Behavioral consequences of customer inspiration: the role of social media inspirational content and cultural orientation

Ernest Emeka Izogo, Mercy Mpinganjira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Although previous research emphasized the importance of inspiration in influencing consumer behavior, there is no categorical response to how social-media inspirational content inspires consumers across cultures. This paper aims to take on this agenda through a vignette experimental study. Design/methodology/approach: This paper devised a vignette study involving subjects (n = 370) recruited from Nigeria and South Africa. The structural equation modeling procedure, analysis of variance (ANOVA) and regression analysis aided the examination of the scale psychometrics and hypotheses testing. Findings: Among other findings, this study shows that: inspirational content (utilitarian vs hedonic) exerts a positive differential effect on customer inspiration (CI) such that the effect of hedonic content is more pronounced than utilitarian content; collectivistic consumers are inspired more than individualists; CI triggers customer engagement behaviors (CEBs) and purchase intention, and an inspired-to component of CI mediates the effect of inspired-by on CEBs and purchase intention. Research limitations/implications: While this study makes significant contributions to knowledge on CI, the focus on firm-generated content limits the scope of this study. Future research should examine the effect of consumer-generated content on CI. Additionally, the likely contextual influence of product type on CI and its triggers in the context of the foote, cone and belding grid creates the room to further interrogate the research model under conditions of high/low involvement products. Originality/value: By showing how social-media inspirational content and cultural orientation separately influence and interact to influence CI which consequently triggers CEBs and purchase intention, the findings highlight the psychological mechanisms through which CEBs and purchase intention can be simultaneously triggered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)431-459
Number of pages29
JournalJournal of Research in Interactive Marketing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 11 Nov 2020


  • Advertising
  • Computer-mediated communication
  • Consumer psychology
  • Cultural orientation
  • Customer engagement behaviors
  • Customer inspiration
  • Marketing communication
  • Online advertising
  • Purchase intention
  • Social-media contents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Marketing


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