Why is it difficult to resist social media temptations? One reason might be that social media users have strong and spontaneous approach reactions to social media cues. In the present study, daily Facebook users (N = 228) completed a Stimulus-Response Compatibility (SRC) task, which assessed their spontaneous approach reactions to Facebook cues. Results showed that participants were faster in approaching than avoiding Facebook related (vs. control) pictures, regardless of their general tendency to experience Facebook self-control failures. Thus, contrary to expectations, spontaneous approach reactions to social media cues were not related to people's daily experienced social media self-control failure.
This study investigates the evolvement of informalization of company communication on social media over time, based on actual social media data from the tourism industry. The development in the use of emoticons and emoji by companies is examined, as an expression of informalization and humanization of online company communication. We selected 33 companies from the tourism industry in The Netherlands and investigated their Facebook and Twitter messages supplemented with the messages of consumers who interacted with these companies, for the period 2011–2016. Results show that the use of emoticons and emoji in online company communication increased significantly over the period covered in this study, demonstrating a higher level of informalization of company communication. Since this is a key factor for improving relational outcomes, this finding has scholarly as well as managerial relevance. We discuss the implications of the results for the presence of organizations on social media.
Consumers have made abundant use of social media to share their experiences with and evaluations of products, services, and policies—and with the organizations that produce them. Consumer voices, or electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM), can be heard on social network sites, online review sites, the comments section of news sites, and, in general, in all online spaces that enable an active role for users. Whereas in the early days of the Internet, organizations typically chose not to respond to online consumer reviews or answer online consumer questions, since around 2010 it has become increasingly common for organizations to have an active presence in social media and to directly engage in interactions with consumers. This article defines webcare as the online interactions between organizations and consumers about consumer questions, complaints, and experiences with regard to the organization’s products or services. Webcare interactions are typically (although not exclusively) public, which distinguishes webcare from customer service that takes place in nonpublic one-to-one interactions that organizations have with consumers, such as in call centers. The public character of webcare adds a new dimension to customer service: not only is the consumer in question engaged in interacting with the organization at hand, but bystanders are as well. This involves consumers who witness (and at times engage in) the webcare interaction and whose attitudes toward the organization may be affected by the nature of the interaction. As a result, public interactions between organizations and consumers make webcare an important part of an organization’s online presence. Another distinguishing feature of webcare is that the interactions between organizations and consumers frequently move beyond typical customer service questions (e.g., a failed product, a faulty service delivery). Although customer service still makes up the bulk of webcare interactions of most organizations, webcare teams frequently receive compliments by consumers, questions regarding the organizations’ ethics, or inquiries about the organization’s stand on societal issues. When an organization gets involved in a public crisis, webcare teams need to deal with large groups of citizens and/or consumers expressing their opinions, often accompanied or inspired by pressure groups.
Social media users often experience the difficulty of controlling their social media use while having important tasks to do. Recent theorizing on self-control and media use proposes four possible factors (immediate gratifications, habitual checking, ubiquity, and notifications) that might cause social media self-control failure (SMSCF). We tested whether these factors indeed predict SMSCF among 590 daily social media users. Results showed that, when people checked social media habitually, or strongly experienced the online ubiquity of social media, or perceived strong disturbances from social media notifications, they were more likely to fail to control their social media use. However, social media-related immediate gratifications did not predict SMSCF. This study empirically identified social media-related factors that might induce social media users’ self-control difficulty.
We investigated the proposition that among international students, face-to-face (FtF) interaction with the host-country network, and Facebook interaction with the host- and the home-country networks predict perceived social support, which, in turn, predicts psychological adjustment. We tested the model using cross-lagged and non-lagged reciprocal effects path analyses on three-wave panel data gathered via online surveys. The results indicated that whereas FtF interaction with the host-country increased perceived social support in the short-term, Facebook interaction with the host-country lowered perceived social support in the long-term. Perceived social support increased Facebook interaction with the host-country both in the short- and the long-term. At the same time, perceived social support, in the long-term, decreased depressive symptoms. In the short-term, perceived social support and depressive symptoms negatively reinforced each other. Our longitudinal study contributes to existing literature by elucidating the complex interplay of communication channels and their implications on international students’ experiences.
