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The Concept Of Online Image Of A Brand And Its Application To Nation Brands
Unformatted Document Text:  Giorgi Topouria: The Concept Of Online Image Of A Brand And Its Application To Nation Brands 21 time, reflects them. In order to properly conceptualize, formally define and operatinalize the proposed concept of online image of a brand and attempt to suggest how to measure it, some further explanations need to be made. Primitive Terms In order to be able to speak about online image of a brand, we need to accept the existence of: a) a brand and b) online information related to it. The unit of observation is a brand; the concept varies across brands at any time, and for each brand – across time, but not across audiences. Online information in its very basic form is a sequence of electronically stored ―0‖-s and ―1‖-s. These sequences may have different formats and be in different forms, such as: text, pictures, audio, video, animation, and all sorts of their combinations that may form web pages, websites, blogs, social network profiles (FaceBook, MySpace, etc.), personal communications, discussion forums, consumer reviews, tax filings, public records, etc., and can be exchanged over the Internet. Underlying Assumptions Assumption 1: information may have/contain a meaning (so called, ―container metaphor‖: content is inherent in a text (Krippendorff, 2004)), which may or may not be neutral. Therefore, information has valence – it can be positive, neutral or negative, depending on the emotional, cognitive, moral, etc. charge/load of its meaning. At the same time, this valence can also have a level of arousal, or intensity, which can be mapped on different scales, for example, a 5-point semantic differential: very negative, somewhat negative, neutral, somewhat positive, very positive (ibid). Assumption 2: (digital) information is quantifiable; therefore, it is also measurable in terms of

Authors: Topouria, Giorgi.
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Giorgi Topouria: The Concept Of Online Image Of A Brand And Its Application To Nation Brands  
time, reflects them. 
In order to properly conceptualize, formally define and operatinalize the proposed concept of 
online image of a brand and attempt to suggest how to measure it, some further explanations 
need to be made. 
Primitive Terms  
In order to be able to speak about online image of a brand, we need to accept the existence of: a) 
a brand and b) online information related to it. The unit of observation is a brand; the concept 
varies across brands at any time, and for each brand – across time, but not across audiences. 
Online information in its very basic form is a sequence of electronically stored ―0‖-s and ―1‖-s. 
These sequences may have different formats and be in different forms, such as: text, pictures, 
audio, video, animation, and all sorts of their combinations that may form web pages, websites, 
blogs, social network profiles (FaceBook, MySpace, etc.), personal communications, discussion 
forums, consumer reviews, tax filings, public records, etc., and can be exchanged over the 
Underlying Assumptions 
Assumption 1: information may have/contain a meaning (so called, ―container metaphor‖: 
content is inherent in a text (Krippendorff, 2004)), which may or may not be neutral. Therefore, 
information has valence – it can be positive, neutral or negative, depending on the emotional, 
cognitive, moral, etc. charge/load of its meaning. At the same time, this valence can also have a 
level of arousal, or intensity, which can be mapped on different scales, for example, a 5-point 
semantic differential: very negative, somewhat negative, neutral, somewhat positive, very 
positive (ibid). 
Assumption 2: (digital) information is quantifiable; therefore, it is also measurable in terms of 

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