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An international branding strategy based on a case study of a Taiwanese firm

Hsiu Ying Huang (College of Management, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan)
Ming Huei Hsieh (College of Management, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan)

Marketing Intelligence & Planning

ISSN: 0263-4503

Article publication date: 20 September 2011




The purpose of this study is to explore and conceptualize the process of how an emerging‐market firm develops a successful international brand.


A qualitative case study approach was employed in this study. Two rounds of data collection were conducted. Data sources include archival, interview and field notes. A total of 13 in‐depth interviews were conducted. Interviewees were drawn from across different functions and comprised top management to lower‐level employees. Collected data were analyzed in the iterate process, and emergent themes from the case form the basis of strategy conceptualizing.


An effective international branding process can be conceptualized as four sequential strategic steps: create a transcultural brand name; identify a universal appeal for its products; develop a global brand essence; and convey the brand essence through products. The case finding also shows that the ability to fuse three pairs of seemingly contrasting elements across geographical and temporal boundaries is essential in the strategic process. The three pairs of elements include Western and Eastern cultures, historical and modern elements and craftsmanship and mass‐production.

Research limitations/implications

This paper is rich in qualitative detail, but with all single case study research, its limitations regard applicability to other contexts. The applicability may suffer from the idiosyncratic characteristics of the case company as well as the difference between industries and products.

Practical implications

The finding provides insights into how an emerging‐market firm can craft its international brand both faster and more effectively. The identified international branding process has managerial implications for international marketers in both emerging‐market and non‐emerging‐market firms.


The study fills the void in the research of international branding strategy of emerging‐market firms. The conceptualization of an international branding provides a basis for further research on how to effectively craft an international brand.



Ying Huang, H. and Huei Hsieh, M. (2011), "An international branding strategy based on a case study of a Taiwanese firm", Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 29 No. 6, pp. 611-623.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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