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A Study on Social Media Networks: Impact of Intrinsic Motivators and Demographic Factors
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
2011 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The advent of social media networks is radically changing the way we communicate, shareand socialize. These networks are also creating impact on consumer behavior. In this study,we tried to analyze the factors working behind the intrinsic motivation of people upon whichthey are interacting in the social networks and formulating their preferences.Based on the theory of intrinsic motivation, we identified five factors to be most relevant withthe phenomena we attempted to address which are Curiosity, Power, Status, Tranquility, andIndependence. Among these five factors, we tried to analyze the relative importance of eachone on the buying behavior of users in the form of choosing social media platforms. Westretched out inquiry to the identification of the influence of demographic factors as well.According to our analysis, it has been revealed that the relative importance of curiosity ismore than any other factors and it also has a strong association with the nationality of theuser. Again, status has been identified as the second most important factor however; itshowed no association with any demographic factor.To conduct this study, we have taken a qualitative approach. Our philosophical underpinningsare based on the positivist and objectivist perspective which defined how we are going toreceive and interpret reality as researchers. However, on more practical terms, we chosesurvey as our data collection method as it allows us to collect mentionable amount of datawithin a short time span and keeps the opportunity of higher statistical analysis open.Regarding the sampling method, we have followed both the non-probability conveniencesampling and Quota sampling method. We have collected our 206 respondents from UmeaUniversity, which was divided by equal half of male and female quota. After collecting thedata, we analyzed it and presented the empirical findings in the chapter 5. Then the analysisrelating to the research question and the hypotheses was presented in the chapter 6 where wealso decided about the null hypotheses on the basis of stringent statistical tests. At the end, wesummed up out findings and proposed some implications and future research possibilities.This study can be helpful to understand the links between human motivation and the userinteraction in the social networks. This kind of relationships has not been fully appreciated inthe literature so far. From a managerial perspective, social media platforms are continuouslybecoming one great route to reach the consumers and engage them with the brands. Thus,understanding the motivation of the users might help the marketers to formulate their strategybetter and they can also take better decisions regarding which kind of social media is to use topromote the products on. As we also studied the demographic factors and one of the uniquecapacities of social media networks is the ability to identify demographic segments veryspecifically, the managers can capitalize on our demographic findings to differentiate theirpromotion on the basis of demographics across various social media platforms.This study has several limitations as time and resource scarcity did not allow us to explore theissue more profoundly. Thus, it has kept many research opportunities open such as exploringthe influence of psychographic factors on the choice of social media, use of user generatedcontent to build a stronger brand profile, identification of extrinsic motivators behind thebuying behavior of users and so on.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. , 82 p.
Keyword [en]
Social media, Intrinsic motivators, Buying behavior, Facebook, online advertising, Youtube, Twitter, Linkedin, Flickr, Motivation
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-45552OAI: diva2:430282
2011-06-01, 15:00 (English)
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2011-07-08 Created: 2011-07-08 Last updated: 2011-07-08Bibliographically approved

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