An examination of Facebook utilization by parks and recreation departments in Texas

Powell, David
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The current study investigated Facebook utilization by Parks and Recreation departments in Texas, including the prevalence and means of use, departmental goals for Facebook, methods of evaluation, and predictors of page likes. Using a relationship marketing theory as a basis, an online survey was developed and sent to all members of the Texas Recreation and Park Society, representing 203 distinct agencies. A total of 57 responses were received, or approximately 28% of the sample population. Descriptive statistics were presented for Facebook use, goals, and evaluation. A stepwise regression analysis found 5 significant models predicting page likes, with the fifth model accounting for the greatest amount of variance (57.1%; adj. R2 = .571, p < .001). The final model included the frequency a department posts to their Facebook page, the number of years the Facebook page has been in existence, the population size of the city in which the department resides, department utilization of paid advertising, and those departments reporting high fan engagement. Results presented are discussed, and practical implications for Parks and Recreation Facebook pages are provided.

Sports management, Social sciences, Facebook, Recreation, Social media, Texas