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Article
Publication date: 26 July 2018

Rojanasak Chomvilailuk and Ken Butcher

The purpose of this paper is to determine the effectiveness of strategic corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives that seek to enhance customer engagement…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to determine the effectiveness of strategic corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives that seek to enhance customer engagement, through different forms of positive word of mouth.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 258 responses were collected from customers of mobile telephone service providers, and analysed using t-tests, ANOVA and structural equation modelling. The survey embedded a realistic press release, purporting to originate from the respondent’s service provider, communicating CSR information.

Findings

Mobile telephone users are largely indifferent to CSR communication activities but segments of the market respond differently. Customer-perceived community value of the strategic CSR initiative to the intended beneficiary of the activity was found to be an effective antecedent of customer engagement.

Research limitations/implications

Alternative modes of customer engagement have the potential to enhance customer discourse. Customer-perceived community value of the strategic initiative provides further explanatory power to the CSR–customer relationship.

Practical implications

Customer-perceived community value can be used as a planning tool for marketers to gauge the effectiveness of CSR advertising campaigns before launch. Managers can adapt their CSR communications message to better reflect customer concerns.

Social implications

NGOs that offer greater perceived community value can partner with companies more successfully.

Originality/value

A holistic CSR-centric approach to evaluate strategic CSR initiatives and determine their influence on alternative forms of customer engagement is novel.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 36 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

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Article
Publication date: 22 February 2013

Rojanasak Chomvilailuk and Ken Butcher

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the efficacy of corporate social responsibility (CSR) knowledge on customer liking for the bank across two countries and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the efficacy of corporate social responsibility (CSR) knowledge on customer liking for the bank across two countries and cultural contexts.

Design/methodology/approach

Three CSR variables were tested for their comparative influence on customer liking under different cultural value conditions. Surveys were completed by 204 bank consumers in Australia and 219 bank customers in Thailand. ANOVA and regression were used to test hypotheses.

Findings

Perceptions of existing CSR performance and new CSR initiative had significant effects on liking for the bank. However CSR orientation had no effect. These influences varied substantially depending upon the community orientation of the target customer.

Research limitations/implications

Understanding the differing roles of the two significant CSR variables provide insights into the complexities of CSR relationships. The successful introduction of a scale to measure a salient internal outcome measure, called liking for the bank, suggests future research opportunities.

Practical implications

The differential impact of CSR information on customer responses highlights the importance of understanding different cultural contexts and suggests that careful segmentation strategies are required for particular CSR campaigns. In particular, new social‐cultural segmentation bases may be required.

Originality/value

A combination of three CSR variables, together with new CSR information reflecting aspects of CSR not previously used in combination. A new affective customer response measure was used. The first cross‐cultural and country analysis to be conducted for CSR‐customer response relationships within the banking sector. Use of the cultural value of community orientation as a moderator.

Details

International Journal of Bank Marketing, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-2323

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2005

Ken Butcher

This study investigates how social influence variables will affect repurchase intentions differently depending on the number of prior visits made to the service…

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigates how social influence variables will affect repurchase intentions differently depending on the number of prior visits made to the service. Specifically, the social influence variables of social regard and social comfort are compared with perceived core service quality to determine the greatest influence on repurchase intentions at four stages of customer experience with the service.

Design/methodology/approach

A single, cross‐sectional survey was conducted to gather data for this study. Customer data were drawn from nine small hospitality businesses operating in Queensland, Australia.

Findings

A cross‐sectional survey of 146 café respondents revealed that social regard is the greatest influence on repurchase intentions for the initial visits to the café, but after 11 visits only perceived core service quality is a significant predictor.

Research limitations/implications

The cross‐sectional design used in this study may not yield accurate associations between predictors and re‐purchase behaviour. In addition, the sample was weighted toward females.

Practical implications

The results suggest that, for customers in the early café encounter, feeling respected is especially important.

Originality/value

This exploratory study sheds light on some of the predictor variables of re‐purchase intentions.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1960

Memories of Christmas, inevitable overeating and the discomfort of satiation have sufficiently receded to be able to discuss briefly that occasional concomitant of food…

Abstract

Memories of Christmas, inevitable overeating and the discomfort of satiation have sufficiently receded to be able to discuss briefly that occasional concomitant of food, mentioned discreetly, usually behind hand to mouth and then only to close intimates—indigestion! It may accompany only certain foods, or if one has attained its crown of martyrdom, most foods, but before coming to our purpose in mentioning the subject at all, we would sound a few words of caution against blindly accepting all statistical evaluations which appear to confirm logically unacceptable viewpoints, which bestow success to improbabilities and simplicity to imponderables and unaccountably obtain superior results from placebo treatment, or in other words, confirm the therapeutic value of doing nothing! There are probably fallacies in these statistical efforts, but the ordinary down‐to‐earth individual cannot detect them. Perhaps it needs on the setting‐a‐thief‐to‐catch‐a‐thief principle, another statistician to find them.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 62 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Article
Publication date: 12 October 2015

Daraneekorn Supanti, Ken Butcher and Liz Fredline

The purpose of this study is to understand how hotel managers perceive the benefits that may accrue to employees and hotels through their engagement in corporate social…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to understand how hotel managers perceive the benefits that may accrue to employees and hotels through their engagement in corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities.

