfect inspiration to begin a conversation with a Vertu Concierge Lifestyle Manager. VERTU SELECT Vertu Select delivers original articles selected to inspire, inform and entertain based on a user’s region, preferences and passions. Written by carefully selected global journalists, experts and organizations, the articles appear via the handsets RSS feed once a customer has registered their phone. Vertu Select is available in English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Arabic, Japanese and Simplified Chinese.

VERTU. ME Introduced with the launch of Constellation Quest in October 2010, vertu. me is a service that provides the user with a Vertu email account and effortless harmonization of the device’s lifestyle and business tools. Should the customer choose, the user’s emails, contacts, calendar and task information can be automatically synchronized with Vertu’s secure servers, giving the benefit of protected back up of their data. Vertu offers the consumer complete peace of mind. Should the handset be lost, this data can be retrieved and seamlessly downloaded to a replacement phone.

The system also ensures that whenever the vertu. me account is accessed, whether from the phone, a home or office computer (PC and Mac) or via the web, this information is up to date. TARGET CONSUMER The Vertu mobile is a highly luxurious product, which doubtlessly is made to fit the extremely wealthy population of this world. The main customers are rich and found in the urban areas, who are constantly searching for the extraordinary products. Furthermore, their flagship- and department stores are situated in the finest areas, in order to attract the highly rich international shoppers. These are people who buy the best quality watches, the best quality fashion devices” – Nigel Litchfield, former president of Vertu The special features and services of the phone such as the “Vertu Concierge”, attracts customers who are constantly traveling worldwide – jet setters. The Vertu mobile was the first phone which was able function in over 180 different countries. This fact covered many needs and made it rapidly attractive for people who were constantly traveling such as celebrities and high ranked business people. In fact, Madonna, Beckham and Gwyneth Patrol were some of Vertu’s first users when it was launched.

CONSUMER-BASED BRAND EQUITY PYRAMID Brand Salience For Vertu achieving right brand identity involves brand salience. People generally are not still aware of VERTU because it is relatively “young” brand and promotion is quite narrow. However their target consumer for sure can recall and recognize this brand. So conclusion here is that Brand salience is more depth than breadth. This basically means that even thou there are not yet many people knowing VERTU, but those who do , they know all insights of it, can easily recall it and understands what this brand is about.

Brand Performance The product itself is at the heart of brand equity, as it is the primary influence of what consumers experience with a brand, what they hear about the brand from others, and what the brand can tell customers about the brand in their communication. Brand Performance relates to the ways in which the product or service attempts to meet customers` functional needs. This is on top level for VERTU brand. It is crucial to contribute to customers` desires, wants and needs. Vertu brand highly represents all what their HNWI customers want to have for paying a high price.

The product is highly durable; it has distinctive logo, premium pricing and advanced technology in gadgets. Unique services provided for customers by VERTY also attributes to brand`s performance. Brand Imagery Another variable CBBE Pyramid is second type of brand meaning which involves brand imagery. Imagery deals with such a properties of a product, which meets customers` psychological needs. It is more about what people think of it, how they see it. VERTU`s imagery is extremely individualistic and stylish.

When customer is buying VERTU cell he/she buys a beauty of it as well. As of VERTU`s customer has a strong judgment of a brand as high quality luxury product. Credibility is high and customer see VERTU as superior, advantageous brand. Brand Judgments Brand judgments focus upon customers` personal opinions and evaluation with regard to brand. This involves how consumer put together all from performance and imagery association to make kind of an evaluation. VERTU`s clients evaluate this brand as a high quality luxury brand.

Brand Feelings This variable shows emotional response with respect to VERTU brand. It shows what feelings are evoked by the marketing strategy for the VERTU and how does it affect feelings about themselves and relationships with others. Customer of VERU is for sure status-conscious person. Customers of VERTU have a unique and warmth feeling about the brand. It can be exciting due to special relationship of beauty and technology in brand`s products. Customer feels it is trendy and relates to special status and therefore social approval.

Customer feels high security within this brand due to all advantages provided. As VERTU makes consumer feel better self-respect, pride, fulfillment and accomplishment also occurs. Brand Resonance Final variable of pyramid shows brand relationships with a customer based on Salience, Performance, Imagery, Judgments and Feelings. As for VERTU even if general awareness is low the behavioral loyalty is very high, customer want to get back to this brand, consequently repeat purchase is possible. Brand loyalty is necessary but not sufficient for resonance to occur.

Within VERTU brand customer is not returning to this brand again due to, for example, scarce of substitutes. VERTU attained their main goal- strong personal attachment to brand. It goes beyond of having just a positive attitude to view brand. Another important part of Resonance is active engagement. This probably is the strongest affirmation of brand loyalty. It occurs when client is willing to invest time, energy, money in to the brand. Constantly customers of VERTU are invited to special social events created by VERTU worldwide, and they are participating.

Therefore VERTU has a very strong relationship with its customer. SWOT ANALISYS FOR VETRU STRENGHT * Masterpiece of design, engineering, and craftsmanship * Was truly innovative pioneering brand * Strong reputation (Products have established strong reputation in their field) * Global expansion (Includes significant growth over last 10 years) * Customer service * Control of Quality(As produced just in one factory in England) * London Symphony Orchestra is creating ringtones exclusively for each model of Vertu WEAKNESSES Extremely high production price (which leads to high product price) * Limited access as distribution is exclusive and limited (Missing opportunities for new customers) * Not able to buy online (More customers now go online) * Not enough technical innovation again (Many customers claim that gadgets are beautiful but not really practical) OPPORTUNITIES * E-business (launch “buy option” online) * Emerging markets * Mix VERTU styling with Nokia (in order to increase awareness ) * Change of consumer lifestyle (growing demand from young and senior people) THREATS Increasing Quality of Competing Products and Number of those * Importance of counterfeiting (Chinese counterfeiting factories already picked up the idea) * Newer forms of luxury and innovation are constantly changing COMPETITORS GOLDVISH Brand established in Geneve, Switzerland in 2003. Very Haut-Couture style but extremely not practical. Cells are difficult to buy, narrow distribution channel. View itself as a pioneering brand of luxury cell phone on official website which is obvious lie. The pioneering brand was VERTU. Only 3 lines of phones are developed since 2003.

