There are three key precepts that underpin salient corporate heritage brands: Trust, Authenticity and Affinity. Trust relates to the bilateral confidence between the institutional brand and stakeholders. Authenticity captures the notion of preserving the enduring identity traits of corporate heritage brands. Affinity captures the notion of public sovereignty (for any corporate heritage brand to endure there has to be public consent). The management of corporate heritage brands requires policymakers to show corporate brand stewardship to four spheres of activity: (1) achieving trust between the brand and its brand community; (2) preserving the brand's authenticity; (3) showing sensitivity to public concerns and ensuring the brand remains relevant and respected; (4) demonstrating empathy to environmental concerns; and (5) ongoing stewardship of the corporate brand. For its part, the British Monarchy, as a corporate heritage brand, is also dependent on bilateral trust between the Crown and public. This is predicated on public affinity towards the Monarchy and the Crown maintaining its authenticity as a corporate brand vis-à-vis its relationship with its brand community. A central finding relates to the centrality of trust to the management and maintenance of monarchy. In addition, there is a management requirement to calibrate authenticity (taking institutional and identity perspectives) and affinity (being mindful of customers and stakeholder concerns). This study builds on earlier JBM articles on corporate heritage brands (Balmer et al, 2006; Urde et al, 2007). This article is timely in that it comes during the lead up to Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee celebrations 1952–2012 along with the wedding of Prince William to Catherine Middleton (April 2011).
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Footnote on the Commonwealth of Nations: Membership of the Commonwealth traditionally has been limited to those nations that were formerly part of the British Empire. With only a few exceptions, most former British territories have joined the Commonwealth, most Commonwealth no longer have constitutional or legal ties with Great Britain. The overwhelming majority of Commonwealth nations are Republics. A few are monarchies that do not have Queen Elizabeth as their Head of State viz: Malaysia, Lesotho. Sixteen Commonwealth nations retain Queen Elizabeth as their Head of State; as such, she is separately and divisibly Queen of Australia, Queen of Canada, Queen of Jamaica, Queen of New Zealand and so on. Among those nation states that remain outside the Commonwealth, even though they have historic constitutional ties with the British Crown/Great Britain are Burma, Hong Kong, Ireland and significantly the United States. Most curious in this regard is the United States, which, even today, remains decoupled from nations with whom it shares historic familial ties, including Australia, Canada, New Zealand and of course Great Britain: the wounds of 1776 (the American Revolution) have never, it would appear, been fully healed in this regard. In recent years, quite a few nations, although not enjoying historic links with the British Crown, have applied for Commonwealth membership: most applications have been rejected with the exception of Cameroon, Mozambique and Rwanda who were, curiously, respectively French, Portuguese and Belgium overseas territories and were admitted owing to exceptional circumstances. Commonwealth Principles (as defined in 1971) include the requirement for Commonwealth States to share common values relating to: democracy, human rights, good governance, the rule of law, individual liberty, egalitarianism, free trade, multilateralism and world peace. Heads of overseas diplomatic missions from Commonwealth countries are known as High Commissioners and they do not have embassies but High Commissions. The logic for this is because Commonwealth nations are not foreign to each other: Commonwealth countries are, in colloquial terms, seen as part of a family of nation states. In Commonwealth countries, High Commissioners take precedence over ambassadors. For example, in the United Kingdom, High Commissioners, when presenting their credentials to the Queen, are driven in a carriage drawn by four horses, whereas the ambassador's coaches have only two horses. Among the principal symbols of the Commonwealth are the British Monarch (as its titular head) and the English language.
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Balmer, J. Corporate heritage brands and the precepts of corporate heritage brand management: Insights from the British Monarchy on the eve of the royal wedding of Prince William (April 2011) and Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee (1952–2012). J Brand Manag 18, 517–544 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1057/bm.2011.21