Toward an Employee Communication Mediation Model: Exploring the Effects of Social Media Engagement on Employee–Organization Relationships and Advocacy

Yuan Wang, Yang Cheng, William J. Gonzenbach


Grounded in the framework of the communication mediation model, this study examined the impacts of employees’ organizational identification and social media engagement on their relationships with their organization and advocacy behavior through a national survey of employees working at large organizations in China. The current study found that employees’ organizational identification significantly affects their social media engagement and perceived relationships with their organization. It also documented that social media engagement has a positive impact on favorable employee–organization relationships (EORs), which influence employee advocacy. Furthermore, social media engagement and EORs were identified as mediators to explain how the influence flows from organizational identification to EORs and that from social media engagement to advocacy. This study is a pioneering study to apply the communication mediation model to the public relations field and proposes the employee communication mediation model to enrich public relations theories. Its results have practical implications for Chinese organizations.


social media engagement, employee–organization relationships, employee advocacy, organizational identification, COVID-19

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