Drivers and Outcomes of Brand Relationship Quality in the Context of Online Social Networks

Iryna Pentina, Bashar S. Gammoh, Lixuan Zhang, and Michael Mallin
International Journal of Electronic Commerce,
Volume 17, Number 3, Spring 2013, pp. 63-86.

Abstract: This research adopts a brand relationship perspective to investigate how users of a social network site (e.g., Facebook and Twitter) perceive the quality of their relationship with those sites and their intention to continue to use them, as well as the intention to continue using the hosted brands that they “follow” through the social network site. In addition, the role of matching a user’s personality to the perceived personality of the social network site is explored as an antecedent to perceived relationship quality with the social network site. Survey responses from 284 Twitter and Facebook users were collected, and Smart PLS path modeling was used to test our hypotheses. Findings confirm that individuals join and form stronger ties with social networks that convey similar personality characteristics to themselves. Study findings also reveal that perceived strength of relationship quality with an online network brand not only facilitates future intentions to continue using this network and recommend it to others but also strengthens preferences for other brands utilizing this network for marketing purposes. A key implication of our findings is that social network sites and “followed” businesses may benefit from designing and implementing relationship-building-focused processes to strengthen participation in the social network site to increase user engagement with brands hosted on the social network site.

Key Words and Phrases: Brand relationship quality, Facebook, self-brand personality match, social networks, Twitter, use continuance.