Communicating Corporate Social Responsibility: Empty Promises or Smart Strategy?
Today many companies communicate their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities via huge advertising campaigns, demonstrating to be a “good company" to their stakeholder groups. For instance, Pepsi’s “Refresh Project" gained attention when the company passed up running a commercial during the Super Bowl 2010 and spend the millions saved to a CSR campaign. In grants every month they spend $ 1.3 million to fund public-selected ideas which will "refresh our world" (Forbes, 2010). Coca-Cola invests lots of money in CSR campaigns, for example they included on their iconic red cans a seasonal white polar bear in order to raise awareness and money for the World Wildlife Fond. Furthermore, they sponsored the so-called ’red dress campaign’ with Heidi Klum for women’s heart health (Diet Coke, 2012). Moreover, almost every automotive manufacturer invests in "blue efficiency” (e.g., Volkswagen’s ”Golf Blue-e-motion”). By doing so, companies hope to improve their corporate image and increase consumer purchase intentions as well as their willingness to pay more money for the company’s products.
KeywordsCorporate Social Responsibility Corporate Social Responsibility Activity Corporate Social Responsibility Engagement Automotive Manufacturer Corporate Social Responsibility Communication
- Channel 7 Australia (2008), “Nike Contractor in Malaysia Using Forced Labour”, online:http://www.youtube.com (accessed on 19/02/2012).
- Coddington, W. (1990), “It’s No Fad: Environmentalism is Now a Fact of Corporate Life,” in: Marketing News, October 1990, 7.Google Scholar
- Diet Coke (2012), “Don’t Stop Showing Your Heart,” online:http://www.dietcoke.com (Access on 19/02/2012).
- Fombrun, C. J. (1996), Reputation: Realizing Value from the Corporate Image, Harvard Business School Press, Cambridge, MA.Google Scholar
- Forbes (2010), “The Most Imaginative CSR Campaigns,” online:http://www.forbes.com (accessed on 19/02/2012).
- Freeman, B. (2006), “Substance Sells: Aligning Corporate Reputation and Corporate Responsibility,” in:Public Relations Quarterly, 51(1), 12–19.Google Scholar
- Gardner, M. P.; Mitchell, A. A. and J. E. Russo (1985), “Low Involvement Strategies for Processing Advertisements,” in:Journal of Advertising, 14(2), 4–12.Google Scholar
- Greenpeace (2010), “Nestle Doesn’t Deserve a Break”, online:http://www.greenpeace.org (accessed on 19/02/2012).
- Greenpeace (2011), “Victoria: Mattel and Barbie drop Deforestation”, online:http://www.greenpeace.org (accessed on 19/02/2012).
- Kirchhoff, K. R. (2009), “Das Good Company Ranking: Corporate Social Responsibility Wettbewerb der 90 groBten Konzerne Europas”, online: http://www.kirchhoff.de(accessed on 19/02/2012).
- McKinsey (2006), “McKinsey Global Survey of Business Executives: Business & Society,” in:McKinsey Quarterly, 2, 33–39.Google Scholar
- Menon, S. and B. E. Kahn (2003), “Corporate Sponsorship of Philanthropic Activities: When Do They Impact Perception of Sponsor Brand?,” in:Journal of Consumer Research, 13(3), 316–327.Google Scholar
- Porter, M. E. and M. R. Kramer (2006), “Strategy & Society: The Link Between Competitive Advantage and Corporate Social Responsibility,” in:Harvard Business Review, 84(12), 78–92.Google Scholar
- Swaen, V. and J. Vanhamme (2005), “The Use of Corporate Social Responsibility Arguments in Communicating Campaigns: Does Source Credibility Matters,” in:Advances in Consumer Research, 32(1), 590–591.Google Scholar
- Trudel, R. and J. Cotte (2009), “Does It Pay To Be Good?,” in:Management Review, 50(2), 60–68.Google Scholar
- Vlachos, P. A. (2012), “Corporate Social Responsibility and Consumer-Firm Emotional Attachment: Moderating Effects of Consumer Traits,” in: European Journal of Marketing (forthcoming).Google Scholar
- Wall Street Journal (2010), “Gulf Oil Spill”, online: http://online.wsj.com/public/page/gulf-oil- spill.html (accessed on 19/02/2012).Google Scholar