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1.1 Background of the Study
The proportion of the world adolescents’ population is rising faster than that of other age
groups. As at today, 84% of the world’s adolescent live in the developing world (Singh, Wu and
Langrose, 2006). In Nigeria, the onset of menstruation profoundly changes an adolescent’s life
(Aniebe and Nwankwo, 2019). Young adolescent girls in schools need access to clean soft
absorbent sanitary pads or products, as menstruation necessitates some form of sanitary protection.
To meet this need, learning about perception and behaviour of adolescent’s on the use of sanitary
protection is of pivotal significance to health education and their reproductive health, as attitude
developed during this period is likely to be pursued to adult life and this trend may continue to
their offspring. Pads come in different thickness and styles, depending on menstrual flow, and
should be changed at least 3 - 4 hours regardless of the amount of staining for comfort and to
prevent odour and infections (Egyptian Fertility Care Society, 2019). Unhygienic behavioural
practice of not using sanitary pads during menstruation is a result of negative perception and
behaviour, thus endangering the reproductive health and wellbeing of these adolescent school girls
especially in their early period of transition from childhood to adulthood. There is a limited
availability of commercial sanitary pads and those that exist are financially out of reach for most
women and girls. Clean clothing materials, toilet tissues, sanitary napkins, pads, tampons have
been identified as materials used to manage menstruation (Moronkola and Uzuegbu, 2016).
Advertising is basically the dissemination of sales messages through purchased space, time
or other media (Arens and Bovee, 2016). It is one of the marketing tools used by businessmen and
women to promote their goods and services.
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Just as the media of social communication have enormous influence everywhere, so does
advertising which uses the media as a vehicle for persuasion as well as a powerful force for shaping
attitudes and behaviour in today’s world. Individuals are exposed each day to a tremendous number
of advertising stimuli. To cope with this bombardment, our sensory organs select those stimuli to
which attention is given (Wells: 242).
Advertising is not done by the management of a product just for the fun of it. It is
principally undertaken for persuasion or advocacy even apparently just giving us information,
using media that are paid to get through to the mass audience with the identity of advertisers being
clear(Arens and Bovee:7).
Social media refers to the means of interactions among people in which they create, share,
and exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks. Andreas Kaplan and
Michael Heinlein (2010) define social media as "a group of Internet-based applications that build
on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, which allow the creation and
exchange of user-generated content“. Furthermore, social media depends on mobile and web-
based technologies to create highly interactive platforms through which individuals and
communities share, co-create, discuss, and modify user-generated content. It introduces substantial
and pervasive changes to communication between organizations, communities, and individuals.
Advertising can reach a wide range of audiences with simple messages that announce the
availability and location of products express their quality and value, imbue brands with personality
and simultaneously define the personality of people who can buy them (Arens and Bovee:
22).Some of the keys roles of advertising are; building awareness, inducing dialogue and
positioning or repositioning brands by changing either perception or attitudes (Fill: 487).
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The rapid growth of Internet in the last decade has made it a vital part of each and every
soul. The Internet users’ base worldwide has grown to 3.42 billion in 2016 from 2.92 billion in
2014 (Internet Live Stats, 2016). Internet is being used for various activities like searching product
features, compare prices, select and place order and make payments (Senthil, Prabhu,
&Bhuvaneswari, 2013; Sinha, 2010). The fast and flexible communication competencies of the
Internet has made it a platform where people communicate and exchange information with others
(Ahmad, Rahman, & Khan, 2017; Ahmad, Rahman, & Khan, 2016; Ahmad & Khan, 2015).
Internet has evolved itself into an interactive and collaborative from that of passive readings
(Sharma, 2008). The interactive quality of the internet has given its’ users a new way to interact.
Online Social Networking Sites (SNS) are the digital networks in which there occurs an intrinsic
connection with other members present over the site (Wellman &Gulia, 1999). Social media has
proved itself to be the most significant medium which has extended its root to different segments
of the world population (Corbett 2009; Barnes & Mattson, 2008; Bernoff, Pflaum, & Bowen 2008).
