The Mystery of Social Media Influencers Influencing Characteristics : An exploratory study on how social media influencers characteristics influence consumer purchase intentions
Abstract: Background: Social media have had a big influence on consumers engagement and the upcoming of social media influencers. Social media influencers are often seen as people who are similar to their audience and could be seen as strong opinion leaders. Social media influencer marketing is becoming more and more beneficial for businesses to implement in their marketing strategy. In order to know how to choose the right SMI for the cause, it could be useful to consider four specific characteristics of social media influencers. The characteristics have previously been examined in quantitative research, focusing on the relationship between the characteristics and purchase intention. Therefore, a certain need to explore how this relationship influence consumers’ purchase intentions has been identified. Purpose: The purpose of the study was to explore how consumers purchase intentions are influenced by social media influencers characteristics. The question that was asked in the study was how does each of the characteristics of social media influencers influence consumers’ purchase intentions. Methodology: This thesis used a qualitative approach and was of exploratory nature. The data was gathered through unstructured in-depth interviews based on a purposive sample considering the age group (millennials born between 1980-1996) as well as the participants frequently consuming social media influencers. The researchers verified theoretical saturation at six interviews. Conclusion: The main findings of this thesis entail how consumers’ purchase intentions are influenced by social media influencers characteristics. What was concluded is that there are eight categories that explain how the respondents thought that social media influencers can achieve with being attractive, being perceived as similar to their consumers, being authentic and being trustworthy in order to influence their purchase intentions.
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