Clicca qui per scaricare

Internal Branding and Employee Brand Consistent Behaviours: The Role of Enablement-Oriented Communication
Autori/Curatori: Alessandra Mazzei, Silvia Ravazzani 
Anno di pubblicazione:  2017 Fascicolo: 1  Lingua: Inglese 
Numero pagine:  19 P. 121-139 Dimensione file:  103 KB
DOI:  10.3280/MC2017-001007
Il DOI è il codice a barre della proprietà intellettuale: per saperne di più:  clicca qui   qui 

Employee behaviours conveying brand values, named brand consistent behaviours, affect the overall brand evaluation. Internal branding literature highlights a knowledge gap in terms of communication practices intended to sustain such behaviours. This study contributes to the development of a non-normative and constitutive approach to internal branding by proposing an enablement-oriented communication approach. The conceptual background presents a holistic model of the inside-out process of brand building. This model adopts a theoretical approach to internal branding as a non-normative practice that facilitates constitutive processes. In particular, the paper places emphasis on the role and kinds of communication practices as a central part of the non-normative and constitutive internal branding process. The paper also discusses an empirical study based on interviews with 32 Italian and American communication managers and 2 focus groups with Italian communication managers. Findings show that, in order to enhance employee brand consistent behaviours, the most effective communication practices are those characterised as enablement-oriented. Such a communication creates the organizational conditions adequate to sustain employee discretionary and extra-role brand consistent behaviours.

Keywords: Internal branding; employee behaviours; brand consistent behaviours; employee enablement; constitutive approach; internal communication.

