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Managing meaning through branding - the case of a consulting firm

Kärreman, Dan LU and Rylander, Anna (2008) In Organization Studies 29(1). p.103-125
Abstract
The current interest in organizational culture, identity, image and reputation and in organizational discourse points towards the pressure on contemporary organizations to focus attention on the symbolic dimensions of their activities. The phenomenon of branding, while originally portrayed as a marketing tool, can also be understood as an exercise in management of meaning. Branding does not only inform external stakeholders, such as customers and investors, about the values of the organization. It also potentially instructs and directs organizational members. In this sense, branding can be viewed as a management and leadership practice. Drawing on a longitudinal case study, this paper illustrates how these practices are played out in the... (More)
The current interest in organizational culture, identity, image and reputation and in organizational discourse points towards the pressure on contemporary organizations to focus attention on the symbolic dimensions of their activities. The phenomenon of branding, while originally portrayed as a marketing tool, can also be understood as an exercise in management of meaning. Branding does not only inform external stakeholders, such as customers and investors, about the values of the organization. It also potentially instructs and directs organizational members. In this sense, branding can be viewed as a management and leadership practice. Drawing on a longitudinal case study, this paper illustrates how these practices are played out in the particular context of a management consulting firm and explores the relationship between branding and organizational identity and identification. The study highlights the shortcomings of the strategic marketing perspective on brands and the need for further empirical studies that examine the role of branding from different perspectives and in different empirical contexts. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
branding, brands, organizational identity, management consulting, identification
in
Organization Studies
volume
29
issue
1
pages
103 - 125
publisher
SAGE Publications Inc.
external identifiers
  • wos:000253168700005
  • scopus:37849021082
ISSN
1741-3044
DOI
10.1177/0170840607084573
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
a5dc350d-4fe1-43cf-9b4c-a9e67626dbad (old id 1196369)
date added to LUP
2008-09-10 11:06:47
date last changed
2017-11-19 03:33:17
@article{a5dc350d-4fe1-43cf-9b4c-a9e67626dbad,
  abstract     = {The current interest in organizational culture, identity, image and reputation and in organizational discourse points towards the pressure on contemporary organizations to focus attention on the symbolic dimensions of their activities. The phenomenon of branding, while originally portrayed as a marketing tool, can also be understood as an exercise in management of meaning. Branding does not only inform external stakeholders, such as customers and investors, about the values of the organization. It also potentially instructs and directs organizational members. In this sense, branding can be viewed as a management and leadership practice. Drawing on a longitudinal case study, this paper illustrates how these practices are played out in the particular context of a management consulting firm and explores the relationship between branding and organizational identity and identification. The study highlights the shortcomings of the strategic marketing perspective on brands and the need for further empirical studies that examine the role of branding from different perspectives and in different empirical contexts.},
  author       = {Kärreman, Dan and Rylander, Anna},
  issn         = {1741-3044},
  keyword      = {branding,brands,organizational identity,management consulting,identification},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {103--125},
  publisher    = {SAGE Publications Inc.},
  series       = {Organization Studies},
  title        = {Managing meaning through branding - the case of a consulting firm},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0170840607084573},
  volume       = {29},
  year         = {2008},
}