People often fail in controlling their social media use when it conflicts with other goals and obligations. To facilitate research on understanding social media self-control failures, we constructed a brief social media self-control failure (SMSCF)-scale to assess how often social media users give in to social media temptations. Social media users (N = 405) completed a survey (including a 4-week follow-up) to test the scale's psychometric properties. The self-report SMSCF-scale showed good internal consistency and test retest reliability. Demonstrating its construct validity, the SMSCF-scale was moderately related to existing problematic media use and general self-control scales. Demonstrating its predictive validity, the SMSCF-scale was positively related to social media use and feelings of guilt about one's social media use and was negatively related to psychological wellbeing. The SMSCF-scale provides a useful indicator of social media self-control failure that could facilitate future research on the psychological processes underlying social media self-control failures. (C) 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Background: A lack of physical activity is considered to cause 6% of deaths globally. Feedback from wearables such as activity trackers has the potential to encourage daily physical activity. To date, little research is available on the natural development of adherence to activity trackers or on potential factors that predict which users manage to keep using their activity tracker during the first year (and thereby increasing the chance of healthy behavior change) and which users discontinue using their trackers after a short time. Objective: The aim of this study was to identify the determinants for sustained use in the first year after purchase. Specifically, we look at the relative importance of demographic and socioeconomic, psychological, health-related, goal-related, technological, user experience-related, and social predictors of feedback device use. Furthermore, this study tests the effect of these predictors on physical activity. Methods: A total of 711 participants from four urban areas in France received an activity tracker (Fitbit Zip) and gave permission to use their logged data. Participants filled out three Web-based questionnaires: at start, after 98 days, and after 232 days to measure the aforementioned determinants. Furthermore, for each participant, we collected activity data tracked by their Fitbit tracker for 320 days. We determined the relative importance of all included predictors by using Random Forest, a machine learning analysis technique. Results: The data showed a slow exponential decay in Fitbit use, with 73.9% (526/711) of participants still tracking after 100 days and 16.0% (114/711) of participants tracking after 320 days. On average, participants used the tracker for 129 days. Most important reasons to quit tracking were technical issues such as empty batteries and broken trackers or lost trackers (21.5% of all Q3 respondents, 130/601). Random Forest analysis of predictors revealed that the most influential determinants were age, user experience-related factors, mobile phone type, household type, perceived effect of the Fitbit tracker, and goal-related factors. We explore the role of those predictors that show meaningful differences in the number of days the tracker was worn. Conclusions: This study offers an overview of the natural development of the use of an activity tracker, as well as the relative importance of a range of determinants from literature. Decay is exponential but slower than may be expected from existing literature. Many factors have a small contribution to sustained use. The most important determinants are technical condition, age, user experience, and goal-related factors. This finding suggests that activity tracking is potentially beneficial for a broad range of target groups, but more attention should be paid to technical and user experience-related aspects of activity trackers.
Habitual behavior is often hard to change because of a lack of self-monitoring skills. Digital technologies offer an unprecedented chance to facilitate self-monitoring by delivering feedback on undesired habitual behavior. This review analyzed the results of 72 studies in which feedback from digital technology attempted to disrupt and change undesired habits. A vast majority of these studies found that feedback through digital technology is an effective way to disrupt habits, regardless of target behavior or feedback technology used. Unfortunately, methodological issues limit our confidence in the findings of all but 14 of the 50 studies with quantitative measurements in this review. Furthermore, only 4 studies tested for (and only 3 of those 4 found) sustained habit change, and it remains unclear how feedback from digital technology is moderated by receiver states and traits, as well as feedback characteristics such as feedback sign, comparison, tailoring, modality, frequency, timing and duration. We conclude with recommendations for new research directions. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
PowerPoint presentations are often criticized for the excessive use of text on the slides. In a study of 97 academic scholars, we found that presenters indeed used substantially more text than is advised. Speaking anxiety was found to be related to the time spent on preparing and rehearsing, and time spent on rehearsing is related to the number of words on the slides. Anxious presenters appear to use PowerPoint slides as speaking notes. Presenters should be trained to overcome their speaking anxiety by means other than the abundant use of words on their slides.
PowerPoint has received much criticism regarding excessive use of text and the lack of contact with the audience. Why presenters use PowerPoint in this way has not been studied so far. Our study using interviews with beginning and advanced presenters shows that some use the program as a speaking note and as a means to draw the attention away from themselves. Some even think that PowerPoint can replace rhetorical skills. Slides are mainly designed on the basis of commonsense, instead of guidelines based on human information processing. Implications for the teaching of PowerPoint use in business communication are discussed.
Social networking sites (SNS) play an increasingly important role in maintaining geographically close romantic relationships (GCRR). However, knowledge about SNS use in long-distance romantic relationships (LDRR) is still lacking. The present study examined the relative importance of SNS in maintaining LDRR compared to GCRR, particularly with regard to the use of SNS to express involvement (via relational maintenance behaviors) and to gauge a partner's involvement (via partner surveillance and jealousy) in the relationship. An online survey was conducted among predominantly young adult Facebook users who were in a romantic relationship (N=272). Results showed that participants who were in a LDRR reported higher levels of relational maintenance behaviors through SNS than participants who were in a GCRR. Also, as compared to participants who were in a GCRR, participants who were in a LDRR used SNS more for partner surveillance and experienced higher levels of SNS jealousy.
This study aims to shed more light on the question whether, and under what circumstances, valence affects consumers’ intention to buy a product after reading an online review. We hypothesize that receiver expertise could possibly moderate (a) the impact of review valence on consumers’ purchase intentions, and (b) the asymmetric effects of positive and negative reviews. To test these hypotheses, we conducted an experiment, exposing participants (n = 470) to reviews varying in valence (i.e., positive, neutral, negative), with purchase-intention as the dependent variable. The results support the moderating role of receiver expertise for both the influence and weight of review valence effects. This explains the inconsistent results for review valence reported in previous studies.
To be a trustworthy partner, people need self-control. People infer others’ level of self-control from behavioral cues, and this perception influences how much they trust others. Exhibiting compulsive Internet use (CIU) might provide such cues. This research examined whether and how CIU affects perceptions of self-control and trust in a partner. In an experimental study, we manipulated CIU in descriptions of strangers and found that participants in the CIU condition judged the other to have lower self-control and trusted them less than in a control condition. In a prospective dyadic study among newlyweds, we extended these results to close relationships. The results confirmed our hypotheses. Additionally, we found that low trait self-control makes people prone to CIU, illustrating that assessing others’ CIU is a good strategy to gauge others’ level of self-control. These results illuminate how and why CIU may be harmful for relationships.
In this paper, we investigate whether and to what extent exposure to a company's social media activities over time is beneficial for corporate reputation, and whether conversational human voice mediates this relation. In a two-wave longitudinal survey among 1969 respondents, we assessed consumers’ exposure to an international airline's social media activities, perceived level of conversational human voice and perception of corporate reputation. The results show that consumers’ level of exposure to company social media activities precedes perceptions of corporate reputation. Also, conversational human voice mediates the relation between consumers’ level of exposure to company social media activities and perceptions of corporate reputation. We discuss the implications of the results for the presence of organizations in social media.
Several studies have established a negative relation between the use of sexually explicit Internet material (SEIM) and relationship quality. While most studies imply SEIM use decreases relationship quality, the opposite might also be true: lower relationship quality might increase people's SEIM use. This article aims to shed light on the directionality of the relation between SEIM use and relationship quality among married couples. We used prospective dyadic data to examine the short- and long-term relation between SEIM use, sexual satisfaction, and relationship adjustment among adult SEIM users and their partners. The results showed that, among husbands, adjustment and SEIM use are negatively and reciprocally related. Also, sexual satisfaction among husbands predicted a decrease in their wives’ SEIM one year later, while wives’ SEIM did not affect their husbands’ sexual satisfaction. The findings have important implications for theories on the link between relationship quality and SEIM use. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Studies have shown positive associations between liking a Facebook brand page and brand evaluations, but causal evidence is lacking. This online pre-post-measure experiment compared brand evaluations of
current followers' of a target brand's Facebook page, with new followers’ instructed to
like' the page, and non-followers’ over one month. Results showed a significant positive increase for new followers on brand evaluations, whereas non-followers showed no change. Current followers were most positive in evaluations overall, but showed no change over time. This provides evidence that following a brand's Facebook updates can cause positive changes in brand evaluations. The effects were explained by perceived conversational human voice, indicating the importance of brand interactivity. Implications for brands’ social media presence are discussed. (C) 2015 Direct Marketing Educational Foundation, Inc., dba Marketing EDGE. All rights reserved.
