Brand Globalness: More Than Just Geographical Reach

by | Jan 4, 2023

Global Brands

The globalization of markets has led many multinational corporations to restructure their brand portfolios, favoring fewer brands that offer global business potential. Although much work has shed light on the potential outcomes of brand globalness, such as enhanced quality and prestige perceptions, the underlying concept of brand globalness itself has received little attention. In fact, defining what “global” means continues to challenge efforts to examine global brands and their related phenomena. Informed by a review of existing global brand definitions, I propose an extended, multi-faceted conceptualization of perceived brand globalness.

“Perceived brand globalness refers to a consumer’s belief that a brand has wide availability, recognition, and acceptance in many countries around the world; has a similar positioning, image, personality, look, and feel across markets (enabled by standardization of marketing activities); and is associated with a given global consumer culture.”

Furthermore, I theorize an extended model of global brand effects that pairs the proposed facets of brand globalness – perceived market reach, perceived standardization, and global consumer culture positioning – with brand evaluation and brand attitude, two outcome variables commonly investigated in this field.

To test the conceptual model, I analyzed survey data from Germany using structural equation modeling. The analysis reveals the relative impact of each facet, such that I decompose global brand effects into their constituent elements. I find that a brand’s perceived degree of standardization has a remarkably strong negative effect on brand evaluations that even exceeds the positive impact of a brand’s market reach, which is commonly presented as the main conduit for global brand effects. By showing that the effects associated with brand globalness are not exclusively positive, my study challenges conventional wisdom in the field of global branding.

Full reference: Mandler, Timo (2019), “Beyond Reach: An Extended Model of Global Brand Effects,” International Marketing Review, 36 (5), 647–674.

Cite for: Global brands, negative effects of perceived brand globalness, refined conceptualizations/definitions, marketing standardization, marker variable, rival model specification

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