Cultivating Trust and Harvesting Value in Virtual Communities
AbstractAlthough previous scholars have examined the value of virtual communities to customers, in this study we investigate the role of a firm's efforts in cultivating trust and harvesting value for themselves via the virtual communities that they sponsor. We hypothesize that the perceptions of a firm's efforts to provide quality content, to foster member embeddedness, and to encourage interaction foster favorable customer beliefs about and trust in a virtual community sponsor. Further, we hypothesize that trust motivates customers to behave relationally toward the sponsoring firm by sharing information with, coproducing new products with, and granting loyalty to, the sponsoring firm. Data from 663 customers are analyzed using structural equation modeling techniques. We find that efforts to provide quality content and foster member embeddedness have positive effects on customer beliefs about the sponsor. In fact, fostering member embeddedness has a stronger explanatory effect on customer beliefs than does providing quality content. However, despite the fact that previous studies show that customers value interaction in virtual communities, our findings suggest that firms must do more than encourage interaction among their community members if they hope to create value from their virtual communities.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.
Volume (Year): 54 (2008)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
virtual communities; online communities; trust; embeddedness; relationship marketing;
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Korschun, Daniel & Du, Shuili, 2013. "How virtual corporate social responsibility dialogs generate value: A framework and propositions," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(9), pages 1494-1504.
- Kurt Matzler & Daniel Stieger & Johann Füller, 2011. "Consumer Confusion in Internet-Based Mass Customization: Testing a Network of Antecedents and Consequences," Journal of Consumer Policy, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 231-247, June.
- Gyrd-Jones, Richard I. & Kornum, Niels, 2013. "Managing the co-created brand: Value and cultural complementarity in online and offline multi‐stakeholder ecosystems," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(9), pages 1484-1493.
- Brodie, Roderick J. & Ilic, Ana & Juric, Biljana & Hollebeek, Linda, 2013. "Consumer engagement in a virtual brand community: An exploratory analysis," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 105-114.
- Reuber, A. Rebecca & Fischer, Eileen, 2011. "International entrepreneurship in internet-enabled markets," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 660-679.
- Monic Sun & Feng Zhu, 2011. "Ad Revenue and Content Commercialization: Evidence from Blogs," Working Papers 11-32, NET Institute.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.