Social Network Influence on Online Behavioral Choices: Exploring Group Formation on Social Network Sites

Kyounghee Kwon, Michael A. Stefanone, George A. Barnett

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    28 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Social media communication is characterized by reduced anonymity and off-to-online social interactions. These characteristics require scholars to revisit social influence mechanisms online. The current study builds on social influence literature to explore social network and gender effects on online behavior. Findings from a quasi-experiment suggest that both network-related variables and gender are significantly associated with online behavior. Perceived social environment, measured by personal network exposure rate, is more significant than objective reality, measured by frequency of received social messages, in determining behavior. We discuss the implications of social contagion effects on web-based strategic communication-including advertising, political campaigns, and social mobilization. Data limitations and the difficulty of measuring social network influence via social media are also discussed.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1345-1360
    Number of pages16
    JournalAmerican Behavioral Scientist
    Volume58
    Issue number10
    DOIs
    StatePublished - 2014

    Fingerprint

    group formation
    Social Support
    Social Media
    social network
    social media
    Communication
    Social Environment
    communication
    anonymity
    gender
    Interpersonal Relations
    mobilization
    campaign
    experiment
    interaction

    Keywords

    • interpersonal influence
    • online social networks
    • personal network exposure
    • social contagion
    • social influence
    • social networking sites

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Social Psychology
    • Social Sciences(all)
    • Sociology and Political Science
    • Cultural Studies
    • Education

    Cite this

    Social Network Influence on Online Behavioral Choices : Exploring Group Formation on Social Network Sites. / Kwon, Kyounghee; Stefanone, Michael A.; Barnett, George A.

    In: American Behavioral Scientist, Vol. 58, No. 10, 2014, p. 1345-1360.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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