Date

4-2014

Department

Communication Studies

Degree

Master of Arts (MA)

Chair

Faith Mullen

Keywords

Chaiken, Facebook, Heuristic Systematic Model, Marketing, Real Estate, Twitter

Disciplines

Advertising and Promotion Management | Communication | Marketing | Public Relations and Advertising | Real Estate | Social Media

Abstract

With the advent of Facebook and Twitter, people from all walks of life in all parts of the world have the ability to connect electronically, impersonally, and constantly. Small businesses are just beginning to unlock the power of social media marketing, specifically real estate professionals. Shelly Chaiken created the Heuristic Systematic Model of persuasion, the descendant of the Elaboration Likelihood Model. This study applies the tenets of Chaiken's HSM to the methods of persuasion employed by real estate agents via Facebook and Twitter. Fifty participants were surveyed by the researcher in order to gauge their activity, interest level, and motivation for processing posts by real estate professionals on Facebook and Twitter. Their corresponding data was analyzed for answers to three specific research questions. The researcher's findings suggest that the average Facebook and Twitter user is not the same as the real estate agent's target client. The findings from this study also suggest that current levels of real estate marketing via these social networking sites do not engage users enough to call their sufficiency threshold into question, thereby never motivating them to concurrently or systematically process the information. Limitations of the present study and recommendations for future research are also provided.