The most expensive gadget is “Le Millionaire” and it costs $1,000 000. MOBIADO Canadian-based manufacturer of luxury phones with modern minimalistic design launched in 2004. It has 3 main lines –Classic, Professional and Grand Line. Mobiado actively participates in social events in North America (such as Golden Globes and Couture Fashion Week in NY). The brand is not very popular in Middle East and Europe. Still Distribution channel is not wide enough. Price range is from $1,900 to $57,000 GRESSO Gresso is Russia-based company which started its activity in 2007, so it is the newest competing brand in luxury phones field.

Gresso has 5 main lines and they also provide customized phone for their clients. But mostly popular in Russia and Vietnam, Ukraine and one distributor in USA so far, however it is compensated by their option to buy products online. For Gresso products price range is from $3,000 to $42,000. RECOMMENDATIONS Focused and customized segmentation is valuable in this market, so VERTU must continuously concentrate on their customers’ needs and desires. As any luxury company which faces constant global expansion it has to pay attention to counterfeiting problem. For example, Apple Inc. ow faced big problem in China where whole Apple stores are opened and being “fake”. China already produces cheap unqualified cells, abusing the brand VERTU, so losses in long-run might be significant. VERTU must work on effective anti-counterfeiting strategy in order to preserve the “face” of the brand. During this study we have discovered that general awareness of the brand is still low, therefore VERTU might collaborate with mother-company Nokia in order to produce some kind of mix and make the brand more popular and easily recognized, as for example H;M and Roberto Cavalli collaboration.

Vertu is constantly launching Limited Edition lines which are sufficient in this market, because “best consumer” wants something distinctive and really exclusive, and more important, the customer is ready to pay for that. Partnership with Ferrari, Boucheron and Ermenegildo Zegna increased popularity of the brand considerably. For that reason, we suggest VERTU to collaborate more also with fashion designers, thus gaining also “fashion” group customers. REFERENCES http://us. vertu. com/world-of-vertu/history/ http://i. nokia. com/blob/view/-/263802/data/1/-/form20-f-10-pdf. pdf http://www. pp-luxury. com/en/vertu-lanseaza-o-gama-de-produse-mai-ieftina_444. html http://www. google. fr/url? sa=t;rct=j;q=vertu%20mobile%20strategy;source=web;cd=8;ved=0CGQQFjAH;url=http%3A%2F%2Fhighered. mcgraw-hill. com%2Fsites%2Fdl%2Ffree%2F007710708x%2F110214%2FGucciLouisVuitton_Vertu_CaseStudy. doc;ei=_GctT_WCE8HM0QWryK2tCA;usg=AFQjCNHW6_wzn1WCQxkM_OJSMTuizfXMcQ;sig2=MWFOk5Qo1sZB17F5_23Eew;cad=rja http://www. businessweek. com/globalbiz/content/dec2007/gb20071221_951028. htm http://www. icmrindia. org/casestudies/catalogue/Marketing/MKTG151. tm https://www. iveycases. com/ProductView. aspx? id=52373 http://www. wital. net/en/press-events/press/vertu-services-overview/ http://mktg. uni-svishtov. bg/ivm/resources/CustomerBasedbrandEquityModel. pdf http://www. wital. net/en/press-events/press/vertu-retail-concept-2011/ http://www. brandchannel. com/features_profile. asp? pr_id=61 http://www. prschool. ge/img/every_day/Fashion%20Marketing. pdf#page=155 http://www. zdnet. co. uk/news/desktop-hardware/2002/03/22/platinum-luxury-phones-have-no-competition-2107188/ http://www. goldvish. com/ http://mobiado. com/ http://www. gresso. com/ ttp://vertu. com/ http://www. linkedin. com/company/vertu/statistics http://vertu. com/en/discover-vertu/history. aspx http://vertu. com/en/help-and-support/contact-vertu/where-to-buy. aspx http://money. cnn. com/popups/2006/biz2/cellphone/4. html http://www. allbusiness. com/retail-trade/apparel-accessory-stores-womens-specialty/4250840-1. html http://www. icmrindia. org/casestudies/catalogue/Marketing/MKTG151. htm http://www. unet. univie. ac. at/~a0025537/php/ABWLs/FK-Marketing/store3/Internet_Exercise_Vertu. pdf http://www. wital. net/en/press-events/press/vertu-retail-concept-2011/

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Marketing Plan for a Premium (Branded) Product

Table of Contents No| Tittle| Pages| 1. 0| Executive Summary| 5| 1. 1~1. 2| Objectives ~ vision and mission| 5| 2. 0| Company Summary| 6| 2. 1| Background| 6| 2. 2| Company Locations and Facilities| 6| 3. 0| Products and Services| 7| 3. 1| Products Description| 7| 3. 2| Competitive Comparison| 8| 3. 3| Supply and Demand Details| 9| 3. 4| Technology Needs| 10| 4. 0| Market Analysis| 11| 4. 1| Target Market| 11| 4. 1. 1| Target Market Segment Strategy| 11| 4. 1. 2| Market Needs| 11| 4. 1. 3| Market Trends| 11| 4. 1. 4| Market Growth| 12| 4. 2| Industry Analysis| 13| 4. 2. 1| Industry Participants/Key Players| 13| 4. 2. | Main Competitors/Competitive Analysis| 13| 5. 0| Strategy and Implementation Summary| 14| 5. 1| Marketing Strategy| 14| 5. 2| Pricing Strategy| 15| 5. 3| Promotion Strategy| 15| 5. 4| Distribution Patterns| 15| 5. 6| Sales Strategy| 16| 5. 7| Sales Forecast| 16| 5. 8| Sales Programs| 16| 6. 0| Web Plan Summary| 17| 6. 1| Website Marketing Strategy| 17| 6. 2| Development Requirements| 17| 7. 0| References| 18-20| 1. 0 Executive Summary 1. 1 Objectives My objective is to collect and research information to understand Audi Company better in terms of their company background, product and services and their marketing strategy.

Examples are like their technology, competitors pricing, sales figures market growth and many more. 1. 2 Vision and Mission Vision: “Audi – the premium brand” Mission: “We delight customers worldwide” 2. 0 Company Summary 2. 1 Background Audi is under a parent company named Volkswagen Group which is a German automobile manufacturing company. Audi is a manufacturer of exquisite cars – beautiful, sophisticated machines that embody technological perfection. Audi is the Premium brand growing most rapidly and on course to become the world’s most successful Premium manufacturer.

