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Title: The role of identification, participation and attachment in building brand equity in social networking sites
Author: Al Said, Faris
ISNI:       0000 0004 2742 6669
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2013
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Although Social Networking Sites have become dominant in the lives of many consumers, research on virtual brand communities in the context of Social Networking Sites is scarce. This study focuses on addressing this gap by investigating how identification with the brand and the brand community, participation on official brand pages on Facebook, and attachment to the brand develop and support brand equity in the context of Social Networking Sites. Participation in virtual brand communities has been generally viewed as posting and lurking. This study has developed new participation scales to address the limited perspective of participation in the literature. In addition, this study aims to investigate the types of members of brand pages on Facebook and the nature of their participation. The author developed a model that provides a new understanding of how brand equity develops in Social Networking Sites. The study was conducted in two stages. Firstly, a pilot study was conducted that used focus groups to build new scales to measure participation in Social Networking Sites, which were tested and validated by analysing quantitative data collected from an online and offline survey. Secondly, the main study was conducted by collecting data from an online panel of 436 UK consumers. Structural equation modelling techniques were then used to assess the validity of the new proposed participation scales and to test the set of interrelationships among the proposed variables. The findings indicate that consumer identification with the brand and the community has a positive impact on participation on brand pages as well as on attachment to the brand. The findings also reveal that brand loyalty, perceived quality, willingness to pay a price premium, and word-of-mouth are all predicted by brand attachment. Finally, this study has shown that participation is a two level behaviour that is based on three member types: tourists, minglers, and fans. The model and the new participation scales proposed in this study present a new perspective on online consumer behaviour. In addition, the findings of this study have implications for understanding and building consumer-brand relationships in Social Networking Sites. Keywords: Brand Equity, Brand Identification, Brand Community Identification, Virtual Brand Community, Perceived Quality, Brand Loyalty, Word-of-Mouth, Willingness to Pay a Price Premium, Brand Attachment, Participation, Social Networking Sites, Structural Equation Modelling,fACEBOOK
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: H Social Sciences (General) ; HF Commerce