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Instagram as a mirror: A study on how identification based on homophily impacts followers’ purchase intention on Instagram
University of Borås, Faculty of Textiles, Engineering and Business.
University of Borås, Faculty of Textiles, Engineering and Business.
2018 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Purpose: This thesis aims to research how homophily affects followers/consumers’ attitudes towards Instagram fashion influencers. In particular, the purpose is to investigate if the perceived level of identification (evaluated according the homophily variables and types of identification) between followers/consumers and fashion influencers is one of the drivers behind followers/consumers’ engagement on Instagram. Additionally, consumption patterns on Instagram will be further investigated, paying special attention in determining if followers/consumers’ identification with fashion influencers have an impact on their purchase intention towards the fashion products the influencer endorses.

Methodology: This thesis uses an abductive research approach, together with qualitative methods to fulfill its aim and answer the research questions. The empirical data were gathered through an in-depth interview which eight participants, sampled by purposive sampling ,answered. Subsequently, the interviews were transcribed, coded, and analysed using thematic analysis. The main limitations of the research are the facts that the participants live in the same area and are approximately the same age. Thusly, the transferability of the results mightbe complicated.

Findings: The findings of the analysis point out that followers/consumers’ engage with fashion influencers at an interpersonal level, through realization of sharing similar interests and values. Participants have also shown a desire of becoming even more similar to their favourite influencers by altering the beliefs they have in common with them. From the perspective of the theory of Homophily-Heterophily, the engagement between followers and influencers is affected by both, value and status homophily. On the other hand, it has also been demonstrated that identification influences followers/consumers’ purchase intention towards the fashion products influencers endorse on Instagram.

Contributions: This paper contributes to the academia by investigating followers/consumers’ purchase intention through the theories of Identification and Homophily-Heterophily. Additionally, the context of Instagram, as well as, the qualitative nature of this investigation are novelties on this field of study. Fashion companies and influencers can also benefit from the results of this research, since they would be able of creating better collaborations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018.
Keywords [en]
Instagram, Instagram influencer, Identification, Homophily, Purchase intention, Information adoption, Qualitative thematic analysis.
National Category
Economics and Business
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-14709OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-14709DiVA, id: diva2:1232481
Subject / course
Textile management
Available from: 2018-07-13 Created: 2018-07-11 Last updated: 2018-07-13Bibliographically approved

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MSTM_2018_5_01(825 kB)36 downloads
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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