Investigation of brand personality on retail branding: Grocery private label brands
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In retailing industry, brand, as the most valuable intangible asset of a firm, has become notably important due to its highly competitive nature (Ailawadi & Keller, 2004). In particular, the significance of brand personality recognition to establishing brand equity (Aaker, 1996) and its support towards an enduring basis for differentiation (Haigood, 1999) have been advocated by marketing scholars and practitioners through a number of research. At the same time, the role of private labels in building retailers brand equity is also evident to grow. However, little is known regarding the marketing strategic decisions in addressing this area (Ailawadi & Keller, 2004). Providing these two important marketing topics, this thesis focuses on the brand personality concept in the context of fast-moving-consumer-goods private label brands. This research investigated private label brand personality dimensions using Aaker’s (1997) brand personality scale and their effects on consumers’ quality perception of the brand. This research also examined the differences in the evaluation of each brand personality dimension between male and female consumers, and also Foodtown (full-service) and Countdown (price-discount) supermarkets. The data for the current study were collected from a mall-intercept survey, carried out in Auckland supermarkets. The factor analysis resulted in five brand personality dimensions. It was evidenced that consumers evaluated “Sincerity” to be the most descriptive brand personality dimension of a private label brand, followed by “Confidence”, “Ruggedness”, “Competence”, and “Excitement and Sophistication” respectively. In conducting the multiple regression analysis, “Confidence” was found to be the most influential brand personality dimension in affecting consumers’ quality perception of a private label brand. No significant differences were found in the average descriptiveness level of all private label brand personality dimensions between males and females, except for “Confidence”, and also between Foodtown and Countdown. Overall, the contribution of knowledge in this study was the development of brand personality dimensions of a private label brand and the relationships between the personality dimensions and consumers’ quality perception of the brand. The findings in this study offered key recommendations for grocery retailers to consider when managing their private label brands.