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Article
Publication date: 10 August 2010

Francisca Farache and Keith J. Perks

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how companies use corporate social responsibility (CSR) advertisements to legitimise their ethical positions and how CSR

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9017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how companies use corporate social responsibility (CSR) advertisements to legitimise their ethical positions and how CSR advertisements vary across countries.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper evaluates CSR advertisements from Chevron and Banco Real published in the news/business magazines (The) Economist and Time in the UK as well as in Veja and Exame in Brazil, leaders in their categories. The advertisements were analysed using a set of semiotic concepts.

Findings

Companies use different strategies for publicising CSR. There are campaigns that appeal to consumer rationality as well as campaigns that appeal to the emotions. There is also evidence that companies use their advertisements to respond to public pressure and thus create or maintain their legitimacy in the eyes of society.

Originality/value

CSR communication is an emerging field, with research focusing on corporate social disclosure mainly through web sites and corporate reports. However, little is known regarding CSR advertisements. The paper provides insights on this issue and focuses on comparative research, which is also a neglected area in the CSR field.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 2 November 2020

Stephanie A. Pankiw, Barbara J. Phillips and David E. Williams

Luxury brands seek to differentiate themselves from competitors by engaging in corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices. Although many luxury brands participate in…

Abstract

Purpose

Luxury brands seek to differentiate themselves from competitors by engaging in corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices. Although many luxury brands participate in CSR activities, it is unclear if luxury brands communicate these CSR activities to consumers. Therefore, this study aims to explore two questions: are luxury jewelry brands communicating CSR (including women’s empowerment) in their advertising? And how should luxury jewelry brands communicate CSR messages in their advertising?

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a content analysis of luxury jewelry print advertisements and in-depth interviews with 20 female jewelry consumers analyzed using grounded theory to construct the luxury brand CSR advertising strategies theory.

Findings

Very few (3%) of print advertisements contain CSR messages, including femvertising and the theory presents four paths for brands to consider when promoting CSR practices, namely, ethical sourcing, cause-related marketing product, a signal of product care and quality and signal of an authentic relationship with the consumer.

Practical implications

The model provides four potential CSR advertising strategies and guidelines luxury jewelry brands can use to create successful advertising campaigns.

Originality/value

Luxury jewelry advertising has not been empirically examined and the study fills gaps in the understanding of luxury brands’ communication strategies. It adds to the knowledge and theorizing of the use and appropriateness of CSR appeals in a luxury brand context.

Details

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 24 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Book part
Publication date: 24 June 2017

Isabell Koinig, Sandra Diehl and Barbara Mueller

This investigation set out to uncover whether CSR appeals – socially and/or environmentally oriented efforts promoted as part of a corporation’s advertising campaign …

Abstract

This investigation set out to uncover whether CSR appeals – socially and/or environmentally oriented efforts promoted as part of a corporation’s advertising campaign – present a fruitful strategy for pharmaceutical manufacturers. This study investigates whether consumers in the two countries are similar with regards to (1) attitudes toward CSR engagement (2) perception of the social engagement of a company (3) perceived product/cause fit and (4) evaluation of CSR versus non-CSR appeals in OTC pharma ads. A field study was conducted (483 subjects; non-student sample) to explore how a standardized promotional message with or without a CSR appeal is perceived in a cross-cultural setting. Results indicate that consumers’ response (with regard to attitudes toward CSR, perceived social engagement by a company, perceived product-cause fit, as well as ad evaluation) all varied by country. Consumer responses were only tested with regard to a fictitious product as well as for one product category. Overall results suggest that CSR messages resonated more with some consumers than with others and, thus, may need to be tailored by market. Apart from a very small number of investigations, neither consumer evaluations of over-the-counter (OTC) drug ads in general, nor responses to CSR ad appeals in particular, have been explored. Thus, this investigation’s primary goal is to explore responses toward CSR messages in non-prescription drug ads in the United States and Brazil.

Details

Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Governance
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-411-8

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Article
Publication date: 24 July 2020

Claudel Mombeuil and Bin Zhang

To date, many firms tend to use corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication and marketing as a means to offset their irresponsible behaviors and unscrupulous…

Abstract

Purpose

To date, many firms tend to use corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication and marketing as a means to offset their irresponsible behaviors and unscrupulous business practices. Often time, they can easily get away with this in the context where the institutional settings are weak, and corporate social irresponsibility (CSIR) and corruption are widespread. The purpose of this study is to explore stakeholders’ attribution concerning CSR claims of four beverage manufacturing companies operating in America’s poorest country (Haiti) where CSIR and corruption remain widespread. This study also explores whether there are differences in demographic characteristics (e.g. gender, corporate affiliation and education) regarding stakeholders’ attribution of CSR claims of these companies.

Design/methodology/approach

Given the exploratory nature of this study, an inductive research approach (qualitative plus quantitative) and supported by an interpretive approach were used.

