Corporate social responsibility as a marketing strategy in foreign markets: The case of Korean MNCs in the Chinese electronics market
2016 (English)In: International Marketing Review, ISSN 0265-1335, E-ISSN 1758-6763, Vol. 33, no 4, 530-554 p.Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Purpose - The authors are witnessing the increasing extent of corporate social responsibility (CSR) performance as strategic behaviour specifically in emerging markets. The purpose of this paper is to investigate how multinational companies (MNCs) manage CSR activities in emerging markets to aid their core business activities. In line with this question, the paper aims to develop a theoretical view for deeper understanding of the strategy in CSR practices aiding internationalization. The view is based on a business network perspective highlighting the four concepts of learning, commitment, legitimacy and trust. Design/methodology/approach - The methodology employed is qualitative, based on interviews with involved parties. The case study is about the experiences of a Korean MNC's CSR strategy when entering into the Chinese electronics industry. Findings - The case illustrates how the Korean MNC committed resources to gain trust and legitimacy that improved their market position. It further manifests that the firm's CSR strategy was proactive because of the large commitment in several long-and short-term projects towards the society. Investment in social issues like education, environmental problems and communities aided the firm's entry. Research limitations/implications - The study has a qualitative and in-depth nature. Future research is needed in order to generalize the proposed theoretical frame. Practical implications - The study manifests how a MNC employs CSR strategy for internationalization in a foreign market. It shows how managers can undertake different practical CSR measures to enter and expand in foreign markets. Social implications - While internationalization of firms is mainly based on their business commitment towards counterparts or business firms, the study shows how CSR strategy and activities towards the society support their businesses. Originality/value - While internationalization of firms is mainly based on their business commitment towards counterparts or business firms, the study shows how CSR strategy and activities towards the society support their businesses. The study investigates CSR strategy and enlightens activities like education and environmental problems. The study further develops the business network view and includes social aspects. The theoretical view holding the four relationship elements of trust, knowledge, legitimacy and commitment permits deeper understanding of the MNC's proactive CSR behaviour in new markets.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 33, no 4, 530-554 p.
China, Emerging markets, South Korea, Commitment, Business network, CSR marketing strategy, Legitimacy, trust and knowledge, Samsung Electronics
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-300591DOI: 10.1108/IMR-03-2014-0104ISI: 000379779300002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-300591DiVA: diva2:951622