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Internal brand co-creation: The experiential brand meaning cycle in higher education

Dean, Dianne; Arroyo-Gamez, Ramon E.; Pich, Christopher; Punjaisri, Khanyapuss


Dianne Dean

Ramon E. Arroyo-Gamez

Christopher Pich

Khanyapuss Punjaisri


Higher education (HE) institutions need to adapt to the global environment but the complex nature of HE highlights the role of marketing and the internal market in realizing the brand identity, creating a challenge for developing a shared brand meaning. This research explores how employees co-create brand meaning through their brand experiences and social interactions with management, colleagues and customers. Using a phenomenological approach, the findings highlight that brand meaning commences from historical, superficial brand interactions. Employees then develop brand meaning further through a series of brand interactions and social interactions. Bridging the internal branding and the co-creation literature, this study conceptualizes the evolving, co-created nature of employees’ brand meaning in the experiential brand meaning cycle. This study extends Iglesias and Bonet’s (2012) work and illustrates the function of employees as readers and authors of brand meaning, emphasising the crucial role of brand co-creation in guiding employees’ brand promise delivery.


Dean, D., Arroyo-Gamez, R. E., Pich, C., & Punjaisri, K. (2016). Internal brand co-creation: The experiential brand meaning cycle in higher education. Journal of business research, 69(8), 3041-3048.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 1, 2015
Publication Date Aug 1, 2016
Deposit Date Dec 17, 2015
Publicly Available Date Nov 23, 2017
Journal Journal of business research
Print ISSN 0148-2963
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 69
Issue 8
Pages 3041-3048
Keywords Brand identity, Co-creation, Internal branding, Brand meaning, Higher education
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Authors' accepted manuscript of article published in: Journal of business research, 2016, v.69, issue 8.
Contract Date Nov 23, 2017


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