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Article
Publication date: 6 May 2014

Matthew Tingchi Liu, Ipkin Anthony Wong, Guicheng Shi, Rongwei Chu and James L. Brock

This paper aims to investigate how corporate social responsibility (CSR) performance (i.e. to the environment, society and stakeholders) and perceived brand quality…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate how corporate social responsibility (CSR) performance (i.e. to the environment, society and stakeholders) and perceived brand quality influence brand preference. The mediating effect of perceived brand quality on the relationship between CSR performance and brand preference is also studied.

Design/methodology/approach

In 2011, 243 valid responses to questionnaire surveys were collected from a convenience sample in China. Regression analyses were used to test the hypotheses.

Findings

Customers’ brand preference can be enhanced by CSR performance. Performance in each of the three CSR domains (i.e. environment, society and stakeholders) positively impacts brand preference, although to different degrees. The impact of CSR on stakeholders has the strongest influence on Chinese customers’ brand preference among the three CSR domains. Perceived brand quality was found to be a mediator of the relationship between CSR performance and brand preference.

Research limitations/implications

This research studies the relationship between CSR performance and brand preference. Results show CSR performance is not the strongest predictor of branding outcomes, its explanatory power is comparatively weaker than that of perceived brand quality. Additionally, we found a mediating effect of perceived brand quality on the relationship between CSR performance and brand preference.

Practical implications

Brands can be more attractive to Chinese consumers when brands take appropriate investments in CSR activities. A socially responsible brand is not guaranteed to yield a competitive advantage. Instead a competitive advantage will more likely result through the employment of the appropriate CSR strategies, with a focus on stakeholders’ interests.

Originality/value

The current research contributes to the literature by finding that not all CSR activities are equally effective. Customers in emerging markets still appear to be focused more on the quality of brands and, to some extent, stakeholder CSR practice, as these provide direct benefits to customers. Findings of this study also support the notion that Chinese consumers are beginning to use CSR information to evaluate brands.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 28 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 October 2014

Matthew Tingchi Liu, Ipkin Anthony Wong, Chu Rongwei and Ting-Hsiang Tseng

This study aims to investigate how perceptions associated with corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives influence customers’ preference and loyalty in a…

5569

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate how perceptions associated with corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives influence customers’ preference and loyalty in a controversial consumer market. The mediating effect of brand preference between perceived CSR initiatives and customer loyalty is also examined.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology in the current study involves the use of questionnaire surveys delivered to a convenience sample in the city of Macau in 2012. A total of 616 valid samples were collected among casino players in a high bet limit area in six major casinos. Regression analysis was used to test the hypotheses formulated for carrying the study forward.

Findings

The findings indicated that customers’ brand preference can be enhanced by their perceptions on CSR. Two CSR initiatives (stakeholders and society) significantly increase loyalty intention, although to varying degrees. The impact of CSR on stakeholders has a stronger influence on customers’ brand preference. Another important finding of the current study is the fact that brand preference is a partial mediator of perceived CSR initiatives and customer loyalty.

Research limitations/implications

This study verified the relationship among CSR initiatives perception, brand preference and loyalty intention in the context of the Macau gaming industry. Perceived CSR initiatives enhance customer loyalty. Additionally, this study found a partial mediating effect of brand preference between CSR perception and customer loyalty.

Practical implications

Customer loyalty can be enhanced with companies’ appropriate investments in social responsibilities. Although a socially responsible brand image of a company is not guaranteed to be a competitive advantage that attracts more premium customers, there is a general consensus that it may result in the latter with appropriate CSR strategies involving the greatest attention directed toward improving stakeholders’ interests. From the marketing perspective, retaining premium customers with a higher brand preference level is a key to both long-term competitiveness and profitability.

Originality/value

This study investigates how premium customers’ perceived CSR initiatives of a casino influence their loyalty intention, and also examines how brand preference, as a mediator, influences the relationship between perceived CSR and loyalty intention. Extending the realm of CSR study to understand the linkage between CSR and customer behaviors is also important because multiple theories predict different benefits, and assessing the value of CSR, therefore, requires multiple approaches. Finally, evidence from the research is significant for researchers and practitioners, especially when working on conflicting issues.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 26 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 27 September 2021

Hajar Fatemi and Laurette Dube

This paper aims to study the unexplored possibility that priming firms’ corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity in consumers’ minds may impact consumers’ preference

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the unexplored possibility that priming firms’ corporate social responsibility (CSR) activity in consumers’ minds may impact consumers’ preference for non-firm related consumption and lifestyle choice options with intertemporal trade-offs.

