Social media usage for tv viewing in China : predictors, media engagement, and user behavior
Date of Issue2016-03-31
Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information
The increasing popularity of using social media for TV-related matters can have a positive effect on TV ratings and audience engagement. According to Kantar Media (2014), more than 50% of TV audiences in China posted their opinions related to popular TV programs on Weibo. As the degree of social media discussions turns into TV metrics (Smitha, 2013), Weibo TV Rating Index improves the assessment of TV program performance in addition to ratings. Despite the hype of using social media for TV-related matters, there is little scholarly research in this emerging area. To fill the research gap, this study examined the relationships between predictors of using TV-related Weibo and media engagement, and the influence on user behaviors. Based on Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) and Theory of Uses and Gratifications (U&G), this study identified perceived characteristics (i.e., ease of use, usefulness), motivations (i.e., instrumental use and ritualized use) and social factors (i.e., sociability, and social presence) as predictors of two types of media engagement (personal engagement and social-interactive engagement) and examined their influences on active and passive Weibo usage for TV related matters. This web survey study recruited 435 active Chinese Weibo users who engage in discussions of TV programs. Through building a structural equation model (SEM), the results showed that social factors (perceived sociability and social presence) had positive associations with Chinese users’ social-interactive engagement, while the motivation factors and TAM factors had no significance. Perceived social presence and perceived usefulness both were positively related to personal engagement. The two types of media engagement showed strong positive associations with active and passive Weibo usage for TV viewing. With respect to theoretical contributions, this study explained the relationships between predictors, media engagement, and user behaviours in using social media for TV viewing. Practically, the empirical findings provided useful consumer insights to industry practitioners to enhance their understanding of factors influencing social media usage to engage user, and shed light to the development of emerging multiscreen social TVs.
Nanyang Technological University