Webinar: Co-operative identity and branding: An exploration in putting your co-op foot forward

This webinar explored the much-debated topic of co-op branding and identity. The three featured speakers explored the topic from different perspectives, grounded both in research as well as experience (see end of this paragraph for bios of the presenters). ___________________Georgina Whyatt provided an overview of her research on the implementation of a 'marketing our cooperative advantage (MOCA)' strategy. She focussed particularly on the internal challenges to implementing such as strategy. She explored whether values are something that has to be balanced with business growth or if the two go hand in hand. _____________________ Donna Balkan presented her recent research exploring co-operative identity as illustrated on Canadian co-op websites: Co-op Identity 2.0. She spoke to her metrics for measuring whether co-op identity is showcased and the results of her scan of nearly 100 co-ops and credit unions (including the 50 largest co-ops in Canada). _____________________Carolyn Hoover of DotCooperation spoke about the "dot coop" brand, how this url showcases co-op identity and she provided an overview of the global picture in terms of which sectors are using the .coop url. ________________________________________ Presenter bios: ______________________________________ Georgina Whyatt (BA (Hons), MBA, DipCIM) is Head of the Marketing Department at Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, UK. Her research interests focus on marketing strategy implementation in the context of communities, co-operatives and business ethics. Before entering academia, Georgina held positions in retail management and international marketing, both in the UK and in Hong Kong. She teaches Marketing the Co-operative Advantage in the Co-operative Management Education program at Saint Mary's University. _______________________Donna Balkan is the Communications Manager of the Canadian Co-operative Association (CCA). A former journalist with the Ottawa Citizen and CBC Radio, she brings to the co-op sector more than 30 years experience in journalism, communications management, strategic communications, media relations, social media and publications. Donna is the 2013 recipient of the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation Merit Award. ________________________ Carolyn T. Hoover is the Chief Executive Officer of DotCooperation LLC which is a wholly owned subsidiary of the National Cooperative Business Association in the USA. Prior to joining dotCoop, Carolyn spent over 20 years working in software development focusing on members and association support systems, government financial systems and telephone billing systems. She holds a BS in Computer Science from Virginia Tech.