Purpose – The purpose of this study is to explore the effects of brand's country‐of‐origin image on the formation of brand equity. Design/methodology/approach – To accomplish this, the brand equity of household electrical appliances, particularly televisions, refrigerators and air‐conditioners, in the Malaysian market is examined. A conceptual framework in which brand's country‐of‐origin image is postulated to influence the dimensions of brand equity, which is made up of brand loyalty, brand awareness, perceived quality, and brand associations. These dimensions, in turn, influence brand equity. Data were collected from consumers of household electrical appliances using probability sampling. Findings – Factor analysis conducted on brand equity dimensions, produced three factors namely, brand distinctiveness, brand loyalty, and brand awareness/associations. The regression analysis results show that brand's country‐of‐origin image positively and significantly influences dimensions of brand equity. The results also show that brand's country‐of‐origin image influences brand equity, either directly or indirectly, through the mediating effects of brand distinctiveness, brand loyalty and brand awareness/associations. Research limitations/implications – The study investigates brand equity of durable goods of three product categories namely television, refrigerator and air‐conditioner. It only considers brand's country‐of‐origin image as one of the sources of brand equity. The conceptual framework does not take into consideration factors that moderate the influence of antecedent of brand equity on brand equity. Practical implications – Producers of household electrical appliances should put greater emphasis in creating brand loyalty for their products. The good image of brand's original country should be highlighted in order to enhance the overall image of the brand. Favorable country image can also be capitalized in brand‐naming strategy. Originality/value – This is paper important in identifying the sources of brand equity.
Journal of Product & Brand Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 6, 2007
Keywords: Brand equity; Country of origin; Brand image; Brand loyalty; Brand awareness; Malaysia
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