  1. Abratt R., Kleyn N. (2012). Corporate identity, corporate branding and corporate reputations: Reconciliation and integration. European Journal of Marketing, 46(7/8): 1048-1063.
  2. Ahmed P.K., Rafiq M. (2003). Internal marketing issues and challenges. European Journal of marketing, 37(9): 1177-1186.
  3. Archer M. (1995). Realist Social Theory: The Morphogenetic Approach. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  4. Arthur W. Page Society (2012). Building Belief: A New Model for Activating Corporate Character and Authentic Advocacy. New York, NY --(
  5. Ashcraft K.L., Khun T.R., Cooren F. (2009). Constitutional amendments: ‘Materializing’ organizational communication. The Academy of Management Annuals, 3(1): 1-64.
  6. Aurand T.W., Gorchels L., Bishop T.R. (2005). Human resource management’s role in internal branding: An opportunity for cross-functional brand message synergy. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 14(3): 163-169.
  7. Aziz H.H.A., Rizkallah A. (2015). Effect of organizational factors on employees’ generation of innovative ideas: Empirical study on the Egyptian software development industry. EuroMed Journal of Business, 10(2): 134-146.
  8. Bendapudi N., Bendapudi V. (2005). Creating the Living Brand. Harvard Business Review, 83(55): 124-32.
  9. Bitner M.J. (1995). Building service relationships: It’s all about promises. Journal of Academy of Marketing Science, 3(4): 246-51.
  10. Bjerke R., Ind N. (2015). The influence of aesthetic investments on employees: An investigation of arts’ impact on employees. EuroMed Journal of Business, 10(2): 214-233.
  11. Botero I., van Dyne L. (2009). Employee Voice Behavior: Interactive effects of LMX and power distance in the United States and Colombia. Management Communication Quarterly, 23(1): 84-104.
  12. Brown S.P., Lam S.K. (2008). A meta-analysis of relationships linking employee satisfaction to customer responses. Journal of Retailing, 84(3): 243-255.
  13. Burmann C., Zeplin S. (2005). Building brand commitment: A behavioural approach to internal brand management. Journal of Brand Management, 12(4): 279-300.
  14. Burmann C., Zeplin S., Riley N.M. (2009). Key determinants of internal brand management success: An exploratory empirical analysis. Journal of Brand Management, 16(4): 264-284.
  15. Chi C.G., Gursoy D. (2009). Employee satisfaction, customer satisfaction, and financial performance: An empirical examination. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 28(2): 245-253.
  16. Christensen L.T., Cornelissen J. (2011). Bridging corporate and organizational communication: Review, development and a look to the future. Management Communication Quarterly, 25(3): 383-414.
  17. Cornelissen J., Christensen T.L., Kinuthia K. (2012). Corporate brands and identity: developing stronger theory and a call for shifting the debate. European Journal of Marketing, 46(7/8): 1093-1102.
  18. Culnan M.J., McHugh P.J., Zubillaga J.I. (2010). How large US companies can use Twitter and other social media to gain business value. MIS Quarterly Executive, 9(4): 243-259.
  19. Dasgupta S.A., Suar D., Singh S. (2013). Impact of managerial style on employees’ attitudes and behaviours. Employee Relations, 35(2): 173-199.
  20. Daymon C., Holloway I. (2002). Qualitative Research Methods in Public Relations and Marketing Communications. London: Routledge.
  21. de Chernatony L. (1999). Brand management through narrowing the gap between brand identity and brand reputation. Journal of Marketing Management, 15(1-3): 157-179.
  22. Dunn M., Davis S. (2003). Building brands from the inside. Marketing Management, 22: 32-37, May/June.
  23. Foster C., Punjaisri K., Cheng R. (2010). Exploring the relationship between corporate, internal and employer branding. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 19(6): 401-409.
  24. Galvagno M., Dalli D. (2014). Theory of value co-creation: a systematic literature review. Managing Service Quality, 24(6): 643-683.
  25. George W.R. (1990). Internal marketing and organizational behavior: A partnership in developing customer-conscious employees at every level. Journal of Business Research, 20(1): 63-70.
  26. Giddens A. (1979). Central Problems in Social Theory: Action, Structure, and Contradiction in Social Analysis: Berkley, CA: University of California Press.
  27. Glaser B., Strauss A. (1967). The Discovery of Grounded Theory. Chicago, IL: Aldine.
  28. Gremler D.D., Gwinner K. P. (2008). Rapport-building behaviors used by retail employees. Journal of Retailing, 84(3): 308-324.
  29. Grönroos C. (1990). Service Management and Marketing. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books.
  30. Gummesson E. (1987). Using internal marketing to develop a new culture. The case of Ericsson quality. Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, 2(3): 23-28.
