Business – UConn Today
Social media is the new equivalent of “word of mouth” advertising, and in the United States alone, corporate social media spending is projected to exceed $17 billion by 2019.
Companies rely on a robust social media plan to increase sales. But how do they determine the best way to spend their money and maximize their results?
Understanding what leads to effective content sharing is at the core of cost-effective marketing campaigns. — Jing Peng
UConn assistant professor of operations and information management Jing Peng and three colleagues have studied the issue, and discovered that depending how popular your company’s social media message is, you should employ different strategies.
For example, a company like Starbucks, which tends to be a social-media standout, would promote its products differently than, say, Allstate insurance, which doesn’t have the same passionate following.
The research, titled “Network Overlap and Content Sharing on Social Media Platforms,” was published in the Journal of Marketing Research in August. Peng’s co-authors are professors Ashish Agarwal from the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas-Austin, and Kartik Hosanagar and Raghuram Iyengar, both of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
“This research is very relevant today because marketing communication through platforms such as Twitter can enable firms to reach new customers through users’ connections, and drive the demand for their products,” Peng says, noting that previous studies have shown that content sharing among friends is highly effective in acquiring new users, as compared to direct communication from a firm.
Understanding the factors that drive sharing, then, becomes key to marketing practices, he says. Prior research had addressed what is being shared and who is sharing, but Peng and his colleagues wanted to address network overlap and its impact. The extent of common connections between a sender and receiver may represent their common interests, common audience, or their content …