This research aims to investigate the message strategies most likely to promote online “word-of-mouth” (WOM) activity for business-to-business (B2B)/business-to-consumer as well as product/service Facebook accounts.
Using content analysis and HLM, the authors measure the relationship between three types of message strategies and Facebook message “Likes” by analyzing 1,143 wall post messages of 193 Fortune 500 Facebook accounts.
Research findings suggest that B2B Facebook account posts are more effective if they include corporate brand names and avoid “hard sell” or explicitly commercial statements. Furthermore, results suggest that including emotional sentiments in Facebook posts is a particularly effective social media strategy for B2B and service marketers.
This study advances the knowledge of social media and online WOM behavior, as well as B2B and service advertising/communication literature, by relating message content to message popularity. In terms of managerial implications, this research provides explanations and support for the implementation of effective social media message strategies that are likely to promote WOM activity.
The authors thank Professors Bruce Weinberg, Aline Sayer, Alex Zablah, and Barry Berman for their comments and insights on earlier versions of the paper.
Swani, K., Milne, G. and P. Brown, B. (2013), "Spreading the word through likes on Facebook: Evaluating the message strategy effectiveness of
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited