Titel: Transfer of brand associations over time: The brand extension of Nivea
Författare: Kaisa Lund, Linnéuniversitetet, Fakultetsnämnden för ekonomi och design, Ekonomihögskolan
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Brand extension has been the source of strategic growth for many firms during recent decades. Introducing new products under existing brand names is one way to use the image of a brand name to enter new markets. Previous research has shown that the success of a brand extension depends on the transfer of the parent brand associations to the extended product. Although the transfer of brand associations from the parent brand to the extension is recognised as crucial for the success of brand extension, surprisingly little research has been conducted on how brand associations actually are transferred. In the present research, I argue for expanding the view on brand extension to include market communication of product introductions. Explanations are provided on how brand associations are transferred in multiple brand extension from an advertising perspective.
The empirical data are based on a case study of the personal and skin care brand Nivea and include an advertising analysis that spans a time period of 72 years, interviews with executives, and a document analysis. The interpretation of the case is guided by a review of the literature on brand extension, brand associations, and brand personality. Insights into how brand associations are transferred in multiple brand extension are advanced in the conclusion, emphasising that brand associations are transferred not only from parent brand to extended product but also from one extension to another. The results also show that the brand associations change due to contextual changes as a consequence of the transfer to a new product. The context refers to the intended user or usage situation. Furthermore, the study suggests that corporate associations reinforce brand associations of extended products. Finally, I propose that future research should include the organisation as part of the brand extension process. The study is intended to contribute to an increased understanding of brand extension, facilitating the creation of new hypotheses, research designs, and methods in the research area.
Läs också gärna vår mini-intervju med författaren och forskaren Kaisa Lund.