Scholars have become increasingly interested in the importance of corporate social advocacy to an organization’s bottom line. However, few researchers have investigated the subliminal mechanism with which corporations’ political engagement attracts public attention and creates positive corporate-public relationships. This study examines corporations’ identification with sociopolitical issues as an identity signaling practice. Rooted in the signaling and social identity theories, this study proposes a model that demonstrates the positive effects of corporate social advocacy activities on brand loyalty. This study sheds light on the role of brand community engagement as a signal verification process. Public-company identification leads to brand loyalty, which indicates the public’s acceptance of a corporation’s signal. We tested our proposed model through an online survey with participants recruited from Amazon Mechanical Turk ( N = 960). Theoretical and practical contributions of this study were discussed.
- corporate social advocacy
- signaling theory
- social media brand community
- public-company identification
- brand loyalty