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Japanese Psychological Research Invited Paper


2001, Volume 43, No. 4, 195–206
Special Issue: Consumer behavior

The effect of brand personality and brand


identification on brand loyalty: Applying the
theory of social identification

CHUNG K. KIM1
School of Business Administration, Sungkyunkwan University,
3-53 Myungnyun-dong, Chongno-ku, Seoul, Korea

DONGCHUL HAN
School of Business Administration, Seoul Women’s University,
126 Kongnung 2 dong, Nowon-ku, Seoul, Korea

SEUNG-BAE PARK
School of Business Administration, Sungkyunkwan University,
3-53 Myungnyun-dong, Chongno-ku, Seoul, Korea

Abstract: This study investigated the effect of brand personality on brand asset management
by using the concept of consumers’ identification with a brand. The focus was on one im-
portant type of high-technology product, the cellular phone. The authors develop a conceptual
framework to explain the effect of brand identification on brand loyalty. The important
variables of this framework include the attractiveness of the brand personality, the distinctive-
ness of the brand personality, the self-expressive value of the brand personality, positive word-
of-mouth reports of the brand, and brand loyalty. The empirical results indicated that there are
positive relationships between attractiveness, distinctiveness, and self-expressive value of
brand personality. These relationships had a statistically significant effect on consumers’
identification with a brand. Furthermore, brand identification had a direct effect on word-of-
mouth reports and an indirect effect on brand loyalty. The theoretical and managerial impli-
cations of the empirical results are presented, and suggestions are made regarding both the
limitations of the present study and future directions for research.
Key words: brand personality, word-of-mouth reports, brand loyalty, social identification,
self-expression.

Research background and X camera emphasized the image of in-


objectives dependence, dynamism, and brilliance through
Many companies are trying to get target the tennis player Andre Agassi. These kinds of
customers’ attention by creating a distinctive human characteristics associated with a brand
brand image for their products. In the United are called “brand personality.”
States, promotion of General Motors’ The importance of brand personality to
Chevrolet truck emphasized the image of consumers’ brand loyalty and repurchasing
“Like a rock,” and that of Canon’s EOS Rebel behavior has not been widely acknowledged.

1
We would like to thank Dr. Heesung Sung, at Seoul Women’s University, and Hong-Seong Kim, at the Global
Marketing Research Center of Samsung Electronics, for their general support. We also would like to thank Professor
Kojima, Professor Hayashi, and two anonymous reviewers. This study was funded by the Korea Research Foundation.
© 2001 Japanese Psychological Association. Published by Blackwell Publishers Ltd, 108 Cowley Road,
Oxford OX4 1JF, UK and 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148, USA.
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196 C. K. Kim, D. Han, and S. B. Park

