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This model is built around two axes. The first represents the risk that the consumer is willing to assume in its brand choice, that is to say, the level of effort that this consumer is willing to accept (or not) when choosing a brand depending on whether this latter is already known to him/her or not.
The second line shows the anchoring - local or global – that the company is planning for its brand.
The framework is thus a representation of the above factors and displays the two equity issues which are on one hand the customers’ trust and the degree of risk-reduction associated with the brand, and on on the other hand the companies local vs. global brand emphasis
choice. Figure 1 presents this framework. Figure 1:
(a) The first axis of the analytical model represents the nature of brand differentiation i.e. the degree of localness or globalness that the company wants to spotlight in promoting its products. The local vs. global dimension refers to the grade of localness a company should – or not – emphasize when choosing its brand(s) name(s). A key consideration for Chinese companies is to determine to what extent globalness or localness should be emphasized, and specifically to what extent rooting the brand in localness may represent a positive or negative added value. The more the company wants to “minimize” its origins, the more it must look to use brands which evoke globalness – on the left of the axis – meaning an international or cosmopolitan environment (Caldwell et al., 2006;
Riefler and Diamantopoulos, 2009), such that the production region will not be a factor taken into account by the consumer. Yet on the contrary, the emphasis can be put on localness – the right-hand side on the horizontal axis.
(b) The second axis of the analytical model represents the heuristics of consumer motivation i.e.
the cognitive effort (Strebinger, 2004) that the consumer is likely to make in a given product category in relation to the expected benefits from the brand (Berthon et al., 2009). The customer who opts for a low cognitive effort is in a static attitude and not ready to take the risk to purchase an unknown brand. On the other end, the more the customer accepts to take a risk at the time of purchase (i.e. buying an unknown brand), the higher his/her propensity to accept a cognitive effort;
which means that the consumer is implicated and is proactive in researching information on a less explicit brand. This axis represents the degree of risk reduction perceived by the consumer because the less the consumers are willing to take a risk at the time of purchase (Kapferer, 2000) the higher their brand expectations and the lower their cognitive effort will be.
Implications At the theoretical level The model suggests that the significant historical debate on a product’s origins or its components leads to, in the case ECCs, a reconfiguration centered on these companies’ strategic intent to globalize their brands. This strategic intent consists either in sourcing the brand from its local dimension to capitalize on its authenticity, or to choose an adapted global path which allows for challenging brands already established via similar methods.
To Agrawal and Kamakura’s (1999) question: “Country of origin: A competitive advantage?”, our answer is yes, but not in the usual sense as the research confirms the competitive opportunities of brands from emerging countries’ companies. Contrary to the conventional wisdom we recommend to ECCs with forceful strategic intentions concerning origin and favorability of their brand names to consider a much wider range of options, including 'being local and acting global'.
The contribution of this paper is to construct a framework that suggests how an emerging country company could create and develop the best-adapted international brand policy depending on its specific situation regarding localness emphasis and customers’ risk reduction acceptance. Four strategic branding concepts for emerging countries’ companies when expanding abroad are presented and explained. The results of the analysis indicate that the debate surrounding the influence of the geographical origin of a product must be renewed within the framework of a dynamic perspective, evidently focused on the strategic intention of the ECCs brand at the time of their international expansion.
At the managerial level The model leads to four branding strategy options which may be put into practice in emerging countries’ companies, depending on the local or global rooting focus and on the company perception of the customer’s degree of risk aversion. With a reasonable degree of plausibility the four strategic branding intents can be classified according to the motives and benefits as well as the predominant styles of expansion displayed by emerging countries’ companies when internationalizing.
Rather than seeing brand strategy choice as an inevitable consequence of international development, ECCs are in a position to innovate by making a competitive advantage of their lack of anteriority in this domain. Particularly, the model suggests that the notion that only global brands are associated with higher product quality or prestige (in relation to local brands) is no longer a universal truth and thus needs to be interpreted with caution. An emerging country company may gain time by purchasing already existing well-known Western brands. However it may too benefit from choosing to emphasize a locally-rooted branding strategy, conditional to creating and maintaining the same high standards of any brand in a developed country’s market.
