Brand community coping

The successful alignment of co-creative practices between brand communities and marketers promises many benefits, including stronger consumer brand relationships. Yet recent research has identified the inherent difficulty of creating or maintaining such an alignment. This study builds on these cautionary tales to show how marketer-initiated brand transgressions impact communal brand relationships built on extensive histories of successful co-creation. Building theory through netnographic inquiry of the drama surrounding a poorly managed brand transgression in a video game brand community and a counterexample of positive marketer action, this study introduces a theoretical model of brand community coping and its four stages of instigation, distillation, mobilization, and remembrance. Overall, the study provides new insights on brand transgressions, consumer coping, brand relationships, and co-creation.