Investigating Brand Prestige

Brand Prestige image

Introduction

The concept of branding applied to human resource management (HRM) is called employer branding (EB) (Backhaus & Tikoo, 2004). In 2015, Wahba and Elmanadily reported a strong connection between EB and HRM, that EB is increasing, and that companies are allocating branding efforts to attract and retain employees.

Businesses use EB to attract potential employees that will best contribute to the organization’s strategic goals (Martin et al., 2011). Tim Abler and Simon Barrow were the first to coin EB in 1996 as a way of melding human resource activities and branding strategies (Barrow & Mosley, 2005).

Employer branding defined by Ambler and Barrow (1996) is the result of economic, psychological and functional benefits offered by the company, and associated with the organization. In HRM, EB is a tool that communicates the company’s employee benefits (Ambler & Barrow, 1996).

Brand Prestige

There are five human traits assigned to brands: competence, ruggedness, excitement, sincerity, and sophistication. Brand Prestige job seekers assign human traits to brands.

The personality trait prestige along with innovativeness and competence might explain the incremental differences of functional job features namely advancement opportunities and salary.

Brands assigned with high prestige, a high level of sophistication, and with the upper-class lifestyle are believed to provide employees with higher status (Lievens, van Hoye, & Schreurs, 2005).

Organizational prestige was reported by Hasan and Hussain (2015) to be an antecedent of employees’ organizational commitment. Perceived external brand prestige reflects the social value that employees have on their employer’s identity (Mignonac, Herrbach, & Guerrero, 2006).

A firm’s competitive edge is augmented by its brand prestige. Choi, Ok, and Hyun (2011) examined the effects of brand experience and brand personality on brand prestige, and the effects of brand prestige on brand loyalty.

After analyzing the data, the researchers learned that brand prestige is both directly and positively affected by experience and brand personality (the group of human attributes connected to a particular brand).

In 2012, Stokburger-Sauer, Ratneshwar, and Sen examined the idea of consumer-brand identification. Their research revealed that brand prestige was one of three cognitive antecedents of consumer-brand identification.

The researchers concluded that identification with a brand is linked to the extent of which a person perceives the brand to be prestigious.

Effect of Tournament Rituals on Brand Prestige

Tournament rituals stem from Ritual Theory that defines this type of competition as a process that distributes organizational prestige and creates a means to rank inter-organizational brands.

Rituals operate for social integration that promotes the transfer of shared meaning. Tournament rituals authenticate the legitimacy of its participants. The brands that enter these tournament rituals do so to communicate values and reinforce brand status. These rituals function as a determiner of the worthiness of its competitors and activities. Despite competitive mechanisms that should allow changes in the ranking, the status system sustains brands at the apex of the prestige pyramid. The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

These rituals function as a determiner of the worthiness of its competitors and activities. Despite competitive mechanisms that should allow changes in the ranking, the status system sustains brands at the apex of the prestige pyramid. The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

Rituals operate for social integration that promotes the transfer of shared meaning. Tournament rituals authenticate the legitimacy of its participants. The brands that enter these tournament rituals do so to communicate values and reinforce brand status. These rituals function as a determiner of the worthiness of its competitors and activities. Despite competitive mechanisms that should allow changes in the ranking, the status system sustains brands at the apex of the prestige pyramid. The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

The brands that enter these tournament rituals do so to communicate values and reinforce brand status. These rituals function as a determiner of the worthiness of its competitors and activities. Despite competitive mechanisms that should allow changes in the ranking, the status system sustains brands at the apex of the prestige pyramid. The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

Despite competitive mechanisms that should allow changes in the ranking, the status system sustains brands at the apex of the prestige pyramid. The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

The brands at the apex garner more visibility and their behaviors are universally considered elite thereby reinforcing the hierarchical order which serves as a stabilizing mechanism.

There are several definitions of employer branding. Armstrong (1996) explained EB is the creation of an agency’s brand image for prospective employees. That image is influenced by the agency’s reputation as a provider of services and the company’s overall reputation. Several years later, Sullivan (2004) defined employer branding as the long-term strategy to regulate employee perceptions and to make stakeholders and potential employees aware of a particular firm. Along with benefits, a firm’s reputation plays an important role in attracting and retaining employees. There are three dimensions of Cable and Turban’s (2001) framework of employer familiarity also described as the job seeker’s level of company awareness. The first two dimensions are not relevant to the present endeavor. However, the third dimension addresses the employer’s reputation which is also viewed as the company’s public evaluation.

That image is influenced by the agency’s reputation as a provider of services and the company’s overall reputation. Several years later, Sullivan (2004) defined employer branding as the long-term strategy to regulate employee perceptions and to make stakeholders and potential employees aware of a particular firm. Along with benefits, a firm’s reputation plays an important role in attracting and retaining employees. There are three dimensions of Cable and Turban’s (2001) framework of employer familiarity also described as the job seeker’s level of company awareness. The first two dimensions are not relevant to the present endeavor. However, the third dimension addresses the employer’s reputation which is also viewed as the company’s public evaluation.

