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Corporate heritage brand traits and corporate heritage brand identity: the case study of John Lewis

Ammar Abdellatif Sammour (Department of Management, Birkbeck University of London, London, UK)
Weifeng Chen (Brunel Business School, Brunel University London, London, UK)
John M.T. Balmer (Brunel Business School, Brunel University London, London, UK)

Qualitative Market Research

ISSN: 1352-2752

Article publication date: 24 April 2020

Issue publication date: 14 October 2020

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901

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the corporate heritage brand traits and corporate heritage brand identity by concentrating on developing key dimensions for the corporate heritage brand dimensions in the retailing industry in the UK. This study advances the corporate brand heritage theory and introduces the theory of corporate heritage brand identity, which is developed from the case study of John Lewis – one of the most respected and oldest retails in the UK established in 1864.

Design/methodology/approach

This empirical study has adopted a theory-building case study using qualitative data. It uses semi-structured interviews that were organised and managed by John Lewis Heritage Centre in Cookham. A total of 14 participants were involved in this study. We have used Nvivo.11 software to set the main themes and codes for this study framework.

Findings

This study identifies Balmer’s (2013) corporate heritage brand traits that are essential to be considered for the corporate heritage brands in the retailing industry to sustain their innovativeness and competitiveness. The findings of the case study informed the four dimensions of corporate heritage brand identity, which include price, quality, symbol and design. The findings are incorporated into a theoretical framework of corporate heritage brand identity traits.

Practical implications

The discussed traits of this study can help brand senior management to enhance their corporate heritage reputation and sustainability through maintaining these (four) traits over their brand, and inform their brand stakeholders about their brand heritage success.

Originality/value

This is one of the few attempts to develop a research framework of corporate heritage brand identity. This framework suggests four dimensions of corporate heritage brand identity traits including brand price, quality, design and symbol. This is one of the first attempts to study corporate heritage branding management traits in the retailing industry sector.

Keywords

Citation

Sammour, A.A., Chen, W. and Balmer, J.M.T. (2020), "Corporate heritage brand traits and corporate heritage brand identity: the case study of John Lewis", Qualitative Market Research, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp. 447-470. https://doi.org/10.1108/QMR-03-2018-0039

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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