Testing effects of transparency efforts on restoring trust and the bottom line in post-crisis communication
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The trust in corporations within the public has decreased sharply, especially after scandals in the finance industry in recent years. How to restore trust among the public has become a crucial issue for many corporations because trust is claimed to be an important indicator of consumer purchase intent. The purpose of the study is to assess whether the trust level is higher in groups that are exposed to communication transparency efforts compared to a group that was not exposed to transparency efforts in two types of crisis scenarios. A second objective of the research is to see whether the consumer purchase intent is higher in the groups that are exposed to communication transparency efforts in different crisis scenarios. The effect of various specific aspects of transparency efforts on the trust level towards an organization is explored as well. Results indicate that transparency efforts do have a positive effect on trust but no effect on consumer purchase intent after a crisis. The effect of specific aspects of transparency efforts on trust vary in different crisis scenarios. Finally, trust level and consumer purchase intent share a significantly strong association.