Consumer Values and Attitude Toward Cause-Related Marketing: a Cross-Cultural Comparison

Anne M. Lavack, University of Regina
Fredric Kropp, Monterey Institute of International Studies
EXTENDED ABSTRACT - While cause-related marketing (CRM) has gained increasing acceptance around the world during the past two decades, anecdotal evidence suggests that consumers in different countries are not equally supportive or accepting of cause-related marketing. In addition to the relative newness of the concept in some areas of the world, it is possible that cultural differences in values and value structures may play a role in shaping attitudes toward cause-related marketing. This study investigates the relationship between values and consumer attitudes toward cause-related marketing, using samples from four countries from four different continents: Canada (North America), Norway (Europe), Korea (Asia), and Australia.
[ to cite ]:
Anne M. Lavack and Fredric Kropp (2003) ,"Consumer Values and Attitude Toward Cause-Related Marketing: a Cross-Cultural Comparison", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 30, eds. Punam Anand Keller and Dennis W. Rook, Valdosta, GA : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 377-378.

Advances in Consumer Research Volume 30, 2003     Pages 377-378

CONSUMER VALUES AND ATTITUDE TOWARD CAUSE-RELATED MARKETING: A CROSS-CULTURAL COMPARISON

Anne M. Lavack, University of Regina

Fredric Kropp, Monterey Institute of International Studies

EXTENDED ABSTRACT -

While cause-related marketing (CRM) has gained increasing acceptance around the world during the past two decades, anecdotal evidence suggests that consumers in different countries are not equally supportive or accepting of cause-related marketing. In addition to the relative newness of the concept in some areas of the world, it is possible that cultural differences in values and value structures may play a role in shaping attitudes toward cause-related marketing. This study investigates the relationship between values and consumer attitudes toward cause-related marketing, using samples from four countries from four different continents: Canada (North America), Norway (Europe), Korea (Asia), and Australia.

CRM in Canada, Australia, Norway, and Korea

The popularity of CRM in the United States appears to be spreading to other countries (Dwek 1992). For example, a survey in Australia said that 79%of Australian consumers are more inclined to purchase products from companies considered to be good corporate citizens (The Sunday Age 1997). In Canada, 41% said that they expect companies to have more involvement in the community (Menzies 1997). Canada’s proximity to the United States and its high level of exposure to American media may have a role in shaping Canadian views towards CRM, resulting in views similar to those espoused by Americans.

Although CRM is more advanced in the United States and Canada, and making headway in Australia, it has received little attention in Norway and almost no attention in Korea. Consumers in the latter countries are less familiar with CRM, therefore:

H1a Attitudes toward cause-related marketing will be the most favorable in Canada.

H1b Attitudes toward cause-related marketing will be the least favorable in Korea.

Values (LOV)

Values are the core of personal identity and play a key role in shaping consumer attitudes and behaviors (Homer and Kahle 1988). Kahle (1983) developed the List of Values (LOV). LOV assesses the importance to individuals of nine values that can be grouped into three underlying dimensions: internal values (self-fulfillment, self-respect, sense of accomplishment, and warm relationships with others); external values (security, sense of belonging, and being-well respected); and interpersonal values (fun and enjoyment in life and excitement; Homer and Kahle 1988; Kahle 1983).

Impact of Values on Attitudes toward CRM

Values have been used to explain and predict consumer attitudes and behaviors because they provide an abstract set of behavior-guiding principles (Rose et al. 1994; Williams 1979). Values have the potential to shape attitudes toward donation behavior, helping behavior, and cause-related marketing. From the consumer standpoint, engaging in CRM behavior appears to have much in common with internal values and external values, but little in common with interpersonal values.

H2a People with a positive attitude toward CRM are more likely to rate internal values as more important than people with a less positive attitude toward CRM.

H2b People with a positive attitude toward CRM are more likely to rate external values as more important than people with a less positive attitude toward CRM.

Methodology

The questionnaire was administered to a set of university students in Canada (n=138), Australia (n=49), Norway (n=69), and Korea (n=196). The questionnaire was originally written in English, translated into Korean and Norwegian, then back translated into English. Attitude toward cause-related marketing is measured using a four-item scale developed by Kropp, Holden, and Lavack (1999). Values are measured using the List of Values.

Results

Attitude toward CRM. In comparing the four countries on the Attitude toward CRM scale, a significant difference was found between Canada and Korea (p<.01), as well as between Australia and Korea (p<.01). This provides support for H1a and H1b.

Values. No significant differences were found between Canada, Australia, and Korea on any of the three LOV subscales (internal values, external values, and interpersonal values). Significant differences were found between Norway and the other countries. Norway rated internal values and external values significantly lower than both Canada and Korea (p<.01). As well, Norway rated interpersonal values significantly lower than Canada, Australia, and Korea (p<.01).

Values and CRM. Those who had a highly positive attitude toward CRM were more likely to rate self-fulfillment, self respect, warm relations with others, security, and sense of belonging as being more important (p<.05). Both internal and external values were rated as significantly more important by the group with the most positive attitude toward CRM (p<.05), providing support for H2a and H2b.

Conclusion

This study has shown that attitudes toward CRM may be less positive in countries where CRM is less established. It appears that differences in attitude toward CRM are also linked with personal values, specifically with internal values and external values. The results of this investigation may be useful to global marketers in planning and implementing CRM promotions.

REFERENCES

Dwek, Robert (1992), "Doing well by giving generously," Marketing, July 23, 16-18.

Homer, Pamela M. and Lynn R. Kahle (1988), "A Structural Equation Analysis of the Value-Attitude-Behavior Hierarchy," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 54, 638-646.

Kahle, Lynn R. (ed.) (1983), Social Values and Social Change: Adaptation to Life in America, New York: Praeger.

Kahle, Lynn R., Sharon E. Beatty, and Pamela Homer (1986), "Alternative Measurement Approaches to Consumer Values: The List of Values (LOV) and Values and Life Style (VALS)," Journal of Consumer Research, 13(3), 405-409.

Kropp, Fredric, Stephen J.S. Holden, and Anne M. Lavack (1999), "Cause-Related Marketing and Values in Australia," International Journal of Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Marketing, 4(1), 69-80.

Menzies, David (1997), "The Marketer is a Helping Hand," The Financial Post, (May 24), 61.

Rose, Gregory M., Aviv Shoham, Lynn R. Kahle, and R. Batra (1994), "Social Values, Conformity, and Dress," Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 24, 1501-1519.

The Sunday Age (1997), "New Trend Set to Take Off in Australia," The Sunday Age, September 16, 1997, p. 8.

Williams, R.M. Jr. (1979), "Change and Stability in Values and Value Systems: A Sociological Perspective," in M. Rokeach (ed.), Understanding Human Values: Individual and Societal, NY: Free Press, pp. 15-46.

----------------------------------------