Conclusion The research confirms the competitive opportunities of brands from emerging countries’ companies, and broadens the scope of international branding knowledge to under-researched regions of the world as suggested by Whitelock and Fastoso (2007). Our proposal reinforces the contingency perspective of international marketing according to which brand policy may depend on company criteria as well as foreign market specificities and, furthermore, concurs with Usunier’s (2011) suggestion about the necessary deliberate deployment of a strategic branding intent which itself could be successfully conveyed to consumers.
A comparative analysis of the four strategic branding concepts for emerging countries’ companies when expanding abroad is to be performed.
Brand, Brand Strategy, Emerging Countries, Brand of Origin, Country of Origin References Aaker, D. (1992), “The value of brand equity”, Journal of Business Strategy, Vol. 13, N° 4, pp. 27-32 Agrawal, J. and Kamakura, W.A. (1999), “Country of origin: A competitive advantage?”, International Journal of Research in Marketing, Vol. 16, pp. 255-267 Berthon, P., Hulbert, J. M. and Pitt, L. F. (1999), “Brand management prognostications”, Sloan Management Review, Vol. 40, N° 2, pp.53-65 Caldwell, M., Blackwell, K. and Tulloch, K. (2006), “Cosmopolitanism as a consumer orientation”, Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, Vol. 9, N° 2, pp.126Hult, G.T. (2012), “A focus on international competitiveness”, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Vol. 40, N° 2, pp. 195-201 Kapferer, J.N. (2000), Re marques, Les Editions D’Organisation, Paris Kapferer, J.N. (2005), “The post-global brand ”, Brand Management, Vol. 12, N°5, pp. 319Keller, K.L. (1993), “Conceptualizing, measuring and managing customer-based brand equity”, Journal of Marketing, Vol. 57, N°1, pp. 1-22 Keller, K.L. (2012), Strategic Brand Management: building, measuring and managing brand equity, 4th edition, Pearson Education, Harlow Magnusson, P., Haas, S.M. and Zhao, H. (2008), “A Branding Strategy for Emerging Market Firms Entering Developed Markets”, Journal of International Consumer Marketing, Vol. 20, N°3/4, pp. 95-107 Ramamurti, R. (2012), “Competing with emerging market multinationals”, Business Horizons, vol. 55, pp. 251-249 Riefler, P., Diamantopoulos, A. (2009), “Consumer cosmopolitanism: Review and replication of the CYMYC scale”, Journal of Business Research, Vol. 62, N°4, pp. 407-419 Rosenbloom, A. and Haefner, J.E. (2009), “Country-of-Origin Effects and Global Brand Trust: A First Look”, Journal of Global Marketing, Vol. 22, pp. 267-278 Schultz, D.E. (2008), “Branding from Emerging Markets”, Marketing Management, Vol. 17, N° 5, pp. 10-11 Sharma, S. (1999), “Trespass or symbiosis? Dissolving the boundaries between strategic marketing and strategic management”, Journal of Strategic Marketing, Vol. 7, pp. 73-88 Shet, J.N. (2011), “Impact of Emerging Markets on Marketing: Rethinking Existing perspectives and practices”, Journal of Marketing, Vol. 75, pp. 166-182 Slater, S. and Olson, E. (2001), “Marketing’s contribution to the implementation of business strategy: an empirical analysis”, Strategic Management Journal, Vol.22, pp. 1055-1067 Strebinger, A. (2004), “Strategic Brand Concept and Brand Architecture Strategy – A proposed Model”, Advances in Consumer Research, Vol. 31, pp. 656-661 Urde, M. (1999), “Brand orientation: A mindset for building brands into strategic resources”, Journal of Marketing Management, Vol.15, pp. 117-133 Usunier, J.-C. (2011), “The shift from manufacturing to brand origin: Suggestions for improving COO relevance”, International Marketing Review, Vol. 28, N°5, pp. 486-496 Whitelock, J. and Fastoso, F. (2007), “Understanding International Branding: Defining the Domain and Reviewing the Literature”, International Marketing Review, Vol. 24, N°3, pp.
