Some markets, like the fast-food one, are affected by the so-called “industry effect”, which brings with it misperceptions and misjudgements among stakeholders that create difficulties in establishing, modifying and maintaining players’ corporate image. In addition, giant multinational players like McDonald’s – that is going to be hereby investigated - has suffered from certain reputation crises that contributed to increase the weight of those misperceptions. As commonly accepted, communication can contribute to reduce reputation risks and build an improved brand reputation, on the basis of various variables; Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability is one of them. The paper investigates, on one hand, the McDonald’s case study with the aim of showing that a communication strategy based on results and measurable performances of CSR is therefore able to prevent reputational risks and maintain a good brand reputation, although well-established perceptions are hard to change. On the other hand, the case study is tested on Generation Z through the focus groups methodology in order to demonstrate which communications are expected to be better perceived in the future and why.
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