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Factors affecting social interaction on Social Network Sites: The Facebook Case

Maiz, A and Arranz, N and Fernandez De Arroyabe, JC (2016) 'Factors affecting social interaction on Social Network Sites: The Facebook Case.' Journal of Enterprise Information Management, 29 (5). 630 - 649. ISSN 1741-0398

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Abstract

Purpose - Our paper focuses on understanding which factors affect the social interaction in the case of Facebook. Many authors point out the great potential of these networks for social interaction and as conduits of information. However, studies show that the topology of the network is disconnected, consisting of small sub-networks that make Facebook unsuitable for disseminating information. This situation has created the need to introduce exogenous factors, aimed at boosting and providing cohesion to the network structure. In this context, we test the following question: how exogenous and endogenous factors contribute to encouraging social interaction on Facebook. Design/methodology/approach - For the analysis of social interaction on Facebook, a population consisting of all the followers of the walls of 10 corporate social networks was used. From the total 269,424 users analysed, a stratified sample of 132 followers was obtained and networks were built for each of them. We then proceeded to search for each follower's friends and friends of friends to build the social network up to the fourth level, obtaining a total of 132 subnets with 1,628,074 links between them. To determine the impact of both exogenous and endogenous factors in the interaction of the network we performed a causal analysis. Findings - The results obtained from this study provide empirical evidence on the adequacy of companies? dynamization measures used and how exogenous and endogenous factors influence the social interaction on Facebook. Thus, our results show that exogenous factors, such as the activity of the community manager and the digital marketing investment in the network, do not have a significant effect on the interaction. On the other hand, endogenous factors, such as network density and clustering, have a positive effect on the trigger of social interaction between the followers. Therefore, companies must consider the importance of the structural factors that characterize network followers, such as density or clustering coefficient, to be able to interpret and optimize them to obtain higher levels of social interaction. Originality/value - This is one of a few papers that examine interactions in social network sites, particularly in corporate network sites in Facebook. The results expose the importance for organizations to have reliable information on the patterns of interaction to properly manage the resources allocated for this purpose in SNS.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Essex Business School
Faculty of Social Sciences > Essex Business School > Management Science and Entrepreneurship Group
Depositing User: Juan Fernandez De Arroyabe Fernandez
Date Deposited: 17 May 2016 12:29
Last Modified: 13 Sep 2018 09:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/16554

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