Only a few researchers, such as Plummer brand. Social identification theory has mainly
(1985) and David Aaker (1996), have pointed been applied to organizational identification, in
out the importance of brand personality in which variables such as organizational prestige,
building competitive advantage and brand expectation level, length of membership, and
loyalty. Recently, Jennifer Aaker (1997) pre- contact frequency have been studied (Mael &
sented the empirical results of her research on Ashforth, 1992). Some of these concepts are
the measurement of brand personality. applied to our study in order to examine the
In short, the issues of why and how brand role of brand identification.
personalities affect consumers’ brand loyalty Many people are likely to express them-
have not been addressed. The study reported selves and/or enhance themselves by selecting
here borrowed the methodology developed by particular brands. The degree to which the
Aaker (1997) to measure some dimensions brand expresses and enhances their identity is
of brand personality. This paper presents a determined by their level of brand identifi-
theoretical framework for understanding any cation. The major research subjects of our
effects of brand personality on brand asset paper are as follows:
management. The paper also specifies con-
sumers’ behaviors in respect of word-of-mouth 1. With what kinds of brand personalities do
reports about a brand, and brand loyalty. consumers in Korea associate their cellular
The specific research objectives of this study phones?
were as follows. First, it examined the existence 2. How does brand personality affect brand
of brand personality in the cellular phone loyalty?
market in Korea. Furthermore, the research
showed that the self-expressive value and The latter is broken down into three parts:
distinctiveness of the brand influence the
attractiveness of a brand personality. When 1. Which aspects of brand personalities are
there is a fit between brand personality and connected to a brand’s attractiveness, self-
a consumer’s self-expression, the consumer expressive value, and distinctiveness?
may consider a brand as a person, or even a 2. Does the attractiveness of brand person-
companion. In the real world, we find this ality positively affect the level of brand
kind of relationship between brand and human identification?
(Fournier, 1998). Sometimes, the human charac- 3. Does brand identification have a positive
teristics attached to a certain brand are used to effect on the level of brand loyalty and
express one’s own image or personality. word-of-mouth reports?
Second, this study investigated any possible
linkage between brand and consumer through This study will be of interest both to
the social identification theory developed in businesses and academically. In the business
social psychology. The concept of social world, it is expected that the results of studies
identification relates to a person’s sense of like the present one will be used to develop
belonging to a certain group or organization strategies for corporate advertising and store
(Bhattacharya, Rao, & Glynn, 1995; Mael & design. Furthermore, it will help our under-
Ashforth, 1992). Therefore, a consumer’s standing of how brand personality may be
identification with a certain brand or a certain used to enhance customers’ self-expression
company makes that consumer differentiate and product differentiation. Academically,
the brand from others. Social identification studies about brand personality have pro-
theory is widely used in social psychology gressed to identifying dimensions of brand
(Mael & Ashforth, 1992). personality. Beyond such identification, this
Third, this study examined the effect of study, within the framework of social identifi-
brand identification on brand loyalty and cation, examines how brand personality affects
positive word-of-mouth reports about the brand loyalty.

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The effect of brand personality and brand identification on brand loyalty 197

In the next section, the literature on two This phenomenon, which is widely rooted in
important areas, brand personality and social our social life, is often called social identifi-
identification, is selectively reviewed, and some cation. In short, social identification implies
hypotheses are introduced. The theoretical back- the sense of belonging to certain groups or
ground to this paper is also explained. Then an organizations (Ashforth & Mael, 1989; Hogg,
interdisciplinary study of marketing and social Hardie, & Reyrolds, 1995). Here, a group in-
psychology is described. The theoretical and cludes a reference group; it includes not only a
managerial implications of the findings and group to which people belong but also a group
future research directions are also presented. to which they aspire to belong. Fournier (1998)
has studied how consumers identify themselves
with brands by using idiographic analysis.
Studies of organizational identification may
Literature review and hypotheses
be divided in two. First, there is a group of
Studies of brand personality studies on the antecedents of identification.
How human personality affects various aspects Such studies have examined: the degree of
of consumer behavior has been widely studied, competition with other organizations (Mael
but studies of brand personality began only & Ashforth, 1992); organizational prestige
recently, although in the field of marketing (Bhattacharya et al., 1995); and tenure (Hall,
several studies have already been completed Schneider, & Nygren, 1970). Second, there is a
and published. For example, Plummer (1985) group of studies on the effect of group identi-
studied how brand personality affects con- fication. For example, Mael and Ashforth
sumers’ choice of a soft drink with a distinctive (1992) found a positive relationship between
brand image in the United States. Aaker (1996) identification and alumnis’ contribution to
summarized the role of brand personality in their Alma Mater. Dutton, Dukerich, and
building up brand power, and pointed out Harquail (1994) argued that there is a positive
the importance of and the need for empirical relationship between identification and group
research. Aaker (1997), after realizing the need cooperation. Shamir (1990) proposed that
for further empirical research, developed a identification has a positive effect on the will-
new measurement scale for measuring brand ingness to contribute to collective work.
personality along five dimensions, extracted However, all these studies investigated
from her research. These five dimensions were organizational identification, not brand identi-
sincerity, excitement, competence, sophisti- fication. In the papers cited above, studies of
cation, and ruggedness. But these studies have the relationship between consumer and brand
not shown how brand personality affects im- (i.e., consumers’ identification with a brand)
portant marketing variables such as brand were suggested as a likely next research topic.
loyalty. We need to study how brand person- Recently, Aaker (1999) offered a concept of
ality affects brand loyalty, using a theoretical brand identification based on her study of
framework such as social identification. brand role in self-expression.