Findings

The overall results of this study show that internal (employees) and external stakeholders alike consider the CSR claims of these companies as “cosmetic,” with no significant difference in their affiliation. The results also show no significant differences in the age groups but significant differences in gender and level of education regarding stakeholders’ attribution of firms’ CSR claims.

Originality/value

By addressing firms’ CSR claims from the perspectives of internal and external stakeholders through means of a mixed methods approach, this study adds an important contribution to the relevant literature.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 17 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

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Article
Publication date: 18 September 2020

Joon Hye Han, Gary Davies and Anthony Grimes

Drawing from the theory of how relevant items are processed in memory when making judgements, this study aims to test for recency effects between CSR advertising and…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing from the theory of how relevant items are processed in memory when making judgements, this study aims to test for recency effects between CSR advertising and related, negative news on how a company is perceived and the explanatory roles of environmentalism, attribution and both feelings and attitudes towards the advertising itself.

Design/methodology/approach

This study uses between-subjects experimental design with pretests.

Findings

Order effects exist, which, when ads and news are similarly influential, evidence a recency effect. The process is explained by both the mediating influence of attribution of blame and the moderation of this influence by attitude towards the environment. Differences between the effectiveness of ads are explained by the mediating influence of attitudes towards and feelings about the ad together with the moderation of this influence by involvement in the ad context.

Practical implications

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) ads should be pretested in the context of related but negative news, and not just on their own, to ensure they can buffer such news. CSR ads can be more effective when following rather than preceding such news and should not be withdrawn if such a crisis occurs.

Originality/value

The research first attempts to explain recency effects theoretically from the influence of CSR ads on negative CSR-related news. It also shows the determining factors in how such effects influence consumers by considering attribution, environmentalism, attitude to the context and attitude and feelings towards CSR ads.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 5 November 2019

Fernanda Muniz, Francisco Guzmán, Audhesh K. Paswan and Heather J. Crawford

In response to consumer and society demands for firms to be socially responsible, brands have been taking a strategic approach to corporate social responsibility (CSR) by…

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2072

Abstract

Purpose

In response to consumer and society demands for firms to be socially responsible, brands have been taking a strategic approach to corporate social responsibility (CSR) by integrating socially responsible activities into their brands’ core value propositions to strengthen brand equity. Thus, from a brand building perspective, this paper aims to investigate the immediate effect that brand CSR communications have on the change in brand awareness, perceived quality and loyalty, to provide a deeper understanding of how each dimension affects the overall change in brand equity.

Design/methodology/approach

With evidence from an experiment conducted in three different countries (Australia, United States and Spain), based on an actual brand CSR program, this paper explores the different immediate effects of change in brand awareness, perceived brand quality and brand loyalty, after the exposure to a CSR message, on the overall immediate change in value that consumers give to a brand. Furthermore, it examines the role of brand-cause fit and the influence that differences in cultural, economic and political environments have on this effect.

Findings

The change in brand loyalty due to CSR communication is the key dimension driving the immediate positive change in overall brand equity. In addition, change in brand awareness has an inverted U-shape relationship with change in overall brand equity, whereas the change in perceived brand quality does not have an influence. Finally, the results indicate that this immediate effect holds regardless of the level of brand-cause fit, but is greater in countries where firms are expected to participate and CSR reporting is not mandatory, making such practices be seen as voluntary.

Practical implications

The findings of this study offer research implications for academics, and practical considerations for brand managers, interested in how to rapidly generate changes in consumer perception by leveraging CSR activities for brand building in global settings. Specifically, it indicates that when the aim is to quickly build brand equity, the goal of communicating CSR activities must be to increase the level of attachment that consumers have to the brand since loyalty is the main driver of the immediate change in overall brand equity.

Originality/value

Although many scholars have demonstrated the impact of CSR on various consumer behavior outcomes (e.g., brand attitude, purchase intention, loyalty), from a brand build perspective the implications of the immediate effect of a brand communication of CSR practices on consumer-based brand equity remain less clear. This study addresses this gap to gain a deeper understanding of how to rapidly generate changes in consumer perception to build strong brands while leveraging CSR practices.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 28 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

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Article
Publication date: 3 October 2016

Sun Young Lee

The purpose of this paper is to explore the channels companies use to communicate their corporate social responsibility (CSR) messages and to test the effectiveness of…

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4567

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the channels companies use to communicate their corporate social responsibility (CSR) messages and to test the effectiveness of those channels – specifically, press releases, corporate websites, CSR reports, corporate Facebook pages, and TV advertising – on forming companies’ CSR reputations.

Design/methodology/approach

The two primary methods used in this study were secondary analysis of existing data and content analysis. The study sample was the 101 companies in the Reputation Institute’s 2014 CSR ranking of the 100 most highly regarded companies (two companies were tied) across 15 countries.

Findings

Corporate websites and CSR reports were the most common channels for CSR communications, but press releases – through their impact on news articles – and general corporate Facebook pages were the only effective channels in forming CSR reputation.

