The purpose of the paper is twofold: first, to examine how managers and employees in start‐ups understand and define a corporate brand; and second, to reveal how corporate brand co‐creation with different stakeholders is executed in companies in their start‐up phase.
The data are gathered via a multiple case study from the managers and employees of three start‐ups that operate in the software business.
Corporate brand has both internal and external aspects. Corporate brand co‐creation is a process that begins with the stakeholders inventing the corporate name before the company is established, and continues at the start‐up phase by developing the new corporate name, updating the logo and communications material, and developing the product and business. The events and stakeholders in each of the above mentioned sub‐processes are also revealed.
The small number of interviews from a specific context limits the statistical generalisability of the results. Only a corporate viewpoint is taken, which may not offer a profound understanding of the process.
Managers need to recognise the stakeholders that could help the company, and how they could possibly help, both before and after establishing the company. The stakeholders may offer ideas and viewpoints that the entrepreneur could not invent alone, and which could, as their best, improve the whole business.
To the best knowledge of the author this is one of the rare studies that examines corporate branding in start‐ups and perhaps the first study to examine them from a corporate brand co‐creation viewpoint.
CitationDownload as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited