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Investigating virtual community participation and promotion from a social influence perspective

Li-Chun Hsu (Department of Cultural Resources and Leisure Industries, National Taitung University, Taitung, Taiwan)
Kai-Yu Wang (Department of Marketing, International Business, and Strategy, Goodman School of Business, Brock University, St Catharines, Canada)
Wen-Hai Chih (Department of Business Administration, National Dong Hwa University, Hualien, Taiwan)

Industrial Management & Data Systems

ISSN: 0263-5577

Article publication date: 7 August 2018

Issue publication date: 13 August 2018




Understanding how to develop users’ word of mouth to promote a virtual community (VC) is an important issue in VC management. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the factors that lead to VC participation and promotion from a social influence perspective.


This research recruited 368 VC (i.e., Fashion Guide) members in Taiwan and used structural equation model to test research hypotheses.


The results showed that both shared vision and language positively influenced norm of reciprocity and social identity, respectively. Norm of reciprocity and social identity influenced VC participation intentions, and subsequently resulted in VC promotion intentions.


Prior studies neglect investigating the relationships between the three social influence processes (internalization, compliance and identification). This study contributes to the literature by proposing that internalization affects VC participation and promotion via compliance and identification.



Hsu, L.-C., Wang, K.-Y. and Chih, W.-H. (2018), "Investigating virtual community participation and promotion from a social influence perspective", Industrial Management & Data Systems, Vol. 118 No. 6, pp. 1229-1250.



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