Purpose – The purpose of this exploratory study is to expand the knowledge of the current literature stream and to attempt to more fully understand the simple but singularly unique aspect of social networking communication that is the Facebook “Like”. To this end, motivations behind liking a brand are explored, as well as the interactions that occur between the company and consumer as a result of this Facebook interaction. Next, we look at differing levels of interaction for liked product and service brands on Facebook. Specifically exploring if there are differences with how Facebook users engage with liked product and service brands. Design/methodology/approach – The authors first engage in an exploratory, qualitative-based research to look at the motivations and consequences associated with liking product and service brands, using a sample of 160 Facebook users. Next, an ANOVA analysis is performed using an online sample of 264 respondents recruited from Amazon Mechanical Turk. Findings – The qualitative analysis reveals differing motivations for liking brands on Facebook and suggests that generating Facebook Likes can indeed have positive, if unacknowledged, outcomes for the firm. Further, while there is no significant difference in perceptions of brand knowledge between product- and service-based brands, there is a significant difference in perceptions of brand connectedness between brand types, with consumers reporting a greater sense of connection to the service brands and higher levels of brand attitude and purchase intention for product-based brands. It is also shown that consumers have a greater intention of reading and liking posts from product-based brands. Originality/value – This paper explores and attempts to move toward clarification of the gap that exists between “quality” versus “quantity” valuations of a Facebook Like.
Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 12, 2015
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