Consumers have also changed their approaches to purchasing and consuming products and services. The internet is currently considered as the main source of information that enables consumers to make important decisions more easily during their shopping activities. The digital media platforms such as social media, websites, emails, search engines, and knowledge platforms have placed customers in a more active role as key market players. This has allowed companies to reach out to prospective customers everywhere and anytime (Eagle et al. 2014). Digital media platforms such as social media and email applications are increasingly being regarded as the ideal arenas for establishing and strengthening communities that allow users and organizations to establish and strengthen good relations and facilitate content accessibility to members of the public. Social media is gradually forming part of people’s everyday lives. Computers interconnected by networks have allowed people located in different parts of the planet to ignore the physical and distance barriers and seek others, and bring them together in groups that are formed on the premise of a broad range of socio-cultural and sub cultural relationships. a. Background to the Study The rapid changes and advancements in technology for over a decade have transformed the manner in which both business firms and customers operate within their specific apparel
DIGITAL MARKETING AND CONSUMER BEHAVIOR 4 markets. In particular, the advancements of social media and email technologies have increased both the number and variety of communication channels available to marketers who seek to reach their target customers ( Ublova, 2015). Today, communications are no longer confined to pre posters and television advertisements, since the utilization of social media and email has supported the development of new channels such as direct mails and user-generated contents. These rapid changes have also encouraged the growth of communication potentials of existing companies. Social media and email revolutions have also empowered consumers within the communication processes on many levels. In particular, the internet provides customers with access to unprecedented volumes of information so that when searching for products to meet specific needs, they can actively search for the most appropriate solutions and compare the options available ( Mahoney & Tang, 2016). Consequently, many comparison websites have arisen in reaction to this growing trend. Most social networking sites have been built on the technological and ideological foundations of Web 2.0, which give room for the development and exchange of user-generated contents (Eagle et al. 2014). For instance, apparel companies normally resort to social media when seeking to champion behavior change in the audience via media messages. The user- generated profile features found in social media channels are the closest links that many media producers have to the individual personality of an audience member. Although social media and
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