Do consumers want a "good" apparel brand? the effects of apparel brands' Corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices on brand equity moderated by culture

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Hongjoo Woo (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Byoungho Jin

Abstract: Do consumers want a `good' apparel brand? Although Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has been a crucial issue for the apparel industry, there was a lack of evidence showing how consumer perceptions of apparel brands' CSR affect brand equity, compared to apparel product attributes cross-culturally. This study aimed to unveil the comparable effects of CSR and apparel product attributes on apparel brands' brand equity among U.S. and Korean consumers.Total 447 survey questionnaires were collected from U.S. and Korean college students. The results found that both intrinsic and extrinsic apparel product attributes enhance brand equity, supporting H1. As only product responsibility, economics, and environment-related CSR dimensions significantly enhance brand equity, H2 was partially supported. There was no moderating effect of culture thereby H3 was rejected. However, additional analyses revealed that U.S. consumers more positively evaluate CSR and are more affected by CSR in improving brand equity than Korean consumers. In conclusion, in enhancing brand equity, consumers wanted a "good" apparel brand that is responsible for product, economics, and environments-related CSR issues in business practices, along with intrinsic and extrinsic apparel product attributes. And U.S. consumers more wanted responsible apparel brands than Korean consumers. The findings of this study give useful information of "what product attributes brands need to focus on," "what kinds of CSR dimensions they need to focus on," and "what they need to do for different consumers across countries."

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2013
Apparel, Brand equity, Corporate social responsibility, Hofstede's culture
Consumer behavior $z United States
Consumer behavior $z Korea (South)
Social responsibility of business $z United States
Social responsibility of business $z Korea (South)
Clothing trade $v Cross-cultural studies

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