Semiotics of Brand Building: Case of the Muthoot Group

Semiotics of Brand Building: Case of the Muthoot Group

Sudio Sudarśan
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7393-9.ch013
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Most theories in brand management, evolved from 20th century economics, rely on a convenient assumption of how consumers should make purchase decisions. In contradistinction, this chapter demonstrates a semiological tradition in the context of brand management using a 128-year-old brand, Muthoot Group, to expound upon the ways consumers prevalently perceive brands, which then drive their purchase decisions. Just as in marketing, where the focus changed from “economic exchange” to “social exchange,” in brand management the focus needs to change from “symbols” to the way people use semiotic resources to produce both communicative artifacts and events to interpret them, which is also a form of semiotic production. Since social semiotics is not a self-contained field, the chapter historically plots the brand-building voyage of Muthoot Group, applying semiotic concepts and methods to establish a model of brand and extend the scientific understanding of differentiation, loyalty, and advocacy.
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Different Kettle Of Fish

On the continuum stretching from the cave paintings of Homo Erectus to present social media updates, via the postmodern man, the insatiable need to communicate identity has created an infinite sensory palette of both visual and verbal expression, together unfolding the mysterious and elusive power of symbols. As states of mind, the distinctive power of symbols lies in their ability to divulge myriad levels of reality, otherwise latent, as a means of stimulating the human mind to wider awareness; heightening a strong sense of belonging, in order to induce greater recall and memory.

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