Market Orientation as a Branding Strategy

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Bachelor’s Thesis Autumn Semester 2007 Department of Business Studies

Market Orientation as a Branding Strategy
by

Harriet Mellenius

Supervisor: Olivia Kang

ABSTRACT
This paper studies the impact of market orientation strategy on brand awareness. Zara, a Spanish leading fashion retailer and an example of a brand using this strategy, is compared to three other multinational brands operating in Stockholm, Sweden, namely Topshop, Mango and United Colours of Benetton. The latter brands are known to use advertising to create brand awareness.

Fashion magazine attention was used as a measure of brand awareness. Data on the brand awareness was gathered by browsing three leading Swedish fashion magazines – Elle, Glamour and Damernas Värld – and the fashion section of the biggest Swedish tabloid, Aftonbladet.

It was found that market orientation can compete with advertising as a marketing strategy to create brand awareness, but only in part of the market segment. This was concluded from the fact that Zara was featured in some of the magazines, but not all of them.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

First, I would like to thank my supervisor, Olivia Kang, for all her support. I would also like to thank my former co-writer Charina Montemar Hägglund, for helping me with the data gathering. I also want to thank my classmates for their constructive criticism that has greatly improved this paper. Finally, I would like to thank Mattias Kreku and Erik Mellenius who kindly assisted me with the proofreading.

HARRIET MELLENIUS

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TABLE OF CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................................................................. 5 THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK ....................................................................................................................... 6 BRAND AWARENESS ..................................................................................................................................... 6 FASHION MEDIA ............................................................................................................................................. 8 ADVERTISING ................................................................................................................................................. 8 MARKET ORIENTATION STRATEGY .......................................................................................................... 9 Customer Focus ........................................................................................................................................... 11 Competitor Focus......................................................................................................................................... 11 Interfunctional Coordination ....................................................................................................................... 12 Market orientation and branding ................................................................................................................. 12 MODEL ............................................................................................................................................................ 12 METHODOLOGY .............................................................................................................................................. 13 MARKET ORIENTATION STRATEGY ........................................................................................................ 14 Zara.............................................................................................................................................................. 14 ADVERTISING STRATEGY .......................................................................................................................... 15 Benetton...
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