Audi has been recognised by the European Union for outstanding environmental protection, based on its long tradition of minimising and reusing production waste. 2. 2 Company Locations and Facilities The worldwide network of Audi sites comprises the two German plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm, as well as seven production facilities in Gyor (Hungary), Brussels (Belgium), Changchun (China), Aurangabad (India), Bratislave (Slovakia), Martorell (Spain) and Indonesia. 3. 0 Products and Services 3. 1 Products Description Type| Audi Q5 2. 0 TFSI Quattro (225PS)| Vehicle Type| Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV)|

Transmission| 6-speed manual| Year| 2011| Price(RM)| 328,000| Engines| 1,984 cc (1. 984 L; 121. 1 cu in) I4 turbo| Acceleration(0-60mph)| 7. 0 sec| Maximum Speed| 130 mph| Tank Capacity| 75| Weight| 1850| Audi Q5 2. 0 TFSI Quattro (225PS) is a sport utility vehicle (SUV). The transmission for the car is 6-speed manual. Not only that, the Audi Q5 engine is 2. 0 litre engines comes with a turbo system which boost its engine capability, the acceleration from 0-60mph is 7. 0 per second and the maximum speed is 130mph which is approximately 233kmh while the tank capacity is 75 litres and the weight is 1850kg. 3. Competitive Comparison Type| Range Rover Evoque| Porsche Cayenne| Vehicle Type| Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV)| Sport Utility Vehicle (SUV)| Transmission| Six-speed Automatic| Eight-speed Tiptronic S with Auto start/stop function| Year| 2012| 2012| Price(RM)| 363,888| 570,000| Engines| 2. 0L Si4 4-cylinder petrol engine| 3. 6L V6| Acceleration(0-100km/h)| 7. 6 sec| 7. 5 sec| Maximum Speed| 217 km/h| 230 km/h| Tank Capacity| 70| 100| Weight| From 1640| 2030| 3. 3 Supply and Demand Details Audi Q series Annual Sales in all countries Production (unit)| Year| Year| Vehicles (Audi)| 2011| 2010| Q5| 183,678| 154,604|

Q7| 53,703| 48,937| Q3| 19,613| -| Total Audi Q series| 256,994| 203,541| Based on the table above, Audi Q series annual sales for the model Q5 had increase from 154,604 for the year 2010 to 183,678 for the year 2011. The different of annual sales between year 2010 and 2011 is 29,074 which means the supply and demand for year 2011 had increase. The total annual sales of Audi Company for 2010 are 203,541 whereas for the year 2011 is 256,994. The table above show that the total annual sales of the company had also increase 53,453 which mean the supply and demand of the cars increase from the year 2010 to 2011. . 4 Technology Needs As technology needs for the model of Audi Q5 is the engine. The engine Audi Company use for Q5 is 2. 0 litre engines comes with a turbo system which boost its engine capability and turbocharging for more power and greater efficiency  is a development of the engine that powers the likes of the current Audi TT and Volkswagen Golf GTI. The engine’s power and performance will be from 0-60mph is 7 seconds and the top speed will be 130mph or 209km/h. The horsepower can up to 211hp or 4300rpm and the torque will be 258 Ib-ft. or 1500rpm. 4. 0 Market Analysis 4. 1 Target Market

The following are the strategy for target market. 4. 1. 1 Target Market Segment Strategy Market segmentation for Audi Q5 will be psychographic segmentation which means Audi Company divide the buyers into different categories based on social class, lifestyles or personality characteristics. For the target market segment will be differentiated marketing strategy which means Audi Company produces several types of car such as SUV (Sport Utility Vehicle), Sedan and Sport each targeting its own segment of consumers. As for the product I choose Q5 target market is towards consumer’s lifestyles from higher level income.

The target market will be consumers who finding for more comfortable, powerful and luxury option. 4. 1. 2 Market Needs Audi Company is providing customer comfort and luxury cars. Audi have a very good warranty and aftersales services for the customers. Now for all the new Audi models, the customers can choose whether you want to have three, four or five years warranty. So with the few years warranty you can enjoy your driving and also no need to worry about the unexpected repair bills. 4. 1. 3 Market Trends Market trends for Audi Q5 is the technology its use for the engine. Audi Q5 has automatic start and stop function for greater fuel.

Audi Q5 comes with the Driver’s Information System (DIS) can help consumer to save fuel. Not only that, the market trends for Audi Q5 is because comfort and luxury. 4. 1. 4 Market Growth Production (unit) Production (unit) Year Year Figure: Production of vehicles Audi Q5 Figure above shows the Audi Q5 pass four years production from 2008 to 2011. The models of Q5 have a production of 20,320 in year 2008. Then the production increase from 20,320 to 105,074 in year 2009. The different of both years are 84,754. The productions still continue increase from 2009 to 2010 which mean from 105,074 to 154,604.

Lastly for year 2011, the production for the year is 183,678. Compare to the pass four years the production of Audi Q5 is continues increase. 4. 2 Industry Analysis 4. 2. 1 Industry Participants/Key Players The industry participant for Audi Q5 is Stefan Sielaff. He is the head of design in Audi Company. He joins the company in year 2006. The key player for Audi Q5 is towards the consumers with high level of income and age above 40. Not only that, Audi Q5 can also be for family uses because it is 7 seaters car. 4. 2. 2 Main Competitors/Competitive Analysis The main competitors for Audi Q5 are Range Rover Evoque and Porsche Cayenne

Range Rover Evoque: * The main strength of Range Rover Evoque is that it is the sport utility vehicle (SUV) with the engine turbocharged inline four-cylinder which can boost up to 240 horsepower, six-speed automatic transmission and impressive acceleration which is 7. 6 per second. Porsche Cayenne * The main strength of Porsche Cayenne is that it is also sport utility vehicle (SUV) with the engine 8-speed Tiptronic S which can boost up to 380 horsepower, Eight-speed Tiptronic S with Auto start and stop function and impressive acceleration which is 7. 5 per second. 5. Strategy and Implementation Summary 5. 1 Marketing Strategy Marketing strategy for the Audi Company is to hit the annual sales target or increase sales and profitable get back. Audi Company will choose the best strategy to gain profit in order to create customers value. Audi Company market segmentation will be psychographic segmentation which means for the model Q5, the segmentation will base on the individual lifestyles. Audi Company market target will be age above 40 and consumers with high level of income. The target market segment will be differentiated marketing strategy.

This is because the Audi Company is going to target on few market segments and provide few models such as A4, TT and Q5. By setting the market targeting, company hope can get higher sales. The market position for Audi Q5 is to combine both aspect in terms of luxury and performance in order to make the Audi Q5 to become a perfect sport utility vehicle. With high quality and luxury car and have also good performance with high tech engine, better interior and exterior are more attract the consumers compare to others competitors. 5. 2 Pricing Strategy

In terms of pricing strategy, marketers have to look into competitors’ strategies and prices to make comparison. The pricing strategy for Audi Company is by cost-based pricing which is convincing consumers of the vehicles value. The company profit will be the most important issue in pricing strategy. Audi Company is using psychological pricing which means it is consider about the pricing but not the world economics. The higher the price of car is, the higher quality of the car is. 5. 3 Promotion Strategy The promotion strategies for Audi Q5 are advertising and public relation.

In terms of advertising, Audi Company has to make decisions when setting the advertising budget which is objective, budget decisions, message and media decisions and advertising evaluation. The marketer had chosen the advertising budget by using competitive-parity method in order to prevent promotion war and know what the competitors plans. Public relation is that Audi Company builds a strong relationship with the customers. The public relation company will organise a special event for example car show to promote the cars. By organising the car show public relation people can introduce the benefit of Audi Q5 and the specifications. . 4 Distribution Patterns The distribution patterns for Audi Company will be wholesaling. Audi Company is the wholesaler and the Audi Company will hire selling agents to help the company to gain the sales. The selling agents will sell the cars direct to last consumers. The wholesaler will set the segmentation and targeting consumers in order to identify the consumers and build a strong relationship with them. Selling agents have to explain about the cars specification and pricing to the customers in details to make the customers understand about the car concept. 5. Sales Strategy Sales strategy for Audi Company for model of Q5 is Audi Company have a very good aftersales services and warranty. Each of Audi cars has a warranty of at least 3years. Then, consumers no need to worry about the high repairing cost. Let’s say a customer with an Audi car model of Q5 send his or her car to service and he or she is busying with the job he needs a car to go work while the car repairing. In this case, Audi Company will decide to give the particular customer a same model of car to use while the car is doing services. 5. 6 Sales Forecast

The annual sales for Audi Q5 in year 2011 are 183,678 units so the marketers aim that the next annual sales in year 2012 for Audi Q5 will be 500,000 units. The reason why the marketers aim for more annual sales is because the Audi Company objective is to get benefits. To gain more annual sales the marketing strategy have to be improve in order to have more supply and demand of Audi Q5. 5. 7 Sales Programs The sales program for Audi Q5 is the marketers will set market segmentation, market targeting, market position and market differentiation to concentrate on a market to increase the annual sales.

In terms of pricing, the marketers will consider the target market income level and needs to get an Audi Q5. The marketers also will consider about the consumer judgement on the product. The marketers have to do some promotion in order to introduce the product to the target market. In this case, the product is Audi Q5 so the marketers have to consider the suitable premium product promotion strategy. After all, the marketers have to set a distributer to sell out the product. The distributer is by wholesale which means the Audi Company has to hire a selling agent to distribute the product to the last consumer. 6. 0 Web Plan Summary 6. Website Marketing Strategy Website marketing strategy is something similar to marketing strategy but is only available in online business. First of all, the marketers have to select the target market for Audi Q5. The target market for Audi Q5 is basically on consumers which is with high level of household income and with age 40 above. Audi Q5 is a premium product so for online marketing the consumers have to look into more about details of the company and also the car. Furthermore, the marketers have to look into the competitor’s online advertisement make sure the competitor’s online marketing did not reduces the confident of the consumers.

Then, the marketers have to improve the Audi Company advertising skills. In terms of pricing, the marketers have to look into the market target needs. By using psychological pricing which means the consumers thought that the higher price of the car means the higher quality of the car. The consumers buying Audi Q5 is to show status and personal characteristic. The marketers have to create an advertisement either create by own or by hiring the graphic designer. For Audi Company normally the marketers will hire the famous graphic designer to create a fabulous website page.

And the graphic designer will helps to create the content of the advertising which is the slogan of the Audi Company by giving consumers message about the car comfort and luxury. In addition, the marketers have to monitor the advertising in terms of maintaining the latest news of the website. 6. 2 Development Requirements The marketers have to make sure the budget of the advertising did not over the cost so that the company did not lose any profit. The costing by hiring a famous graphic designer are very high so the marketers have to make sure that the online marketing are successful and hit the target of sales.

List of References Audi. com (n. d. ) Corporate strategy > Audi at a glance > Investor Relations > Audi Worldwide. [online] Available at: http://www. audi. com/com/brand/en/company/investor_relations/audi_at_a_glance/corporate_strategy. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012] En. wikipedia. org (1937) Volkswagen Group – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [online] Available at: http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Volkswagen_Group [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Fleetdirectory. co. uk (2012) Audi profile and Audi company details. [online] Available at: http://www. fleetdirectory. co. k/audi/ [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Audi. com (n. d. ) Careers > Audi Worldwide. [online] Available at: http://www. audi. com/com/brand/en/company/careers. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Models. audiusa. com (2012) Detailed Specifications > Features and Specifications > Audi Q5 > Audi of America. [online] Available at: http://models. audiusa. com/q5/detailed-specifications [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. En. wikipedia. org (2009) Audi Q5 – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [online] Available at: http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Audi_Q5#Transmissions [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Models. audiusa. om (2012) Engines > Features and Specifications > Audi Q5 > Audi of America. [online] Available at: http://models. audiusa. com/q5/engines [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Landrovermalaysia. com. my (2011) Land Rover – Media. [online] Available at: http://www. landrovermalaysia. com. my/media_rangerover44tdv8. asp [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Topgear. com (2012) Porsche Cayenne GTS unveiled in Malaysia – TopGear Malaysia. [online] Available at: http://www. topgear. com/my/7667-porsche-cayenne-gts-unveiled-in-malaysia/ [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Porsche. com (2012) Technical Specs – Cayenne Diesel – Cayenne Overview – Dr.

