Selecting the Right Cause from the Right Category: Does the Role of Product Category Matter in Cause-Brand Alliance? A Case Study of Students in Shanghai Universities

Increased competition is making it difficult to distinguish products solely by attributes, creating room for cause-related marketing. In this study with a sample of 322 university students, we evaluated the changes in consumer attitudes toward cause and brand as consequences of Cause Brand Alliance (CBA), by using the product category as moderator. Four popular brands from two product categories, including durable and nondurable, and four causes from different cause categories involving health, human service, animal, and environment, have been used. ANOVA has been used to compare the means of consumer's responses toward cause and brand, in relation to CBA at different times. Results show that linked cause and brand improve the attitude of the consumers toward the cause as well as the brand. In the case of the cause, improvement in consumer attitude is high for the durable product category, but low for the non-durable product category. So for the brand, improvement in consumer attitude is there regardless of product categories (durable, non-durable) when it is attached to different types of causes. This improvement is high for association with human-related causes compared to that of non-human-related causes. Findings suggest that in forming a CBA, cause-managers should pay more attention in selecting product category for alliances, and brand-managers have to impute more interest in establishing alliance with human-related cause.
Iranian Journal of Management Studies, Volume:10 Issue: 2, Spring 2017
365 to 383  
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