Research Focus

The department is dedicated to research within the conceptual triangle of innovation, strategy, and branding practices.

 

 The Innovation Perspective

Our research on innovation capability deals with product, process, market and resource innovation in businesses and public institutions. We examine how the knowledge and skills required for innovation can be attained, distributed and applied within and beyond the organization. One central issue thereby is which basic conditions are especially conducive to maximizing innovation capability. We investigate how innovations can originate from knowledge, skills and resources available within the organization itself or from customers, suppliers and other stakeholders.

 

  The Branding Perspective

This field of research deals with brand development processes and how they can be influenced. We examine how brand meanings develop within social interactions, how they become subject to experience through brand manifestations (the organization, its products and services, as well as people, symbols and activities), and finally how people interested in a brand participate in brand related interactions. In particular, we focus on the question of how lasting emotional relationships between organizations and important stockholders develop and how these relationships may strengthen or weaken the brand position. From this, implications for branding actions should emerge.

 

 The Strategic Management Perspective

The increasing dynamics of markets linked with changes more difficult to foresee require new procedures and ways of thinking from people working in business organizations as well as public institutions. Innovative entrepreneurship as well the development of a unique system of emotional relations with the most important stakeholders can become a major base for competitive advantages. Strategic leadership refers to the creation and maintenance of social, economic and technical conditions within an organization. Within this field of research we examine the influence of strategic leadership on the innovation capability of organizations and on their capability of building lasting emotional relationships with and among stakeholders.

 


 

 Top Publications

Below you find a list of our most recent high profile publications.
You can also find a list of our entire publication activities.

 

Koll, Oliver; Plank, Andreas (2022 online first): Do Shoppers Choose the Same Brand on the Next Trip When Facing the Same Context? An Empirical Investigation in FMCG Retailing.

In: Journal of Retailing. (Weblink) (DOI)

Abstract:

The most basic manifestation of brand loyalty is repurchasing – making the same choice on the next category occasion. This study tests to which extent the stability of contextual cues across purchase occasions affects repurchasing. We investigate these effects by analyzing a total of 1.6 million brand choice pairs (i.e., two consecutive choices) of 20,587 German and 23,036 British shoppers in three FMCG categories. We find that stable contextual cues (same retailer, basket size or weekday as on previous occasions) further repurchasing whereas unstable contextual cues (different retailer, basket size or weekday as on previous occasions, a promotion chosen on one of the occasions or a different assortment size) hinder repurchasing. Furthermore, our results stress the importance of inertia and the power of private labels to foster repurchasing. This study provides generalizable insights regarding trip-to-trip stability in shoppers’ choices, proposes a metric to benchmark brand performance across multiple retail outlets, and pinpoints opportunities for manufacturer-retailer cooperation in order to nurture repurchasing.

 

Wieser, Verena E.; Luedicke, Marius K.; Hemetsberger, Andrea (2021): Charismatic Entrainment: How Brand Leaders and Consumers Co-Create Charismatic Authority in the Marketplace.

In: Journal of Consumer Research 48/4, S. 731 - 751. (Weblink) (DOI)

Abstract:

How do CEOs, entrepreneurs, managers, celebrity bloggers, and other brand leaders acquire charismatic authority in the marketplace? Grounded in a multi-perspective, in-depth case study of the charismatic CEO of an Austrian shoe manufacturer, this article introduces a sociocultural mechanism called charismatic entrainment. Charismatic entrainment involves brand leaders staging charismatic authority by promoting polarized worldviews and taking personal risks to demonstrate their ability to lead social change. It further involves consumer-followers publicly validating and consumer-critics challenging brand leaders’ claims to charismatic authority, encouraging further entrainment via their support, but also their criticism. Brand leaders, consumer-followers, and consumer-critics draw on social mediamarketplace sentiments, and brand manifestations as entrainment resources to more effectively endow brand leaders with charismatic authority in the marketplace. The article contributes a market-based, multi-stakeholder—versus an organizational, leader-centric—theory of charisma co-creation to the literature on charismatic authority. It also adds to theories of iconic branding, risk consumption, and societal morality plays, sensitizing readers to the constructive but also destructive potential of market-based charisma co-creation.

 

Ceipek, René; Hautz, Julia; De Massis, Alfredo; Matzler, Kurt; Ardito, Lorenzo (2021): Digital Transformation Through Exploratory and Exploitative Internet of Things Innovations: The Impact of Family Management and Technological Diversification.

In: Journal of Product Innovation Management 38/1, S. 142 - 165. (Weblink) (DOI) (Volltext)

Abstract:

This study examines the impact of family management on digital transformation with specific regard to the firm’s development of Internet of Things (IoT) innovations. Drawing on the distinctive characteristics of firms with family managers, such as the focus on family-centered noneconomic goals, long tenure, emotional ties to existing assets, and rigid mental models, it hypothesizes that increasing family involvement in the top management team is negatively related to the development of IoT innovations that are distant from a firm’s existing technology base (i.e., exploratory IoT innovations) compared to exploitative IoT innovations. Further, the study proposes that the firm’s degree of technological diversification, especially in unrelated forms, reinforces this relationship. The longitudinal analysis between 2002 and 2013 on a sample of publicly traded German firms allows us to test our hypotheses from the beginning of the emergence of the IoT concept. Our findings show that due to the particular characteristics of their managers, family-managed firms do not welcome the risks related to exploratory IoT innovations, and the benefit of risk diversification from technological diversification is lower than the cost of abandoning family-centered goals. As our results imply that the involvement of family managers constrains the development of exploratory IoT innovation, the top management team composition in firms that intend to be at the forefront of the digital transformation should be accurately designed by avoiding a high proportion of family members.

 

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