Studies of social identification Research hypotheses


In social psychology, social identification means This study was designed to test the inter-
that a person identifies him/herself as a member relationships between six constructs. The
of a society. An expression of identification constructs have been categorized into two
with an organization is treated as a special type groups. The first group (antecedent variables)
of social identification (Bhattacharya et al., comprises the self-expressive value and distinc-
1995; Hogg & Abrams, 1988; Lau, 1989; Mael tiveness of brand personality. The second
& Ashforth, 1992). group (outcome variables) comprises attrac-
People tend to use various factors to classify tiveness of brand personality, brand identifi-
themselves as belonging to a specific group. cation, positive word-of-mouth reports, and

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198 C. K. Kim, D. Han, and S. B. Park

Self-
expressive
value Word-of-mouth
Attractiveness reports
of brand
personality

Distinctiveness of
brand
personality
Brand
Brand loyalty
identification

Figure 1. The research model.

brand loyalty. The main focus in this study was organization, the more they agree with its
on brand identification. norms and cooperate with it. As indicated
First, self-concept, self-consistency, and self- above, previous studies have empirically shown
continuity are interrelated. The brand will be that group identification has a positive effect
perceived as attractive when it helps a person on alumni’s contributions, group cooperation,
to express him/herself, and when the person and willingness to contribute to a collective
identifies with the brand (Belk, 1988). Aaker work (Dutton et al., 1994; Mael & Ashforth,
(1999) argued that a brand is used for self- 1992; Shamir, 1990). This means that a
expression and to reflect self-concept. When consumer’s identification with a social object
expressed properly, brand personality posi- (whether it is a group, an organization, or a
tively affects a consumer’s attitude to the brand. brand) leads the person to behave positively
Based on the literature review, it is expected toward the group. Therefore, we conclude that
that the greater are the self-expressive value brand identification will positively affect brand
and the distinctiveness of the brand personality, loyalty and word-of-mouth reports.2 Therefore,
the more the brand personality will appeal. we have the following additional hypothesis.
Therefore, we have the following hypotheses:
3. The more consumers identify with a brand,
1. The greater the self-expressive value and the more will be the consumers’ word-of-
the distinctiveness of brand personality mouth reports and brand loyalty.
are, the greater will be the attractiveness of
the brand personality. The three hypotheses are linked in the research
2. The greater the attractiveness of the brand model shown in Figure 1.
personality is, the more consumers will
identify with that brand.
2
Bhattacharya et al. (1995) examined the difference
between brand identification and brand loyalty. They
Second, we expect that the more consumers stated that brand loyalty is a reflection of the functional
identify with the brand, the more will be their utility of products and services, whereas brand iden-
word-of-mouth reports and brand loyalty. Some tification is necessarily related to the goals of the
organization and the reasons why it exists. Therefore,
research results regarding the outcome
brand identification can affect brand loyalty, but brand
variables of identification show that the more loyalty does not guarantee identification with the brand
an organization’s members identify with the or the company.

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The effect of brand personality and brand identification on brand loyalty 199