Traditional channels like television, radio, newspaper etc. delivers single-directional
communication but with the advent of Internet and social media the users are able to get two-way
conversations (Mayfield, 2008). Among the different types of social media SNSs have been
considered to be the most important for the digital media revolution (Vogt &Knapman, 2008). It
has also been reported that e-mail has been replaced by SNSs to be the most popular online activity
and the primary source from where the Internet users seek information (Fuscaldo 2011; Albanesius
Advertising through all media influences audiences, but television is one of the strongest
mediums of advertising and due to its mass reach and visual components; it can not only influence
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individuals’ attitude, behaviour, lifestyle, exposure but can, in the long run, even influence the
culture of the country (Latif and Abideen, 2016).
Social Media advertisement came up in the society because it helps to showcase goods and
service. It also helps producers to sell their goods more, informs the public not only about the
product but also the qualities of the products than any other medium.
However, there exists different advertisement of sanitary pad which is a commodity that is
widely used by women in the society. But among other sanitary pads that are being advertised,
Always is the most widely used because of it popularities among users of sanitary pads and based
on the assumption that its advertisement is so dramatic and captivating that’s why every user of
sanitary pad prefers it to other products of its type.
This study is set to find out why social media advertisement of sanitary pad influences the
consumer in purchasing the products so that the assumption will become a fact with reasonable
evidence and theories backing it.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
When humans enter the digital age, many aspects of life are different from previous
periods, lifestyles that rely on a variety of online and social media are widespread. Based on the
background of this era, marketing methods have become more and more exciting and diversified.
As a new product of digital marketing, influential market has become very popular in recent years,
but also the money spent in this field has grown exponentially in the past few years (Lou & Yuan,
2019), so the area is widely concerned by the academic community.
It has been observed that most female students in Kogi State prefer ‘Always’ to others
mainly because of its quality, and particularly because of the role which TV advertisement has
played in popularizing the product. This shows the supreme power of the internet in Nigeria in the
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century which has left the teeming population of youths consuming wide range of information
on social media ranging from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Whatsapp and YouTube etc. These
platforms have a range of personalities with a whooping amount of followers who always consume
their content which in turn educates and enlightens them. Through this products such as sanitary
towels and other products have used that strategy in marketing their products and therefore
increasing their brand name and reputation. Due to this, the researcher sought to examine the
influence of social media advertising on female mass communication students’ purchasing habit
of sanitary pad.
1.3 Objectives of Study
1 To determine the level of influence social media advertising has had on female mass
communication students who use sanitary pad.
2 To examine ways in which social media sanitary pad advertisement has attracted its customers.
3 To find out what other categories of sanitary pad students use apart from ‘Always’.
4 To find out what social medium does Kogi state university use in assessing information as
regarding sanitary pads.
1.4 Research Questions
1 How has social media influencers’ advertisement on sanitary pad influenced the choice of female
mass communication students that patronize it?
2 In what creative way has the sanitary pad advertisement attracted its consumers?
3 What other categories of sanitary pad does student’s use aside ‘Always’ sanitary pad?
4 Which social medium does Kogi state university students use in assessing information as
regarding sanitary pads?
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1.5 Scope of Study
The study is limited to only female mass communication students of Kogi State University who
are internet savvy. This study will make use of Twitter as the main social media for the study. This
is because KSU undergraduates are familiar with it everytime.
1.6 Significance of Study
Producers of Always Sanitary Pad
The producers of ‘Always’ sanitary pad can use this research work to improve on the
quality of their products and services. This is possible if many of the adverts are more dramatic,
colourful, truth to life and captivating.
Also, the producers should improve in the concept of their advertisement and improving
on the product that will make both the old users and new users continue to use the product.
The Students
The female students can also benefit by gauging their scale of preferences before settling
for a better and unique product. It is also possible for the students to know about the product and
its qualities.
