Triadic Public-Company-Issue Relationships and Publics’ Reactions to Corporate Social Advocacy (CSA): An Application of Balance Theory

Hyejoon Rim, Hao Xu, Chuqing Dong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Drawing from balance theory, this study examines how publics respond to CSA in terms of their identification with the company and attitude toward the company depending on their balanced state and preexisting company attitude valence. Using real companies, two online experiments were employed by replicating different social issues: abortion and gun legislation. The results showed a greater degree of consumer-company identification and company attitude changes, respectively, when people experience an imbalanced state than a balanced state. The study also showed that control mutuality perception weakened such interactions, suggesting the role of equated bilateral relationships in how publics restore the balanced state. Theoretical and practical implications were discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-134
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Public Relations Research
Volume34
Issue number3-4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Keywords

  • balance theory
  • consumer-company identification
  • control mutuality
  • Corporate social advocacy (CSA)
  • ideological identity

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