Title: Engaging consumers on social media: empirical evidence from the communications analysis of a CSR oriented company

Authors: Annamaria Tuan; Andrea Moretti

Addresses: Department of Economics and Management, University of Pisa, via Ridolfi 10, 56124 Pisa, Italy ' Department of Economics and Statistics, University of Udine, via Tomadini 30/A, 33100 Udine, Italy

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to show how corporate social responsibility (CSR) communication on social media is actually implemented and managed in business practice by a coffee company in Italy with a proved track record in CSR related activities. Consistent with the explorative aim of the study, this paper employs a case study approach and it adopts a sensemaking-sensegiving framework. An analysis was carried out of the communication on social media by interviewing three key respondents and employing a content analysis technique in order to study the communication on Facebook and Twitter. Results show that even if a company is CSR oriented, communication on social media does not focus on social and environmental issues. The result is confirmed by the interviews which underline how difficult it is to create engagement and to create a two-way dialogue with stakeholders about CSR issues on social media. The paper ends by suggesting several recommendations for further CSR communication implementation of the company analysed and for business practice in general.

Keywords: CSR communication; corporate social responsibility; social media; case study; sensemaking; technology; customer engagement; coffee; Italy; content analysis; Facebook; Twitter; social networks; sensegiving.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTMKT.2017.083371

International Journal of Technology Marketing, 2017 Vol.12 No.2, pp.180 - 205

Received: 08 Aug 2016
Accepted: 10 Aug 2016

Published online: 01 Feb 2017 *

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