Date of Award

Fall 12-20-2012

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Marketing

First Advisor

Dr. Naveen Donthu

Second Advisor

Dr. Ritu Lohtia

Third Advisor

Dr. Corliss Thornton

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Denis Guiot

Abstract

Understanding brand age is potentially critical to a brand management program. When a brand begins to be perceived as older, even with the positive attributes aligned with the idea of traditional and established brands, consumers may begin to move away from the brand. This study defines the concepts of both perceived and preferred brand age. We look at how perceived brand age fits in with our current perspective on branding and can enrich our understanding of consumers’ personal preferences.

As there is very little published work in the area of brand age three distinct set of studies were conducted in order to fully understand the meaning of brand age, explicate the construct and understand the antecedents and consequences. The first study involved a group of exploratory studies. The purpose of this initial group of conceptual studies was to explore current consumer understanding and interpretation of the concept of perceived brand age. These studies were used to inform and direct our subsequent research. Our second set of studies explicated the brand age concept. In the first project, we used a Likert scale designed to understand what cues consumers use to understand the age of a brand. The second project was a semantic differential research study to examine what specific characteristics are associated with younger brands, older brands or are neutral between the two. We also develop and test a model of consumer choice through the exploration of the relationship between perceived brand age and preferred brand age.

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