MA (Master of Arts)
Brand and Media Strategy
Date of Award
Committee Chair or Co-Chairs
Amy Johnson, Melanie Richards, Susan Waters
The present study represents a content analysis of the efforts of real-world brands to facilitate parasocial interaction with their followers. The researcher examined these social media exchanges through the scope of parasocial interaction theory, uncertainty reduction theory, and social response theory. The researcher examined posts in mid to late August 2017 and utilized a code sheet to find confirmed parasocial interaction triggers by brands, and examples of parasocial interaction in the posts of those brands’ followers. The researcher looked to see if the utilization of previous research in controlled environments could provide the framework for studying the non-controlled conditions of a real social media page. He hypothesized that the brands he studied that properly utilized methods and triggers to facilitate parasocial interaction would in fact see higher rates of parasocial interaction. The data, while mostly not statistically significant does provide information that deserves further investigation.
Thesis - Open Access
Carter, Alexander E., "“Friendship with a Brand”: Parasocial Interaction with Burger Brands on Social Media" (2018). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 3417. https://dc.etsu.edu/etd/3417
Copyright by the authors.