The Society
The society can equally gain a lot from this research because the students, TV stations,
social media advertisement producers and manufacturers should know their responsibilities and
perform them with the hope of achieving developmental changes.
Again, advertising has an important role to play on a country’s economy society, and
culture. The importance of advertising to the economy as a whole can best be demonstrated by
the Abundance principle.
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This principle states that in an economy that produces more goods and services that can be
consumed, advertising serves two purposes; it keeps consumers informed of their alternatives, and
it allows companies to compete effectively for consumer capital.
1.7 Definitions of Terms
Influence is the power to have an important effect on someone or something. If someone
influences someone else, they are changing a person or thing in an indirect but important way.
Advertising is a very structured form of applied communication, employing both verbal and non-
verbal elements that are composed to fill specific space and time format determined by the sponsor.
Choice involves mentally making a decision judging the merits of multiple options and
selecting one or more of them.
Sanitary Pad
A sanitary pad, sanitary napkin, sanitary towel is an absorbent item worn by a woman while
she is menstruating, while she is recovering from virginal surgery (post birth bleeding), after an
abortion, or in any other situation where it is necessary to absorb a flow of blood from the vagina.
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Ahmad, A., Rahman, O., & Khan, M. N. (2016). Consumer's Perception of Website Service
Quality: An Empirical Study. Journal of Internet Commerce, 15(2), 125-141.
Bausch, S., & Han, L. (2006). Social Networking sites grow 47 percent, year over year, reaching
45 percent of Web users, according to Nielsen/Netratings.
Corbett, P. (2009). Facebook demographics and statistics report: 276% growth in 35–54 year old
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Freberg, K., Graham, K., McGaughey, K., and Freberg, L. A., (2011), Who are the social media
influencers? A study of public perceptions of personality, Public Relations Review, vol. 37,
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motivations for brand-related social media use. International Journal of Advertising, 30(1),
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Industry. SCMS Journal of Indian Management, pp.14-30.
Talaverna, M., (2015), 10 Reasons Why Influencer Marketing is the Next Big Thing. Retrieved
Tapinfluence, (2017a), what is influencer marketing? Retrieved from
Virtanen, H., Björk, P. & Sjöström, E. (2017). Follow for Follow: Marketing of a Start-Up
Company on Instagram. Journal of Small Businesses and Enterprise Development, vol. 24,
no.3, pp.468-848.
Voorveld, H. A. M., van Noort, G., Mutinga, D. G. & Bronner, F. (2018). Engagement with Social
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of Advertising. vol 47, pp.38-54.
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This chapter is designed to review concepts, empirical and non-empirical literature as well
as theories related to the topics under study so as to offer the study theoretical foundation. Thus,
the chapter covers the theoretical, empirical framework, and conceptual review of the study.
2.1 Conceptual Review
2.1.1 Overview of the Social Media
Social media involve the use of mobile and web-based technologies to design highly
interactive platforms by which individuals and communities share, create, converse, and adjust
User-Generated Content (Kietzmann, Hermkens & McCarthy, 2011). User- Generated Content
(UGC) is enabled by Web 2.0 (Kaplan & Haenlein, 2010). Web 2.0 is a term encompassing a
second generation of internet-based and interactive applications that are developed around user-
generated and user adjusted content, such as wikis, blogs, podcasts and social networking sites.
The term Web 2.0 is widely attributed to Tim O’Reilly who used it as the theme of a conference
in 2004 referring to a second generation of Web-based services that feature openness for
collaboration and interactivity (Boler, 2008, p. 39; O’Reilly, 2005). Web 2.0 allows internet users
to engage in the creative process.