Method 4. Word-of-mouth report behavior was


measured on a three-item, seven-point
Sample and data collection Likert scale, based on that used in the
Since this research dealt with the effect of study by File, Judd, and Prince (1992).
brand identification on consumer behavior, 5. The scale for the self-expressive value of
any product could be the object of study as brand personality was based on previous
long as consumers carried a sense of brand studies by the authors. It comprised
identification in relation to it. The cellular three items rated on a seven-point scale:
phone was chosen as the target product for this “The brand helps me to express myself,”
empirical study. When the data were collected “The brand reflects my personality,”
in late 1999, five companies were competing for and “The brand enhances myself.”
the market of cellular phones in Korea. 6. The scale for attractiveness of brand per-
First, a questionnaire was devised and a sonality was also based on the authors’
short pretest conducted; the questionnaire was previous studies and comprised three
then revised based on the results of the pretest. items rated on a seven-point scale: “It
Second, 180 of the revised questionnaires is attractive,” “It is favorable,” and “It is
were distributed to university students in distinctive.”
Seoul, Korea. Of the 150 that were returned 7. The distinctiveness of the brand person-
(a response rate of approximately 83%), ality was measured by another group of
130 were entered in the final data analysis three items which compared different
(20 incomplete questionnaires were omitted). products on a seven-point scale: closely
related vs. not related; completely similar
Measures vs. different; and many common features
Most of the major variables in this study were vs. few common features.
measured using multi-item five-point or seven-
point scales developed and validated by pre-
vious research. The specific items are presented
in Table 2. Seven instruments were used to
Results
gather the data to test the three research In order to test the hypotheses, the structural
hypotheses. Some appropriate modifications modeling method called LISREL was used. We
were made to the items. found several interesting and important results
in relation to the hypotheses. Before we
1 Forty-two dimensions of brand personality present the main results, however, we show an
were measured with the Brand Personality initial analysis procedure and some findings
Scale (BPS), developed by Aaker (1997). regarding the dimensions of brand personality.
The BPS employs a five-point Likert scale We also present the reliability and validity of
(1 being “strongly agree,” 5 “strongly the measures used in the main analysis.
disagree”).
2. Brand identification was measured on a Analyzing the dimensions of brand
six-item, seven-point Likert scale (1 being personality
“strongly disagree,” 7 “strongly agree”), An exploratory factor analysis was done on the
originally developed by Mael and Ashforth 42 items of brand personality with a varimax
(1992). rotation. During the factor analysis, six
3. Brand loyalty was measured on a four-item variables that were not related to any factor
scale developed by Aaker (1996) and (i.e., down-to-earth, family-oriented, real, in-
Ratchford (1987) and modified by Kim dependent, cool, cheerful) were excluded, and
(1998). This scale comprised a seven-point a total of five factors were extracted from
Likert scale (1 being “strongly disagree,” remaining 36 items. The factors were named
7 “strongly agree”). “Sincerity,” “Excitement,” “Competence,”

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200 C. K. Kim, D. Han, and S. B. Park

