Date of Award

Summer 8-1-2012

Degree Type


Degree Name

Executive Doctorate in Business (EDB)



First Advisor

V. Kumar, Ph.D. (Chair)

Second Advisor

Nita Umashankar, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

J. Andrew Petersen, Ph.D. (UNC at Chapel Hill)


Can Internet search query data be a relevant predictor of financial measures of brand value? Can Internet search query data enrich existing financial measures of brand valuation tools and provide more timely insights to brand managers? Along with the financial based motivation to estimate the value of a brand for accounting purposes, marketers desire to show “accountability” of marketing activity and respond to the customer’s perception of the brand quickly to maintain their competitive advantage and value. The usefulness of the “consumer information processing” framework for brand, consumer and firm forecasting is examined. To develop our hypotheses, we draw from the growing body of work relating web searches to real world outcomes, to determine if a search query for a brand is causal to, and potentially predictive of brand, consumer and firm value. The contribution to current literature is that search queries can predict perception, whereas previous research in this nascent area predicted behavior and events. In this direction, we propose arguments underpinning this research as follows: the theoretical background relative to brand valuation and the theoretical frame based on an in-depth review of how scholars have used search query data as a predictive measure across several disciplines including economics and the health sciences. From a practitioner perspective, unlike traditional valuation methods search query data for brands is more timely, actionable, and inclusive.