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Effect of message orientation/vividness on consumer engagement for travel brands on social networking sites

Anish Yousaf, Insha Amin, Dhouha Jaziri,
Published in Emerald Publishers
2020
Volume: 30
   
Issue: 1
Pages: 44 - 57
Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine how consumer-brand engagement on social networking sites (SNS) is an outcome of the message orientation/vividness.

Design/methodology/approach

Message design is proposed to include two components, namely, orientation and vividness. The message orientation is classified as either task/instrumental or socioemotional. The message vividness is measured through content type. The consumer-brand engagement is conceptualized at three levels, namely, cognitive (comment), affective (shares) and conative (likes). A total of 1,000 posts were collected from the official Facebook pages of the 10 most popular travel brands, five each from India and the USA. These two countries were chosen as they are culturally different, with the former representing a largely collectivist culture and greater social connectivity and the latter representing primarily an individualistic culture.

Findings

The study reveals that greater message vividness, with more interactive/audio-visual content, leads to higher engagement. The task/instrumental message orientation leads to low-/medium-level engagement. Overall, a combination of high-vividness and socioemotional orientation generates maximum engagement. India and the USA depict unique effects of message orientations/vividness on the consumer-brand engagement levels, indicating cultural implications for the brand SNS messages – effectiveness.

Research limitations/implications

The study’s conceptualization of consumer-brand engagement reflected through the consumers – responses to brands – SNS messages, represents new knowledge. The unique effects of message vividness and orientation on consumer-brand engagement and the variations across cultures is also a novel contribution to the extant branding literature.

Practical implications

The brand marketers should not only design their SNS messages with appropriate vividness/orientation but also tweak them across cultures, for maximum consumer engagement.

Originality/value

The study is a novel attempt to deploy the interaction process analysis framework in an SNS setting.

About the journal
JournalJournal of Product & Brand Management
PublisherEmerald Publishers
Open AccessYes