Determinants of users’ information dissemination behavior on social networking sites : An elaboration likelihood model perspective

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-418
Journal / PublicationInternet Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018


Purpose - As a new communication paradigm, social networking sites (SNS) have boosted information diffusion and viral marketing. Prior researchers have identified various factors affecting information dissemination on SNS. However, they often focus on limited factors and there is a lack of an integrated theoretical framework that explains aspects of relevant factors. Besides, the research on the impacts of relationships on individual retweeting behavior is still controversial. The purpose of this paper is to propose a theoretical framework to systematically investigate the determinants of individual dissemination behavior on SNS based on the elaboration likelihood model (ELM). Moreover, the authors also examine the relative importance of those relevant factors. 
Design/methodology/approach - The authors randomly selected 1,250 members of Twitter and crawled posts published by each member since he/she created the Twitter account using Twitter API. The authors processed the data to create panel data and tested hypotheses with the panel logit model. 
Findings - Factors both on the central route and on the peripheral route of ELM have positive impacts on individual dissemination behavior. Among them, information receiver-related factor and relationships-related factors are the most influential. Contrastingly, source-related factors are the least influential. Furthermore, the authors find that social tie strength mediates almost 50 percent of the effect of value homophily on individual dissemination behavior. 
Originality/value -  The authors are the first to directly apply ELM to examine individual dissemination behavior on SNS. By integrating factors into the two information processing routes, They incorporate relevant factors into the model and systematically analyze their impacts on individual retweeting behavior on SNS. The research offers at least one explanation for the contradictory findings about the effect of homophily on individual sharing behavior in previous research. The authors propose new variables that gauge topical relevance and interpersonal value homophily on SNS.

Research Area(s)

  • Elaboration likelihood model, Information dissemination behaviour, Online marketing, Retweeting, Social networking sites, Twitter