Evaluating user-generated content in social media: an effective approach to encourage greater pro-environmental behavior in tourism?

Han, Wei and McCabe, Scott and Wang, Yi and Chong, Alain Yee Loong (2017) Evaluating user-generated content in social media: an effective approach to encourage greater pro-environmental behavior in tourism? Journal of Sustainable Tourism . pp. 1-15. ISSN 1747-7646

[img] PDF - Repository staff only until 2 April 2019. - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download (905kB)

Abstract

Appealing to tourists’ intrinsic interest for high-quality tourism environments, and thus encouraging them to act with a greater sense of personal responsibility toward the environment, could be critical to promoting sustainable tourism. Proliferating media channels makes the choice, style and delivery of pro-environmental messages a key issue for tourism marketers and management. Social media has become a recognized important channel for tourism information, with user-generated content (UGC) being more trusted than official channels, yet there is little knowledge about its potential role in activating pro-environmental norms. This study investigates that issue. Focusing on the conjoining aspects of personal and social norms for the first time, we propose a hypothetical model to explain the direct and indirect effects of pro-environmental UGC in activating tourists’ pro-environmental behavioral intentions. Working in a Chinese context, where social media plays an increasing role, the research, using a web-based sample (N = 1043), UGC-linked pro-environmental knowledge and awareness, was found to have a strong role in activating pro-environmental norms, creating a pro-environment online community, and increasing tourists’ level of engagement in pro-environmental social media activity. The study highlights the effectiveness of social media channels with UGC providing persuasive communications able to impact sustainable behaviors.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Pro-environmental behavior, user-generated content, social media, tourism marketing, norms
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham Ningbo China > Faculty of Business > Nottingham University Business School China
University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Social Sciences > Nottingham University Business School
Identification Number: 10.1080/09669582.2017.1372442
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2017 11:42
Last Modified: 17 Oct 2017 16:09
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/47298

Actions (Archive Staff Only)

Edit View Edit View