Ing. h. c. F. Porsche AG. [online] Available at: http://www. porsche. com/pap/models/cayenne/cayenne-diesel/featuresandspecs/ [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Annualreport2011. volkswagenag. com (2011) Volkswagen Group – Annual Report 2011 – Audi. [online] Available at: http://annualreport2011. volkswagenag. com/divisions/audi. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Audi. com (n. d. ) Corporate strategy > Audi at a glance > Investor Relations > Audi Worldwide. [online] Available at: http://www. audi. com/com/brand/en/company/investor_relations/audi_at_a_glance/corporate_strategy. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012].

Models. audiusa. com (2012) Detailed Specifications > Features and Specifications > Audi Q5 > Audi of America. [online] Available at: http://models. audiusa. com/q5/detailed-specifications [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. CNET (2009) Audi Q5 delivers sports car handling. [online] Available at: http://reviews. cnet. com/8301-13746_7-10309171-48. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Topgear. com (2012) Porsche Cayenne GTS unveiled in Malaysia – TopGear Malaysia. [online] Available at: http://www. topgear. com/my/7667-porsche-cayenne-gts-unveiled-in-malaysia/ [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012].

Audi UK (2012) Saving you fuel < Q5 < Q5 < Models < Audi UK. [online] Available at: http://www. audi. co. uk/new-cars/q5/q5/saving-you-fuel. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Babyrr. com (2012) babyRR. com – The Range Rover Evoque Forum – Negative Consumer Reports Review. [online] Available at: http://babyrr. com/forum/archive/index. php/thread-2845-1. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Porsche. com (2012) Drive – Features – Panamera S Hybrid – Dr. Ing. h. c. F. Porsche AG. [online] Available at: http://www. porsche. com/usa/models/panamera/panamera-s-hybrid/detail/drive/ [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. speedonline. com (n. d. ) PDK vs. Tiptronic – 6speedonline. com Forums. [online] Available at: http://www. 6speedonline. com/forums/cayenne-958/273697-pdk-vs-tiptronic. html [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. About. com Small Business: Canada (2000) Part Two of the 5 Step Internet Marketing Plan. [online] Available at: http://sbinfocanada. about. com/od/onlinebusiness/a/netcampaignpp_2. htm [Accessed: 28 Nov 2012]. Marketing, An Introduction ARMSTRONG, G. and KOTLER, P. (n. d. ) Marketing, An Introduction. 11th ed. United State of America: Pearson Education

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Sneaker War

Nike currently enjoys a 47% market share of the domestic footwear industry, with sales of $3. 77 billion. Nike has been manufacturing throughout the Asian region for over twenty-five years, and there are over 500,000 people today directly engaged in the production of their products. They utilize an outsourcing strategy, using only subcontractors throughout the globe. Their majority of their output today is produced in factories in China, Indonesia, and Vietnam, but they also have factories in Italy, the Philippines, Taiwan, and South Korea.

These factories are 100% owned by subcontractors, with the majority of their output consisting solely of Nike products. However, Nike does employ teams of four expatriates per each of the big three countries (China, Indonesia, Vietnam), that focus on both quality of product and quality of working conditions, visiting the factories weekly. They also developed their code of conduct in 1992 and have implemented it across the globe, as its goal is to set the standard for subcontractors to follow if they wish to do business with Nike.

However, due to a manufacturing network of this magnitude, they have faced numerous violations involving factory conditions and human rights issues, which have been widely publicized. They have responded to these issues through the Andrew Young report, the Dartmouth Study, and Ernst & Young’s continual monitoring, but are still approximately two years away from completely addressing these problems throughout the globe. Reebok Reebok, as the second leading manufacturer of footwear, has domestic revenues of $1. 28 billion and a market share of 16%.

Similar to Nike, they also utilize a 100% outsourcing strategy and manufacture their products throughout Asia. They have created and implemented their own code of conduct for manufactures to follow, but have less infrastructure than Nike across the globe to enforce it. They are facing scrutiny in regards to wage, overtime, and air quality issues, and like Nike, are working to address these issues. However, their strength, the creation and distribution of a global brand, is allowed to foster under this manufacturing strategy, as hey focus on their core competencies, and out source their production.

Adidas is currently enjoying the fastest growth of any brand domestically, with a market share of 6% and revenues of $500 million. They have been shielded from bad publicity by the two Goliath’s of the industry, Nike and Reebok, and are reaping the rewards substantially. They have adjusted their manufacturing strategy, from a vertical operation in Germany in the 60’s and 70’s, to an outsourcing focus today throughout Asia.

Unlike the big two, they do not have a code of conduct, and their factories are considered to be the worst in the industry. It is just a matter of time before they are exposed, with an underground swelling of negativity already occurring today. In order to avoid the negative effects and lost revenues that Nike and Reebok have received, they need to immediately begin to take a pro active stance in regards to the working conditions of their factories.

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Brand Community

During the last fifteen years, there are many popular subjects: relationship marketing and brand building,etc.These hot subjects encourage interaction and speed up the incubation of new sources of disciplinary growth: Brand Relationship(the relationship between consumer and brand).In Brand Relationship theory sysytem,more scholars focus on the relationship between consumer and brand, but Muniz and O’Guinn(2001) did more research on the relationship among consumers, and put forward a new brand concept – Brand Community.

This concept comes from “consumption community”,which was first proposed by historian Daniel Boorstin(1974), ‘in the modern era of high mobility, people look not only to communality of consumption behavior but also to neighborhood as a basis for feelings of community.’ The same as consumption community, brand community is also initiative and drive of individuals’ co –operating at the beginning, after that, enterprise start to take advantage of the power of brand community to build brand loyalty and brand equity, therefore, brand community is becoming a new weapon of marketing.

In this essay, I make literature review surveys on scholarly articles, books relevant to brand community, providing a description, summary and critical evaluation of brand community. Firstly, discuss the origin and definition of brand community. Secondly, summary the research status and the dynamic natures of brand community which are different from consumption community, briefly introduce three main features of brand community. Thirdly, illustrate evolution of brand community model. Fourthly, case study, use case of Starbucks to explain the implications of brand community. Finally, conclusion and the prospect of research.

1 Demarcation of Brand community

1.1 Origin of Brand community

During the last few years, there is a trend that academic research on consumption activities moved away from considerations of individual to a focus on communal. The word ‘community’ was used frequently. ‘consumption community’ (Boorstin, 1973). ‘Subcultures of consumption’ (schouten and McAlexander, 1995). ‘Band community’ (Muniz and O’Guinn, 2001; McAlexander et al., 2002).These communities are referred to as ‘social collectives’ (Greenwood, 1994). ‘Life-mode communities’ (Firat and Dholakia, 1998) and‘neo-tribes’ (Cova, 1997).

