Opinion leadership for ethnic products
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opinion leadership For ETHNIC PRODUCTS. Dissertation Proposal Presented to the Graduate Faculty of the Marshall Goldsmith School of Management Alliant International University. Presented By Levi Richard. Introduction.

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Opinion leadership for ethnic products

opinion leadership For ETHNIC PRODUCTS

Dissertation Proposal

Presented to the

Graduate Faculty of the

Marshall Goldsmith School of Management

Alliant International University

Presented

By

Levi Richard


Introduction

Introduction

  • This study is an exploration of the characteristics of opinion leaders for ethnic products and proposes to learn how they behave and disseminate information.

  • Most of the prior research on this topic has focused on the opinion leaders of mainstream products.


Opinion leadership

Opinion leadership

  • Functions of opinion leadership

    • Acquire product information about product’s or product categories they are interested in.

    • Disseminate information throughout their social networks.

Opinion

Leaders

Social

Networks

Spread Information


U s population trends

u.s. Population trends

Source: U.S. Bureau of Census (1998)


Consumer spending habits

Consumer Spending habits

Source: New Strategist Publications, 2004


Importance of the study

Importance of the study

  • In the United States, the demand for ethnic products will grow as the American society continues to become more diverse

  • Marketers of ethnic products will need to discover who the opinion leaders are and how they disseminate information to the information receivers.

  • A focus must be placed on discovering the characteristics of opinion leaders for ethnic products.


Objectives of the study

Objectives of the study

  • Compare opinion leadership across three different ethnic groups.

  • Compare social networking relationships, such as who the ethnic opinion leader is within the network.

  • Investigate how the opinion leader for ethnic products disseminates information to the information receivers.


Broad conceptual model

Broad Conceptual model


Literature review

Literature Review

  • Opinion Leadership

  • Acculturation

  • Ethnic Identity

  • Cross Cultural Studies


Opinion leadership1

Opinion leadership

  • Original research was conducted by Lazarfeld & Berelson (1948) that measured opinion leaders impact on the election.

  • Rogers and Cartano (1962) defined opinion leadership as “individuals who exert an unequal amount of influence on the decisions of others…those individuals from whom others seek advice and information”.


O l characteristics

O.L. characteristics


Acculturation

Acculturation

  • Acculturation occurs when the member of one cultural group comes into contact with a larger dominant cultural group and changes in their attitudes, values, perceptions, and behaviors occur over time (Gordon, 1964; Herskovits, 1938; Triandis, Kashima, Shimada, Lisansky, & Villareal, 1986).

Low

High


Ethnic identity

Ethnic identity

  • A psychological construct reflecting various aspects of our identification with, and membership in, an ethnic group (Cuellar 1997).

Low

High


Ethnic identity1

Ethnic Identity

  • Factors that impact ethnic identity

    • Self-identification (Phinney, 1992)

    • Sense of belonging (Ashmore, 2004; Phinney, 1990)

    • Ethnic involvement (Phinney, 1992)

      • Friendship (Drieger, 1975; Garcia, 1983)

      • Language

      • Religious Affiliation

      • Group participation

      • Political activities


Ethnic identity2

Ethnic Identity

  • Factors that impact ethnic identity

    • Importance and Salience (Phinney & Alipuria, 1990).

    • Social Embeddedness (Ashmore, 2004)

    • Exploration (Phinney, 2007)


Opinion leadership across cultures

Opinion leadership across cultures

  • Cosmos & Sheth (1980)

    • Measured opinion leadership characteristics across five cultural groups (American White, American Black, India, Chinese, and British)

    • 7 dimensions were found to be significant among the five groups (opinionated, practical, self-centered, accessible, peer expert, authoritarian, general expert.


Opinion leadership across cultures1

Opinion leadership across cultures

  • Marchall & Gitosudarmo (1995)

    • Measured opinion leadership characteristics in eight countries (Germany, Hong Kong, Australia, India, Indonesia, Korea, United States, and New Zealand)

  • Factor analysis was used to categorize 13 opinion leader characteristics into four factors (maturity, expertise, sociability, and wealth).

  • Findings showed differences between the countries with respect to maturity and wealth.


Opinion leadership across cultures2

Opinion leadership across cultures

  • Coulter, Freick, and Price (2002)

    • Measured cosmetic opinion leadership traits among women in Hungary.

    • Findings show that the cosmetics opinion leader is younger, more cosmopolitan and upscale, and involved with the media.

    • They also show a higher degree of product involvement and product knowledge.

    • Also, the findings showed that these opinion leaders showed “seeking behaviors” indicating they look for new and different brands of cosmetics.


Opinion leadership across cultures3

Opinion leadership across cultures

  • Sohn (2006)

    • Measured opinion leader characteristics (expertise, product involvement, domain specific innovativeness, media habits, and demographics) within digital camera online communities in Korea.

    • Found no correlation between product involvement and demographics, with O.L. in the online environment.


