When Posting About Products in Social Media Backfires: The Negative Effects of Consumer Identity-Signaling on Product Interest

Grewal, Lauren, Stephen, Andrew T. and Coleman, Nicole Verrochi When Posting About Products in Social Media Backfires: The Negative Effects of Consumer Identity-Signaling on Product Interest. Journal of Marketing Research. (Accepted)

Abstract

Consumers frequently express themselves by posting about products in social media. As consumers can use physical products to signal their identities, posting products in social media may be a way for consumers to virtually signal identity. Paradoxically, we propose that there are conditions where this action can reduce a consumer’s subsequent purchase intentions. Five experiments demonstrate that posting products in social media that are framed as being identity-relevant can reduce a consumer’s subsequent purchase intentions for the same and similar products, as this action allows a consumer to virtually signal their identity; fulfilling identity-signaling needs. Fortunately for retailers, the authors suggest theoretically and managerially-relevant moderators that attenuate this negative effect on intent to purchase. These findings have important implications for how firms can conduct social media marketing to minimize negative purchase outcomes.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Social Media, Identity, Identity-Signaling, User-generated Content, Digital Marketing
Subject(s): Markets
Date Deposited: 13 Sep 2018 07:13
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2018 07:13
URI: http://eureka.sbs.ox.ac.uk/id/eprint/6896

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