2. Mediating Effect of Stakeholder Roles on the Relationship between Destination Branding and Competitive Advantage in Kenya
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Stakeholders such as local communities and service providers have long been engaged in tourism planning, however, there is rare insights into stakeholder collaboration in destination branding (Pike and Page, 2014). This study examines whether stakeholder roles: Leadership, Brand Association, Brand Uniqueness, Co-creation and Perceived quality have a significant role as a mediating variable, between destination branding and competitive advantage. The study used random sampling of three hundred and eight tourism related business sectors across Nairobi, Nakuru, and Kisumu counties in Kenya. The Main Findings of the study are (i) Mediation effect of Leadership, brand association, Brand Uniqueness, Co-creation and Perceived Brand Quality with respect to independent and dependent variable are significant because their normal theory test for direct has a p value less than 0.05. This Concludes that Mediators referred to as Leadership, brand association, Brand Uniqueness, Co-creation and Perceived Brand Quality are partial mediators because there is reduction (not total elimination) from .6788 to .5709, .6788 to .5701, .6788 to .6088, .6788 to .6136, .6788 to .5476 of coefficient of X variable respectively. The results of the study will help with establishing strategies for the incorporation of the various stakeholders in destination branding strategies in the tourism industries.