Corporate reputation is a valuable intangible asset for companies, yet is increasingly difficult to manage in an era with hard-to-control online conversations. In this paper, we investigate whether and when a company's online activities to acquire engaged consumers are beneficial for corporate reputation. In a survey among 3531 customers and non-customers of an international airline, we measured consumers’ engagement in the airline's social media activities and perception of corporate reputation. Results show that consumers’ intensity of social media use is positively related to their engagement in the airline's social media activities, especially among customers. Engagement in the social media activities in turn is positively related to corporate reputation, especially among non-customers. We discuss the implications of the results for social media policies in the travel and tourism industry. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Objective: Compulsive Internet Use (CIU) has been linked to lower wellbeing, especially among adolescents. Yet, questions regarding the directionality of this association remain unanswered: CIU may influence wellbeing and vice versa. Theoretically, both directions are plausible, yet so far no studies have examined the directionality of these effects among adults. This article aims to shed light on the directionality of the relation between CIU and both positive and negative wellbeing, using a prospective, longitudinal sample of adults (n = 398). Methods: Over the course of four years, participants completed five assessments of their CIU and both positive and negative indicators of wellbeing. Participants were married couples who were recruited in the municipalities where they were married. Results: CIU predicted increases in depression, loneliness and stress over time, and a decrease in happiness. No effect of CIU on the change in self-esteem was found. Further, happiness predicted a decrease in CIU over time. Conclusions: The results suggest CIU lowers wellbeing. This is important given that lowered wellbeing may affect health. Happiness is suggested to be a buffer for developing CIU. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Two studies examined the impact of online store reviews on consumer trust in online stores. Based on the warranting principle, it was proposed that consumer reviews are a more important cue for judging the trustworthiness of an online store than the overall reputation of the store (Experiment 1) or assurance seals (Experiment 2). The role of dispositional trust was also examined. In both experiments, consumer reviews turned out as the strongest predictor of trustworthiness judgments. Store reputation had no significant effect. In Experiment 1, there was a main effect of dispositional trust on perceived trustworthiness. In Experiment 2, dispositional trust moderated the effects of reviews and assurance seals. High trusters were more influenced by the reviews of other consumers; and only high trusters tended to be influenced by assurance seals. The results show that consumer reviews play an important role in consumer decision making, indicating that online consumer communities indeed empower consumers. (C) 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Individuals with autism spectrum disorders or autistic traits may profit from Internet and computer-mediated interactions, but there is concern about their Internet use becoming compulsive. This study investigated the link between autistic traits and Internet use in a 2-wave longitudinal study with a non-clinical community sample (n = 390). As compared to people with less autistic traits, people with more autistic traits did not report a higher frequency of Internet use, but they were more prone to compulsive Internet use. For women, more autistic traits predicted an increase in compulsive Internet use over time. These results suggest that, despite its appeal for people with autistic traits, the Internet carries the risk of compulsive use.
This article examines how compulsive Internet use and marital well-being are related to each other. We suggest that they are negatively related and explore whether compulsive Internet use predicts marital well-being or vice versa. The relation between compulsive Internet use and marital well-being is tested in a two-wave prospective study among 190 newlywed couples. The results suggest that (a) compulsive Internet use predicts marital well-being, and not vice versa, (b) that this is a within- rather than a cross-partner effect, and (c) that the frequency of Internet use may be positively related to marital well-being. The results are discussed in terms of the mechanisms that underlie the link between compulsive Internet use and relationship quality.
Buying online is still perceived as risky. A key strategy of online marketers to increase consumer trust in online ordering is to display privacy and security seals on their web sites. Although research indicates that these Internet seals do not necessarily mean better safety for online consumers, findings of several other studies demonstrated that these safety cues do influence consumer responses. The goal of this chapter is to provide the reader with an overview of findings regarding the persuasiveness of Internet seals and to reflect upon possible explanatory mechanisms for these effects. Future research directions and managerial implications for e-business are provided. © 2010, IGI Global.
This article examines how perceiving concealment in close relationships influences marital well-being. It suggests that the perception of concealment from a partner signals separateness from one's partner and contributes to feelings of perceived partner exclusion. These feelings of exclusion, in turn, should negatively affect relational quality. These predictions are tested in a prospective study among 199 newlywed couples. Results suggest that perceiving concealment reduced marital adjustment and trust and increased conflict over time. Importantly, change in perceived partner exclusion mediated these effects. This article demonstrates that the perception of concealment (a) has deleterious effects on relational well-being in the long run and (b) is harmful in part because it elicits feelings of exclusion.
