While companies contribute in different ways to the corporate social responsibility (CSR) issues they support, little is known about the effects of varying CSR contribution types on consumers' evaluations of the contributing company. This article examines consumer reactions to two basic contribution types-money versus in-kind-in the CSR domain of disaster relief to demonstrate through five studies that while consumers evaluate a company more favorably when it makes in-kind rather than monetary contributions of equivalent value to CSR issues that are perceived to be less controllable, the pattern reverses when the company's contributions are made to CSR issues that are perceived to be more controllable. This interaction between contribution type and perceived issue controllability is more likely to manifest when controllability is accessible in the minds of consumers. The underlying process is driven by the extent to which the disparate emotionality of each contribution type matches the intensity of felt emotion evoked by CSR issues of varying perceived controllability, producing processing fluency.

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Hildebrand , Diogo; DeMotta , Yoshiko; Sen , Sankar; Valenzuela Martínez, Ana

Consumer responses to corporate social responsibility (CSR) contribution type

12/2017
While companies contribute in different ways to the corporate social responsibility (CSR) issues they support, little is known about the effects of varying CSR contribution types on consumers' evaluations of the contributing company. This article examines consumer reactions to two basic contribution types-money versus in-kind-in the CSR domain of disaster relief to demonstrate through five studies that while consumers evaluate a company more favorably when it makes in-kind rather than monetary contributions of equivalent value to CSR issues that are perceived to be less controllable, the pattern reverses when the company's contributions are made to CSR issues that are perceived to be more controllable. This interaction between contribution type and perceived issue controllability is more likely to manifest when controllability is accessible in the minds of consumers. The underlying process is driven by the extent to which the disparate emotionality of each contribution type matches the intensity of felt emotion evoked by CSR issues of varying perceived controllability, producing processing fluency.
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Consumer responses to corporate social responsibility (CSR) contribution type
Hildebrand , Diogo; DeMotta , Yoshiko; Sen , Sankar; Valenzuela Martínez, Ana
Journal of Consumer Research
Vol. 44, nº 4, 12/2017, p. 738 - 758

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