Brands provide the linking value to some individuals who wants to become member of these communities. These communities seize the idea that people have relations with other people and such relationships are constructed around a fulcrum acted by brands. Harley Owners group(HOG)is a good example of the brand providing such linking value(Fournier et al.,2001).There are more and more descriptive studies detailing the features of such communities: Star Wars fans (Brown et al.,2003); Sun’s Java Center community (Williams and Cothrel,2000) and Nutella(Cova and Pace, 2005).

In a word, communities are expected to provide benefits for the organisation: they affect brand equity and create a stable base of loyal, enthusiastic consumers (Muñiz and O’Guinn, 2001; McAlexander et al., 2001). Actually, it is not easy for a brand to establish a community.

Brand-centred communities may typify themselves to open up a utopian place in the contemporary world.Kozinets (2001) noted that ‘impossibility and dreamness together with deep motivational power and desire’ While utopianism enables customers to engage with reality rather than merely escape into fantasy (Geoghegan, 1987).Which means transform and subvert are the two abilities of utopian (Maclaran and Brown, 2001).Members and the relations among them compose a community. McAlexander and Koeing (2002) identify communities on the basis of identification among community members(a neighborhood, a leisure pursuit, an occupation and devotion to a brand).Brand community is a new type of community, different from traditional community, can form a strong image, a lengthy history around brands.Actually,it is a community established with brand-centric

1.2 Definition of Brand community

Because brand community is a new concept, there is nounified definition in academia, but we can define it from two parts: narrow and broad meanings. Narrow meaning is represented by Muniz and O’Guinn. Based on the research on some brands, such as Ford Bronco, etc.Muniz and 0’Guinn (2001) noted a brand community is a no-geographically bound and specialized community based on a structured set of social relationships among admirers of a brand. It highlight the point connection of brand community is brand not region, and brand community has three essential markers (Muniz and O’Guinn, 2001).

Bagozzi (2006) noted that brand community is consumption community with common enthusiasm for a certain brand or certain good social cognition (environmental protection), the members realize collective objective or express the common emotional and commitment through common action. Substantially,this is as the same as Muniz and O’Guinn’s definition,they both emphasize the expressions of emotion and action from a certain brand

McAlexander (2002) expended this concept,the broad meaning of brand community is a connection network with focal customer as centre, besides brand relationship, there are many other relationships. This concept emphasizes the Consumers’ all-round experience of brand. Upshaw and Taylor (2001) made a broad explanation to this concept,they documented that all the stakeholders who have relationship with the brand (including employee、customer、stockholder、supplier and strategic partnered) compose brand community.

2 Basic theory and concept 2.1 Research Status Brand community is becoming an increasing popular topic in brand management research; however, the short-lived time leads to its present research is preliminary, and mainly focused on the concept, features, origin, impact and modes, etc. For example,Muniz and O’Guinn(2001)claimed that brand community has three essential features of community: consciousness of kind, rituals and traditions and moral responsibility.

Schau and Muniz (2002)reported the value of brand community image is important to consumers identify centified;Schmitt , Rogers and Vrotsos (2003)described the performance of brand community in Jeep,BMW and many other vehicle brands;Hoeffler and Keller (2002)noted the improving consciousness of brand community is in favor of enhancing brand equity based on consumers; McAlexander , Kim and Roberts (2003)researched the relationship between brand community and consumers satisfaction, consumers loyalty, and claimed that consumers loyalty is not only affected by customer satisfaction, but also by brand community.

Belk and Tumbat noted that it is not easy for a brand to establish a community.(Schouten and McAlexander, 1995; Kozinets,2001;Muniz and Schau,2005).There are many scholars focusing on virtual community, documented the classify of community and marketing strategy (McWilliams , 2000 ; Monica , 2000 ; Wind , Mahajan and Gunther ,2003). All above research enrich the brand community theory, but there is a serious problem: research only stays on statical concept ,feature and primary implication phase.Muniz and O’Guinn said the future of research is to know how brand community change in different social situation.

2.2 Dynamic Natures Consumption community and brand community are different on several dimensions:firstly,Muniz and O’Guinn(2001)noted that brand community is non-geographically bounded, they may be either scattered(Boorstin,1974),or geographically concentrated (Holt,1995).Geographical concentration is the dimension of social context.

To be more exact, interactions within a brand community may be rich in social context. Communication may be predominantly face to face,nediated by electronic devices(Boorstin,1974).Members may have a number of information about each other(gender,age and background).There is little understanding of movement along this dimension. The temporal stability of a community can be asset to marketers in as much as legerity equates with a long-term, stable valuable market communities can share useful consumption experiences. (Arnould and Price, 1993).

2.3 Three main features 2.3.1 Consciousness of kind This feature includes two sides: legitimacy and oppositional brand loyalty.Muniz and O’Guinn noted that members feel an significant connection to the brand and toward each other, even they are strangers, members feel they know each other, “the link is more important than the thing ”(Cova,1997,p307).They also can distinguish who is the real member by judging whether he is familiar with and in favor of the brand, not just because of chasing fashion to use product of the brand.Sometimes,brand community members build community to share common experience and brand connotation to fight with other brands. That means community will become more solidarity when facing with threats (Muñiz and O’Guinn, 2001).

