Drivers of in-group and out-of-group electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM)

José Luís Abrantes, Cláudia Seabra, Cristiana Raquel Lages, Chanaka Jayawardhena

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to address a recent call for additional research on electronic word-of-mouth (eWOM). In response to this call, this study draws on the social network paradigm and the uses and gratification theory (UGT) to propose and empirically test a conceptual framework of key drivers of two types of eWOM, namely in-group and out-of-group. Design/methodology/approach: The proposed model, which examines the impact of usage motivations on eWOM in-group and eWOM out-of-group, is tested in a sample of 302 internet users in Portugal. Findings: Results from the survey show that the different drivers (i.e. mood-enhancement, escapism, experiential learning and social interaction) vary in terms of their impact on the two different types of eWOM. Surprisingly, while results show a positive relationship between experiential learning and eWOM out-of-group, no relationship is found between experiential learning and eWOM in-group. Research limitations/implications: This is the first study investigating the drivers of both eWOM in-group and eWOM out-of-group. Additional research in this area will contribute to the development of a general theory of eWOM. Practical implications: By understanding the drivers of different eWOM types, this study provides guidance to marketing managers on how to allocate resources more efficiently in order to achieve the company's strategic objectives. Originality/value: No published study has investigated the determinants of these two types of eWOM. This is the first study offering empirical considerations of how the various drivers differentially impact eWOM in-group and eWOM out-of-group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1067-1088
Number of pages22
JournalEuropean Journal of Marketing
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Communication
  • Consumer behaviour
  • Internet
  • Marketing strategy
  • Portugal
  • Social network theory
  • Uses and gratification theory
  • Word-of-mouth


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