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Co-created Reputation in a Nonprofit Context: A Mixed-method Study of SACC-DC

Reputation has been the subject of marketing research throughout recent years, and it was found to be an important measure of how organizations are perceived. The theory of co-creation, where organizations interact and deliver value through the involvement of customers, has also shown positive effects on performance.

The main purpose of this thesis is to gain a deeper understanding of how reputation and co-creation are managed internally. Furthermore, this study aims to investigate the impact of brand image, satisfaction, perceived quality, and brand experience on co-creation and reputation by evaluating the external perceptions of members of a nonprofit membership organization, the Swedish-American Chamber of Commerce of Washington, D.C., Inc. (SACC-DC).For a nonprofit membership organization, both reputation and co-creation can be of importance, as they do not compete by financial means, but instead by how the members perceive the networking service that they provide.

We could identify a research gap, since there is no study that examines co-creation in relation to reputation.
Furthermore, there is a need to conduct more research on co-creation in the nonprofit context. We could also see that more in-depth studies need to be done on reputation in order to understand the underlying factors of the internal management of the reputation.

In order to fulfill the purpose of the thesis, a mixed-method study has been conducted. In the qualitative study, we have conducted eight semi-structured interviews with board members and employees of SACC-DC. Through the interviews, we gained a deeper understanding of how the reputation is managed by exploring how the organization works with co-creation, identity, desired identity and perceived quality.

From the interviews, four themes were derived to explain how the organization co-creates their reputation together with their members. The themes were brand identity, brand delivery, value, and mutual responsibility. Our qualitative findings resulted in a table, showing that the reputation could benefit from being co-created in nonprofit membership organizations.
Source: Umeå University
Authors: Ampuero, Denise | Holmberg, Sophie

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