“Sophistication,” and “Ruggedness,” in accord- measured. For this empirical testing, mean
ance with their respective factor loadings scores on the measures were utilized. The
(Table 1). results are shown in Table 5.
Before hypothesis testing, a separate test
Reliability and validity of the measures was done to identify whether the self-
First, the Cronbach’s alphas were determined expressive value of brand personality and the
in order to test the reliability of the variables. distinctiveness of brand personality were
The results (Table 2) indicated that the related to the level of brand identification
measures of the key variables were generally without the attractiveness of brand personality
reliable. (alternative model). Indices for the overall fit
Second, in order to test the validity of the for this alternative model were GFI (.83),
measures, the data were analyzed using AGFI (.77), RMSR (.08), NFI (.81), CFI (.89);
LISREL VIII (Joreskog & Sorbom, 1993). A χ2 = 262.38, df = 125, p = .00.
confirmatory factor analysis was performed The various indices for the overall fit of the
according to the method of Bagozzi (1980). As research model (shown in Figure 1) were GFI
shown in Tables 3 and 4, respectively, the (.82), AGFI (.76), RMSR (.89), NFI (.80), CFI
validity of outcome variables and antecedent (.88); χ2 = 275.04, df = 127, p = .00. The
variables was tested in order. The result of the difference between the research model and
confirmatory factor analysis for 13 outcome the alternative model was not significant
variables is shown in Table 3. The overall (χ2 = 12.66, df = 2).
match for the measurement model regarding The relationships between variables and
the attractiveness of brand personality, brand path coefficients of the structural model are
identification, word-of-mouth reports, and presented in Table 6. The self-expressive value
brand loyalty was within acceptable levels of the brand personality had a significant effect
(χ2 = 102.59, p = .05). The following indices on the attractiveness of the brand personality
were found to be appropriate: root mean (γ11 = .84, t = 6.17). The distinctiveness of the
square residual (RMSR) (.05), goodness-of-fit brand personality had a significant effect on
index (GFI) (.91), adjusted goodness-of-fit the attractiveness of the brand personality
index (AGFI) (.86), normed fit index (NFI) (γ21 = .21, t = 2.31), but the effect was weaker
(.89), and comparative fit index (CFI) (.97). than that of self-expressive value. Therefore,
The result of the confirmatory factor analysis these results support hypothesis 1 (the higher
for five measures of the two antecedent the self-expressive value of the brand person-
constructs is shown in Table 4. The overall fit ality and the higher the distinctiveness of
for the measurement model according to the the brand personality are, the more attractive
self-expressive value of brand personality and will be the brand personality). Furthermore,
the distinctiveness of brand personality was the attractiveness of the brand personality
also within acceptable levels (χ2 = 28.02, had a significant effect on the level of
p = .05). The indices were found to be brand identification (β21 = .56, t = 4.61). There-
appropriate: RMSR (.06), GFI (.95), AGFI fore, hypothesis 2 (the more attractive the
(.89), NFI (.95), and CFI (.98). Thus the brand personality is, the higher the level of
measures used for the main analysis were brand identification will be) is also supported.
valid. The degree of brand identification positively
affected word-of-mouth reports (β32 = .38,
Results of hypothesis testing and t = 3.00), but it did not significantly affect the
implications level of brand loyalty (β42 = –.11. t = –0.88).
The test result of the measurement model for Therefore, hypothesis 3 (the higher the con-
this study was positive. The correlation analysis sumers’ identification with brand is, the higher
was done on the data in order to identify the the consumers’ word-of-mouth reports and
directions of relationships among the variables brand loyalty will be) is only partly supported.

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The effect of brand personality and brand identification on brand loyalty 201

Table 1. Factor analysis results – brand personality

Factor 1: Factor 2: Factor 3: Factor 4: Factor 5:


Factor item sincerity excitement competence sophistication ruggedness Communality
a
Intelligent .79 .12 .17 .10 –.02 .6737
Successful .72a .26 .17 –.07 .24 .6754
Leader .66a .07 .05 .06 .40 .6088
Upper class .66a .11 .36 –.13 .27 .6717
Secure .66a .15 .24 .24 .10 .5811
Technical .65a .34 .14 .14 .27 .6512
Corporate .65a –.01 .36 .36 .09 .5677
Reliable .63a –.01 .37 .37 .12 .6256
Hardworking .63a .17 .34 .34 .03 .5587
Confident .60a .30 .14 .14 .19 .5218

Trendy .04 .79a .18 –.12 –.11 .6924


Young –.01 .70a .15 .14 –.05 .6412
Contemporary .41 .71a –.05 .02 –.08 .6758
Unique .21 .68a .28 .06 .17 .6125
Up-to-date .35 .65a .21 –.20 –.09 .6348
Spirited .04 .64a .24 .29 .03 .5556
Western .30 .58a .11 .01 .41 .6069
Outdoorsy .15 .50a .18 .12 .45 .5263

Charming .30 .27 .70a .26 .14


Sentimental .20 –.10 .69a .24 –.03 .7488
Smooth .20 .06 .67a .38 .16 .5829
Feminine –.06 .28 .66a .09 .12 .6603
Good-looking .17 .25 .65a .27 .19 .5399
Glamorous .35 .20 .64a .25 .10 .6285
Imaginative .13 .32 .54a .12 .08 .6432
Daring .33 .22 .54a –.13 .32 .4420
Exciting .25 .39 .53a –.14 –.10 .5624

