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How Social Media is Transforming the Fashion Consumers: The Effects of "Social" Consumer Attributes on Brand Engagement in Social Networking Sites

  • Park, Hyejune (Dept. of Design, Housing & Merchandising, Oklahoma State University)
  • Received : 2017.05.11
  • Accepted : 2017.06.20
  • Published : 2017.06.30

Abstract

The proliferation of social media has given rise to the new consumer group, namely, social consumers. This study identified the distinct characteristics of social consumers (i.e., online social search, online social navigation, online social connection) and examined the impacts of social consumer attributes on the engagement with fashion brands via brands' SNSs (BSNSs). A sample of 141 U.S. consumers who had browsed and/or participated in a fashion brand's BSNS (i.e., the Facebook page for fashion brands) was used to examine hypothesized relationships. The analyses involved running a confirmatory factor analysis and a structural equation modeling. The result indicates that the impacts of the social consumer attributes on the benefits of BSNSs (i.e., experiential and functional benefits) as perceived by consumers were significant, except the link between online social connection and functional benefits. In addition, consumers' existing relationship with a brand served as a moderating variable, strengthening the impacts of social consumer attributes on BSNS benefits. The perceived benefits of BSNSs positively affected perceived relationship investment which in turn influenced brand loyalty. Practical marketing suggestions are provided for fashion brands.

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