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The Crown as a corporate brand: Insights from Monarchies

Publiceringsår: 2006
Språk: Engelska
Sidor: 137-161
Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie: Journal of Brand Management
Volym: 14
Nummer: 1
Dokumenttyp: Artikel i tidskrift
Förlag: Palgrave Macmillan



In an age when brands have seized the imagination of so many, the corporate landscape has become a brandscape. Recently, corporate branding has emerged as an important agenda item for many senior executives. Brands are viewed as a significant corporate asset. The corporate brand is viewed as an important profile builder for corporations. It is seen as an invaluable tool for attracting key constituencies such as customers and employees. It can imbue a corporation with a distinctiveness that is not readily replicated. Financially, it can be one of an organization’s most coveted and cherished assets. For customers, it serves as a guarantee of expectations, much like an informal contract. In short, a corporate brand often is invested with the Midas touch and this explains why corporate brands enthrall companies and customers alike. In a world saturated with products and messages, brands represent an important navigational tool for stakeholders. This is particularly the case in crowded categories where the cacophony of communication means that corporate (and product/service) messages are often unheard. As such, corporate brands give voice to an organization’s key values and enable the organization behind the brand to cut through the communications hubbub that characterizes much of today’s corporate world.

Longevity is sometimes cited as a key attribute of corporate brands. Consider global brands such as Coca Cola, Ford, Reuters, and Nokia. These are corporate brands that have held strong positions in their markets for decades. Some corporate brands have older pedigrees, of course, such as the Wells Fargo and Hudson Bay companies in North America. In Europe, Rothschild’s (bankers), Stora Kopparberg (mining), and Cadbury (chocolates) provide other examples.

However, these corporate brands are relative adolescents in another realm of brands, when one considers an institutional group that appears to have strong corporate brand characteristics—namely monarchies. Some monarchies have existed for over one thousand years, such as the Japanese and Swedish crowns. They are not corporations but in our view they are brand-like institutions in many ways.

As a case in point, the Swedish Crown has, by any branding measure, impeccable credentials. Its brand loyalty (from its citizens) is approximately 70%, and has been at a high level for some considerable time. It has avoided many of the vicissitudes that have beset other monarchies in recent years. It is a brand that was not engulfed in the wave of “institutional regicide” that swept away most European monarchies in the aftermath of World War I. It is a brand that has accommodated and embraced change. It is a brand that still adds value and gives meaning to its key constituencies – an element that is for us a core tenet of branding. And it is a brand with considerable financial value in terms of benefits to the country’s businesses, tourism, and general public.


  • Economics and Business
  • Monarchies Corporate brands brand management


  • ISSN: 1479-1803

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