International product policies, of which one of the important sub-areas is international branding, is among the top ten key subject areas that researchers are encouraged to study in order to strengthen the global marketing discipline (Hampton and van Gent, 1984). International branding is a localization process. This paper reports a preliminary effort to investigate this process by studying 261 localized Chinese brand names of foreign brands being marketed in Hong Kong. These localized brand names are found to be of reasonable length, easily pronounceable, and containing either positive or neutral connotations by themselves. Looking at these localized brand names in terms of translation from their original counterparts, most of them are found to be similar in length to their originals, reading similarly in Cantonese to the original names’ pronunciation, and containing dissimilar connotations to those of the original names. Possible explanations are also discussed.
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