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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2003

Annette Hind

Analyses the impact of the Teletubbies on the children’s branded market since 1997, reflecting the belief of creators Ragdoll and the BBC that children must be at the core…

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Abstract

Analyses the impact of the Teletubbies on the children’s branded market since 1997, reflecting the belief of creators Ragdoll and the BBC that children must be at the core of all brand‐driven activity, but with parent communication also vital. Shows the ways in which Teletubbies provide an all‐round experience for the under‐3 year olds, resulting in an environment where they can practice thinking, listening and watching skills. Outlines characteristics of the programme that appeal to young children: simplicity, humour, emerging speech, babylike appearance, constant activity, and repetition of core sequences. Stresses the importance of keeping to the programme values in designing other product ranges like toys, video and books.

Details

Young Consumers, vol. 4 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-3616

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 June 2002

Dean C. Weller

Discusses the importance of brands to children, and the importance of children to brands. Emphasises that children have a strong awareness of brands from a young age, and

840

Abstract

Discusses the importance of brands to children, and the importance of children to brands. Emphasises that children have a strong awareness of brands from a young age, and reports research on their identification of familiar brands (McDonalds was the best known). Describes a cluster analysis project on mothers with children from 0 to 4, relating the mothers’ lifestyle and demographic characteristics to their views of how their children should behave. Relates these households to the growth of preschool licenses: the licensing market targets these families and the licenses are backed up by TV programming. Concludes that the advent of licensing has fundamentally altered the nature of brands.

Details

Young Consumers, vol. 3 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-3616

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Article
Publication date: 16 June 2021

Robert James Thomas, Gareth Reginald Terence White and Anthony Samuel

The purpose of this research is to understand what motivates 7–11-year-old children to participate in online brand communities (OBCs). Prior research has concentrated on…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this research is to understand what motivates 7–11-year-old children to participate in online brand communities (OBCs). Prior research has concentrated on prescriptive product categories (games and gaming), predominantly adolescent groups and the social aspects of community engagement and actual behaviour within communities, rather than the motivations to participate with the OBC. This has ultimately limited what has been gleaned, both theoretically and managerially, from this important segment.

Design/methodology/approach

An interpretive, longitudinal position is adopted, using a sample of 261 children (113 male and 148 female) from across the UK, using event-based diaries over a 12-month period, generating 2,224 entries.

Findings

Data indicate that children are motivated to participate in a brand community for four reasons: to support and ameliorate pre-purchase anxieties, resolve interpersonal conflicts, exact social dominance in terms of product ownership and perceptions of product knowledge and to actively engage in digitalised pester power. The study also reveals that certain motivational aspects such as conflict resolution and exacting dominance, are gender-specific.

Research limitations/implications

Knowledge of children’s motivation to engage with OBCs is important for marketers and brand managers alike as the data reveal markedly different stimuli when compared to known adult behaviours in the field. Given the nature of the study, scope exists for significant future research.

Practical implications

The study reveals behaviours that will assist brand managers in further understanding the complex and untraditional relationships that children have with brands and OBCs.

Originality/value

This study makes a novel examination of a hitherto little-explored segment of consumers. In doing so, it uncovers the theoretical and practical characteristics of child consumers that contemporary, adult-focussed literature does not recognise. The paper makes an additional contribution to theory by positing four new behavioural categories relating to community engagement – dependers, defusers, demanders and dominators – and four new motivational factors which are fundamentally different from adult taxonomies – social hegemony, parental persuasion, dilemma solving and conflict resolution.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 55 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 March 2005

Axel Dammler, Ingo Barlovic and Christian Clausnitzer

Examines why children choose certain brands over others. Relates this to the fact that desirable brands appeal to our needs, so that successful brands address children’s…

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Abstract

Examines why children choose certain brands over others. Relates this to the fact that desirable brands appeal to our needs, so that successful brands address children’s needs. Shows how children seek a balance between learning new things (exploration) and relying on a socially and emotionally stable home life (home), and also a balance between independence (intrinsic) and integration into family and peer group (extrinsic). Constructs a fourfold classification of children’s need states, based on these two oppositions, which will help in effective marketing of children’s products. Discusses these four states: Emotional Home, Social Home, Self‐improvement, and Re‐definition. Applies the four states to popular characters in children’s television, respectively Winnie the Pooh, Lizzie McGuire, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and Harry Potter, while Tom & Jerry changes its appeal over time. Illustrates how a product like the mobile phone can be marketed to appeal to each of the four states, and gives general rules for developing brand strategies based on the four need state segments.

Details

Young Consumers, vol. 6 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-3616

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 December 2014

Karine Charry and Nathalie T. M. Demoulin

The purpose of this paper is to represent the first empirical investigation of co-branding strategies whose target is children. It analyses such strategies’ potential in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to represent the first empirical investigation of co-branding strategies whose target is children. It analyses such strategies’ potential in the context of brand extension for non-familiar brands combined with familiar ones and provides managerial implications for both brands.

