This study seeks to develop previous research into value branding by investigating potential misalignments between brand identity as intended by the brand owner, and the way in which the brand image is perceived by young consumers.
Kapferer's model was used to create a detailed brand identity for a value fashion brand. A survey of 150 business students provided a map to identify any gaps between the intended and perceived brand image. Theoretical concepts underpinning the paper include value branding and the relationship between brand identity and brand image.
A marked difference was observed in the way in which value brands are intended and how they are perceived; these misalignments may have significant implications. In particular, young consumers' perceptions of value brands' fashion content could create barriers during decision making. However, the relationship facet indicates potential for developing lifelong loyalty from the sample.
The research provided a visual map of perceived brand image to allow comparison between identity and image. A longitudinal study could identify how attitudes might change throughout the purchasing life of the sample group.
It was found that the brand owner needed to develop and effectively communicate the reflection element of brand identity to improve the perception of how the typical customer is viewed by others.
The relationship between brand identity and brand image is particularly important in the value fashion sector. Although some research has been undertaken in this field, it mainly relates to how corporate brands are perceived, while this study focuses on the product level.
Ross, J. and Harradine, R. (2011), "Fashion value brands: the relationship between identity and image", Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, Vol. 15 No. 3, pp. 306-325. https://doi.org/10.1108/13612021111151914
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