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Linking Reputations: The Signaling and Feedback Effects of Umbrella Branding

  • Miklos-Thal, Jeanine

This paper develops a theory of umbrella branding as a way to link the reputations of otherwise unrelated products. I show that while umbrella branding can credibly signal positive quality correlation, there are no equilibria in which umbrella branding either fully reveals high quality, or signals negative quality correlation. Finally, whenever umbrella branding signals perfect positive quality correlation, firms that already produce high quality products have stronger incentives to invest in developing further high quality products than firms that are currently inactive or produce low quality products.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 11045.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:11045
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  1. Steven Tadelis, 1999. "What's in a Name? Reputation as a Tradeable Asset," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 548-563, June.
  2. Hakenes, Hendrik & Peitz, Martin, 2006. "Umbrella Branding and the Provision of Quality," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 132, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
  3. Luis M.B. Cabral, 2000. "Stretching Firm and Brand Reputation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 31(4), pages 658-673, Winter.
  4. Sullivan, Mary, 1990. "Measuring Image Spillovers in Umbrella-Branded Products," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63(3), pages 309-29, July.
  5. Carl Shapiro, 1983. "Premiums for High Quality Products as Returns to Reputations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 98(4), pages 659-679.
  6. David Kreps & Robert Wilson, 1999. "Reputation and Imperfect Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 238, David K. Levine.
  7. Lynne Pepall & Dan Richards, 1999. "The Simple Economics of "Brand-Stretching"," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 9905, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  8. Grossman, Gene, 1986. "Counterfeit Product Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 103, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Klein, Benjamin & Leffler, Keith B, 1981. "The Role of Market Forces in Assuring Contractual Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 615-41, August.
  10. B. Douglas Bernheim & Michael D. Whinston, 1990. "Multimarket Contact and Collusive Behavior," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(1), pages 1-26, Spring.
  11. Birger Wernerfelt, 1988. "Umbrella Branding as a Signal of New Product Quality: An Example of Signalling by Posting a Bond," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(3), pages 458-466, Autumn.
  12. In-Koo Cho & David M. Kreps, 1997. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," Levine's Working Paper Archive 896, David K. Levine.
  13. Andersson, Fredrik, 2002. "Pooling reputations," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 715-730, May.
  14. Jay Pil Choi, 1998. "Brand Extension as Informational Leverage," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 65(4), pages 655-669.
  15. Sappington, David E M & Wernerfelt, Birger, 1985. "To Brand or Not to Brand? A Theoretical and Empirical Question," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(3), pages 279-93, July.
  16. Mailath, George J. & Samuelson, Larry, 2006. "Repeated Games and Reputations: Long-Run Relationships," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195300796, December.
  17. Cabral, Luís M.B., 2009. "Umbrella branding with imperfect observability and moral hazard," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 206-213, March.
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