Design/methodology/approach

A leisure centre-based survey was used to collect information on children’s attitudes, evaluations of fit and consumption intentions of co-branded products.

Findings

The findings confirm that co-branding strategies may have a very positive impact on attitudes towards partner brands, intentions to consume co-branded products and the host brand. They also indicate that consumption intentions for other products from the host product category are enhanced. From a theoretical perspective, the study stresses the essential mediating role of brand fit. Indeed, this construct appears to enable preadolescents to integrate simultaneous evaluations of two brands while constructing their attitudes towards one product. The asymmetric spill-over effect is also confirmed, with the non-familiar (weaker) brand benefiting more from the co-branding than the familiar (strong) brand.

Research limitations/implications

The main limitations pertain to the small sample size and the absence of direct behavioural measures that could be added through later research. It would also be interesting to study further the concept of fit and the nature of the underlying mediating process (cognitive vs affective) among the target audience, as well as to analyse the impact of the various types of co-branding (functional vs symbolic).

Practical implications

The derived guidelines suggest how non-familiar brands to the pre-adolescent target (including retailers’ brand) may expand their businesses through successful alliances with a more familiar brand that is viewed favourably.

Social implications

In this study, concerns were high to select a co-branded product that does not harm children’s health, to the contrary (vegetable soup with cheese). The results demonstrate that the tactic may increase the target’s intentions to eat products that it would not necessarily fancy (as often the case for healthy products) while contributing to the positive development of economic actors. In this, the paper shows that economic interests should not always be opposed to social welfare.

Originality/value

This study investigates the very popular strategy of brand alliance among an original target (eight-to 12-year-olds) and identifies the original process through which preadolescents appraise two brands that endorse one product, a unique marketing context. This represents an important starting point to further studies on brand alliances.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 42 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 5 February 2020

Ruoshui Jiao and Jack Wei

One of the greatest challenges that global brands face as they expand into new markets and segments is overcoming social and cultural barriers that prevent them from being…

Abstract

Purpose

One of the greatest challenges that global brands face as they expand into new markets and segments is overcoming social and cultural barriers that prevent them from being accepted by consumers. By drawing on theories of Mead’s prefigurative cultures, reverse socialization and symbolic interactionism, this paper aims to investigate the process of reverse socialization, the antecedents and its impact on parents’ attitude toward the reverse socialized brand.

Design/methodology/approach

Using in-depth interviewing method, data were collected from 20 Chinese consumers by capturing the accounts of both parents and their children involved in reverse socialization. The interpretive content analysis was used to study the data.

Findings

Reverse socialization exerts positive influence on brand attitude and facilitates parents’ adoption of the socialized brand. The brand has acquired additional symbolic meanings for Chinese consumers, which in turn enhances self-brand connections among them.

Practical implications

Managerial implications include strategies for cross-cultural marketers to maximize the acceptance of brands by elderly consumers through reverse socialization and efficiently expand the brands’ market into more segments.

Originality/value

As the first research of its kind (to the authors’ knowledge), the findings fill a gap in the marketing literature by demonstrating adult children’s influence on parents through reverse socialization.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 June 2019

Katharine Jones and Mark Glynn

This paper aims to investigate how social media usage by children determines their interactions with consumer brands. The paper also examines the nature of the processes evident.

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate how social media usage by children determines their interactions with consumer brands. The paper also examines the nature of the processes evident.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach was implemented using both paired and single in-depth interviews of New Zealand children (both boys and girls) in the age group of 11-14 years. The data were analysed by thematic analysis of the interview transcripts.

Findings

The study demonstrates that children use three main processes – discerning, reacting and forming – when interacting with brands on social media. Each of these processes has different levels of interaction episodes depending on the amount of social media activity by each child. Discerning has noticing, a lower level of interaction and identifying which uses already internalised brand knowledge. Reacting consists of describing and evaluation which involves more active interaction resulting in opinion formation. Forming can involve a distant “watching” interaction or a more active relating behaviour when children are using multiple social media platforms.

Research limitations/implications

The study identifies three key modes of brand interaction behaviour when young consumers use social media, which each have two interactions. The implication for marketers, parents and policymakers is that there is a range of behaviours, both passive and active, that children show when interacting with consumer brands when using social media.

Practical implications

The current study offers a way to deepen the understanding of how children approach online communications with brands in the social media context. The research finds that the children’s use of social media is more active and dynamic than previously thought, giving rise to connections with brands that are meaningful to the children. Specific codes of practice for online brand marketers may be necessary so that children are helped to understand the commercial intent of brand practices on social media.