  31. Halliburton C., Bach S. (2012). An integrative framework of corporate brand equity. EuroMed Journal of Business, 7(3): 243-255.
  32. Hatch M.J., Schultz M. (2003). Bringing the corporation into corporate branding. European Journal of Marketing, 37(7/8): 1041-1064.
  33. Heath R.L. (1994). Management of Corporate Communication. Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  34. Heide M., Simonsson C. (2011). Putting coworkers in the limelight: new challenges for communication professionals. International Journal of Strategic Communication, 5(4): 201-220.
  35. Henkel S., Tomczak T., Heitmann M., Herrmann, A. (2007). Managing consistent employee behaviour: Relevance and managerial control of behavioural branding. Journal of Product & Brand Management 16(4/5): 310-320.
  36. Holtzhausen D.R. (2002). The effects of workplace democracy on employee communication behaviour: Implications for competitive advantage. Competitiveness Review, 12(2): 30-49.
  37. Ind N. (2003). Inside out: How employees build value. Journal of Brand Management, 10(6): 393-402.
  38. Jacobs M.A., Yu W., Chavez R. (2016). The effect of internal communication and employee satisfaction on supply chain integration. International Journal of Production Economics, 171: 60-70.
  39. Jo S., Shim S.W. (2005). Paradigm shift of employee communication: the effect of management communication on trusting relationships. Public Relations Review, 31(2): 277-80.
  40. Kaplan A.M., Haenlein M. (2010). Users of the world, unite! The challenges and opportunities of social media. Business Horizons, 53: 59-68.
  41. Karmark E. (2005). Living the brand. In: Schultz M., Antorini Y.M., Csaba F.F. (eds.). Corporate branding: purpose/people/process. Fredriksberg: Copenhagen Business School Press, pp. 103-124.
  42. Kaufmann H.R., Vrontis D., Czinkota M., Hadiono A. (2012). Corporate branding and transformational leadership in turbulent times. Journal of Product & Brand Management, 21(3): 192-204.
  43. Ki E., Hon L.C. (2007). Testing the linkage among the organization-public relationship and attitude and behavioral intentions. Journal of Public Relations Research, 19(1): 1-23.
  44. Ki E., Hon L.C. (2012). Causal linkage among relationship quality perceptions, and behaviour intention in a membership organization. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 17(2): 187-208.
  45. Kim J.-N. (2011). Understanding strategic value of good employee relationships and employee communicative actions: For better corporate branding and reputation management. Insight Train, 1: 52-69.
  46. Kim J.-N., Rhee Y. (2011). Strategic thinking about employee communication behavior (ECB) in public relations: testing the models of megaphoning and scouting effects in Korea. Journal of Public Relations Research, 23(3): 243-268.
  47. Kotler P. (1994). Marketing Management: Analysis, Planning, Implementation, and Control (8th ed.). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
  48. Lee S., Hwang T., Lee H.-H. (2006). Corporate blogging strategies of the Fortune 500 companies. Management Decision, 44(3): 316-334.
  49. Lincoln Y.S., Guba E.G. (1985). Naturalistic Inquiry. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
  50. Madlock P.E., Kennedy-Lightsey C. (2010). The effects of supervisors’ verbal aggressiveness and mentoring on their subordinates. Journal of Business Communication, 47(1): 42-62.
  51. Mandelli A. (2012). Branding and control in markets as mediated conversations. Sinergie Italian Journal of Management, 89: 147-165.
  52. Matanda M.J., Ndubisi N.O. (2013). Internal marketing, internal branding, and organisational outcomes: The moderating role of perceived goal congruence. Journal of Marketing Management, 29(9-10): 1030-1055.
  53. Mazzei A. (2010). Promoting Active Communication Behaviours through Internal Communication. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 15(3): 221-234.
  54. Mazzei A., Ravazzani S. (2015). A holistic model of behavioural branding: The role of employee behaviours and internal branding. Micro & Macro Marketing, 24(2): 239-262.
  55. McPhee R.D, Zaug P. (2000). The communicative constitution of organizations: A framework for explanation. Electronic Journal of Communication/La Revue Electronique de Communication, 10(1-2): 1-16.
  56. Mitchell C. (2002). Selling the brand inside. Harvard Business Review, 80(1): 99-105.
  57. Morgan D.L. (1988). Focus Group as Qualitative Research. Newbury Park: Sage.
  58. O’Neil J. (2008). Measuring the impact of employee communication on employee comprehension and action: A case study of a major international firm. Public Relations Journal, 2(2): 1-17.
  59. Park S.H., Kim J.-N., Krishna A. (2014). Bottom-Up Building of an Innovative Organization Motivating Employee Intrapreneurship and Scouting and Their Strategic Value. Management Communication Quarterly, 28(4): 531-560.
