2004
Volume 43, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 1384-6930
  • E-ISSN: 1875-7286

Abstract

The impact of emotional communication on perceived sincerity and reputation of organizations in crisis

The impact of emotional communication on perceived sincerity and reputation of organizations in crisis

This paper examines the impact of emotional communication of an organizational spokesperson in times of crisis on consumers’ perceptions of the spokesperson (i.e. sincerity) and the organization (i.e. reputation) by two experimental studies. The results of study one using a 2 (crisis timing strategy: thunder vs. stealing thunder) × 2 (rational vs. sad message) between-subjects experimental design illustrates that emotional crisis communication leads to less reputational damage than rational crisis communication (N = 168), but only if the organization self-discloses the incrementing information. In study two, the discrete emotions were manipulated in a self-disclosing setting to be sadness or anger (N = 60). The results of study two show that a company is perceived to take more responsibility for the crisis when the spokesperson expresses sadness instead of anger. The sincerity of the spokesperson/organization mediates these effects. Both studies stress the importance of emotional communication by spokespersons for organizations in crisis.

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2015-09-01
2021-12-02
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