2.1.1 e WOM
Hennig-Thurau et al. (2004) defined e WOM as “any positive or negative statement made by potential, actual, or former customers about a product or company, which is made available to a multitude of people and institutions via the Internet” (p. 39). Compared to traditional WOM, e WOM is perceived to be more influential due to its high reach, speed, convenience and absence of pressure from face to face interaction (Phelps et al., 2004).In addition, its measurability consisting of presentation format, high volume and persistence enables consumers to observe and identify trustworthiness of e WOM, which further contribute to consumers’ increasing dependency on e WOM (Lee, Park and Han, 2008; Park and Kim, 2008).
An integrative framework to study e WOM was proposed by Cheuang and Thadani (2012) consisting of 5 elements: source (the communicator), stimuli (e WOM content), the receiver (audience), the response (e WOM effect) and contextual factors. Montazemi and Saremi (2014) further added WOM recommended products/services to the proposed framework. It further synthesized 30 factors that represents these 5 dimensions.
2.1.2 SNS e WOM
SNS is gaining popularity when it comes to seek for information and approval as it combines the advantage of WOM and e WOM. Unlike other types of e WOM media, the identity of SNS is disclosed and posting and exchanging e WOM message is open and transparent (Fang, 2014). e WOM occurs only when consumers search or browse information when they logged in the SNS applications/websites. Other than that, users’ readily available social network not only facilitates the dissemination of the message by liking, commenting, passing on messages etc., but is perceived to be more t...
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... messages made privately through Messenger or “invite” feature based on the definition of e WOM and reference to Keenan and Shiri’s definition of f WOM (2009).
f WOM is distinct to other SNS e WOM in the following ways. Firstly, despite that Facebook is considered to be a closed network where users have restricted access to wider targeted groups (Chu and Kim, 2011), f WOM contains characteristics including social currency, emotions, usefulness and storytelling, which is more powerful and thus is more likely to spread (Yuki, 2015). Secondly, f WOM is positive and entertaining in general as positive feelings conveyed increase the connections between contacts as noted by Utz’s study, which in turn facilitates the spread of f WOM (2014). Moreover, the impact of f WOM is related to a wider range of factors compared to SNS e WOM, making it a fascinating topic to study at.
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