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We do not live to buy Why subcultures are different from brand communities and the meaning for marketing discourse

We do not live to buy Why subcultures are different from brand communities and the meaning for... Purpose – The purpose is to investigate the concepts of subculture, subculture of consumption and brand community with a view to better understanding these three groups and their distinct differences. Design/methodology/approach – The method relies on a literature review and a case study of sporting subculture. Using commentary from the surfing community as an example of subcultural groups we see how they define themselves against consumption oriented groups. Findings – Subcultures are completely different from brand communities (or subcultures of consumption) and while they can be said to share certain common traits the broad philosophical foci of these two groups are vastly incommensurate with one another. Practical implications – Marketing discourse has perpetually conflated subculture with forms of consumption, i.e. brand communities, yet they are different. By acknowledging and interrogating the key differences marketers may better apprehend the needs, character and activities of subcultural participants and market more strategically. Originality/value – By dissecting the differences between subculture, subculture of consumption and brand community, this paper offers a re‐conceptualisation of these terms in marketing discourse. In doing so, this paper seeks to dispel some fundamental misapprehensions in marketing and offer an entirely fresh perspective on the value and meaning of subculture. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy Emerald Publishing

We do not live to buy Why subcultures are different from brand communities and the meaning for marketing discourse

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2007 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0144-333X
DOI
10.1108/01443330710757230
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose is to investigate the concepts of subculture, subculture of consumption and brand community with a view to better understanding these three groups and their distinct differences. Design/methodology/approach – The method relies on a literature review and a case study of sporting subculture. Using commentary from the surfing community as an example of subcultural groups we see how they define themselves against consumption oriented groups. Findings – Subcultures are completely different from brand communities (or subcultures of consumption) and while they can be said to share certain common traits the broad philosophical foci of these two groups are vastly incommensurate with one another. Practical implications – Marketing discourse has perpetually conflated subculture with forms of consumption, i.e. brand communities, yet they are different. By acknowledging and interrogating the key differences marketers may better apprehend the needs, character and activities of subcultural participants and market more strategically. Originality/value – By dissecting the differences between subculture, subculture of consumption and brand community, this paper offers a re‐conceptualisation of these terms in marketing discourse. In doing so, this paper seeks to dispel some fundamental misapprehensions in marketing and offer an entirely fresh perspective on the value and meaning of subculture.

Journal

International Journal of Sociology and Social PolicyEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 26, 2007

Keywords: Cultural studies; Brands; Consumption; Marketing; Consumer behaviour

References