Does Doing Good Always Lead to Doing Better? Consumer Reactions to Corporate Social Responsibility

Journal of Marketing Research, Vol. XXXVIII (May 2001), 225-243

19 Pages Posted: 1 Oct 2013

See all articles by Sankar Sen

Sankar Sen

City University of New York - Department of Marketing and International Business

CB Bhattacharya

European School of Management and Technology (ESMT); Katz Graduate School of Business University of Pittsburgh

Date Written: May 1, 2001

Abstract

In the face of marketplace polls that attest to the increasing influence of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on consumers' purchase behavior, this article examines when, how, and for whom specific CSR initiatives work. The findings implicate both company-specific factors, such as the CSR issues a company chooses to focus on and the quality of its products, and individual-specific factors, such as consumers' personal support for the CSR issues and their general beliefs about CSR, as key moderators of consumers' responses to CSR. the results also highlight the mediating role of consumers' perceptions of congruence between their own characters and that of the company in their reactions to its CSR initiatives. More specifically, the authors find that CSR initiatives can, under certain conditions, decrease consumers' intentions to buy a company's products.

Keywords: corporate social responsibility, consumer behavior, purchase intent

Suggested Citation

Sen, Sankar and Bhattacharya, Chitrabhanu, Does Doing Good Always Lead to Doing Better? Consumer Reactions to Corporate Social Responsibility (May 1, 2001). Journal of Marketing Research, Vol. XXXVIII (May 2001), 225-243. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2333479

Sankar Sen

City University of New York - Department of Marketing and International Business ( email )

One Bernard Baruch Way, B12-240
New York, NY 10010-5585
United States

Chitrabhanu Bhattacharya (Contact Author)

European School of Management and Technology (ESMT) ( email )

Schlossplatz 1
10117 Berlin
Germany

Katz Graduate School of Business University of Pittsburgh ( email )

Pittsburgh, PA
United States
4123834212 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.business.pitt.edu/faculty/bhattacharya

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