Fear of Missing Out in the Digital Age: The Role of Social Media Satisfaction and Advertising Engagement

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Psychology and Marketing


We explore the benefits and costs of social networking usage and examine the roles of need to belong and autonomy to contextualize the fear of missing out (FoMO) socio-cultural phenomenon in the digital age. We utilize a self-determination theory-based framework for understanding how the FoMO phenomenon influences positive (negative) mood, information overload, social media satisfaction, and engagement with social media advertising. Study 1 explores how FoMO relates to positive mood through the need to belong. Study 2 demonstrates how FoMO impacts information overload through the mediation of social media interactivity. Furthermore, Study 2 shows how FoMO alters social media satisfaction, and this relationship is mediated by information overload and moderated by autonomy. Study 3 shows that negative emotions serve to mediate the effect of information overload on engagement with social media advertising. Finally, we discuss implications of this study to provide insight into how brand marketers can offer FoMO-reducing mechanisms to consumers to ensure a high level of advertising engagement, how health advocates can leverage social media to promote meaningful engagement with consumers, and how industry practitioners may want to consider aspirational virtual events to create buzz while also satisfying consumers' need to belong to social groups.


Digital age; Digital marketing; Fear of missing out (FOMO); Information overload; Social media action; Social media satisfaction; Social networking


Social Psychology and Interaction | Sociology of Culture

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