File(s) not publicly available

Are word-of-mouth referrer types linked to customer personality?

conference contribution
posted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 by Angela DobeleAngela Dobele, Antony WardAntony Ward
This conceptual paper discusses possible links between consumers word-of-mouth behaviour and their personality. The importance of word-of-mouth referrals is explored, personality of customers is discussed and the possibility of links between the two constructs are made. A gap was identified in the literature with respect to referrer types and possible links with personality. The findings from two exploratory studies are reported which identify five different referrer types of consumers for cafés and restaurants: opinion leaders, helpful friends, passive mercenaries, reciprocators and closed mouth. The results of a survey of 209 respondents showed a weak correlation between introverts and opinion leaders, while there was a significant negative correlation between opinion leaders and helpful friends. The inclusion of two moderating variables (age and gender) slightly improved the strength of the correlations. The results indicate value in further investigating potential relationships between personality and word-of-mouth behaviour. A proposed theoretical framework was developed together with seven hypotheses. The contribution of this paper is to identify a new direction for research to not only promote a better understanding of the referral behaviour of consumers, and by linking this approach with personality measures, to also gain a better understanding of the motivations of consumers’ referral behaviour.


Category 1 - Australian Competitive Grants (this includes ARC, NHMRC)


Parent Title

2004 Australian and New Zealand Marketing Academy Conference.

Start Page


End Page


Number of Pages


Start Date



Wellington, N.Z.


Victoria University of Wellington

Place of Publication

Wellington, NZ

Peer Reviewed


Open Access


External Author Affiliations

Conference; Faculty of Business and Law;

Era Eligible


Name of Conference

Australian & New Zealand Marketing Academy. Conference

Usage metrics