2.3.2 Shared rituals and traditions The main point of this feature is shared consumption experience. It consists of celebrating the history of the brand and sharing brand stories. The transmission of brand community is life-affirming to establish its culture. At the same time, brand history is brand community’s cultural equity. Sharing brand stories playing a significant role in brand building and maintaining. It strengthens consciousness of kind among brand members and contributes to imagined community. It also reinforces members ‘identity to the brand and help members learn more about communities’ value. Ads play a significant role in brand community rituals and traditions. Members are concerned with ads as they display the brand to those outside of the community, and themselves (Muñiz and O’Guinn, 2001). 2.3.3 Moral Responsibility

Its definition is “a sense of duty to the community as a whole and to individual members of the community” (Muñiz and O’Guinn, 2001).There are at least two traditional communal missions: the first one is integrating and retaining members, there is the presence of a social moral consciousness in traditional communities, they recognize the bounds of what is appropriate and inappropriate, right and wrong. Another is assisting in the use of the brand. Assistance is to help community members, both known and unknown, repair the product or solve problems. Assisting is one of the places in which computer-mediated communication offers a great deal of information (Muñiz and O’Guinn, 2001).According to the primary nature of the relationship, the assistance offered between individuals sharing a communal bond is specialized (Wellman, 1990; Wellman and Wortley, 1990)

3 Evolution of Brand Community model

3.1 Traditional Brand community Model Boorstin emphasized the relationship between product (brand) and customer in consumption community model (figure 1).Customers look brand as the promise enterprise made for the products function value and image. Enhancing brand means the contract between enterprise and customer. To satisfy different needs from different target market, different brands need different brand positioning, even the same brand, with the changing of customers’ need, also need change brand positioning. Therefore, Boorstin took the perspective that consumption community is customer-centric, the development of brand should stick to customers’ need as the guide.

3.2. Triangle Brand community model Muniz and O’Guinn ,who are the initiator of the theory of brand community, enrich the relationship model of “customer-brand”, emphasized brand as intermediary (figure 2).With the development of social economy, customers are not confined to need for product (material level), they are not only concentrating on the function value of products own, more concentrating on consuming the product can give them symbolic significance and emotion interests.

The similar experience and shared emotion among community members give them more emotion value than product function value. Brand community Triad Model break through the single dimensionality in traditional “customer-brand”, concentrate on the relationship among “customer-customer”. Weakness is that the brand will be influenced not only by customers belong to itself, but also by customers belong to other brands. For example,Many customers will interview the website and forum before purchasing products, they can find information about many other brand customers.

3.3. Brand stakeholder relations model Upshaw and Taylor came up with a new Masterbrand Community model based on Brand community Triad Model. Their opinion is all the stakeholders with brand should include employee,customer,stockholder,supplier and strategic partnered.compose brand community(figure 3).A good brand image is the base of community, while these stakeholders play an significant role in maintaining brand image and reputation, only be kind to these stakeholders ,can brand have attraction. It is the motivation of brand community.

This model organizes many factors which can influence brand to build and maintain the harmonious relationship between them. Although this model emphasizes that many kinds of stakeholders are important to brand building, it involves too many complicated relationships which is not easy for analysis and research. Besides, this model strengthens brand’s core position, neglect customers playing an important role in brand building.

3.4. Focal customer model Based on Muniz and O’Guinn’s brand community theory (2001), McAlexander,Schouten and Koening (2002) put forward Focal Customer Model. This model emphasizes brand, product, customer and marketer are important factors to compose brand community, and bring four relationships into brand community: customer and enterprise, customer and product, customer and brand, customer and customer. This model’s feature is highlighting the focal customer playing linking role in brand community. Besides Muniz’s “relationship among customers”, they added product, brand and marketer. Although this structure is more comprehensive, it has drifted “brand community” raised by Muniz, which studied the relationship among customers.

McAlexander’s opinion actually is another closely related topic-brand relationship. A research specialist in brand relationship field, Fourier (2001), expended the relationship between brand and customer to four relations as McAlexander’s model. Based on new product diffusion theory, focal customer is playing an opinion leader during product diffusion process, they are the base of enterprise. So, when enterprices want to attract new customers, also should pay more attention to focal customers’ satisfaction and loyalty.

3.5 conclusions The premise of research on brand community is better understanding of brand community models. From the focus of the study,Muniz’s and McAleXander’s models focus on customer, while Upshaw’s model focus on brand, the difference is that former model studied the role customer playing in brand building, the later studied all the factors can influence brand. From the range of the study, Upshaw’s mode is very comprehensive, but too complex; it is difficult to consider all types of relations in one study at the same time. That is the reason why it is seldom used.Muniz’s and McAlexander’s models are more useful, but from the logicality of study, their models did not distinguish the importance of all types of relations, that is to say, they did not tell us which relation playing an important role in brand community. 4 Case study: The success and failure of Starbucks

Founded in 1971, Starbucks has the fastest growth rate of any company in the history of retailing. (George and Pierce, 2007)Starbucks sells mainly coffee, and even were it the best coffee in the world it would still only be coffee. The question spontaneously arises, however, why is Starbucks today a brand to be counted among the elite of mythical brands? What has made the consumer pay a premium price for something they would normally have paid significantly less for? The answer can be found in the fact that Starbucks’ marketing approach goes far beyond the tangible component of the product by infusing coffee with new symbolic values and brand community. A high quality of coffee, widespread locations and commercial partnership agreements have undoubtedly contributed to the company’s growth, but these elements are not sufficient to make a brand a global myth, an authentic icon of postmodern society.

An exchange from the movie Duplex illustrates the bohemian image Starbucks has acquired as a place where writers and other intellectuals are welcomed as part of a specific community. In the film, a young wife, played by Drew Barrymore, turns to her writer husband and says ”Well, what if you got out of the house for a little while and went to write at, like a Starbucks or something? ” ”It would be nice not to have to write at Starbucks with all the other novelists,” replies the young man, played by Ben Stiller.It is precisely this which is the true essence of Starbucks: a place which evokes symbolic values and brand community values which go beyond coffee and the products sold and which makes a sign a metropolitan legend. It is feeling part of a community like that of the writers looking for success quoted in the film, and many morebesides,which makes consumers identify with a place where, when it really comes down to it, what you mostly do is just drinking coffee.

A person who habitually goes a sort of community to do so not just to drink a cup of coffee but to access a sort of community where they find values, models and behaviors which they tend to recognize themselves in. While Starbucks continued to enrich its context with new meanings and values, other competitors continued to simply sell coffee (Shu-pei Tsai, 2005), Starbucks’s performance demonstrates how, by enhancing the atmosphere and making the place of consumption a space linked to trendsetters and not the minority fringe of the population, by creating a sense of belonging and community, it is possible to achieve success even when satisfying routine needs.

As Volli says, Starbucks “is together closed and secret but also open and public, it shows and hides at the same time, it simultaneously exercises modesty and seduction, the secret and the recall”(Volli,1998).Starbucks has known how to invest a new way of communication ,strongly centered on the communicative processes among members of its brand community and between its members and the outside world.