Originality/value

This study provides empirical evidence of the effectiveness of various CSR communication channels; it not only focuses on CSR reputation, a specific aspect of corporate reputation which has not been studied in this context before, but also examines several different channels simultaneously, in contrast to previous studies which have only investigated one or two channels at a time.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. 21 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 14 November 2016

Catherine Nickerson and Valerie Priscilla Goby

This paper aims to investigate the potential effectiveness of using corporate social marketing (CSM) as part of an advertising campaign targeting local Muslim consumers in…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate the potential effectiveness of using corporate social marketing (CSM) as part of an advertising campaign targeting local Muslim consumers in Dubai. It aims to assess whether Dubai’s local Muslim community’s construal of corporate commitment has evolved beyond philanthropy toward receptiveness to a more embedded corporate societal engagement.

Design/methodology/approach

The examination is based on the framework of corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication that postulates a relationship between internal outcomes, such as the awareness of a cause, and external outcomes, such as the likelihood that a consumer will purchase a product. The authors designed a questionnaire using authentic advertisements for the same product, one with a CSM message and one without, and queried respondents’ opinions of the advertisements, their willingness to purchase the product and their perceptions of the company. Complete responses were collected from 245 Emirati women.

Findings

Significant differences in response to the CSM versus the non-CSM advertisement emerged. The product advertised via the CSM strategy engendered enhanced perceptions of the company among respondents, coupled with a heightened willingness on their part to purchase the product. This indicates that Emirati consumers have gone beyond the simple expectation of philanthropy, which is frequently associated with Muslim consumer loyalty, and value more evolved corporate social commitment.

Originality/value

While Muslim groups have been investigated extensively from various marketing perspectives, the present study is the first to investigate the impact of incorporating CSR into an authentic advertising campaign targeted at Muslim consumers.

Details

Journal of Islamic Marketing, vol. 7 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-0833

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Article
Publication date: 19 October 2021

Yukyung Lee and Carolyn A. Lin

This study examined whether marketing an apparel product via an advertisement with a sustainability vs a conventional message would affect consumer perception of the…

Abstract

Purpose

This study examined whether marketing an apparel product via an advertisement with a sustainability vs a conventional message would affect consumer perception of the brand's CSR image and their attitude toward the brand.

Design/methodology/approach

An online experiment via a posttest-only between-group design with random assignment was administered with a college student sample from a large northeastern university in the US.

Findings

Exposure to an advertisement with a sustainability message had a direct effect on the brand's CSR image, which mediated the relationship between advertisement exposure and (1) perceived brand innovativeness and (2) consumer-brand identification. CSR image positively predicted brand innovativeness, consumer-brand identification and attitude toward the brand. Prior attitude toward sustainable apparel was a significant moderator between advertisement exposure and (1) CSR image and (2) consumer-brand identification.

Originality/value

This study is among the first to test the effects of apparel advertising with a sustainability message on the relationship between consumer and the brand. Study findings contribute to industry knowledge by elucidating the potential effects of an apparel ad with a sustainability message on a brand's CSR image and innovativeness as well as consumer identification with and attitude toward the brand.

Details

Corporate Communications: An International Journal, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1356-3289

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Article
Publication date: 30 October 2009

Alex Wang

This paper aims to test the relations among consumers' attitudes toward disclosures in credit card issuers' print ads, attitudes toward credit card issuers' CSR practices…

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2104

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to test the relations among consumers' attitudes toward disclosures in credit card issuers' print ads, attitudes toward credit card issuers' CSR practices, and attitudes toward credit card issuers in general, with a survey study.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey study with a convenient sampling consisting of college students is used to test the relations among consumers' attitudes toward disclosures in credit card issuers' print ads, attitudes toward credit card issuers' CSR practices, and attitudes toward credit card issuers in general.

Findings

The results suggest that students' positive attitudes toward disclosures positively enhance their attitudes toward credit card issuers and credit card issuers' CSR practices. More importantly, students' attitudes toward credit card issuers' CSR practices mediate their attitudes toward disclosures on enhancing their attitudes toward credit card issuers.

Research limitations/implications

Disclosures are increasingly common in advertisements for a range of products, including banking, cigarettes, over‐the‐counter drugs, and diet products. Thus, the study's results can also be applicable for corporations that advertise financial and health‐related product or services. Despite the inherent limitations of this study (e.g. context‐specific, convenience sample, and limited product types) that have to be confirmed in future research, future research should examine the relationship between various practices of disclosures and different aspects of CSR practices.

Practical implications

Based on this study's results, credit card issuers should improve their practices of disclosures and communicate their disclosures better to college students. Since a positive relationship between consumer responses and CSR practices is evident, projecting good CSR practices can also enhance credit card issuers' corporate images.

Originality/value

The paper primarily studies the impact of advertising disclosures and CSR practices on corporate image from college students' perspective. The research adds value to the existing literature on CSR, which is important to both academic researchers and practitioners.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 32 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

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