Unknown, surprising, and economically significant: The realities of electronic word of mouth in Chinese social networking sites
Journal of Business Research
The increasing significance of electronic word-of-mouth (e-WoM) has followed the rapid growth of Internet usage. Consumers seek information provided by other online users on various online platforms, including social networking sites (SNSs) which are considered ideal platforms for e-WoM. We report research with Chinese consumers on the motivation and use of e-WoM in SNSs, drivers and dynamics of e-WoM, and e-WoM influences on consumer behavior. A number of normative expectations and conclusions in extant research are disconfirmed through empirical research, including the non-significance of non-information-related, social and hedonic motives for seeking e-WoM, and the secondary role of social capital. Findings are incorporated in a novel framework to inform theory development. By providing insights about e-WoM motivations and behaviors in SNSs and by focusing on such dynamics in the Chinese market, a topic is highlighted that is economically significant but is less frequently documented in marketing.
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from the publisher via the DOI in this record.
Volume 69, Issue 2, February 2016, Pages 642-652