Opinion leadership for ethnic products

OL Characteristics

Chat rooms

Newsletter

One-on-one conversation

Ethnic Product Involvement

Ethnic Media Usage

Ethnic Product Knowledge

H4, H6, H7

Opinion Leader

For

Ethnic Products

Dissemination

Behaviors

Internet Forums

Blogs

Word-of-mouth

H5

H9

H1

H3

Ethnic Identity

H8

H2

Ethnic Social

Networks

Acculturation

Figure 1: Broad Conceptual Model


Research questions

Research Questions

  • RQ1Is there a relationship between opinion leadership for ethnic products and the strength of ethnic identity?

    • RQ1a: Is there a relationship between opinion leadership for ethnic products and the dimensions of ethnic identity?

    • RQ1b: Is there a relationship between the opinion leader for ethnic products and their level of education?

    • RQ1c: Is there a relationship between the opinion leader for ethnic products and gender?

  • RQ2Is there a correlation between the strength of acculturation and the ethnic identity of opinion leaders for ethnic products?

  • RQ3Is there a correlation between the ethnicity of opinion leaders for ethnic products and the ethnicity of the information recipient?


Research questions1

Research Questions

  • RQ4Is there a positive correlation between the use of culturally based media and the opinion leader for ethnic products?

  • RQ5Is there a negative correlation between the strength of acculturation for the opinion leader for ethnic products and product knowledge?

    • RQ5a: Is there a negative correlation between the strength of acculturation and the use ethnic language media?

  • RQ6Does a correlation exist between the opinion leaders for ethnic products and product knowledge?

  • RQ7Is there a positive relationship between the level of product involvement and opinion leadership for ethnic products?

  • RQ8Is there a relationship between opinion leadership for ethnic products and the strength of ethnic social networks?

  • RQ9Is there a relationship between opinion leadership and the influence over the members of the social network?


Hypotheses

hypotheses

  • H1: There is a relationship between opinion leaders for ethnic products and the strength of ethnic identity.

  • H1a: There is a relationship between opinion leadership for ethnic products and the dimensions of ethnic identity.

  • H1b: There is a relationship between opinion leadership for ethnic products and their level of education.

  • H1c: There is a relationship between the opinion leader for ethnic products and gender.

  • H2: There is a relationship between strength of acculturation and the ethnic identity of opinion leaders for ethnic products.

  • H3: There is a positive correlation between the ethnicity of opinion leaders for ethnic products and the ethnicity of the information recipient.


Hypotheses1

hypotheses

  • H4: There is a positive relationship between the use of culturally based media and the opinion leader for ethnic products.

  • H5: There is a negative correlation between the strength of acculturation for opinion leaders for ethnic products and product knowledge.

  • H5a: There is a negative correlation between the strength of acculturation and the use ethnic language media.

  • H6: A positive correlation exists between opinion leaders for ethnic products and product knowledge.

  • H7: There is a positive relationship between the level of product involvement for ethnic products and opinion leadership for ethnic products.

  • H8: There is a relationship between opinion leaders for ethnic products and the strength of ethnic social networks.

  • H9: There is a relationship between opinion leadership and the influence over the members of the social network.


Research design

Research design

  • I will utilize an online survey or a mailed questionnaire.

  • Sample population of 3,000 (1,000 each made up of African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, and Asian-Americans).

  • Anticipate a response rate of 10-15%


The survey

THE SURVEY

  • Opinion leadership

  • Acculturation

  • Ethnic Identity

  • Product Knowledge

  • Product Involvement

  • Purchase behaviors

  • Demographics


Measurement

measurement

  • Acculturation Scale

    • Acculturation will be measured with a scale developed by Cuellar, Arnold & Maldonaldo (1995). 28-item, 5 point Likert scale.

  • Ethnic Identity

    • The questions used to measure the level of ethnic identity have been adapted from the Multi-group Ethnic Identity Measure, developed by Phinney (1992). 23-item, 4 point Likert scale

  • Ethnic Opinion Leadership

    • Revised opinion leadership scale (Childers, 1986). 7-item, 5 point Likert scale


Measurement1

measurement

  • Product Knowledge

    • The questions used to measure product knowledge have been adapted from a study conducted by Coulter, Feick, and Price (2000). 5-item, 5 point Likert scale.

  • Product Involvement

    • The questions used to measure involvement have been adapted using an involvement scale developed by Zaichkowsky (1985). 7 point Likert scale.


Data analysis

Data analysis

  • Descriptive statistics will be used to describe the demographic characteristics of the sample, and calculate the mean scores of all items on the scales.

  • Factor analysis will be used to uncover the underlying dimensions of opinion leadership for ethnic products.

  • ANOVA will be used to compare the factor mean scores for each group.

  • The correlations between each of the variables will be analyzed. Factor analysis will be used to retest the reliability of the established scales and re-confirm the underlying dimensions.


Timeline

Timeline

  • Proposal Defense3rd Week of March 08

  • IRB2 Weeks to Confirm

  • Mail announcement post cards4th Week of April 08

  • Mail out survey2nd Week of May 08

  • Mail follow-up post cards4th Week of May 08

  • Begin to analyze data3rd Week of June 08

  • Final defenseAugust 08


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