Development of New B2B Venture Corporate Brand Identity: A Narrative Performance Approach

Minna Törmälä, Richard I. Gyrd-Jones*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The development and role of brand identity in new B2B ventures is not well explored despite the challenge for such organisations in establishing reputational legitimacy. Previous research defines corporate brand identity as stable and endogenous to the organisation based either on the reputational capital of the organisation or the founder. We challenge this view in this paper from a conceptual and empirical perspective. Combining narrative theory and performativity theory this article suggests brand identity develops as a narrative performance. The study employs a narrative case analysis of interviews and archival data generated during a three-year period to examine the development of corporate brand over time. This study shows that the development of corporate brand identity and the context of the development of new B2B venture are closely intertwined processes and provides a framework for understanding the phenomenon. Brand identity is not a stable core emanating from inside the company but develops over time through a reciprocal sensemaking and dynamic interactions between company and the key external stakeholders in its context. We conclude that brand identity is built not only upon the reputational capital of past behaviours but of the brand itself as it explores and interacts within its brand eco-system.
Original languageEnglish
JournalIndustrial Marketing Management
Pages (from-to)76-85
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017


  • Corporate branding
  • Brand identity
  • New venture
  • Business-to-business
  • Stakeholders
  • Process

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