NB-PL 2021


Research on National Brand & Private Label Marketing, Virtual conference, 22-23 Jun 2021; Deadline 31 Dec

POSTING TYPE: Calls: Conferences

Author: Francisco J. Martínez-López

Conference Title: Research on National Brand & Private Label Marketing – International Conference

Conference Dates and Venue:  June 22nd-23th, 2021 – ONLINE CONFERENCE (This conference will be fully online till the COVID pandemic is gone)

Deadline for paper submission: December 31st, 2020

Conference Chairs: Harry Timmermans (Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands; Guest Chair), Francisco J. Martínez-López (University of Granada, Spain), and Juan Carlos Gázquez-Abad (University of Almería, Spain).

Conference Review Board (alphabetical order): Kusum L. Ailawadi, Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth (USA); Nawel Amrouche, Long Island University (USA); Chris Baumann, Macquarie University (Australia); José J. Beristain, University of the Basque Country (Spain); Enrique Bigné, University of Valencia (Spain); Els Breugelmans (KU Leuven, Belgium); James Brown, West Virginia University (USA); Cristina Calvo-Porral, University of La Coruña (Spain); Ioannis E. Chaniotakis, University of the Aegean (Greece); Liwen (Brandon) Chen, City University of Hong Kong (China); Alexander Chernev, Northwestern University (USA); Chan Choi, Rutgers Business School (USA); Gérard Cliquet, Université de Rennes 1 (France); Giuseppe Colangelo, Catholic University of Milan (Italy); Ronald W. Cotterill, University of Connecticut (USA); Barbara Deleersnyder, Tilburg University (Netherlands); John Dawes, University of South Australia (Australia); Els Gijsbrechts, Tilburg University (Netherlands); J. Tomas Gomez-Arias, Saint Mary’s College of California (USA); Oscar González-Benito, University of Salamanca (Spain); Csilla Horváth, Radboud University (The Netherlands); Marco Ieva, University of Parma (Italy); Eugene Jones, The Ohio State University (USA); Robert Paul Jones, The University of Texas at Tyler (USA); Lien Lamey, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium); Elisa Martinelli, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia (Italy); Mercedes Martos-Partal, University of Salamanca (Spain); Sebastián Molinillo Jiménez, University of Malaga, Spain; Dirk Morschett, University of Fribourg (Switzerland); Martin Natter, Goethe University Frankfurt am Main (Germany); Magdalena Nenycz-Thiel, University of South Australia (Australia); Nicoletta Occhiocupo, Oxford Brookes University (UK); Michael Pepe, Siena College (USA); William P. Putsis, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (USA); Anne Roggeveen, Babson College (USA); Natalia Rubio-Benito, Autonomous University of Madrid (Spain); Hanna Schramm-Klein, University of Siegen (Germany); Fiona Scott Morton, Yale University (USA); Raj Sethuraman, Southern Methodist University (USA); Randall Shannon, Mahidol University (Thailand); Ian Clark Sinapuelas, San Francisco State University (USA); Jay I. Sinha, Temple University (USA); Yaron Timmor, Arison School of Business (Israel); Rodolfo Vázquez-Casielles, University of Oviedo (Spain); Gianfranco Walsh, Friedrich Schiller University of Jena (Germany); María Jesús Yagüe Guillén, Autonomous University of Madrid (Spain); Jie Zhang, University of Maryland (USA); Cristina Ziliani, University of Parma (Italy); Pilar Zorrilla, University of the Basque Country (Spain).

Conference Sponsors: University of Barcelona; IRI Spain; EAE Business School; the Spanish Association of Commercial Codification (AECOC).

Conference Publication: Conference papers will be published as a conference proceedings book entitled “Advances in National Brand and Private Label Marketing. Eight International Conference, 2021” by the prestigious publisher Springer. Conference papers will also be accessible online through Springer’s online platform, for quick and effective dissemination of the conference participant’s research work.

