Consumer engagement in a virtual brand community: An exploratory analysis
Despite the extensive use of the term “engagement” in the context of brand communities, the theoretical meaning and foundations underlying this term remain underexplored in the literature to-date. Drawing on a literature review, this study adopts netnographic methodology to explore the nature and scope of consumer engagement in an online brand community environment. The study reveals the complex multidimensional and dynamic nature of consumer engagement, which may emerge at different levels of intensity over time, thus reflecting distinct engagement states. Further, the consumer engagement process comprises a range of sub-processes reflecting consumers' interactive experience within online brand communities, and value co-creation among community participants. Engaged consumers exhibit enhanced consumer loyalty, satisfaction, empowerment, connection, emotional bonding, trust and commitment. The paper concludes with a discussion of implications for practice and further research.
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