The objective of the study is the exploration of consumer brand name equity forestablished products and services. There is little research on consumer brandname equity for established products, despite the general assumption within theliterature of the central importance to consumers of the brand name element.To achieve isolation of the brand name element the study focuses on namechanges brought about by global marketing. Adopting both a critical realistposition and a functional based approach towards consumer brand equity, amixed methods three stage sequential study design is employed.The first stage of the research focuses on the theoretical literature relevant toconsumer brand name equity. In particular it seeks to derive a theoretical modelof the consumer impact of a change in brand name for an established product.The second stage of the research uses qualitative analysis to empiricallyexplore established product brand name functions. The model developed in thefirst stage of research is used as a framework but research is not limited to theempirical exploration of this model. The final stage of the research usesquantitative analysis to empirically explore the importance of the brand name ofestablished product to consumers.The research makes a number of contributions to the existing literature. Itempirically identifies a number of ways in which the brand name of establishedproducts can provide equity to consumers; specifically through rational,relationship, habitual and symbolic functions. One key finding is the discoverythat much of the symbolic value appears to be customer rather than corporatedriven. A further contribution from the quantitative work is an indication that theoverall importance of the brand name of established products holds significantvariance. A minority of research participants placed great importance on thebrand name element, whilst for the majority the brand name held littleimportance. This places in context the above functions of the brand nameelement.Key implications from this study are that the accepted centrality of the brandname element within branding needs qualification and the active role of theconsumer within brand equity creation requires greater recognition. In addition,whilst the research findings provide a good rationale for why corporations areable to change the brand name of their products with minimal impact for most oftheir customers, it also suggests that for a minority of customers this namechange will cause an insurmountable long term problem, which will have to beborne by the corporation.
|Date of Award||1 Aug 2012|
- The University of Manchester
|Supervisor||Stuart Roper (Supervisor) & Dominic Medway (Supervisor)|