Fostering brand engagement and value-laden trusted B2B relationships through digital content marketing : The role of brand’s helpfulness
Taiminen, K., & Ranaweera, C. (2019). Fostering brand engagement and value-laden trusted B2B relationships through digital content marketing : The role of brand’s helpfulness. European Journal of Marketing, 53 (9), 1759-1781. doi:10.1108/EJM-10-2017-0794
Published inEuropean Journal of Marketing
© 2019 Emerald Publishing Limited
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore how digital content marketing (DCM) users can be engaged with business-to-business (B2B) brands and determine how such engagement leads to value-laden trusted brand relationships. Design/methodology/approach Through an online survey, data were collected from the email marketing list of a large B2B brand, and the hypothesised research model was analysed using covariance-based structural equation modelling. Findings This paper identifies a bundle of helpful brand actions – providing relevant topics and ideas; approaching content with a problem solving orientation; as well as investing in efforts to interpret, analyse and explain topics through DCM – to foster relationship value perceptions and brand trust. Critically however, cognitive-emotional brand engagement is shown to be a necessary requirement for converting these actions into relationship value perceptions. Research limitations/implications This paper furthers the understanding of the dual role of helpful brand actions in functionally oriented DCM. Additionally, this paper offers evidence of the central role of cognitive-emotional brand engagement in influencing value-laden customer–brand relationships. Practical implications This paper introduces a bundle of helpful brand actions that forms the basis for the dual roles of a brand in enhancing customer value and in fostering brand engagement and building relationships. This approach helps practitioners to steer brand-related perceptions arising from DCM interactions towards building trusted brand relationships. Originality/value This paper contributes to the marketing literature by revealing a potential approach to DCM in managing customer relationships. Instead of focusing solely on the content benefit-usage link to support engagement, this paper reveals the potential of helpfulness as a brand-initiated DCM engagement trigger in engaging customers with the brand, vis-à-vis the content. ...
PublisherEmerald Publishing Limited
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