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A Typology of Winery SME Brand Strategies with Implications for Sustainability Communication and Co-Creation

  • The article explores SME (Small and Medium Sized Enterprises) brand strategies as a means to position and successfully engage in competitive markets. A derived typology of brand strategy types deals with social profiling and sheds light on brand strategy internalization of two current managerial paradigms—sustainability and co-creation. N = 895 German SME wineries were examined, leaning on a netnographic analysis of predominantly websites and social media interactions. A two-step clustering method thereby identified eight winery SME brand strategy types. The importance of sustainability across the identified eight brand strategy types is significant. Co-creation turned out to be a key profiling trait characterizing one brand strategy type. The typology illustrates strategic richness, with brand strategies leaning predominantly on traditional values, on sustainability, on external reputation, or on more innovative customer centric concepts such as co-creation. Hereby, the typology and the identified brand levers invite to strategically design brand management, governance, and sustainability. Wineries which focus on traditional positioning and legitimacy were found to be cautious in deploying co-creation through social media. Winery brands that are characterized by engagement in digital co-creation apparently either tend to expand their scope or partially combine it with traditional values, making them the most diverse type identified. Sustainability obviously needs to be addressed by all brand strategies. Despite industry and country focus, the analyses illustrate the relevance of socially-oriented profiling and highlights that sustainability has reached a status of a fundamental business approach still allowing to differentiate thereon. Furthermore, the business models of the SMEs need to deliver communicated values.

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Document Type:Article
Author:Marc Dressler, Ivan Paunovic
Parent Title (English):Sustainability
Article Number:805
Place of publication:Basel
Date of first publication:2021/01/15
Keyword:co-creation; governance; netnography; online communication; strategic SME marketing; sustainability; wine branding
Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC):3 Sozialwissenschaften / 33 Wirtschaft / 330 Wirtschaft
Entry in this database:2023/02/28