Social Media Engagement of Stakeholders: A Decision Tree Approach in Container Shipping

Ebru Surucu-Balci, Gokcay Balci, Kum Fai Yuen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


Social media provides a significant avenue for stakeholder engagement which is crucial to ensure loyalty and satisfaction of stakeholders who possess valuable resources that can influence the business outcomes. Container lines – imperative members of global supply chains and facilitators of international trade – utilize social media to engage their stakeholders due to environmental and commercial complexity of their business. However, not all social media posts generate the same amount of stakeholder engagement. This study aims to identify and examine the social media post characteristics that lead to higher stakeholder engagement in the container shipping market. The study applies Chi-Squared Automatic Interaction Detection method to categorize social media posts based on their engagement levels. The analysis is conducted on the tweets of four global container lines which are posted between 1 September 2018 and 31 January 2019. The results demonstrate that social media posts of container lines have varying effects on engagement level. We found that fluency of tweets, tangibility of company resources in the tweet, vividness level, content type, existence of a link, and existence of a call-to-action significantly influence the container lines’ stakeholder engagement rate. This study is the first that finds out social media post classes based on the interaction between their characteristics and engagement rates by employing a decision tree methodology. The results are expected to help container lines in their social media management and stakeholder engagement policies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103152
Number of pages12
JournalComputers in Industry
Early online date22 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2020


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