Social good or self-interest: Incentivizing consumer social media engagement behaviour for health messages

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16 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigates the impact of incentive type and ad appeal on consumers' social media engagement in health-related ads. The aim is to determine whether self-oriented incentives versus other-oriented social incentives encourage (crowd in) or discourage (crowd out) consumers to engage in health-related ads on social media. Four experimental studies examine the level of social media consumer engagement under three different incentive conditions for two types of ad appeals and two different health issues. Findings show among incentives, the social good incentive has a significantly greater impact on social media consumer engagement for alcohol ads, with the social good incentive triggering people's intrinsic motivations and encouraging social media engagement. For smoking ads, the social good incentive again promotes engagement, although not significant, This study finds that overall people are significantly more likely to engage in emotional health-related ads on social media compared to rational ads. This study also sheds light on the moderating role of gender on social media engagement for health campaigns. Finally, this study provides insights on the interaction effect of ad appeal and incentives in generating social media engagement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1293-1313
Number of pages21
JournalPsychology & Marketing
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021


  • ad appeal
  • consumer engagement
  • health promotion
  • incentives
  • motivations
  • social media


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