Determinants of Influence in Electronic Word of Mouth Communication in Facebook

Stone, Russel (2020) Determinants of Influence in Electronic Word of Mouth Communication in Facebook. Doctoral thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Word of mouth (WOM) communication is being magnified and amplified on an unprecedented scale by new technology. Where once thoughts and experiences regarding products were shared orally, WOM has been transformed by social media into electronic word of mouth communication (eWOM) with hundreds of friends and acquaintances on social networking sites such as Facebook. Using the Elaboration Likelihood Model (ELM), this study identifies factors that affect the influence of eWOM in the Facebook News Feed. Argument strength, source expertise, tie strength and purchase decision involvement are identified as important variables, and their effect on attitude towards a product and intention to purchase a product is investigated. The study found that contrary to the expectations of the ELM, Facebook users were not using the strength of the argument contained in the eWOM to make judgements about their intention to purchase a product. Users were instead using the heuristic cue of source expertise to inform their purchase behaviour. Tie strength was also used as a heuristic cue to determine whether an eWOM message was worthy of their attention. This study adds to the literature regarding the influence mechanism of eWOM in Facebook and provides further insight for social media marketers.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Keywords: Word of mouth, Facebook, Elaboration Likelihood Model, Influence, Social media
Depositing User: RED Unit Admin
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2021 11:51
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2021 11:51

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