Service quality in social media communication of NPOs: The moderating effect of channel choice

Johannes Gartner, Matthias Fink, Arne Floh, Fabian Eggers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Social media communication is attractive for non-profit organizations (NPOs); however, the channels of social media are not homogeneous; a factor not sufficiently considered by empirical research. We address this gap by looking into the moderating effect of social media channel choice on the impact of brand trust on process and outcome quality. By surveying 174 customers of an Austrian NPO, we analyze different social media channels to investigate whether (1) the established wisdom of service marketing regarding the positive impact of brand trust on service quality holds in the social-media context and (2) whether the choice of social media channel moderates these relationships. The results confirm the established model of service quality. Knowledge from traditional marketing can still be applied in a digital environment. However, the moderation analysis highlights the relevance of social media channel choice and illustrates different effects on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram. We discuss the implications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)579-587
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Business Research
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021

Copyright 2021 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Business Administration

Free keywords

  • Brand trust
  • Channel choice
  • Non-profit organizations (NPOs)
  • Service marketing
  • Service quality
  • Social media


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