Special Issue: Fresh Perspectives on Brands
Journal of Marketing Management, Volume 36, 2020 – Issue 11-12

Fresh perspectives on brand management
Carsten Baumgarth, Dirk-Mario Boltz, Holger J. Schmidt & Stuart Roper


Building a corporate brand in the digital age: imperatives for transforming born-digital startups into successful corporate brands
Michela Mingione & Russell Abratt
“For startups, building a corporate brand in the digital age is an important strategic imperative and today requires different brand management strategies from the traditional ones in the past. Entrepreneurs and managers would strongly benefit from a deeper understanding of how to successfully ride the digital wave and transform their born-digital startups into corporate brands. By studying the successful story of the OneDay Group, an Italian corporate brand that originally grew out of a blog, this paper provides five imperatives that can be used by entrepreneurs and marketing managers in the digital age for the creation and development of a born-digital startup, and transforming it into a competitive corporate brand. Specifically, it defines, explores and explains the novel construct of born-digital startup corporate brands. The present work makes a theoretical and practical contribution to the startup literature, the corporate brand literature and the co-creation literature …” Read more >

Experimenting, partnering and bonding: a framework for the digital influencer-brand endorsement relationship
Thaysa Costa Do Nascimento, Roberta Dias Campos & Maribel Suarez
“Endorsement studies have gained complexity with the possibilities created by social media platforms, where ordinary consumers can achieve celebrity status and rise to the level of digital influencers. Recent studies highlight that influencers have evolutionary trajectories. However, little is known about how these trajectories are related to social media endorsement dynamics. Based on a five-year netnography, this research investigates the main forms of endorsement that connect digital influencers and brands and how endorsement practices evolve along influencers’ trajectories. The research outlines three forms of endorsement relationship that evolve during the influencer’s career cycle: experimenting, partnering and bonding. Finally, the paper argues that brands play different roles, as providers, partners and hirers, supporting and rewarding digital influencers’ entrepreneurial process …” Read more >

Social media responses and brand personality in product and moral harm crises: why waste a good crisis?
John Nadeau, Richard Rutter & Fiona Lettice
“The purpose of this research is to understand the process of attitudinal changes towards a brand in crisis and the brand’s communication around the crisis by utilising balance theory and brand personality. Four crisis case studies were selected and data was collected from brands’ Twitter platforms on either side of the crisis event horizon. Results demonstrate an opportunity to update the balance theory approach in a crisis by considering the type of crisis (product harm vs. moral harm) relative to brand personality (brand competence vs. brand character). Balance theory helps explain how consumer attitude changes occur through a crisis. Further, the mapping of brand communications in social media over four selected case studies show that brand personality identity can change as a result of a crisis and demonstrate how brand managers can actively frame their online communication to help the brand to recover more effectively from a crisis …” Read more >

Experiential art infusion effect on a service’s brand: the role of emotions
Caroline Cuny, Mathieu Pinelli, Marianela Fornerino & Axel deMarles
“This study seeks to extend the notion of the art infusion effect to an artistic intervention in a service context, and specify its mechanisms. Dual mediation by immersion and aesthetic experience may explain the experiential art infusion effect on brands. As a test of this prediction, this study investigates groups of customers who experience an artistic intervention in different conditions, characterised by two types of music (art-congruent vs. brand-congruent) and an artist’s performance. Experiencing one of these artistic interventions increased brand attachment, relative to a control condition. Immersion and aesthetic experience (positive emotions) exerted a significant dual mediation effect on brand attachment when comparing the art-congruent music and the performance conditions. Interestingly, immersion and negative emotions did not reveal any mediating influence …” Read more >

‘You’re not perfect, but you’re still my favourite.’ Brand affective congruence as a new determinant of self-brand congruence
Floortje Wijnands & Tripat Gill
“Consumers tend to prefer brands whose image is congruent with their actual or their ideal self. Despite the critical importance of self-brand congruence, the literature currently exclusively relies on self-reported self-brand congruence, and lacks a measure that sheds light on its determinants. In the current research we propose and test a new determinant of self-brand congruence: brand affective congruence (BAC). BAC is based on how people intuitively assess affective meaning of different cultural concepts on the three dimensions of evaluation, potency and activity. Using an empirical study, we find that BAC is an effective determinant of self-brand congruence and has positive downstream effects on brand-self connection, brand trust, purchase intentions, and willingness to pay a higher price …” Read more >  Read the blog>

How consumers reconcile discordant food retailer brand images
Paul Beresford & Craig Hirst
“This paper is positioned in relation to the evolving market conditions of UK grocery retail and offers insight into the consumer led co-creative processes underlying the switching behaviour to discount food retailers by middle-class consumers. Based on phenomenological interviews with ideographic analysis, this research draws on theories related to cultural branding and brand relationships, to demonstrate how consumers negotiate individuated brand meanings. It reveals how, in spite of normative marketplace discourses, consumers are able to reframe and negotiate personally relevant meanings suitable to their own lifestyles and life projects. In so doing, this study contributes to the literature by offering an account of how brand relationships are appropriated in negotiations with stigmatised brand images to make them relevant and suitable for hitherto incongruent market segments. The findings therefore hold relevance for grocery retail managers and other practitioners engaged with the management of low involvement and mundane brands, who will have a better understanding of the process through which such relationships manifest themselves in food retail switching behaviour …” Read more >

Bridging the gap between brand gender and brand loyalty on social media: exploring the mediating effects
Leonor Vacas de Carvalho, Salim L. Azar & Joana Cesar Machado
“Brand gender has been suggested to influence consumer’s responses to the brand. The aim of this research was to deepen the understanding of the relationship between brand gender and brand loyalty by developing a research model to test the relationships among brand gender, active consumer engagement with the brand on social media, perceived quality, brand love and brand loyalty. The hypotheses were tested using structural equation modelling. The results support the importance of active consumer brand-engagement, perceived quality and brand love in underpinning the underlying process between brand gender and brand loyalty. Hence, this research complements prior work on brand gender and confirms the important benefits of a clear brand gender positioning by showing that a strong gender identity will enhance loyalty towards the brand …” Read more >


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