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Article

Ili‐Salsabila Abd‐Razak and Asmat‐Nizam Abdul‐Talib

The purpose of this paper is to highlight the globality and intentionality aspects of consumer boycotts among the Muslim dominant markets around the world through the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to highlight the globality and intentionality aspects of consumer boycotts among the Muslim dominant markets around the world through the consumer animosity perspective, to provide better understanding of the issues. Some applied and potential solutions for marketers and policy makers in dealing with the issues are also discussed.

Design/methodology/approach

The analytical definition of consumer boycotts through the consumer animosity perspective is proposed and the relevance of the discussion is considered. The relationships between the globality and intentionality attributions with animosity and consumer boycotts are assessed before strategies to deal with the issues are diagnosed. Seminal works of classic and current consumer boycotts and animosity literature are reviewed in developing the conceptual background of the paper. Further conceptual reflections are stated based on the depicted current events in the market around the world.

Findings

The conceptual discussion revealed that consumer boycotts in the Muslim dominant market and animosity are two related issues worthy being explored. The issues are of the global concern and occurred unintentionally, therefore they could stimulate unexpected outcomes for the marketers and policy makers alike. Nonetheless, several strategies in dealing with the issues are found to be effective in preventing the issues from getting worse. However, the strategies would not work for all entities in all situations. Understanding the root of the issues would be the best solution.

Research limitations/implications

The discussion is limited to conceptual background of the aspects discussed. Further empirical studies would enhance the applicability of the discussions presented.

Practical implications

In order to find strategies to deal with consumer boycotts in the Muslim dominant markets, marketers need to understand the real reason for the events to occur and demonstrate sincere understanding towards the issues. By doing so, consumer boycotts would not obstruct the progress and growth of the international business in general. Looking at the issues from the animosity perspective is a prolific attempt to understand the events.

Originality/value

The paper reveals the relationship between consumer boycotts and animosity in the Muslim dominant markets and offers understanding of the specific events occurrence. The discussion is extended to describe the events' globality and intentionality attribution assessment.

Details

Journal of Islamic Marketing, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1759-0833

Keywords

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Article

Tony Yan and Michael R. Hyman

The purpose of this study is to explore how nationalistic appeals may affect consumers’ perception and purchasing of targeted brands. Qualitative historical data from old…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore how nationalistic appeals may affect consumers’ perception and purchasing of targeted brands. Qualitative historical data from old China (1900–1949) reveal that social movement groups can adopt nationalistic appeals assisted by meaning framing – defined as a creative interpretation of symbols, designs, behaviors, social events and cultural identities to serve social and political goals – to shape consumers’ attitudes toward foreign brands. After examining the mechanisms and processes underlying consumer boycotts from 1900 to 1949, the responsive strategies of affected foreign companies are illustrated.

Design/methodology/approach

Critical historical research method is applied to historical data and historical “traces” from China’s corporate documents, memoirs, posters, advertisements, newspapers and secondhand sources documenting Chinese boycotts from 1900 to 1949.

Findings

Consumers may pursue interests beyond economic interests. Nationalistic appeals can mobilize consumer boycotts against foreign brands that were perceived to support or relate to targeted countries. Political framing of certain events shapes consumers’ perceptions and concomitant brand choices.

Research limitations/implications

Although differences between historical and current contexts may require tailoring past marketing strategies to current conditions, past strategies can inform current and future strategies.

Practical implications

Strategies adopted by foreign companies in old China (1900–1949) can help contemporary companies design effective marketing strategies for a hostile marketplace infused with nationalistic appeals and competing interests.

Social implications

Although local companies can adopt economic or political nationalism to realize their economic goals, it represents a double-edged sword that can harm national brands.

Originality/value

A historical analysis of nationalistic business appeals in pre-1949 China can inform the counterstrategies modern companies adopt to overcome consumer boycotts.

