The Impact of Self-Efficacy on Willingness to Try Emerging Formats of Digital Content
Date of Award
Doctor of Professional Studies
School of Information Studies
Content consumption, Early adoption, Self-efficacy, Willingness to try
Social and Behavioral Sciences
Prolific research on self-efficacy, willingness to try, and early adoption has repeatedly demonstrated correlation between these variables (Covington, 1984; Rogers, 1963; Bagozzi, 1992; Davis, 1993). Yet when it comes to practical application in the interactive industry (for example, among digital advertising agencies or product developers), the strategy of audience-targeted marketing (appealing to a specific group) often relies heavily on demographic personas rather than psychological personas, in large part because such persona types are easily identified and accessible: e.g. "I am an early adopter," or "I am a suburban soccer mom." These demographic personas draw heavily from Everett Rogers (2003) who identified consistent characteristics among early and/or willing adopters: age (generally under 30), income level (moderate to high), education level (college and beyond), and level of social interaction (high). Yet there is significant weakness with creating demographic-based personas such as this because this method fails to identify intrinsic motivators. For example, the above characteristics can be used to create a persona such as a "Stay-at-Home Mom": 29, college educated, household income $75-100K, and active in the community. However, this does not necessarily lead to similar behaviors among each "Stay-at-Home Mom," because despite sharing demographic categorization, each person will have varying underlying psychological makeup and motivation; one mother might have high self-efficacy and one might have low self-efficacy, and that is likely to impact willingness to try new technology.
Therefore, the ultimate goal of this study - What is the impact of self-efficacy on willingness to try emerging formats of digital content? - was to provide evidence of more significant correlation between self-efficacy and willingness to try emerging formats of digital content as opposed to demographic segmentation and willingness to try emerging formats of digital content, with emphasis on self-efficacy as the independent variable and the strength of its relationship with the willingness to try variable. Evidence of correlation, which was provided in this study, reduces the "high uncertainty [of the high-tech market] for both suppliers and consumers," resulting in more targeted and effective marketing and product development (Huh & Kim, 2008, p. 46) - allowing for the targeting of psychological motivators rather than demographics. Additionally, such conclusions will allow for efficient, successful encouragement of adoption by either targeting high self-efficacy populations or reducing psychological risk for low self-efficacy populations. Emerging formats of content can then be presented and tried without fear or confidence-reduction.
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Bovasso, Dawn, "The Impact of Self-Efficacy on Willingness to Try Emerging Formats of Digital Content" (2015). Dissertations - ALL. 311.