Hyundai & Kia Automobile Branding In China

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1. Evaluate and comment on the international corporate branding strategy of Hyundai and Kia. Kia and Hyandai have embarked on two similar and yet varied international corporate branding strategies. Both companies have sought (with varied success) to elevate their respective brands from a value orientation toward a more premium position. However, while Kia have attempted to do so by expanding the perception of their brand as a dynamic and youthful one, Hyandai have focused on improving perception of their brand as reflective of a refined and modern image. Consequently, the two ideals in terms of brand identity have emerged: Kia as “exciting and enabling” and Hyandai as “refined and confident”. The building of a brand identity involves the development of functional (or tangible) attributes to bring about and reinforce the emotional perceptions one desires for the brand and communicates to the consumer through marketing efforts. In the case of the Hyandai brand, the company has attempted to imbue their products with sleek designs, intelligent systems, ergonomic interfaces and quality engineering. These safe, reliable and high quality vehicles also come with excellent service back up and warranties. All of which are supposed to make Hyandai appear as a stylish and inspiring brand in the mind of the consumer. The company wishes to be perceived as thoughtful, approachable and trustworthy, yet also self-assured and respected as a global player. In sum, Hyundai desires to be the vehicle manufacturer that allows consumers to “drive [their] way”. In the case of Kia, the company has alternatively chosen to portray itself as a brand with “the power to surprise”. The functional attributes it has sought to incorporate into its vehicles are a more dynamic styling and responsive engineering. These versatile and well-equipped vehicles also have similar safety, reliability and

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