Following the Fashionable Friend: The Power of Social Media
This article investigates—and compares—the effects of brand publicity in social and “traditional” digital media. In an analysis of consumer responses to identical brand publicity in seven popular blogs and seven popular online magazines, the authors found that blogs generated higher brand attitudes and purchase intentions. This effect can be explained, in part, by blogs' higher para-social interaction (PSI) with its users. They also found that—owing to that para-social interaction—publicity is more sensitive to user perceptions of the writers' credibility and relationship with the brand. Based on their findings, the authors provide implications and a new architecture for the media and marketing industries.