Association Journals

Effective Communication during the Scandal Reportage of a Company: The Effects of Emotional and Logical Persuasion on Restoring Trust.

SUGITANI Yoko(Sophia University)

The purpose of this study was to investigate how, after the scandal of a company is made public, the company should communicate the facts of the scandal and apologize for it to its consumers in order to restore trust. Previous studies have shown that trust is composed of two dimensions: the integrity-based dimension and the professional ability-based dimension. In this study, the author proposed that the former dimension is based on one’s feelings, while the latter dimension is founded on knowing the fact, such as the objective factual data. The hypotheses of the study were as follows. If a company publishes an apology in a newspaper or has it reported on television, (1) emphasizing the emotional message, as opposed to stressing on the logical aspect, would be more effective in restoring the integrity-based trust, and (2) the reverse would be true in the case of restoring the professional ability-based trust. The experiment mostly supported these hypotheses. The implications of the results for the theory of attitude and trust were also discussed.

Keyword : trust, company's scandals, persuasion, public relations strategy