  60. Porricelli M.S., Yurova Y., Abratt R., Bendixen M. (2014). Antecedents of brand citizenship behavior in retailing. Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, 21(5): 745-752.
  61. Punjaisri K., Evanschitzky H., Wilson A. (2009). Internal branding: An enabler of employees’ brand-supporting behaviours. Journal of Service Management, 20(2): 209-226.
  62. Putnam L.L., Nicotera A.M. (eds.) (2009). Building Theories of Organization. Thousand Oaks: Sage.
  63. Putnam L.L., Philips N., Chapman P. (1996). Metaphors of communication and organization. In: Clegg S.R., Hardy C., Nord W.R. (eds.). Handbook of Organization Studies. Thousand Oaks: Sage, pp. 375-408.
  64. Redding C.W. (1985). Rocking the boat, blowing the whistle, and teaching speech communication. Communication Education, 34(3): 245-258.
  65. Rokka J., Karlsson K., Tienari J. (2014). Balancing acts: Managing employees and reputation in social media, Journal of Marketing Management, 30(7-8): 802-827.
  66. Santos-Vijande M.L., del Río-Lanza A.B., Suárez-Álvarez L., Díaz-Martín A.M. (2013). The brand management system and service firm competitiveness. Journal of Business Research, 66(2): 148-157.
  67. Sharma N., Kamalanabhan T.J. (2012). Internal corporate communication and its impact on internal branding. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 17(3): 300-322.
  68. Sirianni N.J., Bitner M.J., Brown S.W., Mandel N. (2013). Branded Service Encounters: Strategically Aligning Employee Behavior with the Brand Positioning. Journal of Marketing, 77(6): 108-123.
  69. Smidts A., Pruyn A.Th., Van Riel C.B. (2001). The Impact of Employees Communication and Perceived External Prestige on Organizational Identification. Academy of Management Journal, 44: 1051-1062.
  70. The Economist (2008). Ready, willing and enabled: a formula for performance. London: The Economist Intelligence Unit.
  71. Thelander Å., Säwe F. (2015). The challenge of internal stakeholder support for co-creational branding strategy. Public Relations Inquiry, 4(3): 323-341.
  72. Thomas G.F., Zolin R., Hartman J.L. (2009). The central role of communication in developing trust and its effect on employee involvement. Journal of Business Communication, 46(3): 287-310.
  73. Tompkins P.K., Wanca-Thibault M. (2001). Organizational communication. Prelude and prospects. In: Jablin F.M., Putnam L.L. (edited by). The New Handbook of Organizational Communication. Thousand Oaks: Sage, xvii-xxxi.
  74. Vallaster C., de Chernatony L. (2006). Internal brand building and structuration: The role of leadership. European Journal of Marketing, 40(7-8): 761-784.
  75. Vrontis D., Thrassou A., Mat Zin R. (2010). Internal marketing as an agent of change. Implementing a new human resource information system for Malaysian Airlines. Journal of General Management, 36(1): 21-41.
  76. Wallpach S., Woodside A.G. (2009). Enacted internal branding: Theory, practice, and an experiential learning case study of an Austrian B2B company. In: Glynn M.S., Woodside A.G. (eds.). Business-to-Business Brand Management: Theory, Research, and Executive Case Study Exercises. Bingley, UK: Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp. 389-428.
  77. Weick K.E. (1977). Enactment process in organizations. In: Stow B.M., Salancik G.R. (eds.). New Directions in Organizational Behaviour. Chicago: St. Clair Press, pp. 267-301.
  78. Werhane W., Royal M. (2009). Engaging and enabling employees for company success. WorkSpan – The Magazine of WorldatWork, 9.
  79. White C., Vanc A., Stafford G. (2010). Internal communication, information satisfaction, and sense of community: The effect of personal influence. Journal of Public Relations Research, 22(1): 65-84.
  80. White J., Mazur L. (1995). Strategic Communications Management: Making Public Relations Work. Wokingham, UK: Addison-Wesley.
  81. Williams M. (1998). Enabling beyond empowerment. Serling, VA: Stylus Publishing.
  82. Wyld D.C. (2008). Management 2.0: A primer on blogging for executives. Management Research News, 33(6): 448-483.
  83. Zerfass A., Franke N. (2013). Enabling, advising, supporting, executing: A theoretical framework for internal communication consulting within organizations. International Journal of Strategic Communication, 7(2): 118-135.

  1. Rune Bjerke, Ingunn Elvekrok, Sponsorship-based health care programs and their impact on employees’ motivation for physical activity in European Sport Management Quarterly /2021 pp. 194, DOI: 10.1080/16184742.2020.1735471

Alessandra Mazzei, Silvia Ravazzani, in "MERCATI & COMPETITIVITÀ" 1/2017, pp. 121-139, DOI:10.3280/MC2017-001007


FrancoAngeli è membro della Publishers International Linking Association associazione indipendente e no profit per facilitare l'accesso degli studiosi ai contenuti digitali nelle pubblicazioni professionali e scientifiche