Title: How sender and receiver jointly shape message: an empirical study on transactional relationship in electronic word of mouth

Authors: Tong Bao

Addresses: College of Management, Long Island University-Post, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville, NY 11548, USA

Abstract: By showing the effects of electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM) on product sales, prior research has established a one-way relationship from sender to receiver. This paper demonstrates a feedback loop via 'helpful votes' in the context of online user review: how many eWOM messages sender creates is a function of how many helpful votes receiver provides. In addition, we show receivers consider new eWOM more helpful when prior eWOM messages are few, inconsistent, or positive. Although senders originate eWOM messages, receivers enter the eWOM process through the feedback loop and influence what types of eWOM messages are created; therefore, eWOM is driven by both senders and receivers. Our findings imply that eWOM is a two-way transaction that senders do with receivers rather than to them.

Keywords: electronic WoM; word-of-mouth; eWOM; online user reviews; transactional communication model; Amazon customer reviews; marketing communications; social media; simultaneous equations model; transactional relationships; helpful votes; feedback loop; senders; receivers.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIMA.2015.072882

International Journal of Internet Marketing and Advertising, 2015 Vol.9 No.4, pp.267 - 285

Received: 07 Apr 2015
Accepted: 18 Jul 2015

Published online: 05 Nov 2015 *

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