McDonald and Chernatony reported that while the competency of localization is evident very strongly in the parent brand, the same is not reflected adequately in the promotion of individual products like Meridian, Vector, Orchard, etc. The benefits of individual products of HSBC have not communicated adequately through a product branding exercise. This leads to a tight correlation of individual product lines with the parent brand thus risking the HSBC brand equity in a location due to the failure of a product line. This is a serious vulnerability that HSBC should watch for.
Another vulnerability HSBC might face is pertaining to their sheer size and the challenges in the integration of global functionalities & performance management. The global engagement of the top executive team and their impact on organizational environment & performance may be key vulnerable areas of HSBC (Ready and Conger. 2007). The author recommends that HSBC should focus on developing individual brand equities of the product lines in the form of brand extensions or else developing altogether new brands. This phenomenon will result in additional brand equities of HSBC and will de-link the product branding with corporate branding thus reducing the risk of brand dilution due to product non-performance.
Moreover, HSBC should focus on internal organizational environment, performance & integrity by improving Management visibility, commitment and involvement. What threats does HSBC face in maintaining such an old horse for their core banking operations against competition like Citi Bank? Are they risking their branding by virtue of their Hexagon system being perceived as “ age-old” and vulnerable to emerging threats that may exploit its vulnerabilities? What efforts HSBC should make in communicating to their customers that their Hexagon system is as secured and efficient as any other banking system of the world?
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