Determinants of consumer engagement in electronic word-of-mouth in social networking sites

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Title: Determinants of consumer engagement in electronic word-of-mouth in social networking sites
Author: Chu, Shu-Chuan
Abstract: In recent years , social networking sites have become a prevailing communication technology in the evolution of the digital era for today’s Internet users (Ipsos Insight 2007 ) . As more and more marketers attempt to harness the power of electronic word -of -mouth (eWOM ) in social networking sites (Williamson 2006 ) , rigorous investigation of determinants that lead to consumers’ engagement in eWOM via the social networks is becoming critical . A central question to answer is what factors influence eWOM behavior in social networking sites and what are the underlying processes of eWOM communications in this new social medium . This study focuses on five social relationship variables : social capital , tie strength , homophily , trust , and consumer susceptibility to interpersonal influence that are all related to eWOM behavior in social networking sites . An online survey with a sample drawn from a large southwestern university was conducted to examine predictors of eWOM in social networking sites . Results from a series of multiple regression analyses indicate that certain social relationship variables are significant predictors that relate to social networking site users’ eWOM behavior . Out of the five relationship variables , social capital , homophily , trust , and interpersonal influence were found to significantly relate to users’ engagement in eWOM communications , whereas no effect was found with regard to tie strength . My dissertation research provides a theoretical understanding of consumers’ use of social networking sites as a vehicle for eWOM and contributes to the literature on computer -mediated communication with specific emphasis on online social media . Managerially , findings from this research could provide marketers with valuable information to establish their long -term relationships with consumers and use beneficial eWOM to promote selected brands . In conclusion , examining social relationships in social networking sites could contribute to our understanding of the determinants of consumer engagement in eWOM , which in turn influences the extent and pattern of eWOM and enables companies to deliberate their product diffusion strategies .
URI: http : / /hdl .handle .net /2152 /6585
Date: 2009-10-21

Citation

Determinants of consumer engagement in electronic word-of-mouth in social networking sites. Doctoral dissertation, The University of Texas at Austin. Available electronically from http : / /hdl .handle .net /2152 /6585 .

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