Counterfeit versus original patronage: Do emotional brand attachment, brand involvement, and past experience matter?

Xuemei Bian, Sadia Haque

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


To enhance brand performance and to protect original brands from the unprecedented upsurge of counterfeits, marketers are continuously looking for effective anti-counterfeiting methods. Developing and maintaining emotional brand attachment and brand involvement with consumers have become a strategic marketing endeavour of luxury brands. A significant question bearing both theoretical and practical implications, however, is whether emotional brand attachment or brand involvement is more apposite to warrant a luxury brand’s performance and to safeguard the original brand from counterfeits, which remains unanswered. To address this knowledge gap, a survey was conducted. On the basis of an empirical study, this paper reveals that emotional brand attachment is a more prominent influencer than brand involvement to escalate original brand patronage although the effect of brand involvement is also significant. However, while improved brand involvement pushes consumers to patronize counterfeits, higher emotional brand attachment does not result in increased counterfeit patronage. These effects do not vary as a function of previous experience of either originals or counterfeits. Findings of this research contribute to brand literature by presenting empirical evidence of distinct influence of emotional brand attachment over brand involvement, which represents significant practical implications in relation to strategic brand management and anti-counterfeiting strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)438-451
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Brand Management
Early online date19 Mar 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2020
Externally publishedYes

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