Social implications

The findings shed light on the range of interaction behaviour of young consumers, and such information provides insights into how children acquire brand knowledge, react to social media communication and decide the value of such communication for themselves. Brand marketers have a role to play in ensuring their brand communications practices avoid deception and clearly indicate commercial intent.

Originality/value

Investigating how children individually process brand information in a social media context provides insights into their interaction behaviour. These findings show differing levels of interest in both brand and social media activity amongst children.

Article
Publication date: 26 September 2007

Stuart Roper and Binita Shah

The purpose of this paper is to focus on a relatively unexplored area of branding literature, which is a study of the social impact of branding upon “tweens,”…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to focus on a relatively unexplored area of branding literature, which is a study of the social impact of branding upon “tweens,” pre‐adolescent children aged between seven and eleven. Brands promote a desire in consumers that allows a premium price to be commanded. What is the impact upon children from lower socio‐economic groups who may not be able to afford these premium brands?

Design/methodology/approach

An exploratory qualitative study involving focus groups with primary school teachers in the UK and Kenya and open‐ended projective questionnaires with primary school children in both countries formed the primary data collection. The data were then analysed using thematic analysis. The research objectives were as follows: to assess the importance of brands in the lives of primary school children and whether the exposure to brands has a positive or negative impact on children; to investigate the social impact of branding on children from low income families from the viewpoint of children and teachers; and to assess the cross‐cultural impact of brands by carrying out a comparative study on children/teachers from Kenya as well as the UK.

Findings

Brands can be the cause of social division amongst children resulting in the formation of “in” groups and “out” groups. Those who do not own the right brands may be discriminated against and experience social impacts which include being teased, bullied, having low self esteem and being socially excluded. Their parents also felt the effects through pester power, the guilt of not being able to buy their children the latest brands or by financially struggling to provide these brands for their children. However, positive impacts of branding also emerged from the study.

Research limitations/implications

A brand‐oriented culture impacts upon school life in both developed and developing nations. This is an exploratory study and therefore small sample.

Originality/value

A contribution to address the paucity of research on the negative impact of branding to primary school children.

Details

Equal Opportunities International, vol. 26 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0261-0159

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 August 2014

Rui Carlos Estrela, Francisco Costa Pereira and Jorge Bruno Ventura

– The purpose of this paper is to intend to understand how children organize their representational heritage of brands and what influences they may have had to build it.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to intend to understand how children organize their representational heritage of brands and what influences they may have had to build it.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors carried out a research divided into two parts, one with a questionnaire in which the authors characterized children and identify their behaviours when they are watching TV and surfing the net with an open question which asked them to list which brands they knew. Another qualitative research in which two focus groups were followed with the parents on the consumption habits of their children. The sample includes 602 children between eight and 11 years old. Regarding the parents, 19 participated in the two focus groups, a first in a middle-class area and a second in a lower-class area.

Findings

Children spend many hours during the week and the weekend watching TV and on the internet. As for the representation of consumption, the data were processed by gathering the brands per product categories with specific software that showed the authors, through a lexicographical analysis, a mental representation that anchors on two cores. One regards food and gathers in a star a wide range of product categories and other regarding clothing, more cognitively complex, forming stars and circles.

Research limitations/implications

It was not possible to isolate two samples of children in middle class and lower class as was done with the parents, which did not allow checking this symbolic dimension of brands between these two groups. Parents’ occupations did not allow the authors to clearly identify social classes and in the attempts the authors made that were not reliable by combining the occupation of the father and of the mother.

Practical implications

Children are an important group to be studied, since their attitudes towards products and brands are still in a formative stage and their current experiences will affect their preferences for brands and their behaviours on the market as suggest the authors. This study may contribute to the development of marketing strategies for children by identifying the meanings of food and clothing brands that they own.

Social implications

This research offers the authors clues so that in the future it can be confirmed that lower-classes children are more attentive to the symbolic dimension of brands as a way of self-expression.

Originality/value

A new research method using mental maps which allows for a sharper, more specific analysis, where the distinction between genders and age groups can be detected very clearly.

Details

EuroMed Journal of Business, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1450-2194

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 March 2004

Jill Ross and Rod Harradine

This study was conducted at a school in the north‐east of England using a range of research methods including pre‐focus groups, focus groups, a census of all children and

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Abstract

This study was conducted at a school in the north‐east of England using a range of research methods including pre‐focus groups, focus groups, a census of all children and a survey of parents. It was designed to address a series of research questions related to the relationship between young school children and branding. The findings indicated that brand recognition commences at an early age with older age groups having greater brand awareness. Differences in the perceptions of parents and their children towards brands were identified, with parents expressing their concerns over the effects of branding. Older children were aware of the role of branding in enhancing self‐esteem and acceptance in peer groups. It is suggested that the earlier the marketer establishes brand awareness and recognition in the child, the stronger the brand association and imagery are likely to be when they become independent as consumers.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal, vol. 8 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

Keywords

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