Social Media can be defined as a group of Medium whose applications and technologies
derived from the web (Kaplan and Haenlein, 2011; Sago 2015). Social Media most visible
difference from traditional media is its nature itself. Because Social Media is born in the digital
era, the audience is enabled to respond and interact with the message, making feedback an
important part of the communication process. Additionally, Social Media establish a new
dynamics in the media market, consumers now are not only able to respond to messages but to
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create themselves a message. The user-generated content makes Social Media the kind of platform
with vast possibilities and low entry barriers, bringing the audience to an active part of the
communication process. Kotler (2017) explains how the use of social media has changed the
classic sender-transmitter communication model. With Social Media, the public is more likely to
share their opinions and taking other people's opinions into consideration. That new dynamic
makes consumers a source of invaluable insights. As a result, customers are building their own
image of the companies, despite the own brand image projection. Sender and receiver are intricate
now, recipients of a brand communication message can themselves become the senders of a
company message. Therefore, social media has become a widely used marketing tool over the last
Either aiming to enhance brand equity or to promote products for increasing sales, Social
Media plays always a role in marketing strategies. The aim of companies when using Social Media
is commonly related to consumer-relationship, brand awareness and an increase in sales (Tsimonis
and Dimitriadis, 2013). Godey et al (2016) add that Social Media marketing efforts have also a
significant positive effect on brand awareness and brand image, the two main dimensions of brand
equity. In the digital age, its argued that Social Media actions intensify value equity in a way that
traditional marketing media do not usually do (Filo et al 2015; Kim et al, 2001). As stated before,
Social Media is an interacting communication media. Nor only brands talk to consumers (common
on traditional advertising media), but consumers also talk to brands. It is known that Information
and entertainment are the dominant drivers of all brand-related social media use by consumers.
Either consuming, contributing or creating brand-related content, the audience interest for
information and the desire for entertainment is what makes people engage with brands online
(Muntinga, 2015).
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Social media penetration worldwide is ever increasing. In 2016, 68.3 percent of internet
users were social media users and these figures are expected to grow. North America ranks first
among regions where social media is highly popular, with a social media penetration rate of 59
percent. In 2016, more than three quarters of the United States population had a social media
profile. Overall, U.S. users spend more than 216 weeks minutes on social media via Smartphone,
53 weekly minutes via PC, and 50 minutes per week on social networks via tablet devices. (https:// statistics/ 278414/number-of-worldwide-social network-users/). In Nigeria,
Facebook, a leading social media platform, has over 16 million users, (
Wright & Hinson (2009, p. 15) identified the social media and social networks mostly used by PR
practitioners as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Blog for feedback.
2.1.2 Facebook
Facebook provides social utility services that help people communicate more efficiently
with their friends, families and colleagues. The technologies of Facebook facilitate the sharing of
information through the social graph and digital mapping of people’s real world social connections
service. It was launched in February 2004. Facebook was founded by four students of Harvard
University- Mark Zuckerberg, Eduardo Saverin, Andrew McCollum, Dustin Moskovitz and Chris
Hughes. It was initially called Face mash and was restricted to students of Harvard University.
The use was later extended to people in the universities in Boston, Canada and Ivy League
Universities. The Face mash software was written by Mark Zuckerberg. It was opened to members
of the general public, of 13 years and above, in September 2006. There are over 1,679,433,530
Facebook users worldwide, out of which 9.3% (146, 637,000) of the subscribers are from Africa.
There are over 16,000,000 Facebook users in Nigeria. (Internet World Stat, March 2017).
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2.1.3 Twitter
Twitter is a micro-blogging social network that allows users to share real-time information
in short spurts of up to 140 characters per tweet. It was founded in 2006 by Jack Dorsey, Evan
Williams, and Biz Stone. It is online equivalent of mobile phone text messaging. Twitter users can
“follow” other users or communicate by using hashtags (eg #Nimbomassacre). The hashtags serve
as user-identifying key words that direct readers to what others think are important. Twitter is
based in San Francisco but it is used in other countries. It is available in English, French, German,
Italian, Japanese and Spanish. (Sheedy 2011). Twitter is one of the most popular social networks
worldwide. Part of the appeal is the ability of users to follow any other user with a public profile,
enabling users to interact with celebrities who regularly post on the social media site. As of the
fourth quarter of 2016, Twitter service averaged at 319 million monthly active users. In the last
quarter of 2016, Nigeria recorded a total tweet of 1,646,212. That was the third biggest in Africa
behind South Africa and Kenya.
