This paper seeks to compare some key antecedents of brand loyalty between two emerging markets: Thailand and Vietnam.
Using a sample of 603 female consumers of international shampoo brands, including 304 consumers in Bangkok, Thailand and 299 users in Hanoi, Vietnam, a model was tested that incorporates key determinants of brand loyalty – perceived quality, brand awareness, advertising attitudes, and distribution intensity – by means of structural equation modeling.
The paper found that there are positive relationships between perceived quality and brand loyalty, between brand awareness and perceived quality, between advertising attitudes and brand awareness, and between distribution intensity and brand awareness in both markets. However, the relationship between brand awareness and brand loyalty was found only in the Vietnamese market, and the relationship between advertising attitudes and perceived quality was only found in the Thai market. Finally, no relationship between distribution intensity and perceived quality was found in either market.
A major limitation of this study is the examination of only one concept that stands for strong brands, i.e. brand loyalty. Several other concepts, such as brand relationship quality and brand impressions, should be investigated in future research in order to compare and contrast with those found in advanced economies.
The results of this study suggest that managers of international brands in emerging markets should recognize the differences between markets in order to design effective loyalty programs for each market.
A major contribution of this study is to empirically compare the impacts of perceived quality, brand awareness, advertising attitudes, and store image on brand loyalty in two emerging markets: Thailand and Vietnam.
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