Understanding the Impact of Social Influence on Social Media Advertising: A quantitative study of social media job advertising in the clothing industry
Abstract: Social Medias are growing fast with consumers and employees shifting larger parts of their media consumption towards the new medium. This causes advertisers to follow and to spend lots of money on social media advertising to attract customers and talent. While social media is a great opportunity for advertisers, it also comes with the new component of social engagement that can affect how users perceive the original content. With an increased "war for talent", employers now seek to create attractive job advertisement campaigns on social media to attract the best talent at the cheapest cost. The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of weak-ties social influence on employer attractiveness in a social media setting. In a quantitative experiment with 137 survey respondents, this study explores how social influence on social media, in the form of social engagement with likes, comments and shares, affects the attractiveness of a brand as an employer. To further deepen the theoretical contribution and provide for more interesting managerial implications, the concept of ethics in the form of corporate social responsibility was included as a moderating variable in the former relationship. The results showed how weak-ties social influence on social media did not impact employer attractiveness and that this relationship was not moderated by the level of ethics of the employer. Instead, the study could show how the two mediating variables of perceived ethics and third-person effect could significantly mediate the relationship in opposite directions to offset each other's effects. This in turn explained the non significant relationship between social influence and employer attractiveness.
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