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Retail brand orientation, positional advantage and organisational performance

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This study adopts a resource-based view of branding referred to as brand orientation. Despite the importance of branding in retail, relatively little empirical research has been conducted to understand the degree to which retailers can be considered brand oriented. The purpose of the present research is to establish a conceptualisation of brand orientation that is applicable in a retail context across countries. Moreover, we seek to empirically validate a model of the retail brand orientation–positional advantage–organisational performance relationship and to contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of the factors driving retailer performance. A mail survey was used to collect data from retail firms in Australia, USA and UK. The unit of analysis is the retail firm. Confirmatory factor analysis was employed to assess the measurement properties of the study constructs and structural equation modelling was performed to test the research model. The findings suggest that four elements of retail brand orientation (functionality, distinctiveness, augmentation and symbolism) play different roles in relation to certain aspects of positional advantage, which highlights the importance of developing strength in all four areas. Similarly, a position of superiority in only one aspect of a retailer's offer is insufficient to assure both financial and strategic returns.

Keywords: performance; positional advantage; retail brand orientation

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: July 1, 2013

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