Wholesome .13 .05 .11 .74a .02 .5778


Honest .29 –.01 .02 .69a .19 .5962
Small-town –.06 –.08 .16 .63a .11 .4420
Sincere .19 .03 .25 .62a .25 .5462
Friendly .13 .39 .24 .50a .06 .4783
Original .32 .16 .17 .50a .09 .4134

Tough .16 –.12 .13 .24 .80a .7623


Masculine .29 –.13 .15 .28 .75a .7626
Rugged .44 .15 .16 .21 .60a .6449

Explained by factors 5.9736 4.7723 4.4836 3.6345 2.7770


Eigenvalue 12.2277 3.6994 2.5413 1.6902 1.4824
Cronbach’s α .9110 .8702 .8825 .7768 .8373

a
Factor loading ù .5.

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202 C. K. Kim, D. Han, and S. B. Park

Table 2. Reliability of items

Original number Final number Cronbach’s


Construct Item of items of items α

Attractiveness of 1. Attractive 3 3 .89


brand personality 2. Favorable
3. Distinctive

Self-expressive value 1. The brand helps me to express myself 3 3 .92


of brand personality 2. The brand reflects my personality
3. The brand enhances myself

Distinctiveness of 1. The brand was not related to other brands 3 2 .50


brand personality (vs. closely related)
2. The brand is completely different from other
brandsa (vs. completely similar)
3. The brand has few features in common with
other brands (vs. many features)

Brand identification 1. This brand’s successes are my successes 6 5 .82


2. I am interested in what others think about this
brand
3. When someone praises this brand, it feels like
a personal complimenta
4. When I talk about this brand, I usually say “we”
rather than “they”
5. If a story in the media criticized the brand, I
would feel embarrassed
6. When someone criticizes this brand, it feels like
a personal insult

Word-of-mouth 1. Recommend to other people that the brand 3 2 .78


reports should be theirs as soon as possiblea
2. Recommend the brand to other people
3. Talk directly about your experience with them

Brand loyalty 1. I will continue to use this brand because I am 4 3 .81


satisfied and acquainted with the brand
2. I will use this brand in spite of competitors’
deals
3. I would buy additional products and service in
this branda
4. I prefer the brand to others
a
Those items which were not reliable and loading low on the corresponding constructs were excluded from further
analysis.

Finally, the attractiveness of the brand Discussion and conclusion


personality significantly affected positive word-
of-mouth reports, but it did not significantly Summary of results
affect brand loyalty (β31 = .33, t = 2.64, β41 = .14, Most of the hypotheses were supported by the
t = 1.16). test results. The confirmation of the first

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The effect of brand personality and brand identification on brand loyalty 203

Table 3. Factor loadings (t values) from the confirmatory factor analysis of outcome variables

Factor itemsa Attractiveness Brand identification Word-of-mouth reports Brand loyalty

Attractiveness of brand personality


Item 1 .86 (7.52)
Item 2 .86 (7.54)
Item 3 .84 (7.40)

Brand identification
Item 1 .75 (8.78)
Item 2 .54 (5.95)
Item 4 .76 (8.98)
Item 5 .80 (8.76)
Item 6 .55 (6.08)

Word-of-mouth reports
Item 2 .84 (8.76)
Item 3 .77 (8.45)

Brand loyalty
Item 1 .73 (6.60)
Item 2 .74 (6.66)
Item 3 .79 (6.91)

GFI = .91, AGFI = .86, RMSR = .05, NFI = .89, CFI = .97; χ2 = 102.59, df = 80, p = .05.
a
See Table 2 for the numbered items.

