Taking a Deliberate Approach: The Enactment of Brand Orientation in an SME Context

14 Pages Posted: 27 Jul 2018

See all articles by Nicole Hodge

Nicole Hodge

Charles Sturt University

Cathi McMullen

Charles Sturt University

Jodie Kleinschafer

Charles Sturt University

Date Written: February 2018

Abstract

Brand orientation is a strategic approach observed in business that positions the brand at the centre of organisational processes and has been shown to improve marketing and financial performance. Two fundamental issues in the brand orientation literature are identified and explored in the context of SME’s. Namely (1) the assumption of the ‘presence or absence’ of brand orientation in some conceptualisations and (2) the circular relationship between being brand orientated and the characteristics of extant frameworks of brand orientation. A case study approach followed by abductive analysis was employed to investigate what characterises SME brand orientation enactment in ten small-sized wineries. The key finding of the research is the importance of a deliberate approach when orientating an organisation and its practices around the brand. This approach has been made explicit from the fundamental assumptions of brand orientation theory and is illustrated through three brand practices observed in SMEs: resource investment, communication and brand planning. It is argued that viewing brand orientation through a lens of deliberateness is critical to properly understand how a brand oriented strategy is enacted in organisations. It is also evident that despite the constraints discussed in the literature, SMEs can and do deliberately enact brand orientation.

Keywords: Brand orientation, Small- to medium-sized enterprises, Branding, Case studies, Abductive, Wineries

Suggested Citation

Hodge, Nicole and McMullen, Cathi and Kleinschafer, Jodie, Taking a Deliberate Approach: The Enactment of Brand Orientation in an SME Context (February 2018). Journal of Brand Management, Vol. 25, Issue 4, 2018. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3219035 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/s41262-018-0095-3

Nicole Hodge (Contact Author)

Charles Sturt University ( email )

Panorama Avenue
Bathurst, NSW 2678
Australia

Cathi McMullen

Charles Sturt University ( email )

Panorama Avenue
Bathurst, NSW 2678
Australia

Jodie Kleinschafer

Charles Sturt University ( email )

Panorama Avenue
Bathurst, NSW 2678
Australia

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