Identity elements and simple marketing meth ods

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identity elements and simple marketing meth- ods (Inskip 2004; Ojasalo, Natti, and Olkkonen 2008; Rode and Vallaster 2005). Internal and external SME brand-building processes are pur- sued simultaneously (Abimbola and Kocak 2007), unlike in large organizations where they can be treated separately (Urde 2003). Research suggests that the sophistication of SME branding could be improved by adopting brand orienta- tion (Wong and Merrilees 2005), placing impor- tance on employee-SME culture fit and communicating the essence of the brand to stakeholders (Rode and Vallaster 2005). When implemented together, market orientation and brand orientation, improve the performance of SMEs (Laukkanen et al. 2015; Reijonen et al. 2012). Some research suggests that low- performing SMEs employ simplistic branding, while high-performing ones utilize relatively sophisticated branding, similar to that found in large firms (Berthon, Ewing, and Napoli 2008). Founders play a central role in SME brand- ing. They imbue their firms with their vision, espoused values and passion, which influence the strategy formulation, corporate culture and structure (Boyle 2003; Krake 2005; Merrilees 2007). The innovative personality of the founder can be leveraged to build the SME brand, such as Dyson Appliances using the personality of its founder to position as a highly innovative brand (Boyle 2003). Founders start their firms in industries where they have previous experience and use small management teams for support (Inskip 2004; Spence and Essoussi 2010). The pursuit of growth is calibrated to the internal capabilities of the enterprise, so that the integ- rity of the SME market positioning, brand image, and reputation is not compromised (Spence and Essoussi 2010). Several SME branding typologies are cur- rently available (Krake 2005; Wong and Merri- lees 2005). The Wong and Merrilees (2005) typology is based on brand orientation, brand distinctiveness, brand barriers, and level of JOURNAL OF SMALL BUSINESS MANAGEMENT 2
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marketing. It consists of three SME branding archetypes, namely the minimalist, embryonic, and integrated. The minimalist branding approach exhibits very low level of brand orien- tation, limited brand distinctiveness, high brand barriers, and low-key marketing. The embryonic approach shows much more marketing and business expertise than the minimalist type but exhibits limited understanding of branding and marketing. Wong and Merrilees (2005) consider the embryonic branding approach the de facto SME branding strategy. The integrated branding approach, which shows the highest level of SME branding sophistication, is considered the least common. The Krake (2005) typology has two dimen- sions, namely the role of brand management (either small or large) and the level of brand rec- ognition in the market (either low or high) con- sisting. It has four types: (1) beginning and underprivileged brands (small role of brand management and low brand recognition), (2) emerging brands (large role of brand manage- ment and low brand recognition), (3) accepted brands large role of brand management and high brand recognition), and (4) historic brands Table 1
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