Factors shaping consumer views of global brand activists

Tsougkou, Eleni (Lenia) and Karampela, Maria (2024) Factors shaping consumer views of global brand activists. In: Global Brand Conference 2024, 2024-04-22 - 2024-04-24, Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

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The contemporary consumer landscape demands that firms become vocal in relation to crucial social-political matters. Accordingly, global brands are increasingly choosing to take a stand on, often divisive, socio-political issues such as gender equality and geopolitical conflicts, effectively transforming themselves into global brand activists (GBAs). Yet, it remains unclear what drives consumer attitudes towards global brands when they become activists. This research explores the direct and indirect roles of individual consumer characteristics and brand aspects in influencing these attitudes, accounting for key drivers of global branding outcomes. Adopting a functional view towards attitude formation and using a cross-sectional quantitative approach, we collected data from a UK survey and analyzed it through structural equation modelling and mediation analysis. The findings reveal that political ideology and consumer ethnocentrism, directly and indirectly, influence attitudes towards global brand activists, whereas global brand attitudes and perceived motivations of global brand activists emerge as key mechanisms through which overall attitudes towards global brand activists are shaped.