Is visual content modality a limiting factor for social capital? Examining user engagement within Instagram-based brand communities

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Abstract

In the age of virtual cocreation of value by consumers, the role of the content modality in the development of social capital has been largely overlooked. Given that different modalities lead to varied forms of digital communication, this study examines whether a predominantly visual modality can enhance social capital and improve the collective value perceived by members of an online brand community. Through quantitative analysis, this study demonstrates that the visual modality of Instagram fosters social interactions, shaping the platform’s engagement dynamics. Affect-based visual imagery is persuasive in eliciting responses that match the hedonic nature of the platform. Therefore, fostering a positive emotional connection to both the community and the brand can lead to increased loyalty. This research proposes a different perspective on the interactive social exchange that facilitates the establishment of social capital. Value cocreation engagement is not necessarily dependent on the extensiveness of information depth. Adopting an affective orientation in persuasion has shown efficacy in forming attitudes towards attitudinal objects, particularly the community and brand.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9
JournalHumanities and Social Sciences Communications
Volume11
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2024

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