Innovation and Brands: The Managers’ Perspective in a Multiple Case Study in a Brazilian Region
This article aims to identify what an innovative brand is from the perspective of business managers in a region of Brazil, and describe how they manage innovative brands. A multiple case study was carried out with five innovative companies from four economic sectors: telecommunications, information technology, chemicals, and electricity. The interviews with these managers were processed with content analysis, being established sixteen categories which include: definition of innovation; innovative brand features; reasons for innovation; relationship between brands and innovation; area responsible for innovation; dissemination of innovation; organizational culture of new ideas; types of innovation; reduction of time, costs and risks to innovation; relationship between the company and the market; brand strategies; brand personality; integration of the end consumer into innovation; rewards for the consumer; and brand heritage. At the end, theoretical and managerial contributions are presented that can be applied or adapted to other organizations in their process of innovation and brand management. In this sense, it is important to highlight that, in the studied cases, incremental innovation is dominant; the stage at which successful innovations improve consumer brand awareness, attitude, and usage prevails; and the companies studied could be distributed in two of the innovation possibilities proposed by Brexendorf et al. (2015): follower brands and craft-designer led brands.