Call for Papers:


In just few months, the extraordinary events caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have modified profoundly our daily lives, the way we shop and, of course, the way of doing business, including FMCG and retail. The impact on the economy of COVID-19 deeper recession is unprecedented. The COVID-19 crisis is three times deeper than the 2009 economic downturn. In this context, change and uncertainty have never been as great as in the last few months. Whatever retailers thought they knew about customer behaviour is arguably brought into question.

Although every recession is different, there are common patterns learned from past recessions that might help retailers to doing the right thing for their customers in the ‘next normal’. Firstly, there is a consumption migrating from branded [national] items to private label. Increasing unemployment figures are driving consumers make decisions more cautiously and carefully. Shoppers are more inclined to acquiring price information, making them more price-conscious. In this context, private labels seem to take a better advantage of consumers’ desire to cut their grocery bills and are a cost-effective option for savvy shoppers in tough times. Nevertheless, private label risk is high when differentiation is low retailers, so they are advised to drive trust and brand recognition in their unique private label programmes.

Because of consumers’ budget constraints, COVID-19 may have caused shoppers favouring value channels such as discounters. Expansion programmes of this format may be a sign of their channel’s future dominance with a move towards further diversification in the form of fresh and ambient groceries. Economic outlook will also hit assortment sizes. Retailers and manufacturers have been negotiating on SKU listings for many years. Now retailers feel they have the proof that less is more. However, shoppers still want to have choice with national brands, so retailers are advised to focus on the right mix of brands and private label that drive the category revenue, at the store level for each type of shopper profile.

COVID-19 pandemic’ characteristics also bring unique challenges. A new retail scenario in which local retailers and the online channel are set to play a more significant role, is emerging. The word has gone local. During periods of lockdown, proximity become critical and is expected to maintain it. Regional and local supermarkets and convenience stores have enjoyed exceptional growth in 2020. Almost seventy percent of shoppers globally now prefer shopping in stores close to home, and more than half of consumers are more in favour of buying goods and services that have been produced in their own country. And we expect this to continue and boost.

COVID-19 has also added new outlooks to the challenge of integrating the online-offline shopping environment. Although some retailers were already moving fast, many – specially groceries – were not beating clearly on e-commerce. But now they are doing. During the first 2 months of the pandemic, ecommerce grew by the same amount as in the 5 previous years. Ecommerce acceleration across markets is coming from a new customer profile: older and rural shoppers. The more stringent lockdown measures for the former and the need for being further for the latter are leading ecommerce to get the natural channel to turn to. Nevertheless, retailers should not forget about the physical store, as it still offers great opportunities. Consumers have made significant changes to their shopping behaviour, moving from shopping across multiple (physical) retailers to picking up all their items in a single trip to a store. Seeking for optimising their safety and keeping social distance, shoppers visit the store as little as possible. In this context, retailers are advised to re-design their physical space where items must be touched, compared, and handled in such a way that the likelihood of infecting is as low as possible. Given the decrease in the number of times the shopper visits the store, retailers should increase consumers’ experience at the point-of-sale and make an emotional connection with their customers.

In brief, the COVID-19 pandemic recession is likely to have unique and especially more persistent characteristics which retailers must learn from and anticipate seizing new opportunities. Papers related to this issue are welcome this edition.

In keeping with its established objectives, the conference welcomes papers on topics related to the above, but also to any private label and/or national brand issues in retailing.

In order to submit a paper to the NB-PL 2021 conference you must register as an author at the conference management system at Easychair; click here.

All papers must be formatted according to the conference’s format guidelines and submitted through the conference management system.

Important Dates:

  • Conference Paper Submission date: December 31st, 2020
  • Authors Notification date: February 5th 2021
  • Accepted Papers camera-ready: March 1st 2021
  • Conference Dates: June 22nd-23th, 2021

For further information and updates, please check the conference’s website: http://www.nb-plmarketing.org/

We really look forward to meeting you online and having a great time, sharing ideas and experiences in an amiable gathering.