A Brand Culture Approach to Chinese Cultural Heritage Brands

Schroeder, J. E., Borgerson, J. L. and Wu, Z. (2015), A Brand Culture Approach to Chinese Cultural Heritage Brands, Journal of Brand Management, Forthcoming.

29 Pages Posted: 13 Apr 2015

See all articles by Jonathan E. Schroeder

Jonathan E. Schroeder

Rochester Institute of Technology

Janet L. Borgerson

DePaul University

ZhiYan Wu

Shanghai International Business and Economics University (Formerly Known as Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade) - School of Management

Date Written: January 31, 2015

Abstract

This research represents an effort to fill the gap between brand development studies focusing expressly on Western brands and their markets and culture-specific global brand development in emerging markets, such as China. Case studies are presented of two Chinese brands, Shanghai Tang and Shang Xia, which use cultural heritage in their branding strategy. A consumer perspective sheds light on how consumers co-create brand meaning for cultural heritage brands, and clarifies concepts of brand culture, cultural heritage, and brand heritage. A brand culture approach offers new perspectives on how brand actors co-create, circulate, and re-configure existing meanings of brands and cultures, and how Chinese brands become vehicles for meaning co-creation across national boundaries. Implications include the benefits of being prepared to compete with a new type of Chinese brand that taps into China’s rich cultural heritage, instead of relying on cheap mass production; connecting to ideas of Chineseness and drawing upon shared cultural knowledge to build brand values; engaging with cultural tensions, rather than sidestepping them; providing employees with in depth training about the cultural aspects of the brand in order to align branding strategy with operational identity; and engaging the co-creative stakeholders that play important roles in cultural heritage brands.

Keywords: Brand culture, branding, brand development, brand management, case study, China, Chinese branding, cultural heritage brand, luxury

JEL Classification: L67, M13, M30, M31 ,P31, Z10

Suggested Citation

Schroeder, Jonathan E. and Borgerson, Janet L. and Wu, Maggie, A Brand Culture Approach to Chinese Cultural Heritage Brands (January 31, 2015). Schroeder, J. E., Borgerson, J. L. and Wu, Z. (2015), A Brand Culture Approach to Chinese Cultural Heritage Brands, Journal of Brand Management, Forthcoming., Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2593336

Jonathan E. Schroeder (Contact Author)

Rochester Institute of Technology ( email )

92 Lomb Memorial Drive
Eastman Building, Room 3006
Rochester, NY 14623
United States
5854752703 (Phone)

Janet L. Borgerson

DePaul University ( email )

Institute for Business and Professional Ethics
Chicago, USA
United States
5857293075 (Phone)

Maggie Wu

Shanghai International Business and Economics University (Formerly Known as Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade) - School of Management ( email )

No. 1900, Wenxiang Road
Shanghai, 201620
China

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