Designing and Validating a Method to Measure Young People’s Susceptibility to Social Media Influencers: The SUSIS Questionnaire

Charles Alves de Castro


Social media influencers (SMIs) represent a phenomenon that has increased drastically in previous years, reaching a peak since the COVID-19 pandemic. Much of previous research done involving parasocial relationship theory and consumer trust theory has been done regarding celebrities, leaving a gap in understanding influence and one’s susceptibility to influence in an SMI context. Here, a series of closed-ended questions was applied to a young student cohort (N=91), and its power was evaluated using structural equation modelling, which indicated that a series of 25 questions holds the ability to measure susceptibility to SMI influence. These questions form the SUSIS Questionnaire, thereby representing a confirmed tool to measure susceptibility to SMI influence. These findings respond to a gap in marketing literature involving SMIs, showing the potential power and usefulness they hold in marketing strategies, but also serve as an alert that SMIs influence youth, presumedly both positively and negatively.



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Studies in Media and Communication      ISSN 2325-8071 (Print)   ISSN 2325-808X (Online)

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