Title

Does parasocial interaction with weight loss vloggers affect compliance? The role of vlogger characteristics, consumer readiness, and health consciousness

Document Type

Article

Abstract

Drawing on the notion of parasocial interaction (PSI) and the social comparison theory, this experimental research examines how nutritionist video bloggers (vloggers) influence consumer compliance intentions toward healthy, weight-loss diets. Drawing on two samples (Mexican Americans and White Caucasians) and using structural equation modeling and mediation analysis, this research highlights vloggers’ credibility and physical attractiveness, but not homophily, as salient source characteristics that influence PSI, which in turn reinforces compliance intention. Moreover, consumer readiness, consisting of role clarity, ability, and motivation, serves as a partial mediator of the PSI–compliance intention relationship. Lastly, consumer health consciousness emerged as a significant moderator of the PSI–compliance intention relationship among White Caucasians, but not among Mexican Americans. The findings and their implications are discussed.

Publication Title

Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services

Publication Date

1-2020

Volume

52

ISSN

0969-6989

DOI

10.1016/j.jretconser.2019.01.002

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