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Both Hungary and Germany belong to the old-world wine-producing countries and have long winemaking traditions. This paper aims at exploring and comparing online branding strategies of family SME (small and medium sized enterprises) wineries at Lake Balaton (Hungary) and Lake Constance (Germany), as two wine regions with similar geographic characteristics.Design/methodology/approachThis paper, based on a total sample of 37 family wineries, 15 at Lake Balaton and 22 at Lake Constance, investigates the differences in brand identity on the website, brand image in social media and online communication channels deployed in both wine regions. The study applies a qualitative methodology using MaxQDA software for conducting content analysis of texts in websites and social media. Descriptive statistics and t-test were conducted to compare the usage of different communication channels and determine statistical significance.FindingsAt Lake Balaton, the vineyard, the winery and the family, while at Lake Constance, the lake itself and the grape are highlighted regarding family winery brand identity. The customer-based brand image of Hungarian family wineries emphasizes wine, food and service, with the predominant use of Facebook. In the German family wineries, the focus of brand identity is on wine, friendliness and taste and includes more extensive usage of websites.Originality/valueThe paper deploys a novel methodology, both in terms of tools used as well as geographic focus to uncover online branding patterns of family wineries, thereby providing implications for wine and tourism industries at lake regions. It compares the share of selected most-used words in the overall text in websites and in social media, and presents the key findings from this innovative approach.
Journal of Family Business Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Nov 29, 2022
Keywords: Brand; Brand identity; Brand image; Family business; Social media; Winery; Web scrapping
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