Journal of Business Ethics 154 (4):1143-1159 (2019)

Authors
Sora Kim
Ulsan University
Abstract
Using a national survey of US consumers, this study demonstrates the positive effects of corporate social responsibility communication factors on consumers’ CSR knowledge, trust, and perceptions of corporate reputation. The study also examines the role of a stakeholder-specific factor of consumer–company identification in the process of CSR communication. The findings suggest that the positive effects of CSR informativeness are enduring and independent of consumers’ identification levels with a company, whereas the positive consequences of the personal relevance, transparency, and factual tone of CSR communication intensify as the identification levels increase. Although CSR communication in which a self-promotional tone is adopted has a negative relationship with consumer trust and corporate reputation, such negative effects are not evident among consumers with very high identification levels with a company. Such CSR communication in fact improves consumers’ CSR knowledge and, in turn, has a positive effect on corporate reputation.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-017-3433-6
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