Details

Journal of Historical Research in Marketing, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1755-750X

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Article

Antonia Delistavrou, Athanasios Krystallis and Irene Tilikidou

Although boycotting campaigns have been increasing, a limited amount of academic research has been focussed on the antecedents of consumers’ participation in the retail…

Abstract

Purpose

Although boycotting campaigns have been increasing, a limited amount of academic research has been focussed on the antecedents of consumers’ participation in the retail field. This paper presents an examination of consumers’ intentions to boycott the “unethical” supermarket products by a Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) application. Materialism/Post-materialism was incorporated in the research as a moderating variable.

Design/methodology/approach

Personal interviews were taken in a sample (420) selected by a probability sampling method. Structural equation modelling was performed to analyse the data.

Findings

TPB was found powerful to explain boycotting intentions. Consumers, who more strongly intent to boycott, are affected more by social norms than by attitudes and perceived behavioural control. Those consumers believe more strongly that boycotting “unethical” retail products will generate valuable outcomes, will comply with their referents’ expectations and will not be obstructed by any barriers. Post-materialists were found to hold stronger intentions than materialists. Materialists are mostly influenced by their attitudes and their perceived control over participation in boycotting. On the contrary, post-materialists are solely influenced by their feelings regarding social pressure to boycott.

Research limitations/implications

Control for social desirability should be included in future research. National or multinational samples more effective for generalization. The ability of other psychographics or demographics to moderate TPB relationships could be further investigated.

Practical implications

Retailers, who try to avoid potential boycotts, should primarily aim to diminish the social influence towards boycotting. Secondarily, they should aim to decrease the consumers’ positive attitudes and perceived controllability over participation in boycotting. On the other side, consumers’ groups or associations when designing a boycott campaign should address their call targeting to post-materialist consumers. Messages for a boycotting call should enhance the important referents’ pressure towards a friendlier society in which people’s action is able to ethics in the market.

Originality/value

In this study, TPB was expanded by the incorporation of values, namely Materialism/Post-materialism, as a moderating factor.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 48 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

Content available
Article

Mie Kyung Jae and Hyang Ran Jeon

In this paper, the authors aim to offer a cross-cultural comparison of the boycott intentions of university students in Canada with those of students in Korea.

Abstract

Purpose

In this paper, the authors aim to offer a cross-cultural comparison of the boycott intentions of university students in Canada with those of students in Korea.

Design/methodology/approach

The data were collected from students at Inje University and York University via self-administered questionnaire. A t-test found that Canadian students’ answers showed significantly greater scores in ethnocentrism, boycott attitudes prior to reading the target article and motivations related to self-enhancement compared to those acquired from Korean students. However, the motivation of counterarguments and the boycott intentions of Korean students’ toward Rogers, the parent company of Maclean’s magazine, showed significantly higher scores than those gained from Canadian students.

Findings

The boycott case used in the study is Maclean’s magazine, a Canadian news magazine, which published a controversial article called, “Too Asian? Some frosh don’t want to study at an “Asian” University”. A noticeable gap in each group of students’ boycott attitude and intentions toward Rogers, the parent company of Maclean’s magazine was found.

Originality/value

In the multiple regression analysis, the boycott motivation of self-enhancement was the most influential variable on boycott intentions. The boycott case examined in this paper is a practical case study of cross-national grouping as well as the perceptional difference of the locus of corporate accountability that comes from cross-cultural backgrounds.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2071-1395

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Article

Richard Ettenson and Jill Gabrielle Klein

The frequency and sophistication of consumer boycotts continue to increase from already high levels. Surprisingly, only limited research in marketing has investigated this…

Abstract

Purpose

The frequency and sophistication of consumer boycotts continue to increase from already high levels. Surprisingly, only limited research in marketing has investigated this topic. The purpose of this paper is to provide a strategic analysis of an actual consumer protest with implications for better managerial decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

The animosity model of consumer purchase behavior was employed in two longitudinal studies to investigate an ongoing marketplace protest – Australian consumers' boycott of French products. Study 1 was carried out while France was engaged in nuclear testing in the South Pacific. Study 2 was carried out 1 year after the resolution of the conflict.

Findings

Results from Study 1 show that Australian consumers' animosity toward France was negatively related to their willingness to purchase French products. Consistent with a key prediction from the animosity model, this effect was independent of evaluations of French product quality. The findings from Study 2 show that, a year after the cessation of nuclear testing, Australian consumers continue to have strong negative affect toward France, which in turn, had negative marketplace consequences for French products.

