The Impact of Linguistic Differences on International Brand Name Standardization: a Comparison of English and Chinese Brand Names of Fortune-500 Companies

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The Impact of Linguistic Differences on International Brand Name Standardization: A Comparison of English and Chinese Brand Names of Fortune-500 Companies Author(s): June N. P. Francis, Janet P. Y. Lam, Jan Walls Reviewed work(s): Source: Journal of International Marketing, Vol. 10, No. 1 (2002), pp. 98-116 Published by: American Marketing Association Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25048880 . Accessed: 19/02/2012 07:18 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at . http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org.

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Executive Insights: on International The Impact of Linguistic Differences A Comparison Brand Name Standardization: of English and Chinese Brand Names of Fortune-500 Companies ABSTRACT
The authors investigate the brand name standardization/adap
tation brand strategies names with used by consumer goods names Fortune-500 on several compa

nies in China and Hong Kong. The authors compare English
Chinese brand dimensions.

The vast majority of firms localize their brand names, and transliteration of the brand name is the strategy used most of ten. Firms brand name also appear mistakes to be successful in avoiding unfortunate to the brand names, and add features when localizing the brand name for the

such as cultural symbols, additional product benefits, and more positive Chinese As connotations, market.

the world's will

economies

move

toward

free A

June N.P. Francis, Janet P.Y. Lam, and

markets,

it has

been argued that only the best-managed
names enables (Ourusoff to earn the company survive et al. 1992). above-average

and strongest brand
strong brand name return by creating

JanWalls

a loyal consumer following, which

protects the firm from com

on its franchise. A brand name encroachments is the petitive an asset to the company, foundation of the product, and an im consumer to the success of a new cue, and it is critical portant

product

(Kohli and LaBahn 1997; Lubliner 1993). decision that must be made is name will be standardized or market conditions. Empirical found high degrees of brand one author this to suggest may that

As firms expand abroad, a key the degree to which the brand localized to adapt to the local studies of brand strategy have name standardization, and Shani 1992). leading

companies
(Sandier

are likely to brand globally
However,

and advertise
conclusion

locally
not

be broadly applicable, because most studies have examined similar, expansion only within culturally and linguistically contexts (Huang and Chan 1997). particularly Western, This study departs from most previous studies by examining brand extension between culturally and linguistically dissim ilar countries. Specifically, this study investigates the degree and nature of brand standardization/localization adopted by a Submitted Revised October August 2000 2001

sample sumer

of Fortui_e-500 goods multinational

(the largest

500 U.S.

companies

con corporations) in the special Admin

? Journal of International Marketing Vol. 10, No. 1, 2002, pp. 98-116 ISSN 1069-031X

istrative Region of Hong Kong and in the rest of the Peoples Republic of China. This study compares the linguistic fea tures of the U.S. brand names with the brand names used by

98

these

companies

in the Cantonese

and Mandarin

dialects.

Studying the impact of language difference is...
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