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Journal cover: Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal

Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal

ISSN: 1352-2752

Online from: 1998

Subject Area: Marketing

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Generation Y females online: insights from brand narratives

Document Information:
Title:Generation Y females online: insights from brand narratives
Author(s):Lorna Ruane, (Department of Marketing, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland), Elaine Wallace, (Department of Marketing, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland)
Citation:Lorna Ruane, Elaine Wallace, (2013) "Generation Y females online: insights from brand narratives", Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, Vol. 16 Iss: 3, pp.315 - 335
Keywords:Brand relationships, Consumer behaviour, Fashion, Females, Generation Y, Influence, Internet, Narratives, Online shopping, Social media, Social networking sites, Women
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/13522751311326125 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to understand the relationships Generation Y females have with fashion brands online. Specifically, it examines the role of the internet and social networks in these relationships.

Design/methodology/approach – Narrative interviews were employed to gather data from Generation Y women. Analysis was conducted using inductive thematic analysis.

Findings – Two main themes emerged from the data: the importance of social media and the influence of the internet. Findings suggest social networks have a significant influence on the dynamics of brand consumption and inform our understanding of females' online shopping behaviours.

Research limitations/implications – A qualitative methodology was utilised to elicit insights from consumers. This allowed participants to express their thoughts in their own words, which provided rich data for analysis.

Practical implications – We provide guidance for marketing managers seeking to harness social networks to market brands. Findings illustrate the role of social networks in driving brand consumption among Generation Y women, and highlight the criticality of the social network as a source of information and reassurance for brand choices. Further, we identify concerns about online shopping, and provide suggestions for online retailers seeking to augment consumers' shopping experiences.

Originality/value – This study offers insights into Generation Y females' use of the internet and social networks for brand consumption. To date such research has been mainly quantitative. Further, Generation Y has been neglected in the marketing literature. This paper addresses these gaps and illustrates the significant impact social media has on the behaviour of female consumers.

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