Exploring and evaluating success factors of social media marketing strategy: a multi-dimensional-multi-criteria framework




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Peer reviewed



Purpose – Today, social media is counted as an integral part of marketing strategies, which has led to a paradigm change in this field. As reported, socialmedia marketing has been growing over the recent five years and is predicted to be exponentially growing in the future. However, despite the huge promise and intention to adopt social media marketing strategies by organisations, there remain challenges regarding the successful implementation of these new marketing programmes. Accordingly, marketing managers’ awareness of the success factors of social media marketing is essential to return investment in this area. Due to the little research been accomplished in this field, this paper aims to identify the success factors of social networks’ marketing and to rank the factors by using of interval best-worstmethod (BWM). Design/methodology/approach – To serve the research aims, an extant literature review is accomplished and a focus group approach is conducted to identify the main success factors and subfactors. To analyse the focus group discussions, a qualitative content analysis approach is applied. Interval BWMis used to calculate the weights of each identified factor. Findings – In the final framework, six main success criteria, including strategy, process, technology, content, performance evaluation and people are identified, for each sub-criteria are developed. The interval BWM results suggest the content criterion as the most important success factor in developing a socialmedia marketing strategy. Research limitations/implications – First, this research provides a comprehensive insight into the success factors and best practices of social media marketing. This is the first to draw on the critical factors affecting the success of social media marketing, considering people in the organisation such as top management, employees and customers, strategy, process and performance evaluation focussing on the change management requirements for applying social media marketing and technology as the technical factor of the adoption process, simultaneously. Identifying critical success factors of social media marketing will help marketing managers to avoid falling into the trap of developing social media strategies based on less important areas and ignoring the critical ones. Besides, owing to the limited resources of organisations in implementing social media marketing strategies, prioritising and weighing the success factors will lead to a focus on more important areas. Originality/value – Whilst the related studies have mostly concentrated on the capabilities and activities required to conduct social media marketing and the few research investigated the critical success factors most concentrated on the customer and the content-related factors, the finding of this research goes beyond that and suggests technical, process and human aspects simultaneously in the implementation process in a holistic view.


The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version. The Publisher's final version can be found by following the DOI link.


Social media marketing, Social media marketing strategy, Success factors of social media marketing strategy, Interval best-worst method (BWM)


Jami Pour, M., Hosseinzadeh, M. and Amoozad Mahdiraji, H. (2021) Exploring and evaluating success factors of social media marketing strategy: a multi-dimensional-multi-criteria framework. Foresight,


Research Institute

Centre for Enterprise and Innovation (CEI)