Communicating Corporate Social Responsibility: Empty Promises or Smart Strategy?

  • Christian Boris Brunner
  • Franz-Rudolf Esch
  • Nadine Kinscher
Part of the European Advertising Academy book series (EAA)


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.


Corporate Social Responsibility Corporate Social Responsibility Activity Corporate Social Responsibility Engagement Automotive Manufacturer Corporate Social Responsibility Communication 


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Copyright information

© Gabler Verlag | Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christian Boris Brunner
    • 1
  • Franz-Rudolf Esch
    • 2
  • Nadine Kinscher
    • 3
  1. 1.German University in CairoEgypt
  2. 2.European Business SchoolGermany
  3. 3.Justus-Liebig-University Giessen Germany

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