Two-Minute Drill: Video Games and Social Media to Advance CSR Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • © 2015 by Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Purpose - Corporate managers must find a way to communicate their CSR activities to stakeholders without creating a boomerang effect where the CSR messages create resentment of instead of support for the corporation. One alternative is to use social media channels because they are low cost and can use a soft sell approach, thereby reducing the likelihood of a boomerang effect. However, using social media messaging about CSR challenges managers to attract followers to those social media channels. This chapter explores the use of gamification, the use of gaming features in the CSR messaging, to present CSR messages. The case study of Kraft's "Two-Minute Drill" is used to illustrate how gamification can be used to promote social media-based CSR messaging. Methodology/approach - A case study method is used to illuminate how Kraft used gamification to increase the audience for its anti-hunger CSR efforts. Kraft used the "Two-Minute Drill" game to attract people to their effort to fight hunger. Findings - The "2-Minute Trivia Drill" seemed to overcome the CSR promotional communication concerns of tone and cost. The dominant message and theme is feeding the hungry. The tone on the Facebook page and the game itself is subtle in relation to the Kraft brand because Kraft appears in the background through its logo, name, and the names of prominent Kraft products. The stakeholders are treated as the drivers of the CSR effort because the individuals playing the game are what create the donations from Kraft. Donations could even be personalized. None of the comments posted to the Kraft Fight Hunger Facebook page questioned the expense of the project. Overall the comments were very favorable suggesting there was no boomerang effect from the game. Research limitations/implications - The study offers only one case study of gamification in CSR communication. More cases are necessary to draw stronger conclusions about the utility of gamification for CSR communication presented via social media. Moreover, more direct measures are needed to assess how stakeholders feel about CSR messages using gamifications and if the strategy can consistently prevent a boomerang effect. Practical implications - The implications from the case study are that gamification can be an effective way to attract stakeholders to social media-based CSR messages and to generate positive reactions to the CSR messaging. Originality/value - This chapter is one of the first detailed explorations of gamification as a means to avoid the dangers of the CSR promotional communication dilemma (stakeholders wanting CSR information but reacting negatively to the promotion of CSR activities).

author list (cited authors)

  • Coombs, W. T., & Holladay, S. J.

citation count

  • 9

publication date

  • March 2015