252-270 Winit, W., Gregory, G., Cleveland, M. and Verlegh, P. (2014), “Global vs local brands: how home country bias and price differences impact brand evaluations”, International Marketing Review, Vol. 31 N° 2, pp.102-128 Wong, H.Y., Merrilees, B. (2007), “Multiple Roles for Branding in International Marketing”, International Marketing Review, Vol. 24, N°4, pp. 384-408 Yi-Min, C. (2010), “The Persistence of Brand Value at Country, Industry, and Firm Levels”, Journal of Global Marketing, Vol. 23, N° 3, pp. 253-269 Redesigning the future: Managing the tension between brand heritage and innovation Cooper, Holly Merrilees,Bill Miller,Dale Purpose Brand heritage attracts significant academic attention (e.g. Balmer et al, 2006; Hakala et al, 2011; Urde et al, 2007). Yet, the corporate heritage brand domain is surprisingly underresearched (Balmer, 2013). Maintaining past heritage and progressing brand identity are paradoxical (Merrilees & Miller 2008). That paradox or tension, which is at the core of a corporate heritage brand’s identity, presents a significant challenge for brand management (Aaker, 2009; Balmer, 2011a; Merrilees & Miller, 2008; Urde, 2013). This paper’s purpose is to understand resolving the tension in the corporate heritage brand context, using a qualitative research design. The findings provide insight into how brand managers can remain true to the brand’s essence and innovatively extend the brand’s heritage.
The Literature The paper follows Burghausen and Balmer (2014a; 2014b) and Hakala et al (2011) in elevating heritage above other temporal concepts, such past or history, because of its unique ability to derive legitimacy and value from the past, present and potentially the future. This study draws on the literature domains of heritage brand paradox, corporate heritage brands and brand heritage management.
Heritage Brand Paradox Branding scholars acknowledge the challenge of maintaining the ‘allure and magic’ of a corporate brand and concurrently be relevant (Balmer et al 2006; Merrilees & Miller, 2008).
The tension between constancy and change represents a core paradox in branding (GyrdJones et al, 2013). Corporate heritage brands, despite strong reputations, face the problem that comes with longevity, potentially being perceived as old rather than innovative (Wiedmann et al, 2011).
Remaining True to the Authentic Core Brands ‘must remain true to an authentic core while also remaining relevant’ (Beverland, 2005a, p. 1004). Brand essence has a strong connection to authenticity and brand heritage (Beverland, 2005a). To remain true to the authenticity of a brand, leaders must diligently govern the corporate brand’s core values, a defining element of a corporate brand’s essence (Urde, 2009). The core values can convey the constancy of the brand’s promise, while adapting their interpretation and expression can make the brand relevant.
Embracing Change Arguably, corporate heritage brands only remain relevant if they can manage change and continuity, and being in tune with a brand’s community can support brand renewal practices and in turn, brand endurance (Balmer, 2011a). Balmer (2011a, 535) finds that the ‘ruthless pragmatics of the Crown’ in accounting for changes in the political, economic and social environment ‘has ensured its continuance’. Burghausen and Balmer (2015) emphasise the role of stewardship in maintaining what is termed as heritage relative invariance (Balmer 2011b), accommodating continuity and change.
Relevance Managing brands for the long-term requires brand management to balance ‘brand constancy with activities that create relevance’ (Beverland & Luxton, 2005, 110). Keller (2003) identifies that energy, relevance and differentiation, positively enhance brand strength. He argues that a brand needs to be strong in all three categories to leverage heritage successfully.
Corporate heritage brands ‘remain meaningful not only because of their provenance but because of their salience’ as they ‘not only have, but also give, identity’ (Balmer 2011b, 1382).
Innovation and design Corporate heritage brands can use innovation to tackle emerging consumer needs (Morley & McMahon, 2011). Innovation takes many forms including creative ways of producing, packaging, and delivering goods and services; new ways of communicating to stakeholders about issues and initiatives; and inventive ways to create a cradle-to-cradle organisation. The value of developing an organisational culture that supports innovation is clear (Borja de Mozota, 2003). Design innovation is one strategic approach to brand revitalisation, which could be an effective means for balancing commercial and artistic tensions (Beverland, 2005b; Beverland & Luxton, 2005). Design is an integral aspect of developing and sustaining relevance, and potentially a means for communicating brand constancy, while evolving the style of the brand to engage contemporary stakeholders. Hence, design innovation could help corporate heritage brands to obviate the risk of seeming outmoded or timeworn, rather than innovative.