Consumers and their brands : acting out personal mythologies in a 'global' brand community
Yenicioğlu, M. Baskın
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Brand communities have been theorized to be a crucial source for marketers to build long-term customer centered brand loyalty and a place where consumers can experience the long lost traditional community. Despite this significance consumer research is yet to study the global and the mundane aspects of the brand community concept. This research aims to fill that gap through a qualitative ethnographic study of Harley Davidson brand community in Turkey. The data is presented on two interconnected levels. Through the lived level analysis I challenge the extant literature by portraying brand community as a very heterogeneous formation where traditional community structures only formed through the everyday experiences of consumers with each other. I introduce the personal mythologies metaphor as a way in which consumers form strong emotional attachments with brands within their mundane realities. Finally, I show that brand communities travel internationally as structured set of relationships only on a believed level as a supposition in consumers’ minds. I also discuss the theoretical implications of these findings for consumer culture theory research.