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Types of Electronic Word-of-Mouth and Their Impact on Consumer Attitudes

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Abstract

Numerous eWOM platforms have made it easy for consumers to share product-related information. The aim of the study is to investigate the influence of three commonly used eWOM types on consumer brand attitude. By manipulating the valence of the communicated messages, we shed light on the interaction of different eWOM types and provide insights on the relationship of social tie and valence and its role in attitude formation. Conducting two experiments we confirm three hypothesized relationships: First, by manipulating valence and eWOM type our results confirm that involved consumers are more influenced by conventional eWOM offering comprehensive information about the product from acquaintances or strangers (i.e., weak social ties) than by overall product ratings with their conveyed superficial normative cues (i.e., no social ties). Second, by introducing a third eWOM type in the experiment, so called social media eWOM, our findings confirm that this form of interpersonal communication (i.e., strong social ties) becomes so dominant that any other type of subsequently consulted eWOM – whether it be consistent or inconsistent with SeWOM in valence – becomes neglectable. Based on our results we propose to foster the capacity of review sites to signal social ties.

Keywords

  • Electronic word-of-mouth
  • Online reviews
  • Social media
  • Social tie
  • Trustworthiness

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Correspondence to Robert Zniva .

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Zniva, R., Weitzl, W.J., Müller, J.M., Schneider, A. (2020). Types of Electronic Word-of-Mouth and Their Impact on Consumer Attitudes. In: Martínez-López, F., D'Alessandro, S. (eds) Advances in Digital Marketing and eCommerce. Springer Proceedings in Business and Economics. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-47595-6_9

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