CONSUMER PERCEPTIONS OF GREEN CAUSE-RELATED MARKETING (CRM) PRICE FAIRNESS

Open Access
Author:
Kim, Eun Kyoo
Graduate Program:
Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Management
Degree:
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Dissertation
Date of Defense:
July 11, 2011
Committee Members:
  • Anna S Mattila, Dissertation Advisor
  • Anna S Mattila, Committee Chair
  • Daniel John Mount, Committee Member
  • Breffni M Noone, Committee Member
  • Lisa Elizabeth Bolton, Committee Member
Keywords:
  • Cause-Related Marketing (CRM)
  • Green Marketing
  • Price Fairness
Abstract:
Many firms employ Cause-Related Marketing (CRM) strategies that link product sales to the support of a charity to generate positive brand images. The global objective of the present research is to examine consumer perceptions of price fairness in response to CRM pricing. This dissertation addresses two issues related to consumer perceptions of CRM price fairness. First, this research investigates how relationship norms influence consumer price fairness perceptions when a company’s decision to support a green cause results in higher prices than the competition. Second, this research investigates the effects of relationship norms and perceived benefit of CRM on consumer perceptions of price fairness. This research was conducted in two parts. The empirical investigation of Study I included one pretest and one main study. The proposed hypotheses were tested by experimentally manipulating the relationship norms and the presence of a price trade-off, and measuring consumer price fairness perceptions. The results support the hypothesis that the effect of a CRM price trade-off on perceived price fairness is moderated by relationship norms. The results indicate that relationship type only affects CRM price fairness perceptions when there is a price trade-off. The objective of Study II was to examine how salience of CRM benefit to either the company or the consumer and consumer-company relationship type affect consumer perceptions of CRM price fairness. The results support the hypothesis such that when the benefit to a company is salient, consumers in communal relationships perceive CRM pricing as less fair and are more likely to prefer and stay at a hotel with CRM than those in exchange relationships. On the other hand, when the benefit to consumers is salient, consumers in exchange relationships perceive CRM pricing as less fair and are more likely to prefer and stay at a hotel without CRM than those in communal relationships. Overall, the findings of both Study I and Study II show that relationship type is a significant factor affecting consumer perceptions of CRM price fairness.