Aligning company and dealer perspectives in corporate branding: Implications for dealer satisfaction and commitment

Tatiana Anatolevna Anisimova, Felix Tinoziva Mavondo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: There is a contention in marketing literature that gaps between corporate and key stakeholders perspectives have unfavorable implications for corporate brand performance. The current article attempts to empirically substantiate this argument. As such, this article looks at the relationship between a car manufacturer and its dealers and examines it from the perspective of the relationship misalignment. Methodology: Applying the Profile Deviation method, this study tests the effects of a manufacturer-dealer corporate brand misalignment on dealer satisfaction and commitment. The manager-specified ideal profile for a corporate brand was used as a proxy for a manufacturer perspective and a benchmark against which dealer perceptions were compared. The corporate brand construct encompassed the dimensions of corporate image, corporate personality and dealer-experienced value. Hypotheses were tested using Pearson correlations and multiple regressions. Findings: Results, which were robust across all the corporate brand dimensions, support the hypotheses of negative performance impact of manufacturer-dealer misalignment. Originality/value/contribution: This study identifies an important link between the theoretical proposition and the operationalization test of examining performance implications of misalignment. The current study argues for broader integrative thinking and cross-disciplinary research in business-to-business marketing. In the absence of the relevant literature on conceptualization and operationalization in the marketing literature, the article borrows a testing method of Profile Deviation from the management field. By developing a fine-grained analysis, the current study pinpoints specific aspects that require co-alignment in corporate branding, thus facilitating managerial decision-making. Research implications/limitations: The current study demonstrates that deviation from a corporate perspective implies a weakness in corporate branding process with negative performance consequences. The Profile Deviation perspective used in this article has focused on a static, cross-sectional approach for specifying and testing misalignment between a manufacturer and its dealer principles. The researchers are encouraged to consider alternative mechanisms to test for misalignment as a dynamic task within a longitudinal research design. Practical implications: Companies must be aware of the areas where gaps can occur that impede effective decision-making. Aligning a corporate brand between a company and members of the distribution channel requires careful implementation that encourages dealer inputs in brand operations while avoiding counter-productive implications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35 - 56
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Business-to-Business Marketing
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Cite this

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title = "Aligning company and dealer perspectives in corporate branding: Implications for dealer satisfaction and commitment",
abstract = "Purpose: There is a contention in marketing literature that gaps between corporate and key stakeholders perspectives have unfavorable implications for corporate brand performance. The current article attempts to empirically substantiate this argument. As such, this article looks at the relationship between a car manufacturer and its dealers and examines it from the perspective of the relationship misalignment. Methodology: Applying the Profile Deviation method, this study tests the effects of a manufacturer-dealer corporate brand misalignment on dealer satisfaction and commitment. The manager-specified ideal profile for a corporate brand was used as a proxy for a manufacturer perspective and a benchmark against which dealer perceptions were compared. The corporate brand construct encompassed the dimensions of corporate image, corporate personality and dealer-experienced value. Hypotheses were tested using Pearson correlations and multiple regressions. Findings: Results, which were robust across all the corporate brand dimensions, support the hypotheses of negative performance impact of manufacturer-dealer misalignment. Originality/value/contribution: This study identifies an important link between the theoretical proposition and the operationalization test of examining performance implications of misalignment. The current study argues for broader integrative thinking and cross-disciplinary research in business-to-business marketing. In the absence of the relevant literature on conceptualization and operationalization in the marketing literature, the article borrows a testing method of Profile Deviation from the management field. By developing a fine-grained analysis, the current study pinpoints specific aspects that require co-alignment in corporate branding, thus facilitating managerial decision-making. Research implications/limitations: The current study demonstrates that deviation from a corporate perspective implies a weakness in corporate branding process with negative performance consequences. The Profile Deviation perspective used in this article has focused on a static, cross-sectional approach for specifying and testing misalignment between a manufacturer and its dealer principles. The researchers are encouraged to consider alternative mechanisms to test for misalignment as a dynamic task within a longitudinal research design. Practical implications: Companies must be aware of the areas where gaps can occur that impede effective decision-making. Aligning a corporate brand between a company and members of the distribution channel requires careful implementation that encourages dealer inputs in brand operations while avoiding counter-productive implications.",
author = "Anisimova, {Tatiana Anatolevna} and Mavondo, {Felix Tinoziva}",
year = "2014",
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Aligning company and dealer perspectives in corporate branding: Implications for dealer satisfaction and commitment. / Anisimova, Tatiana Anatolevna; Mavondo, Felix Tinoziva.

In: Journal of Business-to-Business Marketing, Vol. 21, No. 1, 2014, p. 35 - 56.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Mavondo, Felix Tinoziva

PY - 2014

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AB - Purpose: There is a contention in marketing literature that gaps between corporate and key stakeholders perspectives have unfavorable implications for corporate brand performance. The current article attempts to empirically substantiate this argument. As such, this article looks at the relationship between a car manufacturer and its dealers and examines it from the perspective of the relationship misalignment. Methodology: Applying the Profile Deviation method, this study tests the effects of a manufacturer-dealer corporate brand misalignment on dealer satisfaction and commitment. The manager-specified ideal profile for a corporate brand was used as a proxy for a manufacturer perspective and a benchmark against which dealer perceptions were compared. The corporate brand construct encompassed the dimensions of corporate image, corporate personality and dealer-experienced value. Hypotheses were tested using Pearson correlations and multiple regressions. Findings: Results, which were robust across all the corporate brand dimensions, support the hypotheses of negative performance impact of manufacturer-dealer misalignment. Originality/value/contribution: This study identifies an important link between the theoretical proposition and the operationalization test of examining performance implications of misalignment. The current study argues for broader integrative thinking and cross-disciplinary research in business-to-business marketing. In the absence of the relevant literature on conceptualization and operationalization in the marketing literature, the article borrows a testing method of Profile Deviation from the management field. By developing a fine-grained analysis, the current study pinpoints specific aspects that require co-alignment in corporate branding, thus facilitating managerial decision-making. Research implications/limitations: The current study demonstrates that deviation from a corporate perspective implies a weakness in corporate branding process with negative performance consequences. The Profile Deviation perspective used in this article has focused on a static, cross-sectional approach for specifying and testing misalignment between a manufacturer and its dealer principles. The researchers are encouraged to consider alternative mechanisms to test for misalignment as a dynamic task within a longitudinal research design. Practical implications: Companies must be aware of the areas where gaps can occur that impede effective decision-making. Aligning a corporate brand between a company and members of the distribution channel requires careful implementation that encourages dealer inputs in brand operations while avoiding counter-productive implications.

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