Document Type

Article

Date of Original Version

2021

Department

Political Science

Abstract

Chinese social media platforms such as WeChat, TikTok (Douyin in Chinese), and Weibo have become increasingly popular, attracting large amounts of loyal users in and outside of China. Borrowing theories on brand trust and perceived brand values from Marketing and Management, this study examines how perceived media values influence trust in Chinese social media brands such as Weibo and WeChat. Utilizing original survey data collected from Chinese social media users, our study finds that: (1) Chinese users perceive five layers of values in using social media applications, including information value, entertainment value, social networking value, social status value, and organizational communication value; (2) these perceived media values have different effects on trust in social media brands: while entertainment value, social networking value, and social status value directly affect social media brand trust, information value and organizational communication value indirectly affect social media brand trust through social status value, social networking value and/or entertainment value. Our study suggests an important explanation for trust in social media and develops a scale of perceived media values (PMV) that can be used by future researchers.

Publication Title

Computers in Human Behavior

Volume

127

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