Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Social pressure stops Facebook users recommending products on social media sites

Date:
June 27, 2014
Source:
Imperial College London
Summary:
Users of social media sites such as Facebook are less willing to recommend products and services online because of the perceived risks to their reputation.

Users of social media sites such as Facebook are less willing to recommend products and services online because of the perceived risks to their reputation.

Related Articles


Facebook has more than 1.23 billion active users worldwide, with over 50 per cent of all users logging on to it on any given day. Most of Facebook's revenue comes from advertising and the company is looking at ways to make the site a more effective advertising platform for marketers. This includes selling ads that are more targeted to their users.

However, researchers have found that users of social media websites are less likely to use them to say positive things about their favourite products and services. Instead, they are more likely to express their opinions about products in intimate face-to-face social situations. This is because most users usually have a wide range of "friends" or "followers" on social media sites, outside of their immediate family and friends, which deters them from expressing their opinions as they feel more vulnerable to adverse comments.

The research was carried out by Imperial College Business School, Cornell University, Leeds University Business School, Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California and the Department of Management and Marketing at the University of Melbourne.

Dr Andreas Eisingerich, co-author of the report from Imperial College Business School, said: "Social media websites such as Facebook have completely revolutionised the way we share information and communicate with each other. However, our report shows that when it comes to sharing recommendations on products and services on these sites, users tend to stay quiet. They would rather communicate via word of mouth because many users don't want to embarrass themselves online as work colleagues or acquaintances may not endorse or appreciate the same products that they do. Our report could influence how businesses spend advertising budgets on social media websites."

In the study, the researchers surveyed 407 participants in labs and face-to-face surveys to find out how they communicated about their favourite brands. They found that users are reluctant to endorse products on social media sites due to the perceived risk that they could embarrass themselves if their views are not endorsed or shared by others. In contrast, sharing information in face-to-face situations among a smaller group of people, usually family and friends, doesn't have the same social pressures, say the team.

The researchers say their findings are surprising, given the fact that social media platforms have made it easier for users to share information at a time and place that is most convenient for them, such as the comfort of their own homes. This should in theory make people more at ease about sharing their experiences and opinions, say the team.

The researchers also found that those who did share their opinions about their favourite products and services did so because it made them feel good about themselves and that it raised their self-esteem. They found that as the user's need for enhancing their self-esteem increases so does their willingness to share their views; Facebook is an effective way for these types of users to seek feedback and validation.

The researchers suggest that the findings of the report can be used by social media companies and marketers to take steps to ensure that consumers do not feel threatened by these online social risks. This includes providing opportunities for consumers to selectively share their opinions with members of their social network.

The report is published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Imperial College London. The original article was written by Maxine Myers. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Bengt Zφller, Xinjun Li, Jan Sundquist, Kristina Sundquist. Familial transmission of prostate, breast and colorectal cancer in adoptees is related to cancer in biological but not in adoptive parents: A nationwide family study. European Journal of Cancer, 2014; DOI: 10.1016/j.ejca.2014.05.018

Cite This Page:

Imperial College London. "Social pressure stops Facebook users recommending products on social media sites." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 June 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140627094412.htm>.
Imperial College London. (2014, June 27). Social pressure stops Facebook users recommending products on social media sites. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 26, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140627094412.htm
Imperial College London. "Social pressure stops Facebook users recommending products on social media sites." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/06/140627094412.htm (accessed January 26, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, January 26, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Technology Is Ruining Snow Days For Students

How Technology Is Ruining Snow Days For Students

Newsy (Jan. 25, 2015) — More schools are using online classes to keep from losing time to snow days, but it only works if students have Internet access at home. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weird Things Couples Do When They Lose Their Phone

Weird Things Couples Do When They Lose Their Phone

BuzzFeed (Jan. 24, 2015) — Did you back it up? Do you even know how to do that? Video provided by BuzzFeed
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smart Wristband to Shock Away Bad Habits

Smart Wristband to Shock Away Bad Habits

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Jan. 23, 2015) — A Boston start-up is developing a wristband they say will help users break bad habits by jolting them with an electric shock. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Amazing Technology Allows Blind Mother to See Her Newborn Son

Amazing Technology Allows Blind Mother to See Her Newborn Son

RightThisMinute (Jan. 23, 2015) — Not only is Kathy seeing her newborn son for the first time, but this is actually the first time she has ever seen a baby. Kathy and her sister, Yvonne, have been legally blind since childhood, but thanks to an amazing new technology, eSight glasses, which gives those who are legally blind the ability to see, she got the chance to see the birth of her son. It&apos;s an incredible moment and an even better story. Video provided by RightThisMinute
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins