Conceptualizing Interactive Network Branding in business markets: developing roles and positions of firms in business networks

Nikolina Koporcic, Jan-Åke Törnroos

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    20 Citations (Scopus)
    17 Downloads (Pure)


    Purpose–This paper aims to present the concept of Interactive Network Branding (INB) in business markets. The INB conceptualization offers anunderstanding of corporate branding processes as an inherent part of business networking. More specifically, the paper focuses on the importanceof INB forfirms that are developing their roles and positions in business networks.Design/methodology/approach–The conceptual paper reviews the extant literature on corporate branding in conjunction with business networkresearch. This perspective adds to the current knowledge of business marketing by proposing a theoretical framework of INB.Findings–The conceptualization of INB offers a specific network lens on corporate branding by presenting three INB dimensions. Thefirstdimension deals with corporate identity; the second dimension deals with corporate reputation; the third, mutual INB dimension, presents an“interactive space”where branding and networking collide. These three dimensions are enacted by individuals acting on behalf of their companies,as key implementers of INB processes. Through the INB, strategic roles and positions offirms embedded in their business networks are formed.Research limitations/implications–The paper contributes to current literature on business network research that has left a corporate brandperspective almost unnoticed. The INB concept also offers an extension to current literature on corporate branding, which has to date neglectedbusiness relationships and networking issues. Being strongly conceptual, the paper notes that empirical research is needed for observing the role ofINB in real-life business encounters.Practical implications–This study provides novel ideas and implications forfirm representatives responsible for branding and relationshipdevelopment in business networks. It denotes the critical role of individuals and their interactions with other individuals, which influences thedevelopment of specific network roles and positions for connected business entities.Originality/value–The used multidisciplinary approach provides a conceptual platform to study branding processes in business networks. Byoffering a network perspective to corporate branding, new and relevant implications for both theory and practice are fore fronted.

    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    Pages (from-to)1681–1691
    JournalJournal of Business and Industrial Marketing
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - 2019
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • Business networks

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