2.1.4 LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a business and employment oriented social networking service that operates
via websites and mobile apps. Founded on December 28, 2002, and launched on May 5, 2003, it
is mainly used for professional networking, including employers posting jobs and job seekers
posting their CVs. As of 2015, most of the company's revenue came from selling access to
information about its members to recruiters and sales professionals. As of September 2016,
LinkedIn had more than 467 million accounts, out of which more than 106 million are active.
LinkedIn allows members (both workers and employers) to create profiles and "connections" to
each other in an online social network which may represent real world professional relationships.
Members can invite anyone (whether an existing member or not) to become a connection.
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2.1.5 YouTube
YouTube was founded in February 2005. It uses web experience to share online videos. It
allows people to easily upload and share video clips on YouTube changed
the way people share videos because it created a simple way to share otherwise cumbersome and
large video files. Sheedy (2011) observes that before the advent of YouTube, it was difficult to
share video with a large number of people. There are over one billion users of YouTube worldwide.
2.1.6 Blog
Web blog popularly known as blog is a discussion or informational website published on
the World Wide Web consisting of discrete, often informal diary-style text entries called "posts".
Posts are typically displayed in reverse chronological order, so that the most recent post appears
first, at the top of the web page. The emergence and growth of blogs in the late 1990s coincided
with the advent of web publishing tools that facilitated the posting of content by nontechnical users
who did not have much experience with HTML or computer programming. Previously, knowledge
of such technologies as HTML and File Transfer Protocol had been required to publish content on
the Web, and as such, early Web users tended to be hackers and computer enthusiasts. Blogs allow
visitors to leave online comments, and it is this interactivity that distinguishes them from other
static websites.] In that sense, blogging can be seen as a form of social networking service.
Bloggers do not only produce content to post on their blogs, but also often build social relations
with their readers and other bloggers. The two popular free blog websites are
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2.1.7 Importance of Social Media for Businesses and Consumers
Web 2.0 takes a new step forward in the expansion of the Internet in a marketing
environment. Previous studies advocate that young consumers have already adopted online SM as
an inherent part of their life (, 2007). Furthermore, online consumers have perceived
Web 2.0 applications as a source of empowerment, not only in the shape of content sourcing and
communities of dialogue. But also as one of confrontation of producers and vendors concerning
their commercial, ethical and social responsibilities.
According to Damanpour and Gopalakrishnan (2001), conventional communication in
marketing has been seriously depreciated since the development of the engagement aspect arrived
to marketing (Mangold & Faulds, 2009; Muñiz & Schau, 2007). Moreover, Lea et al. (2006) and
Dwyer (2007) consider SM as virtual communities, groups of consumers connected with each
other that interact over the Internet. Dholakia et al. (2004) state that their intention is to achieve
common and personal goals. Consequently, considering that B2C companies are already familiar
with the development of virtual communities, perceiving SM as virtual communities implies an
opportunity for B2C companies to take advantage of this SM and of Web 2.0 technologies for
targeting the user they want to reach. Past research represents SM as a component of the
promotional mix (Mangold&Faulds, 2009; Muñiz&Schau, 2007) since integrated marketing
communication (B2C) tools are incorporated, marketing professionals are not able to control the
distribution, range and type of information. As consumers increasingly distance themselves from
the conventional promotional approaches, these SM are essential for companies that make use of,
and acknowledge, them.
Although the conventional media ends in a compromise between the approach and
commitment of consumers, SM facilitates both the approach and the commitment of said
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consumers (Hanna, Rohm, & Crittenden, 2011; Edelman, 2010). Moreover, some studies
recognize the significance of SM as a platform for building and