In “Doing Well by Doing Good: The Benevolent Halo of Corporate Social Responsibility” published in the Journal of Consumer Research (Volume 41. No. 6, April 2015), Alexander Chernev and Sean Blair research the effect of corporate pro-social behavior on consumer product perceptions. Their research tests the hypothesis that a company’s socially responsible activity can strengthen the consumer’s perceived product performance. The research was further substantiated by several test of how the motivation and farming of a company’s social responsibility efforts affect perceptions of product quality. Chernev and Blair’s research uses the premise of “the halo effect” of social goodwill. The halo effect refers to the phenomena where a person’s overall evaluation of a person or object positively influence specific properties of the person or object. The research of Chernev and Blair proves very relevant because an increasing number of corporations have started to emphasize the importance of pro-social behavior. Previously, companies believed that acts of corporate responsibility only enhanced a company’s overall reputation, but not the customer’s views of the product. I believe research of the halo effect is important because it can help marketing managers understand if they can best leverage company’s benevolent activity to enhance the consumer perception of the product.
The pair’s research appeared to be well tested using logical and fair testing measures. Chernev and Blair ran four experimental studies to examine the impact of corporate responsibility on consumer perceptions. The first was to see whether a company’s socially responsible activities had impact on performance of products through giving respondents a sample of wine and changing whether they were told that the company donated proceeds to the American Heart Association. The second study tested whether perceived product performance was increased when consumers were told company was motivated by benevolence...
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