Facebook and the Cinema:Assessing the Value of Facebook Fan Pages and its Impact on Facebook Users Behaviors toward Movie Consumption ---------------------------------- Master Thesis By Florence Poirel Academic Advisors Dr. Carlos Rodriguez, Delaware State University, USADr. Constantinos Coursaris, Michigan State University, USA IESEG, International Business School, Lille-Paris, France
AbstractResearch Title: “Facebook and the Cinema”Research Purpose: “Assessing the Value of Facebook Fan Pages and its Impacton Facebook Users‟ Behaviors toward Movie Consumption”Research Question: What is the impact of Facebook Fan pages on Facebookusers‟ attitudes and behaviors toward movies and their related consumption?And how can companies drive consumers to legally consume their movies?Research Methodology: Using an inductive approach, constructs wereidentified from a comprehensive literature review and data was collected fromsurvey questionnaires administrated to students (N=200). A model was proposedfrom the combination of the Technology Acceptance Model and Theory ofPlanned Behavior.Research Findings: Simple regressions showed that all the hypotheses areaccepted: the perceived value of the Facebook fan page, the attitude towardbehavior, perceived pressure, and perceived risk help explaining the formationof the behavioral intention. However, only the perceived value of the Facebookfan page and the perceived risk actually predict the formation of the users‟intention to behave.Research Limitations: The study evaluated self-reported behavioral intentionsand could therefore have introduced inaccuracies. Moreover, the list of proposedsolutions is not exhaustive, and further research can be needed.Practical Implications: Findings will help movie marketers to address the keyaspects which influence consumers‟ behavioral intentions toward movies andtheir related consumption. Solutions were proposed to increase the value of theFacebook page while reducing „risk‟ messages.Originality: This research is unique in the sense that the theory of PlannedBehavior and the Technology Acceptance model have never been tested jointlyin the context of Facebook Fan pages as the technology and the cinema industryas the market.
1. Introduction "The characteristics of all successful communities: broadly shared, accessible set of opportunities, a shared sense of (Bill Clinton,responsibility for the success of the common enterprise, and a TED2007)1 genuine sense of belonging."1. 1. Research Problem Statement The Society of Digital Agencies reported in the 2010 Digital Marketing Outlook that"social network-related marketing" is the 2010-2012 first concern amidst senior marketingexecutives. It is even considered as more important than email and mobile marketing, searchoptimization and other digital marketing campaigns. Social Media is a very young phenomenon in terms of tools for marketing but itstarted back in the 80s with the apparition and proliferation of tchats, forums, and blogs2.People were able to share files, links, but more importantly ideas. Back in the 80s, marketerswere not really concerned with social media as generally only technology-oriented people(and accordingly early adopters) were using Social Media. They thought that this populationdid not represent a big enough target to be considered. Since the early 2000, several social media have emerged and gained popularity, andthe traditional mass marketing model is highly challenged. Now that the main social networks(Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin) count more users than the population3 of most countries(Facebook: 800 million active users, Twitter: over 100 million, Linkedin: over 135 million 4),social media is seen as an entire component of modern society. Not only early adopters utilizethese networks but a wide range of the global population: men and women from 18 (legalminimum age for most of social networks) do. Buchwalter (2009) added that social mediawere flourishing among customer and professional communities and that online access wasnow a necessity. According to a study by Richard K. Miller & Associates (2011 p. 393),"social networking now accounts for 11% of all time spent online in the U.S". SocialNetworks are therefore platforms marketers cannot neglect anymore. As Marketing formerlywanted to create trends, they are now forced to follow one.1 See Appendix 32 (Chapman, 2009)3 Source: http://www.populationdata.net/4 Source: http://facebook.com/press/info.php?statistics/, (Kiser, 2010), http://press.linkedin.com/about/
Social networking is one of the largest actual trends and Facebook is one of its stages.Brands can take directions in social media today that would have been unlikely if notimpossible five years ago (Mignon, et al., 2011 p. 21). Before Facebook, consumers had anindirect relationship with brands: they bought products from retailers and saw advertisementon billboards or television. Earlier in Marketing via Facebook, companies did not have a bigpresence on the platform. Most of the time, firms pages displayed basic information, butnothing more sophisticated. Todays Marketing is much more elaborated. Facebook is now aplatform to promote the product (or service), connect with fans, and propose deeperinteraction with the targeted audience. The relationship with consumers/fans is direct andmore and more firms use Social Media specific messages to get their clients involved online:"Like us on Facebook", "Follow