Originality/value

While the results from Study 1 show that consumer anger over nuclear testing did not necessarily lead to the denigration of the quality of French goods, the second study indicates that, beyond the duration of the official protest, there may be repercussions for products associated with the offending party. Accordingly, managers should consider implementing communications programs which, over time, effectively reinforce the quality of their products in the minds of protesting consumers.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 22 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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Article

Nazlida Muhamad, Munirah Khamarudin and Waida Irani Mohd Fauzi

Religion as a cultural element has the potential to drive a strong boycott campaign. Previous studies acknowledge the role of religion in consumer boycotts yet did not…

Abstract

Purpose

Religion as a cultural element has the potential to drive a strong boycott campaign. Previous studies acknowledge the role of religion in consumer boycotts yet did not investigate its role in influencing the very core of consumers’ motivation to participate in religion-based boycott. The purpose of this paper is to explore the fundamental nature of religious influence in an international religion-based consumer boycott. The research model tests the role of intrinsic religious motivation as the root of Muslim consumers’ motivational factors to participate and their intention to boycott US food brand.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted the Hoffman’s’ (2013) consumer boycott model to test the hypotheses. Survey method is used to collect primary data from Muslim millennials in a northern state of Malaysia. The study tested its five hypotheses on a data set of 325 cases using structural equation modelling (partial least squares regression).

Findings

The findings support the primary role of religion influences underlying boycott motivation factors. The intrinsic religious motivation is related to all the four boycott’s motivation factors (i.e. attitudes towards boycotting the brand, subjective norms, make a difference, self-enhancement), and indirectly contributing to intentions to boycott US food brand through the constructs of self-enhancement, subjective norms and attitudes towards the boycott.

Research limitations/implications

The study is a cross-sectional in nature, confined to one US food brand. The findings may be limited to Muslim millennials in the same region or similar cultural background of the country surveyed.

Practical implications

Businesses may want to consider working with social agencies involved in a religion-driven consumer boycott in mitigating negative influences of such boycott on brands.

Originality/value

The study shows the root of consumers’ motivation to participate in an international religion-based consumer boycott, i.e. intrinsic religious motivation, by illustrating the mechanisms of religious influences (i.e. intrinsic religious motivation) on consumers’ intention to participate in Islam-driven boycott.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 121 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Breno de Paula Andrade Cruz and Delane Botelho

The purpose of this study is to identify, in the context of virtual social networks (VSNs), other types of boycott which have not yet been addressed in the literature. We…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to identify, in the context of virtual social networks (VSNs), other types of boycott which have not yet been addressed in the literature. We relate the boycott(s) emerged on the VSNs with those found in the literature (economic, religious, of minorities, ecological and labor boycott), and verify the motivation that must be unique to such context.

Design/methodology/approach

Grounded theory was used in triangulation with netnography (interacting with 183 customers), non-participant observation (68 postings/47 complaints, from 2009 to 2012) and in-depth interview (15 consumers).

Findings

A new classification of boycott was proposed, which emerged on the basis of company service quality, named “relational boycott”, which can generate additional acts of repudiation, such as interaction, unity of the group and encouragement of third parties.

Research limitations/implications

The model of relational boycott proposed was not empirically tested, but insights for future test are provided.

Practical implications

A model of how the relational boycott is structured is provided, being a deliberate, primary act of the consumer resulting from the management problems of a company generating backlash actions.

Social implications

Since boycott represents a mechanism of protesting, it is a way that consumers pressure companies to provide better services and products, which may improve consumer’s wellbeing in the long range.

Originality/value

A new type of boycott emerges in the research, named relational boycott, structured in a model that can be tested empirically.

Details

Management Research: The Journal of the Iberoamerican Academy of Management, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1536-5433

Keywords

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Article

Paul Sergius Koku

The purpose of this study is to examine the effectiveness of consumer boycotts, which have been launched by individuals using the internet, in inflicting economic harm on…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine the effectiveness of consumer boycotts, which have been launched by individuals using the internet, in inflicting economic harm on the targeted firms.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses the event study technique to analyze the market's response to consumer boycotts launched by individuals using the internet.

