How does CSI influence consumer buying behaviour? The mediating role of corporate image and the moderating role of consumers’ demographic factors.
Abstract: Given the increasingly complex nature of contemporary companies, the risk of corporate social irresponsibility (CSI) behaviours is increasing; it is important for organisations to prevent incidences of CSI to maintain competitive advantage. This study investigates the impact of CSI behaviour on both corporate image and consumer buying behaviour. Adopting a quantitative research approach, 241 valid questionnaires using the Luckin Coffee financial fraud case as primary data were collected and analysed using SPSS to determine the effects of CSI on corporate image and consumer buying behaviour, along with the role of consumers’ genders and educational- and income levels in terms of the influence of CSI on corporate image. The findings show that CSI has a negative effect on both corporate image and consumer buying behaviour, and corporate image partially mediates the process by which CSI influences consumer buying behaviour. Gender, educational- and income levels all play a moderating role in the process of CSI influencing corporate image. This thesis complements the research dimension on CSI’s effects on consumer buying behaviour, filling the research gap on CSI in the field of corporate social responsibility (CSR), and provides relevant insights in order to encourage companies to avoid CSI and thus achieve sustainable development.
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