The purpose of this paper is to examine how developing country brand name and brand origin affect the customer’s evaluation of the brand in radically new high-tech products. Using processing fluency as a theoretical underpinning, this study can answer the following questions: first, does foreign brand name (developed vs developing Asian brand name) affect the customer’s attitude toward the brand? Second, does the brand origin (developed vs developing country) moderate the effect of foreign brand name on attitude toward the brand? Third, does the individual difference (knowledge and technological sophistication) matter in determining the brand origin and fit effect on willingness to buy?
A 2×2 between subject experiment was conducted in which two factors were manipulated: foreign brand name (developed: Japan vs developing: China) and brand origin (developed: Japan vs developing: China).
The fit between brand origin and brand name leads to better evaluation of the brand than no fit. On the other hand, for developing country brand origin (e.g. China), the brand naming effect is mitigated by enhanced processing fluency caused by fit, which leads to better evaluation of developing country brand. Fit effect is more pronounced for more knowledgeable consumers. Technologically more sophisticated consumers are more willing to buy the developing country brand origin than technologically less sophisticated consumers due to the processing fluency effect.
This paper introduces the two dimensions of foreign brand name (developed vs developing) and examines the interaction with the brand origin. This research fills the gap of under-researched area in brand naming literature, which is the effect of developing country brand naming on attitude toward the brand of radically new high-tech products. This research extends the previous literature by applying linguistic mechanism, processing fluency to examine the Asian brand naming including emerging market. This research makes an important theoretical contribution by identifying an underlying individual-level construct, “knowledge” and “technological sophistication,” which explains and influences the effects of brand name and brand origin on willingness to buy the brand.
Lee, S. (2019), "When does the developing country brand name alleviate the brand origin effect? Interplay of brand name and brand origin", International Journal of Emerging Markets, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJOEM-10-2018-0543Download as .RIS
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