Factors influencing involvement, brand attachment and brand loyalty on Facebook brand Pages. Marketing in an online environment has put an emphasis on strengthening relationships with consumers in order to gain a competitive advantage. Social media networks may provide a great opportunity for brands to engage with its stakeholders due to the media’s interactive nature. However, social media’s interactivity may become a two-edged sword for brands that undermines consumers’ desire to use social media networks as a platform to communicate primarily with each other. This research investigates factors influencing involvement, brand attachment and brand loyalty on Facebook brand Pages. Based on prior empirical research within relationship marketing, media dependency theory, parasocial interaction theory, and the uses and gratifications theory, a conceptual framework was developed. Further, research specifically addressing these factors in the context of a Facebook brand page aided in building the model. Five motivations of “liking” a Page was identified and defined appropriately for the context of Facebook brand Pages. Information, entertainment and remuneration were thought to have an influence on involvement together with Facebook dependency, whereas social self-expression was thought to have an influence on brand attachment and positive word of mouth intentions. Moreover, inner self-expression was thought to have an influence on brand attachment. Parasocial interaction was thought to have a positive influence on involvement and brand attachment. Further, involvement was thought to have a mediating effect between motivations for “liking” a Page and brand attachment, whereas brand attachment was thought to have a mediating effect between involvement and brand loyalty. An online self-administered survey is used to collect data from Norwegian consumers that has “liked” a Facebook brand Page. This data is further analyzed by using SmartPLS. An assessment of the data’s validity and reliability is made, where the data is evaluated to pass the requirements of validity and reliability. To test the hypotheses, the bootstrap procedure is used. The results suggests that information has a significant and positive influence on involvement. Moreover, parasocial interaction is found to have a significant and positive influence on involvement and brand attachment. Moreover, brand attachment is found to have a mediating effect on the relationship between parasocial interaction and repeat purchase intentions. Social self-expression is found to have a positive influence on brand attachment and repeat purchase intentions. Brand attachment is also found to have a mediating effect on the relationship between social self-expression and repeat purchase intentions. Lastly, the relationship between brand attachment and brand loyalty in terms of repeat purchase intentions and positive word-of-mouth intentions is found to be significant and positive. Brands can use the results to get a better understanding of how brands can strengthen its relationships with consumers through Facebook brand Pages, but also to get insights to the platforms’ potential limitations. This is useful for brands as the results shows that Fans “liking” Facebook brand Pages as a means of social self-expression increases the likelihood of an emotional bond between the brands and the Fan as well as repeat purchase intentions. Moreover, the results indicates that a perceived parasocial relationship on Facebook brand Pages increases the likelihood of brand attachment. Involvement did not have a significant influence on brand attachment. Moreover, Facebook dependency did not have a positive influence on involvement. The results suggests that brand strategies may vary depending on the brand category as well as the consumer’s social life. Thus, future studies should address these differences.
|Educations||MSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||106|