How Credible is E-Word of Mouth Across Digital-Marketing Channels? The Roles of Social Capital, Information Richness, and Interactivity
Digital communication encourages individuals and marketers to share information easily and spread electronic word of mouth (e-WOM). Yet, many people may find it difficult to judge message and source credibility. The current study suggested that receivers' judgment of e-WOM messages stems from three key channel properties: social capital, information richness, and interactivity. The authors formulated a conceptual framework and then conducted a survey across five digital channels. Findings indicated that channel managers should design information-enriching tools if they wish to enhance channel credibility. Moreover, the study found that marketers need to distribute e-WOM via diverse and socially unrelated e-WOM sources rather than closely related sources.