Findings

The results show that consumer boycotts launched by individuals on the internet are ineffective in inflicting economic harm on the targeted firm.

Research limitations/implications

Despites the buzz about the “dark side” of marketing using the internet, the stock market does not react significantly to boycotts launched by individuals using the internet. However, the small sample size of 63 events tampers the temptation to generalize the findings. Future studies can be conducted with a larger sample size with a different time horizon for a deeper understanding.

Practical implications

In spite of the findings of this study, managers should still monitor how consumers use the internet to mobilize others against an organization as such consumer actions can affect a firm's reputation negatively.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the boycott literature and furthers the understanding on the effectiveness/ineffectiveness of the internet as a boycott tool that is intended to inflict economic harm on the targeted firm.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 26 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article

Ibrahim Abosag and Maya F. Farah

The purpose of this paper was to examine the influence of religiously motivated boycotts, such as the one conducted in Saudi Arabia against Danish companies, on corporate…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper was to examine the influence of religiously motivated boycotts, such as the one conducted in Saudi Arabia against Danish companies, on corporate brand image, customer loyalty and product judgment. Despite a growing research interest in understanding the effects of different types of consumer animosities on companies’ performance, there appears to be a scarcity of studies addressing the specific effects of religious animosity. Religious animosity is considered as an additional type which may have more stable and longer-term impacts than other animosities on behaviour.

Design/methodology/approach

The study was based on a two-stage design: an exploratory qualitative stage involving 11 in-depth interviews, followed by a more comprehensive quantitative stage designed to test a proposed theoretical model. Data was collected from Saudi customers of the Danish company Arla Foods in Saudi Arabia. Data was analysed using structural equation model (LISREL 8).

Findings

The model confirms that boycotting have strong negative impact on brand image and consumer loyalty but does not influence consumers’ product judgment.

Practical implications

Religious boycotts have significant consequences on both corporate profits and brand image. The study provides clear steps for companies to combat the influence of religious boycotts especially in relation to brand image and customer loyalty.

Originality/value

The study tested the influence of consumer religious boycotts on brand image and customer loyalty. Religious animosity was found to cause a more persistent boycott that negatively impacts brand image and weakens customer loyalty. However, by and large, boycotting was found not to have any significant impact on product judgment.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 48 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

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Article

Malcolm Smith and Qianpin Li

The primary purpose of this paper is to investigate and ascertain the effects of integrative motivation on the willingness to participate in boycott activities.

Abstract

Purpose

The primary purpose of this paper is to investigate and ascertain the effects of integrative motivation on the willingness to participate in boycott activities.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a mail survey to examine the relationships among six constructs in a boycotting issue context, in order to explore Chinese consumers' willingness to boycott against Japanese products or services with the fallout from a Japanese former PM's continuous visits to a controversial war shrine since 2001.

Findings

The findings suggest that there are significant and positive pairwise relationships between boycott participation and three factors (i.e. animosity, efficacy, and prior purchase). High animosity towards Japanese goods and the other two constructs, at the high end of the attitude spectrum, increase the level of willingness to engage in consumer boycott practices.

Practical implications

Consumer boycotts are a worldwide and historic phenomenon in modern society. As the number of protests grows and as local authorities recognize the economic and political impact of such activities, then multinational companies (MNCs) and host countries begin to see the historic and cultural perspective of these events in addition to the conventional consumer behaviour perspective. To enable boycotting to become less harmful, MNC management need to understand what makes local consumers so affronted. The results of the evaluation can potentially be generalized towards a strategic analysis of the boycott model in other hostile market situations.

Originality/value

The findings of this paper offer pivotal implications for decision makers and the management of those Western multinational enterprises who are concerned with increasing their share of the world's largest consumer market. In particular, Japanese MNCs need to pay much more attention to the oppressed and potentially explosive emotion of animosity as the legacy of past conflicts (i.e. war, economic, political, etc.) between Japan and China.

Details

Asian Review of Accounting, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1321-7348

Keywords

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