Three studies tested predictions derived from terror management theory (TMT) about the effects of terrorism news on prejudice. Exposure to terrorism news should confront receivers with thoughts about their own death, which, in turn, should increase prejudice toward outgroup, members. Non-Muslim (Studies 1-3) and Muslim (Study 3) participants were exposed to news about either Islamic terrorist acts or to control news. When Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh was murdered in Amsterdam by an Islamic extremist during data collection of Study 1, this event was included as a naturally occurring factor in the design. Consistent with TMT, terrorism news and Van Gogh's murder increased death-related thoughts. Death-related thoughts, in turn, increased prejudiced attitudes toward outgroup members, especially when participants had low self-esteem, and when terrorism was psychologically close. Terrorism news may inadvertently increase prejudiced attitudes towards outgroups when it reminds viewers of their own mortality. (C) 2008 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Safety cues are frequently used in online stores to relieve consumers’ risk perceptions concerning online purchases. This paper uses regulatory focus theory (RFT) to predict the persuasiveness of online safety cues. According to RFT (Higgins, 1997), people process information differently depending on whether they strive for achieving gains (promotion focus) or avoiding losses (prevention focus). The aim of the present study is to examine the impact of the regulatory focus compatibility of Web content on online consumer behavior. Using different online stores, two experiments show that the effect of online safety cues depends on the consumers’ regulatory focus. A pilot study demonstrates that safety-oriented Web content lowers consumers’ risk perceptions, but only when in a prevention focus. The main study replicates and extends this finding by showing that online safety cues both lower consumers’ risk perceptions and engender more favorable attitudes and intentions, depending on the regulatory focus.
This experimental study assessed the effectiveness of fundraising messages. Based on recent findings regarding the effects of message framing and evidence, effective fundraising messages should combine abstract, statistical information with a negative message frame and anecdotal evidence with a positive message frame. In addition, building on research into social dilemmas, it was hypothesized that information about charity goal attainment (e.g., the contributions of others) should increase donation intentions. The hypotheses were tested in a 2 (goal attainment: yes/no) x 2 (framing. positive/negative) x 2 (evidence: statistical/anecdotal) factorial design. Abstract information was more effective when combined with a negatively framed message, whereas anecdotal information was more effective when combined with a positive frame. In addition, donation intentions were higher for messages that addressed charity goal attainment issues.
IT TAKES a constant stream of interpersonal decision making for people to be liked by others and to like themselves at the same time. Although often being liked and liking oneself go hand in hand, at times people make choices to give up on being liked in order to restore a positive self-image or to temporarily have a less positive self-image to prevent social exclusion. Ego threat and concomitant emotions play a role in interpersonal decision making among people who are low and high in self-esteem. The literature on threats to the self, feelings about the self, and interpersonal perceptions offers theoretical and empirical evidence in support of the nonintuitive conclusion that people with high self-esteem do not fare any better than people with low self-esteem in terms of how others feel about them. In fact, high self-esteem people become less likeable when they feel threatened. If changes in decision making underlie changes in behavior, decision making patterns among high and low self-esteem people under conditions of threat or nonthreat may be important. Copyright © 2007 by Russell Sage Foundation. All rights reserved.
In two experiments, the impact of shopping context on consumers’ risk perceptions and regulatory focus was examined. We predicted that individuals perceive an online ( vs. conventional) shopping environment as more risky and that an online shopping environment, by its risky nature, primes a prevention focus. The findings in Study 1 demonstrate these effects by using self-report measures for risk perception and prevention focus. In Study 2, we replicated these findings and demonstrated that the effect of an online shopping environment carries over to behavior in a domain unrelated to shopping.
Although concealment in relationships is commonplace, little is known about its implications for the target of concealment. Two large-scale studies among adolescents and their parents tested the central hypothesis that parents’ perception of child concealment predicts poorer parenting behaviors toward their child. Further, we investigated whether actual child concealment adds to the prediction of parenting behaviors through an interaction with parental perception of concealment. Study I yielded evidence for the hypothesized link, which was independent of actual concealment. Study 2 largely replicated these results for perceptions of both concealment and lying while controlling for perceptions of disclosure. Overall, these results suggest that parents’ perception of child concealment coincides with poorer parenting behaviors, regardless of actual child concealment.
In Western Europe, works councils are a common form of indirect employee participation in management decision making. Trust is often assumed to play an important role in the nature and outcomes of labour negotiations and in management-works council consultations. So far, however, the antecedents of trust in management within works councils have not been studied. Using longitudinal data collected among the members of 75 Dutch works councils, the current study tests predictions regarding the relative influence of instrumental vs relational antecedents on the level of trust in management among works council members. An important role of instrumental predictors (e.g. perceived influence of the works council on management decision making) supports a view of trust as a calculative phenomenon. On the other hand, strong effects of relational predictors would lend support to trust as a relational phenomenon. The data show that trust in management among works council members is related to relational rather than instrumental antecedents.