Special issue on Social Media Marketing, Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice

Alma Mintu-Wimsatt and I have been asked to serve as guest editors for a special issue of the Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice. The special issue will focus on Advancing the Theory and Practice of Social Media Marketing.

The call for papers is here.


The use of social media is now ingrained in our everyday lives. It has become common practice for businesses and consumers to use social media as a tool to connect, build, and develop relationships. This is evident from recent statistics on social media usage where approximately 75% of businesses reported having a social networking site while 74% of Internet users use at least one social media outlet. Social media marketing is of value globally due to its ability to cross and even share screens. It is already considered a requisite component of any brand’s promotional campaign and provides real-time customer care value for companies utilizing social media channels. Until recently, social media marketing has largely been driven by branding objectives.  But, a shift is emerging as B2B marketers embrace social media marketing to meet lead generation, relationship marketing, and conversion objectives.


Social media marketing is the utilization of social media technologies, channels and software to create, communicate, deliver, and exchange offerings that have value for an organization and its stakeholders. It is made possible by the digital infrastructure, utilizing social media vehicles such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and others.  Social media engages participants on any connected digital device.

Though the realm of social media is vast and complex, it can be organized using the Zones of Social Media Marketing Framework (Tuten & Solomon, 2015):

Zone 1: Social Community describes channels of social media focused on relationshipsand the common activities people participate in with others who share the same interest or identification.  While all social media channels are built around networked relationships, the interaction and collaboration for relationship building and maintenance in social communities are the primary reasons people engage in these activities. The channels in the social community zone include social networking sites, message boards and forums, and wikis. All emphasize individual contributions in the context of a community, communication and conversation, and collaboration.

Zone 2: Social Publishing aids in the dissemination of content to an audience. Social publishing may be user-generated, editorial and/or branded. Channels of social publishing include blogs, micro sharing sites, media sharing sites, social bookmarking, and news sites. Social publishing has been closely connected to content marketing and B2B marketers have excelled in this zone.

Zone 3: Social Entertainment encompasses channels and vehicles that offer opportunities for play and enjoyment. These include social games, social television, social art, social music, and social sport. Research in this zone primarily has focused on gamification.

Zone 4: Social Commerce refers to the use of social media to assist in the online buying and selling of products and services. Social commerce serves to influence stages of the consumer-decision-making process.  Social commerce channels include reviews and ratings, deal sites and deal aggregators, social shopping markets and social storefronts. While some advances have been made with conversion technology in social channels, the aspects of social commerce that are best understood relate mainly to reviews and ratings.


Despite the exponential growth of social media, we have found that research on each of the four zones noted above have been sporadic in the extant marketing literature.  While there is a wealth of social media articles in practitioner-oriented publications, a cursory investigation of key marketing academic journals and conferences yielded the opposite.  Although social media and social networking may be fairly recent developments, they are now emerging as critical areas of research. It is based on this that the JMTP is devoting a Special Issue on the current state of research on social media marketing.

Given our focus on the strategic foundations of social media marketing, the Special Issue will consider rigorous empirical as well as conceptual papers that offer sound theoretical basis, integrative frameworks and models, important reviews, or debate ideas within the field. We are interested in papers that make their own original and constructive contributions.  We welcome research that explore, investigate and advance our understanding of the dynamic role of social media in the practice of marketing.


The due date for submission of manuscripts is October 15, 2016. Only original papers not currently under review or published in other journals may be submitted. The Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice website, www.jmtp-online.org/, provides journal information (i.e., aims and scope), instructions for authors (i.e., style and formatting guidelines), and information about the review process. Please precisely follow the guide for authors and submit all manuscripts to: editor@jmtp-online.org.  Attach the manuscript and your cover letter as separate documents. Note in the submission that it is for the special issue on sales. Before being placed into review, each manuscript will initially be screened for adherence to JMTP style guidelines and if not properly formatted it will be returned to the author.

QUESTIONS AND FOR MORE INFORMATION:  Contact the Special Issue Guest Editors directly

Tracy Tuten

East Carolina University

tutent@ecu.edu or tracytuten@gmail.com

252.328.6599 (o), 252.495.0328 (mobile)


Alma Mintu-Wimsatt

Texas A&M – Commerce


214.534.1494 (mobile)


See more here