Along with benefits, a firm’s reputation plays an important role in attracting and retaining employees. There are three dimensions of Cable and Turban’s (2001) framework of employer familiarity also described as the job seeker’s level of company awareness. The first two dimensions are not relevant to the present endeavor. However, the third dimension addresses the employer’s reputation which is also viewed as the company’s public evaluation.

However, the third dimension addresses the employer’s reputation which is also viewed as the company’s public evaluation.

Brand Prestige and Job Seekers

Job seekers may describe one potential employer as trendy, but another employer as prestigious. That act of describing a brand using intangible, abstract, and subjective adjectives is common. Those perceptions communicate symbolic information about the company through a form of imagery that the applicant assigns to the potential employer (Lievens, van Hoye, & Schreurs, 2005). Fombrun and Shanley (1990) discussed the combined judgments of the multiple stakeholders on how well a business fulfills their expectations over time determines its corporate reputation (as cited in Cable & Turban, 2003). Research shows that a company’s perceived external prestige (PEP) has a direct impact on an employee’s intentions to quit (Herrbach, Mignonac, & Gatignon, 2004, as cited in Alniacik, Cigerim, Akcin, & Bayram, 2011). Businesses with favorable reputations draw a larger number of high-quality applicants (Cable & Turban, 2003). The benefits that accompany brands prestige stem from broader perceptions that cause job seekers to view employment at a particular company is quite favorably (Lievens, Van Hoye and Schreurs, 2005).

Those perceptions communicate symbolic information about the company through a form of imagery that the applicant assigns to the potential employer (Lievens, van Hoye, & Schreurs, 2005). Fombrun and Shanley (1990) discussed the combined judgments of the multiple stakeholders on how well a business fulfills their expectations over time determines its corporate reputation (as cited in Cable & Turban, 2003). Research shows that a company’s perceived external prestige (PEP) has a direct impact on an employee’s intentions to quit (Herrbach, Mignonac, & Gatignon, 2004, as cited in Alniacik, Cigerim, Akcin, & Bayram, 2011). Businesses with favorable reputations draw a larger number of high-quality applicants (Cable & Turban, 2003). The benefits that accompany brands prestige stem from broader perceptions that cause job seekers to view employment at a particular company is quite favorably (Lievens, Van Hoye and Schreurs, 2005).

In 2011, Alniacik, Cigerim, Akcin, and Bayram explored the independent and joint effects of a company’s perceived reputation, employee affective commitment, and job satisfaction on employee turnover intentions. After analyzing the data, the research team discovered that an organization’s reputation is positively correlated with organizational commitment and job satisfaction. At the same time, there is a negative correlation between a firm’s reputation and employee turnover intent. Corporate social responsibility augments an employer’s brand prestige and its brand distinctiveness resulting in greater perceived attractiveness as an employer (Pérez & del Bosque, 2015).

In 2016, Balaji, Roy, and Sadeque explored the role of university brand prestige in developing student University identification. The results observed suggest that universities should actively engage in branding activities that a strong student-university identity to amplify students’ behaviors that support the university. Further, the university’s brand prestige played a central role in determining student-university identity. Students’ identified with the university more when their perceptions of the institution were more attractive (favorable). As a result, the students will adopt the goals, values, and identities of their university (Rauschnabel, Krey, Babin, & Ivens, 2016).

Self-concept research holds that the individual’s desire for self-continuity runs parallel to that one’s desire for self-enhancement involving the maintenance and the affirmation of a positive self-perception resulting in high self-esteem. Without a doubt people desire to identify with prestigious brands (Greenwald & Banaji, 1995). Prestigious firms are perceived as important (Smidts et al., 2001). Employees of prestigious employers carry a sense of pride in being a part of that brand. Furthermore, external prestige promotes organizational identification (Rampl & Kenning, 2014).

The overall actions of an employer collectively operate that brand’s perceived external prestige. Unlike economic prestige, social prestige concerns the distinguishing qualities that set one brand apart from its competitors (Carmeli, 2005). In an effort to bridge two lines of research that were evolving independently, Lievens, van Hoye, and Anseel, 2007, used the instrumental-symbolic framework to study factors relating to both employer image and organizational identity of the Belgian Army. Data analysis revealed that both instrumental and symbolic perceived image dimensions were predictors of how individual’s perceived attraction to the Army. Additionally, the symbolic identity of the Belgian Army was the best predictor of employees’ identification with the Army. The researchers concluded that employees also attached importance to civilian perceptions of the Belgian Army.

References

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