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Research report - Social Networking Websites

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

GLOBAL MARKETING RESEARCH REPORT Social Networking Websites WS 2007 GROUP D TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction........................................................................................... 3 Executive Summary.................................................................................. 3 Data Collection Process............................................................................ 4 Analysis Results Demographics................................................................................. 5 Gender. ................................................................................. 5 Age........................................................................................ 5 Nationality............................................................................... 6 General Important Findings.................................................................. 7 Which SNWs........................................................................... 7 How Much Willing to Pay.............................................................7 Percentage of Time on SNW...................................................... 10 Usefulness Assessment - Factor Analysis..............................................10 Preference Assessment - Factor Analysis.............................................12 Hypothesis Testing Hypothesis I : Network Size..............................................................14 II : Applications.................................................................16 III : Usage Intensity............................................................19 IV : Information.................................................................20 V : Dependence................................................................21 VI : Registration................................................................23 Conclusion and Recommendations............................................................24 Limitations..............................................................................................25 INTRODUCTION The world of the internet, with its ever-evolving opportunities, has always been an interesting topic to research. In our study, we have decided to take a closer look at the Social Networking Websites (SNWs), that are becoming an increasingly prevalent aspect of today's technological society. Even though SNWs are a relatively new type of communication media, with the oldest ones (MySpace and HI5) introduced only in 2003, in the last decade there has been a signficant increase in the number of SNW providers, as well as a rapid augmentation in the usage rates. This demostrates a great research potential of this field. Our ultimate goal was to determine under which circumstances are registered users willing to pay for the services provided by the SNWs and if yes, how much. With this objective in mind we developed the following research question and hypotheses. A wide range of SPSS methods was used to do so; ranging from general statistical tools, through correlation measuring to the factor analysis as well as factor scores. However, this report discusses only those that have provided the most remarkable results. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY After collecting and analysing our data, we were very surprised at some of the results. Firstly, we expected there to be a correlation between the size of the network and the amount that a user would be willing to pay (or the amount they would consider fair) ...read more.

Middle

The Scree plot also shows an Eigenvalue greater than 1. After rotating the component matrix using VARIMAX we were able to extract 2 factors. "Many friends registered" as well as "Being used to the SNW and knowing it best" was comprised into the factor dependence. Lets call the following 3 variables "Being easier to use", "Preference of the applications" and "Access to more valuable information" convenience. HYPOTHESIS TESTING I. Does the size of the network influence the user's willingness to pay? Hypothesis: The larger the network size, the higher the willingness to pay for a SNW. Null-hypothesis: There is no correlation between the network size and the amount a SNW user is willing to pay. The following analyses were developed based on the data collected regarding the level of willingness to pay when compared to the size of the network that a user belongs to. We created the following groupings of the data, in order to simplify the analysis and calculations: (NetworkGroups): 1.00 = 1 network 2.00 = 2 networks 3.00 = 3+ networks (MaxPayGroups): 1.00 = 0 Euros 2.00 = 1-2 Euro 3.00 = 3 and more Euros This data includes one missing value, which constitutes for only 0.8% of the cases. NetworkGroups * MaxPriceGroups Crosstabulation Count MaxPriceGroups Total 1 2 NetworkGroups 1 12 3 15 2 57 36 93 3 7 12 19 Total 76 51 127 As our data is not metric, but rather ordinal, it did not fulfill the requirements for using the Pearson Correlation. Therefore, we decided to run the Spearman�s Rank Correlation test. From the Spearman Rho test, we can conclude that there is not a significant correlation between the number of networks that a SNW user belongs to and the maximum that a user is willing to pay. However, there is a slight tendency (.204) to support our hypothesis, but this tendency is not large enough to draw a favorable conclusion. ...read more.

Conclusion

Though there are some slight tendencies, none of them are highly significant. Overall, people are simply unwilling to pay for the services offered by an SNW. We recommend that the firms who own and operate the Social Networking Webistes not assess a monthly fee for registration at this time. Since SNWs are fairly new to users, this could be a possible reason for their unwillingness to pay. If the operators of these sites needed extra revenue, we would recommend that they either wait until a later time to assess a fee (when perhaps the user's level of attechment to the site increases) or find other means of funding (such as increased advertising). LIMITATIONS In the course of the SPSS session we have realized that our questionnaire was developed without strong statistical knowledge. Members of our team were only familiar with the basic theorie in statisctics, so when developing our questionnaire, we were limited to the kinds of questions and scales that we could apply. The questionnaire did not allow us to collect the type of data needed to run the more sophisticated analyses. Though we had metric data, for example on the maximum payment question, the categories were not sensitive enough to reflect a correlation in the SPSS analysis. Though some questions included in the questionnaire were originally constructed to yield metric data (such as a percentage answer), in order to analyze the data in SPSS, we had to group answers, which turned the data into categorical. In the questionnaire we have also included a question (number 21) asking if the users are currently paying for the services of a SNW. However, all the respondents answered with no. Due to this fact the 2 branching questions related to the question (21) were irrelevant. As a consequence, we could analyse the willingness to pay only among the people who are currently not charged any fee by the SNW providers. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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