Design/methodology/approach

Across four experimental studies, the authors looked at the impact of CSR priming on the preference of participants for later larger versus sooner smaller money (Study 1), saving versus spending (Study 2) and healthy versus unhealthy food choices (Studies 3 and 4). These choice options were not related to the focal firm that practiced CSR. The authors measured the changes in participants’ consideration of future consequences (CFC) as a potential mediator for the results.

Findings

The participants in the CSR condition showed a higher CFC and a higher preference for the options with long-term benefits and immediate costs over the ones with long-term costs and immediate benefits, i.e. later larger over sooner smaller money, saving over spending and healthy over unhealthy food. The authors documented a mediation role for CFC.

Research limitations/implications

All the participants in the studies were from the USA. Looking at the cultural differences can enrich the understanding of the impact of CSR on preference for the options with intertemporal trade-offs. Furthermore, this paper builds its theoretical justification based on the assumption of individuals’ acceptance of CSR activities. Nevertheless, consumers may have skepticism about these activities. Future studies may investigate the effect of CSR skepticism of individuals on the proposed effects. Additionally, investigating the moderating roles of individuals’ characteristics like their prosocial concern or their knowledge about choice options might be an avenue for future research.

Practical implications

The findings highlight the benefits of CSR priming on consumers’ welfare and normative behavior. Firms may use the findings to understand and manage the impact of other firms’ CSR communications on the evaluation of their own products.

Originality/value

This research is the first to highlight the impact of CSR priming on consumers’ non-firm-related consumption and lifestyle choices with intertemporal trade-offs. The results showed the positive effect of priming firms’ CSR activities on consumers’ CFC and the mediating role of CFC.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 55 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 6 July 2010

Rojanasak Chomvilailuk and Ken Butcher

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the efficacy of three corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives on brand preference in the Thai banking sector.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the efficacy of three corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives on brand preference in the Thai banking sector.

Design/methodology/approach

A 2 × 2 × 2 between subject experimental design was used to test the hypotheses in a bank setting. Three CSR initiatives were tested against a predictor variable of perceived brand quality and moderated by age, CSR predisposition and cultural values. The CSR initiatives comprised commitment to CSR; type of CSR programme; and transparency. Written vignettes disguised as press releases by the bank were used as stimulus materials and a survey completed by 219 consumers in Thailand.

Findings

Overall, all three CSR initiatives had a modest but significant effect on brand preference. The level of influence varied according to age, CSR predisposition and cultural values. While older customers placed more emphasis on perceived brand quality overall it was also found that the type of CSR programme could significantly affect brand preference. In those groups high on the cultural value of individualism, commitment to CSR was found to be a strong contributor to brand preference. Similarly in those groups with a high power distance, brand preference was more influenced by CSR initiatives.

Research limitations/implications

While CSR initiatives make modest improvements to brand preference overall, more substantial impacts occur under situational conditions. Discovering and exploiting such situations is critical to any firm making substantial investments in CSR.

Practical implications

The differential impact of CSR initiatives on brand preference highlights the importance of carefully targeting stakeholders to optimise CSR investments. Communication strategies need to ensure that the appropriate message is designed for particular audiences.

Originality/value

A specific dependent variable of brand preference is used in this study, together with three specific CSR initiatives and three moderating influences. In addition, perceived brand quality is utilised as a benchmark variable to test the strength of CSR initiatives.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 22 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 September 2014

Matthew Liu, IpKin Anthony Wong, Rongwei Chu, Guicheng James Shi, James L. Brock and Ting-Hsiang Tseng

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives influence internal customers’ preference and turnover…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how perceived corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives influence internal customers’ preference and turnover intention. The mediating effect of brand preference on the relationship between CSR initiatives and turnover intention has also been studied.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey was conducted and questionnaires were distributed to a sample in Macau in 2012. Out of these, 138 valid samples were collected among casinos’ mid- and senior-level employees having managerial positions (hereafter “managers”). Regression tests were performed in order to validate the hypotheses.

Findings

Managers’ preference for the casino brand of their employer can be enhanced by perceptions associated with CSR initiatives. Two CSR initiatives (CSR to stakeholders and to society) significantly decrease managers’ turnover intentions, with the impact of CSR directed at stakeholders exerting a stronger influence. Brand preference is a significant mediator of perceptions associated with CSR initiatives and turnover intention.

Originality/value

The current study tries to not only investigate how perceptions associated with CSR initiatives influence an internal customer's turnover intention but is also aimed at understanding how brand preference as a mediator influences turnover intention. Extending the realm of study is important because multiple theories predict different benefits, and assessing the value of CSR therefore requires multiple approaches.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 26 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 9 January 2020

Gustavo Barboza, Valerien Pede and Sergio Madero

The purpose of this paper is to model the role that stakeholders, and especially social responsible consumers play in the process of finding a win–win solution to control…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to model the role that stakeholders, and especially social responsible consumers play in the process of finding a win–win solution to control production related negative externalities. In this regard, when information asymmetries are present and consumers become knowledgeable about them, consumers with d-preferences for corporate social responsibility (CSR) type of products becomes the driver of the firm strategy.

Design/methodology/approach

To accomplish the goals of this paper, the authors proceed to develop a series of theoretical models wherein the social gains and costs of alternative modes of intervention are illustrated. The authors begin with a standard Pigouvian tax model and construct a stakeholder equivalent tax model and finalize the analysis with consumers acting in a shared social responsible behavior with firms as the optimal solution model.

Findings

The authors show that proactive disclosure of information asymmetries regarding negative externalities develops a shared social responsibility between consumers and firms. Market-based solutions to the externality problem are achieved under this setting. This solution is preferred to a Pigouvian tax and to a stakeholder equivalent tax. It is concluded that shared social responsibility is the result of the interaction of consumers with d-preferences and the reaction of a socially responsible “firm” willing, and the authors are able to incorporate these preferences as drivers for its strategy.

Research limitations/implications

The main limitation of this paper is in its theoretical nature and specific applications to one case, that of negative externalities in production processes. The implication of this is that the model herein developed needs to be put to the empirical test.

Social implications

The overall social implications indicate that active reduction of information asymmetries is welfare improving and preferred to government intervention.

Originality/value

This paper is original as it makes use of economic principles to develop a parsimonious model to demonstrate that proactive actions of a firm in response to consumers and stakeholders demands leads to an overall social welfare improvement when negative externalities deriving from production are incorporated into the decision making process of both consumers and firms. These decisions prove superior to government regulations.

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Wade Jarvis, Robyn Ouschan, Henry J. Burton, Geoffrey Soutar and Ingrid M. O’Brien

Both customer engagement (CE) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) have been linked to customer loyalty. Past studies use service dominant logic and customer value…

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Abstract

Purpose

Both customer engagement (CE) and corporate social responsibility (CSR) have been linked to customer loyalty. Past studies use service dominant logic and customer value co-creation to explain this relationship. The purpose of this paper is to apply utility theory to develop and test a new theoretical model based on CSR initiative preference to understand the relationship between CE and customer loyalty to the organisation in a CSR platform.

Design/methodology/approach

This empirical study uses choice theory in the form of best-worst scaling, and structural equation modelling, to measure the impact of sports club members’ choice preferences for a range of CSR initiatives on their intention to engage with the initiative and subsequent loyalty to the club.

Findings

This study highlights the importance of engaging members in the CSR strategy they prefer as it enhances not only the extra value to the organisation via customer loyalty to the organisation, but also CE with the organisation. Furthermore, the study reveals age and gender impact on the relationship between CE in CSR initiatives and customer loyalty.

Originality/value

This study extends CE to CSR behaviours and provides empirical evidence for a unique theoretical framework of CE based on utility theory. It also highlights the need to take into account moderating variables such as customer demographics.

Details

Journal of Service Theory and Practice, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-6225

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 22 October 2020

Yannick Thomas van Hierden, Timo Dietrich and Sharyn Rundle-Thiele

This study aims to demonstrate how banks can align their CSR investment to community needs and citizen preferences. A grounded theory inductive approach is applied to…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to demonstrate how banks can align their CSR investment to community needs and citizen preferences. A grounded theory inductive approach is applied to deliver a community-centred process that banks can apply to inform CSR investment decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

This study employed a sequential mixed-method research design to identify areas of need from the perspective of community leaders and members through depth interviews. Following thematic analysis, citizen preferences for eight priority areas were elicited using best-worst scaling (BWS).

