Consumer Perceptions of Branding Alliances of Educational Institutions and Hotels in Hong Kong

  •  Kiki Chan    
  •  Soo-May Cheng    


The purpose of this study is to examine how potential customers (students) of tertiary educational institutions
perceive the co-branding of such institutions with hotels. This study is an attempt to provide useful insights into
the variables that influence evaluation of brand alliances in service sectors, and to discuss implications for
institutional and hotel reputation building. Quantitative data were collected from students of post-secondary
colleges in Hong Kong by using self-administered questionnaires. Each participant was randomly assigned to
one of the six alliances between tertiary educational institution brands and hotel brands. The findings suggest
that consumer pre-attitudes toward brand partners and perceived brand fit are positively related to consumer
evaluations of the brand alliance. In addition, brand familiarity is found to be important in moderating the
relationship between perceived brand fit and consumer evaluations of the brand alliance. This study gives an
additional empirical research into brand alliances in service sectors. Future research could also consider
evaluating brand alliances from the perspectives of hotel customers. Marketers must carefully consider
consumer perceptions of fit and the importance of brand familiarity when seeking allied partners. This study
breaks from the ranks of strategic management studies of alliances focusing on the views of managers, to
examine brand alliances from the customer perspective. Moreover, it has bridged the gaps between various
management and marketing disciplines, showing the applicability of product branding concepts to service
branding and institutional reputation building contexts.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.