The explosive development of social media has given great opportunities to academic and industry research on consumer brand knowledge. Particularly, the brand associative network has been most frequently used to describe consumer brand knowledge structure. However, few researchers have examined the embedded connotation of the brand knowledge structural measurement in regard to sustainable brand performance and adjusted their brand strategies accordingly. Combining psychological cognitive theory and the network analytic method, this paper aims to extend this area by investigating the relationship between brand structural position in consumers’ associative knowledge network and sustainable brand awareness. Using a monthly dataset of around 130 million user posts, we find that compared to a prior determined brand strategy, brand network centrality in consumer’s brand associative knowledge network shows a much more significant positive effect on sustainable brand awareness. Importantly, we further examined the symmetric matching of brand positioning strategy and consumer’s brand knowledge structure for sustainable brand awareness. We find that sustainable brand awareness will be promoted by a symmetric matching brand positioning strategy with its position in the associative knowledge work. Our study facilitates an understanding of brands based on consumer perceptions for managers and enables businesses to adjust their relevant strategies for the achievement of sustainable brand performance.
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