Findings

Clear investment preferences emerged with citizens preferring six community investment causes, namely, (1) infrastructure, (2) crisis and prevention support, (3) community groups, (4) youth facilities and activities, (5) initiatives that support the local environment, and (6) physical activity promotion. The forming of community advisory committees emerged as one approach that banks could apply to ensure long-term citizen-centred CSR investment decisions.

Research limitations/implications

This study is limited to one community and one community bank and a small convenience, cross-sectional data sample.

Social implications

Community-oriented financial institutions should centre investment decisions on community need and citizen preferences ensuring investments made deliver the greatest societal benefit and community support for the banks is garnered.

Originality/value

This paper provides important contributions to improve the effectiveness of CSR initiatives, providing an inductive, methodological approach that financial institutions can follow to better align their CSR investment to community needs and preferences.

Details

International Journal of Bank Marketing, vol. 39 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-2323

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 26 March 2020

Ingrid M. O'Brien, Robyn Ouschan, Wade Jarvis and Geoffrey Norman Soutar

The purpose of this paper is to assess the impact of CSR initiative preference, customer helping orientation and customer participation on willingness to engage in CSR and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the impact of CSR initiative preference, customer helping orientation and customer participation on willingness to engage in CSR and to demonstrate the influence this engagement has on their commitment and loyalty to the organisation.

Design/methodology/approach

This study entailed an online survey of customers from a large not-for-profit organisation (n = 210). Choice modelling is used to test a structural equation model of drivers and outcomes of willingness to engage in CSR.

Findings

Results demonstrate the CSR initiative preferred by customers has a stronger impact on their willingness to engage with the CSR initiative (volunteering their time, effort, money) than either customers' helping orientation or customer participation. Furthermore, willingness to engage in CSR influences customer commitment and loyalty to support and recommend the organisation.

Research limitations/implications

The results clearly demonstrate the significant impact that customers' preferences for and willingness to engage in CSR initiatives have on customers' relationship with not-for-profit organisations.

Social implications

The results highlight the importance of taking into account customer preferences for CSR issues to encourage customers to engage in CSR initiatives designed to benefit society.

Originality/value

Traditionally CSR literature has focused on how commercial firms' engagement in CSR creates value for the firm and society. The marketing literature has focused on how customer engagement in brand communities benefits the firm. This study extends the research by exploring customers’ willingness to engage in CSR with not-for-profit organisations. It uses Choice modelling to demonstrate the impact of customer preferences for local and aligned CSR initiatives on customer willingness to engage.

Details

Journal of Service Theory and Practice, vol. 30 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2055-6225

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 October 2017

Vidya Sukumara Panicker

The purpose of this paper is to look at the association between different ownership categories and corporate social responsibility (CSR) spending of selected Indian firms.

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to look at the association between different ownership categories and corporate social responsibility (CSR) spending of selected Indian firms.

Design/methodology/approach

Random-effects Tobit panel regression is performed on a panel of 4,388 firm years of 1,722 unique firms over a three-year period (2014-2016).

Findings

Different categories of institutional investors have different preferences for CSR spending of a firm. Promoters of business-group affiliated and unaffiliated firms also behave differently towards CSR activities of their firms.

Research limitations/implications

Heterogeneous behavior of institutional investors is revealed through the study. Foreign institutions and domestic banks are supportive of CSR investments of a firm. Promoters of family firms and group affiliates also diligently plan CSR activities.

Practical implications

Managers cannot ignore the heterogeneities of institutional investors in their investment decisions. Individual investors can align their philanthropic preferences with those of different types of institutional investors or firms.

Social implications

Family-owned firms play a significant role in CSR activities of emerging economies, while individual promoters are not as attracted by the reputational prospects of CSR.

Originality/value

This paper considers the role of heterogeneities of institutional investors in influencing CSR spending of emerging-economy firms. This heterogeneity has not been previously studied in this context.

Details

Social Responsibility Journal, vol. 13 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-1117

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 4000