There is no perfect in the world,with the development of society,economy and many other aspects,Starbucks also should face with some shortage and challenge.The greater standardization of the “structures” has slowly made them lose the bohemian charm which the first points of sale had, and that aroma of coffee which represented the heart of the brand community offering in Starbucks has progressively weakened. The sensory connotation which immediately hits you when you enter a Starbucks and which creates around it a relaxing atmosphere similar to that felt in a club of people who share the passion for coffee, is gradually getting weaker.

But the problem is not limited to reduced olfactory involvement, if anything it involves the fact that the chain is losing its soul of the past, becoming more and more like a conventional chain and losing that atmosphere which was so dear to its founder of a small neighborhood ship, whose emotive warmth can generate particularly intense experiences. We could say that this is one of the risks which companies which have been able to build real communities around their brands find them having to face. When the brand becomes as developed as Starbucks, its audience widens and new consumers, with characters different from those of the community’s original members, take possession, thus reducing the initial followers’ feeling of belonging.

Infact, belonging to a community satisfies the desire of individuals to share common aspects with other individuals and in that way express their distinctiveness from other social groups. When those very people they are trying to distinguish themselves from try to become part of the community, it is necessary to know how to manage this process by trying to preserve the symbolic consistency of the brand rather than adapting it to the new context. This is a natural process: the company does not live so as to remain in the ghetto of the niche; it is in development a growth that we find the preservation of its vital functions, but the process must be handled with extreme care, avoiding compromising the good and the unique that has been built.

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Free Essays

Yves Saint Laurent

After a thorough study of your company and a meticulous analysis the information you have given me, I have concluded that if Yves Saint Laurent changes from a differentiation strategy to a differentiation focus strategy, it is possible for YSL to double its profit within three years. The upsides of the change are a 150-percent increase in profit and strong brand awareness in a niche segment whose profile will be described in details hereafter.

On the other hand, there are downside risks, including high possibility that Louis Vuitton, Tods and Bulgari will attempt to replicate YSL products since they are close to the targeted positioning as well (See Appendix A). The specific goals for YSL in the next 3 years include focusing on a specific segment of the fashion industry. YSL’s current operations and net sales of $145 million are small, compared to Gucci and even YSL Beaute but they make differentiation focus strategy a suitable and viable option.

Furthermore, the prospect of targeting a niche market also arises from YSL’s prominent image as sophisticated sexy and European-chic. Hence, I recommend that YSL develops a focus on men and women who are “thirty and thriving”. These clienteles are those who are beautiful and sophisticated with a promising career. They are quite successful for their age and seem to “have, but still want it all” such as young successful entrepreneurs or middle-management investment bankers.

The benefits of focusing on clientele who are in their 30s are the solidity of their earnings which will drive stable sales and their tendency toward elegance and departing from pure chic and hip. The other goals that coupled with a targeted niche segment are improving operating margin and sales. With the declining trend in royalties, I recommend that YSL should discount them and focus mainly on operating margin excluding royalties. The milestones are 20% in the 2004, 24% in 2008 and 28% in 2005 which will bring YSL’s operating margin to Vuitton’s vicinity.

However, increasing volume in sales should increase as in well in order to gain a more critical mass. The milestones are set as followed: at least $200, 300 and $400 in the first, second and third year respectively. These targets will uniquely reposition YSL since it has a higher operating margin than Hermes and its sales target is much lower than Vuitton which signifies its exclusivity (See Appendix B). Product: There are two products offering options that I would consider: ready-to-wear clothes or leather bags.

Both products are desirable in the chosen niche market. Louis Vuitton has a leather-dominant product mix while Hermes would be a more appropriate competitor for read-to-make apparel. It is important that YSL only choose one product on which it can focus because a diverse product mix when implement a differentiation-focus strategy runs a dilution risk. The durability of leather is an advantage with lower product line turnover than apparel. Bags are often viewed as more versatile as a fashionable statement compared to the constantly changing trends in apparel.

However, the habit of buying clothes when new season comes around can drive higher sales. In the case that clothing is chosen, it is recommended that the sizes should range from 0-2 and the fit should enunciate our clienteles’ confident figures. These factors contribute to the exclusivity. Also, there are a lot of opportunities for synergies in production. YSL can have production in Italy with the help of Gucci’s excellent suppliers relationship and expertise as well as its own factories in Paris.

Price: In order to meet the targeted sales of $400 million after 3 years, if each item is has a premium price of $3000, YSL is aiming to sell 134,000 items in 2005. It is a reasonable estimate considering that after the acquisition of Mendes, YSL will have the capacity to produce and sell at such volume. However, it is recommended that YSL open additional stores (See Place/Distribution Channel). When buying raw materials from suppliers, YSL and Gucci need to collaborate to ask for better discounts.

YSL should also sell off any unnecessary factories bought from Mendes in France if it is more economical to produce in Italy with Gucci. Place/Distribution Channels: Gucci and YSl can also share facilities including warehouses in Italy and factories in France. Another recommendation is that YSL should purchase all its licensees, sever contracts with other distributors and wholesale businesses even if they are bringing in earnings. YSL needs an exclusive distribution channel to match the nature of its products. YSL should only sell its products through directly operated stores.

YSL need to work with Gucci’s recent revamp team in order to change their store layouts to have a lounge ambience, fitting with the sophisticated 30s. YSL also needs to ask Gucci to pick 15 new locations in Italy for additional stores. There should only be stores in Italy and France to preserve the European charm which is a big part of its brand image and identity. It must close down the distributor in Japan so it can have a complete control over what the stores look like, how the sales representatives dress and behave.

Another distribution channel that YSL should explore is the budding e-commerce culture but YSL should retain exclusivity by restricting access unless existing customers have a code authorized by YSL to log in. Promotion: “A luxurious brand for the most fortunately beautiful people on earth” The phrase should be the tagline for any YSL advertisement and a benchmark to assessing the brand performance. Also, it is important to reiterate the “fortunately beautiful” in marketing campaign as to reinforcing the exclusivity of the clientele and to anchoring the brand with such clientele.

Even the buying experience is unique. It is a negotiation between the salesperson and the customers to determine each other’s fit. Salespeople should be told not to rush a sale and customers are encouraged to make multiple visits to the store before purchasing. In addition, if Gucci has Tom Ford, YSL needs to use Yves’s revered figure in marketing. An image of the young Yves will add to the mystique of the brand and a linkage to a rich history. I hope these recommendations are helpful and I am looking forward to working with you.