us on Twitter", "Subscribe on YouTube", or "Connect with uson LinkedIn". Companies interact with their audience on this interface and engage fans in thediscussion. Interaction and Engagement are two very important dimensions but they are notsufficient to fulfill firms sales objectives. People are more and more willing to support thebrands they respect and like; Facebook users "like" firms and brands pages, whether theyconsume it or not, whether they buy it or not. For instance, 4,889,2875 people like theFacebook page of Dior, but not all of these 4,889,287 individuals actually purchase Diorproducts. Some of them may like the page because they like the brand even though theycannot afford to consume it. Interested in the Cinema industry, I decided to link the two topics: Facebook as asocial networking platform and marketing tool, and movies as the products. The firstdifference between movies and Dior products is that people can afford theater tickets orDVDs when they may never afford Dior bags or perfumes. But the Cinema industry suffersfrom a structural transformation into the so-called Video-on-Demand industry, or VODmarket, with the increase of movie streaming and downloading. Some firms found the door toenter that market while providing charged services. Netflix, for instance, a movie rentalservice, is the largest legal online films provider in the world with more than 6.3 millionsubscribers and a compilation of over 75,000 movies (Chiu, et al., 2007). But VideoStreaming is most often an illegal activity facilitated by the numerous new tools availableonline. Both Facebook and Video Streaming are online tools and activities. I am nowinterested in exploring how Facebook can help movie producers and marketers to survivewithin this growing fierce market.5 Statistics on Diors Facebook page, 6th September 2011.
1. 2. Research Purpose Facebook is a platform to promote the product (or service), connect with fans, andpropose deeper interaction with the targeted audience6. Getting fans is already part of thebrands goals: they want „more‟ fans now. Getting them engaged is already one of theirrealizations: customers comment, respond, ask questions, etc. Social networks are useful toolsfor brands to connect with customers, interact with them and engage them into discussions.Followers, fans and contacts can be great ambassadors of brands as long as the firms arewilling to build relationships based on transparency and trust. Todays Marketing is muchmore elaborated. The literature lacks of information regarding Facebook users attitudes and behaviorstoward movies. This paper studies the behavior of Facebook users toward movies. Theadvantage of this product selection is that I consider movies as being “affordable” and “easilyaccessible” goods. Moreover, the Facebook Fan pages of movies are studied as the marketingtool as they are an interface between the Facebook user (and potential customer) and themovie. Therefore, the study concentrates on the Facebook Fan Page as the technology, theFacebook users as the population, the movies as the products, the movie consumption as thebehavior, and the visit on the Fan page as the situation. The brands refers to the Movieagencies, Movie studios and producers, and movie marketing companies or any firm thatworks on behalf of these movies. The ultimate purpose of my research is to assess the impact of the FacebookMovie Fan Page in influencing Facebook users attitudes and behaviors toward movieconsumption. It is also to understand the users decision making process that takes place fromthe movie awareness on the Facebook page to the movie consumption, and how the behaviorof the Facebook users toward a movie can be influenced by marketers via the relatedFacebook Movie Fan Page. The final goal, and contribution for marketers, is to determine how to drive Facebookusers into legally consuming the movies by delivering a non-exhaustive list of solutions forfirms to transform these "virtual consumers" into actually legal consumers and customers ofthe movies. This legal consumption includes going to the theater, buying or renting the DVD,and legally downloading or streaming the movie.6 Source: http://www.Facebook.com/
1. 3. Research Questions1. 3. 1. Research Question As my goal is to assess the value of the Facebook Fan Page to change Facebook usersbehaviors toward movies and their related consuming behavior, the main research question is:what is the impact of Facebook Fan Pages on Facebook users’ attitudes andbehaviors toward movies and their related consumption?1. 3. 2. Sub-questions The sub-questions are as follow:o Do Facebook users visit Facebook movie Fan Pages? Do Facebook users find Facebook Fan Pages useful? How do they engage with the movie on Facebook? How this technology platform and its social richness impacts on their decision making process regarding the movie legal consumption?o How do they form their attitudes toward the movies? Do Facebook users process information as other consumers? What options do they consider when they intend to consume a movie?o How are their intentions [to consume the movie] influenced? How are their intentions influenced by their Facebook personal networks? How are their intentions influenced by the different types of content that the Facebook Fan Page provides?o How can companies drive Facebook users toward legal movie consumption? For more information, please contact me at florencepoirel[at]gmail[dot]com