hypothesis (the higher the self-expressive value Table 4. Factor loadings (t values) from the
of the brand personality and the higher the confirmatory factor analysis of antecedent
distinctiveness of brand personality, the higher variables
consumers will evaluate the attractiveness of Self-expressive
the brand personality) shows that there is a Factorsa value Distinctiveness
positive relationship between customer and
brand. Self-expressive value
Second, it turns out that the brand identifi- 1 .91 (13.10)
cation has a positive effect on word-of-mouth 2 .91 (13.06)
3 .81 (10.84)
reports, but it does not have a significant direct
effect on brand loyalty. But, since word-of- Distinctiveness
mouth reports significantly affect brand loyalty 1 .71 (3.53)
and since brand identification significantly 3 .53 (3.29)
affects word-of-mouth reports, it can be said
that brand identification has an indirect effect GFI = .95, AGFI = .89, RMSR = .06, NFI = .95, CFI = .98;
χ2 = 28.02, df = 17, p = .05.
on brand loyalty through positive word-of- a
See Table 2 for the numbered items.
mouth reports.
Similarly, the attractiveness of the brand
personality directly affects positive word-of- measuring attractiveness in this study had
mouth reports and indirectly affects brand three dimensions – attractiveness, distinctive-
loyalty. Unlike previous studies which argued ness, and favorableness – and these were
that the strength of five dimensions of brand shown to affect brand loyalty and word-of-
personalities affect brand asset, the instrument mouth reports.

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204 C. K. Kim, D. Han, and S. B. Park

Table 5. Correlation matrix of research constructs

Mean SD 1 2 3 4 5 6

1. Self-expressive value 3.58 1.49 1.000


2. Distinctiveness 4.41 1.12 –.156* 1.000
3. Attractiveness 3.96 1.28 .760* –.021 1.000
4. Brand identification 3.20 1.30 .378* –.151* .326* 1.000
5. Word-of-mouth reports 3.42 1.53 .445* –.109 .386* .411* 1.000
6. Brand loyalty 3.87 1.50 .323* .047 .424* .299* .588* 1.000

This table shows the correlation matrix used for the LISREL analysis. Those who would like to replicate our analysis could
use the correlation matrix rather than the full data set.
*p , .1.

Table 6. Results of model and hypotheses

Hypothesis Coefficient value t value

γ11 Self-expressive value → Attractiveness .84 6.17**


γ21 Distinctiveness → Attractiveness .21 2.31**
β21 Attractiveness → Identification .56 4.61**
β31 Attractiveness → Word-of-mouth reports .33 2.64**
β41 Attractiveness → Brand loyalty .14 1.16
β32 Identification → Word-of-mouth reports .38 3.00**
β42 Identification → Brand loyalty –.11 0.88
β43 Word-of-mouth reports → Brand loyalty .74 4.08**

GFI = .82, AGFI = .76, RMSR = .89, NFI = .80, CFI=.88; χ2 = 275.04, df = 127, p = .00.
**p , .05.

Implications for marketing strategies loyalty and word-of-mouth reports. Usually,


Some strategic implications of this empirical brand personality is created by various
study are as follows. First, it is necessary for activities such as marketing communication,
firms to develop efficient communication sales promotion, social contribution, and
methods in order to launch a distinctive and public relations. Therefore, brand personality is
attractive brand personality. Communication not easily created, but once created it tends to
plays a vital role in creating and maintaining have a long life.
brand personality. Unlike foreign examples, The results of this study have an important
there are few Korean cases in which brand theoretical implication, concerning the relation-
personality is consistently created. This re- ship between brand and consumer. Recently,
quires not only communication strategies but with the increasing number of Internet users,
also other activities such as the firm’s com- more businesses have been focusing on customer
munity service and consumer support activities. relationship management (CRM). The develop-
However, many companies fail because they ment of brand identification affects the building
emphasize and focus only on short-term goals of a relationship between brand and consumer.
by responding ad hoc or emulating other In other words, when brand personality seems
companies’ strategies. Therefore, the effective attractive, brand identification is created. If
use of brand personality (uniquely and in such brand identification increases, then online con-
a way that the brand helps people enhance sumers will not so readily click away from the
their self-expression) can increase brand brand’s website. Brand personality would also

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The effect of brand personality and brand identification on brand loyalty 205

help a website powerfully differentiate itself References


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We would like to thank one of the reviewers who on group identification. Social Psychology
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© Japanese Psychological Association 2001.