Undergraduate Course: Brand Culture (BUST10127)
||College||College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||Brands are considerable vehicles for cultural meaning, self-expression, community, social movement and communication. Increasingly, for better or worse, the logic of brands and branding can be seen in diverse areas of life, beyond consumer goods e.g. the political brand, branded religion and person as brand. In short our daily lives are saturated by brand messages and meaning. This course offers students the opportunity to study and understand this fundamental marketing technology from the perspective of the consumer.
Taking a socio-cultural perspective, Brand Culture provides students with a deeper knowledge of the place of brands in the lives of consumers and the skills used to manage them. It does this by considering the meanings of brands and by outlining different brand strategies available to companies to both create meaning and meet the needs of consumers. We firstly explore the socio-cultural meaning of brands to equip students with an understanding of what a brand is, how they are used by consumers and from where their meaning is derived. With this grounding in place, we then move to explore the concepts of brand equity before discussing different approaches for managing brands.
Student Learning Experience
The course is designed to deliver the space and skills to enable students to analyse brand meanings in relation to symbolic material such as marketing communications and, importantly, their own consumer behaviour. As such reflexivity and classroom discussion are central aspects of the course.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
|| Students MUST have passed:
||Other requirements|| Year 4 only. Business Studies Honours Entry
Information for Visiting Students
|Pre-requisites||Visiting students must have at least 4 Business courses at intermediate level, at grade B or above. This MUST INCLUDE at least one Marketing course at intermediate level. This course cannot be taken alongside BUST08004 Marketing. We will only consider University/College level courses.
|High Demand Course?
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2022/23, Available to all students (SV1)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 20,
Revision Session Hours 1,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||Assessment of the course (100%) consists of coursework only which will be an Individual Coursework: Critical review essay (max 2500 words)
Students are to individually produce a critical review of two brands; one that you believe follows a functional branding strategy and one that follows a symbolic branding strategy. You are to review and deconstruct the marketing activities of the brands to explain how they follow this strategy and, ultimately, provide recommendations on how the marketing of these brands could be improved.
||Feedback on your coursework, together with individual marks, will be available on Learn.
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Understand and discuss critically how consumer involvement and emotions affect consumers choice of, and relationship with, brands
- Understand and discuss critically how the postmodern consumer uses brands as a resource to manage their identity
- Critically evaluate symbolism and the meaning of brands and explain how service and corporate brands differ from product brands.
- Discuss critically how brands gain their meanings from various cultural agents including marketers and consumers and evaluate the concept of brand equity.
- Understand and discuss critically strategies used in the management of brands, both functional and symbolic
|Readings may be found either in the University library collection or accessed via The Library electronic journals on |
Journal of Consumer Research
Journal of Marketing
Harvard Business Review
Journal of Marketing Management
European Journal of Marketing
Journal of Brand Management
Additional sources are all around us: the marketing communications campaigns of your favourite brands, social media, websites, celebrities, athletes, retail spaces and your friendship groups.
Look to the newspapers (not just the business pages) and other online news sources such as the BBC. Keep your eyes open for any coverage of BRANDS.
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
Students will develop analytical skills such as:
- The ability to apply concepts and theories to real life brand management;
- The ability to critically brand management strategies;
- The ability to appraise brand strategies and make suggestions for improvement;
- The ability to use introspection as an analytical tool
Subject Specific Skills
Students will gain:
- The ability to recognise and respond to challenges in the management of brands;
- The ability to make recommendations to overcome and avoid specific brand challenges and threats.
By the end of the course students will be expected to:
- Be able to communicate and exchange ideas in oral and written formats
- Be able to analyse visual content and brand management strategies.
|Additional Class Delivery Information
||1 lecture per week
|Course organiser||Dr Pauline Ferguson
|Course secretary||Miss Isla Dalley
Tel: (0131 6)50 3900