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South African Journal of Information Management

On-line version ISSN 1560-683X
Print version ISSN 2078-1865


SANNE, Petra N.C.  and  WIESE, Melanie. The theory of planned behaviour and user engagement applied to Facebook advertising. SAJIM (Online) [online]. 2018, vol.20, n.1, pp.1-10. ISSN 1560-683X.

BACKGROUND: Facebook has become one of the most popular advertising platforms on social media. It is therefore important for social media marketers and researchers to have an understanding of the predictors of Facebook users' engagement with Facebook advertising across all brands and Facebook advertising types. OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to determine whether the theory of planned behaviour could be applied to understand and predict engagement with Facebook advertising. METHOD: Non-probability convenience sampling resulted in a sample size of 656 Facebook users above the age of 18 who resided in South Africa. The data collected by means of an online survey were analysed using regression analyses. RESULTS: The findings indicated that attitude was the strongest predictor of behavioural intention to engage with Facebook advertising, followed by subjective norms. However, perceived behavioural control was found not to be a significant predictor of behavioural intention to engage with Facebook advertising. Furthermore, behavioural intention to engage with Facebook advertising was found to predict actual engagement. CONCLUSION: Social media marketers need to focus on influencing attitudes and subjective norms to increase engagement with their Facebook advertisements. Furthermore, the theory of reasoned action was found to be more appropriate to predict engagement with Facebook advertising, as it excludes perceived behavioural control.

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