Purpose Internet-based marketing communication has been an important element for organizations to build brand image and brand equity. Higher education is not an exception. However, configuring the right mix in the age of social networking sites and various online displays and constantly changing algorithm in search engine optimization have become major challenges today. Hence, the purpose of this study is to configure integrated online marketing communication for the development of brand image and brand equity for higher educational institutions.Design/methodology/approach The study is quantitative in nature. A responsive group of 370 students was chosen from different educational institutions in Malaysia via stratified random sampling techniques. Both exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses were used for interpreting the data. To test the derived hypotheses, structural equation modelling was used.Findings In line with contemporary literature, the study revealed positive relationships between brand image and brand equity, between search engine and brand image and between social media and brand image. The relationship between online display and brand image was not found significant.Research limitations/implications Future research can be done considering both online and conventional marketing communications for the same purpose. This approach can also be used for private and public institutions separately, considering their differences in nature.Practical implications Because history and tradition are no more a single tool to attain and retain the positive image and customer-based brand equity, this study can help higher educational institutions to configure integrated online communication for their target groups, such as students and industry, in the age of the internet.Originality/value This study generates a comprehensive understanding of the impact of Web-based marketing communication to develop brand image and brand equity of higher educational institutions.
Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 7, 2019
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