Negative brand engagement in the online context

Dong, Xinyu (2022) Negative brand engagement in the online context. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis advances the understanding of negative online brand engagement. Previous studies mostly presume consumer brand engagement to be positive. However, many studies highlight the importance of negative online brand engagement and appreciate that it can be more common and potentially more impactful or detrimental to both brands and consumers, particularly in the online context, than positive online brand engagement. Negative online brand engagement is relatively new in the field of marketing and branding research, with no agreement on its conceptualisation and robustly developed measurement. The current thesis aims to address the gap in the conceptualisation and operationalisation and identify and test prominent drivers and outcomes of negative online brand engagement.

The theoretical development involves a systematic literature review of positive consumer engagement, reviews existing articles on negative consumer engagement and builds the foundation for conceptual model development. The empirical analysis adopts a sequential mixed-methods research design. The qualitative study (online observation, semi-structured interviews) was firstly conducted to identify dimensionality, antecedents and outcomes of negative online brand engagement, and develop the conceptual model. Survey data (N=431) were then used in the measurement development and hypotheses testing.

The findings show the multi-dimensional nature of negative online brand engagement, consisting of cognition, affection, online constructive and destructive behaviour. The quantitative results identify six drivers of the phenomenon, namely perceived brand quality, brand failure severity, unacceptable brand behaviour, anti-consumption in general, consumer brand disidentification and oppositional attitudinal loyalty. Finally, the same evidence supports five outcomes including consumers’ intention to participate in anti-brand communities, brand disloyalty, happiness, offline destructive and constructive behaviour.

The thesis offers theoretical and managerial implications. It provides an improved, innovative conceptualisation and a valid measurement of negative online brand engagement and identifies its key drivers and outcomes, none of which have been clearly identified in previous studies. These findings also provide strategic implications for managers to develop the appropriate marketing and branding strategies and avoid or manage the effects of negative online brand engagement.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > Adam Smith Business School > Management
Supervisor's Name: Veloutsou, Professor Cleopatra and Morgan-Thomas, Professor Anna
Date of Award: 2022
Depositing User: Theses Team
Unique ID: glathesis:2022-82870
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 13 May 2022 08:15
Last Modified: 13 May 2022 08:18
Thesis DOI: 10.5525/gla.thesis.82870

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