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The impact of social media communication on consumer-based brand equity and purchasing intent in a pandemic

Lee Heng Wei (School of Digital Technology, Wawasan Open University, Penang, Malaysia)
Ong Chuan Huat (SEGi University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
Ramayah Thurasamy (School of Management, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM), Pulau Pinang, Malaysia)

International Marketing Review

ISSN: 0265-1335

Article publication date: 2 August 2023

Issue publication date: 12 December 2023




This study aims to investigate the impact of the source of the content in social media communication and the content distribution intensity on consumer-based brand equity (CBBE) dimensions and how the study will eventually impact purchase intention.


A total of 521 samples were collected using an online survey questionnaire. The respondents' validity was verified using purposive sampling techniques, and the responses were analysed using SmartPLS 3.0.


The authors outlined the fundamental mechanisms of what makes social media communication effective and discovered that emotional-based brand equity dimensions (brand association and brand loyalty) remained significant in influencing purchase intention. However, attribution-based brand equity dimensions (perceived quality, brand trust and brand awareness) are found to have no impact.


This study decomposed social media communication into three different dimensions, and the authors' result showed that the dimensions do not impact CBBE to the same extent. The authors concluded that some CBBE dimensions, which appear to be a rigour determinant of purchase intention over time, have a feeble effect during the pandemic. The existing relationship between the CBBE dimensions with purchase intention might not hold in the pandemic context. The authors suggested that anxiety or pandemic fear could alter the normal consumer buying process and make some well-established relationships not hold. As research indicates that pandemics are reoccurring events, the authors' study contributes to the global effort to dampen some of the pandemic-related effects on business and marketing.



Since acceptance of this article, the following author(s) have updated their affiliation: Thurasamy Ramayah is at the Department of Information Technology and Management, Daffodil International University, Bangladesh (DIU), Department of Management, Sunway University Business School (SUBS), University Center for Research & Development (UCRD), Chandigarh University (CU), India, Azman Hashim International Business School, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM).


Wei, L.H., Huat, O.C. and Thurasamy, R. (2023), "The impact of social media communication on consumer-based brand equity and purchasing intent in a pandemic", International Marketing Review, Vol. 40 No. 5, pp. 1213-1244.



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