Management Seminars: Michael Beverland (University of Sussex)

12 March 2019, 12.00 PM - 12 March 2019, 1.30 PM

Michael Beverland (University of Sussex)

1.01 Howard House

Title: Marketing Authentically: Balancing Being and Doing


Claiming one is ‘real, genuine and true’, or authentic is a powerful branding tool. Consumers, too, seek authenticity through the marketplace, enacting their idealized self with the use of brands, products, services, experiences, stories, and images. However, the relationship between the ‘real’ and the commercially ‘contrived’ has always been fraught with difficulty. Although scholarship on marketplace authenticity is rich with insight, the predominance of contextually focused qualitative work, embedded heavily within specific disciplinary concerns, has inhibited generalizability and led to confusion in practice. Michael Beverland will present the results of a recent meta-synthesis of qualitative research on the generation of authenticity in a range of contexts including consumption, strategy, tourism sites, and service encounters. For two decades, Michael Beverland’s research has specifically focused on understanding marketplace authenticity, emphasizing both organizational strategy and consumer co-creation. In his presentation, Beverland will highlight how tension management lies at the heart of co-creating authentic brands, identifying five tensions marketplace actors need to work through, and the respective strategies and cues one can use to do so. With our understanding of authenticity being characterized by fragmentation, contradiction, and contextually focused insights, Michael Beverland synthesis aims to bring greater clarity for all stakeholders seeking to manage for authenticity.


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