Design/methodology/approach

In-depth interviews with 23 hotel managers, representing various functional responsibilities, were undertaken across four provinces in Thailand. The sample included local and international chain hotels.

Findings

Hotel managers from all functional areas and levels acknowledged that CSR substantially enhanced the employer–employee relationship. Five themes depicting the beneficial effects were identified: a relationship unifying process, having fun, feeling pride, developing skills and building teamwork. These themes reflect three core factors of emotional responses, social capital and task-related skills.

Practical implications

The paper illustrates that CSR activities can be customised to elicit specific effects that will engender beneficial outcomes for both hotel management and employees.

Originality/value

This paper provides new insights into how hotel managers perceive the employer-employee relationship is enhanced through CSR engagement. In addition, the paper presents a practical model that will be of interest to both academics and practitioners.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 27 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2002

Ken Butcher, Beverley Sparks and Frances O’Callaghan

The social interaction between customers and individual employees can be critical for business success. Similarly, factors such as customer convenience and value for money…

Abstract

The social interaction between customers and individual employees can be critical for business success. Similarly, factors such as customer convenience and value for money are important to repeat purchase. Frontline employees often face the dilemma of how much social interaction is appropriate. Data were collected in a cross‐sectional survey of 406 customers to determine the relative importance of social influence on repurchase intentions across three services. The findings show that social influence variables can be as important as convenience and value for money factors. Further, the data indicate that the nature of the interaction is the critical factor, rather than the amount of social interaction. For naturopathic clinics, the enthusiasm shown by the health care professional is the key factor, whereas in hairdressing salons, making the customer feel relaxed and comfortable is critical.

Details

Journal of Services Marketing, vol. 16 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0887-6045

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 19 April 2011

Ken Butcher and Beverley Sparks

This paper aims to investigate how small/medium hospitality (SMH) firms set preferences for knowledge transfer relating to customer service improvement activities, through…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to investigate how small/medium hospitality (SMH) firms set preferences for knowledge transfer relating to customer service improvement activities, through a determination of the most valued activities, preferred forms of media delivery and why best practice choice is valued.

Design/methodology/approach

A single cross‐sectional survey was used of 255 owners, managers or owner‐managers of SMH firms in Australia using attitude rating scales.

Findings

In nominating preferred customer service training/business performance improvement activities, the reasons for reporting a highly valued activity were grouped into six themes. Relevance and novelty of the activity were the two highest ranked activities. The remaining four themes of informative, credible, ease of use, and social were ranked equally.

Research limitations/implications

The findings suggest that hospitality firms are reluctant to embrace knowledge transfer activities in general and customer service training in particular. These findings shed light on specific preferred activities and indicate the reasons why.

Practical implications

The results from this study have been integrated with other studies to present a range of communication‐based strategies to assist industry policy makers. It is recommended that communication strategies to sell the “novelty, relevance and newness” of the customer service activity should be promoted.

Originality/value

The paper synthesises literature from the small business sector, together with hospitality‐specific papers and extends thinking beyond prescriptive advice. Given that knowledge transfer, delivered as prescriptive advice, tends to be ignored by the sector at large, this paper focuses on what managers do in practice and how they can be reached more directly.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 23 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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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.

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

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Article
Publication date: 7 March 2008

Rui Jin Hoare and Ken Butcher

The purpose of this study is to investigate the antecedent roles of the Chinese cultural values of “face” and “harmony” in influencing customer satisfaction/loyalty, and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the antecedent roles of the Chinese cultural values of “face” and “harmony” in influencing customer satisfaction/loyalty, and the service quality dimensions that are most salient to the context of Chinese diners.

Design/methodology/approach

A self‐administered survey was conducted for a convenience sample of Chinese diners in Australia.

Findings

A factor analysis revealed three service quality dimensions: interaction quality, food appeal, and performance comparison. The results of a series of regression equations showed that both cultural factors and three quality dimensions are significantly and positively correlated to both customer satisfaction and customer loyalty. “Face” was shown to have an influence on customer satisfaction, while food appeal and performance comparison were found to influence both customer satisfaction and loyalty. Gender moderated the influence of both cultural values and quality on customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Research limitations/implications

A student sample limits generalisability of the findings to a wider population.

Practical implications

In addition to insights on restaurant market segmentation, ideas to enhance the service encounter experience for diners are offered.

Details

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, vol. 20 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-6119

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2002

Ken Butcher, Beverley Sparks and Frances O’Callaghan

Argues that the aim of marketers should be to build positive relationships with customers. However, the nature of such relationships is unclear. Examines the one‐to‐one…

Abstract

Argues that the aim of marketers should be to build positive relationships with customers. However, the nature of such relationships is unclear. Examines the one‐to‐one relationship between customers and individual employees and highlights key implications for managers.

Details

Marketing Intelligence & Planning, vol. 20 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-4503

Keywords

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