Vitality as a life style trend in blogs: a netnographic approach

Virpi Oksman, Elina Järvelä-Reijonen, Marketta Puttonen, Kyösti Pennanen

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review


    Vitality is often defined as having both physical and mental energy: it is a subjective feeling of aliveness that arises from feelings of freedom, autonomy support, and intrinsic motivation. (Ryan & Frederick 1997) When people are in vital states, they are strong, active and productive and cope better with stress and challenge. In Eastern traditions vitality is related to source of energy, source of life, creativity, right action and harmony. Arising from Eastern tradition, there are numerous practices increasing vital energies such as acupuncture, reiki, yoga and herbal treatments. In Japan, the concept of Ki, energy and power, which one can draw to oneself, relates to physical, mental and spiritual health. (Ryan & Frederick 1997) In this paper, we study how the business of vitality is created in social media and blogs. More in detail, we study what consumers are exposed to when they search for vitality in blogs. We analyse how vitality is represented and created in the blogs to understand the cultural context of vitality. A qualitative netnographic analysis (see Kozinets 2010) was conducted of the twelve most popular Finnish well-being and mentality blogs in 2015. According to the analysis, there were no significant differences between company and private person's blogs regarding the vitality content. Both categories included marketing and promotions of products or services. Mentality blogs emphasized both internal and external processes; observing and focusing on one's mind and managing relationships with others. Well-being blogs represented vitality as a goal one reaches through effective training, right kind of nutrition and self-discipline but also a wide range of mental and social aspects were represented. One important indicator of vitality in well being blogs is athlete appearance; fit and trained body, which was represented through wide-ranging image material in the blogs.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of ECSM2016
    Publication statusPublished - 2016
    MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
    Event3rd European Conference on Social Media, ECSM2016 - Caen, France
    Duration: 12 Jul 201613 Jul 2016


    Conference3rd European Conference on Social Media, ECSM2016
    Abbreviated titleECSM2016


    • vitality
    • well-being
    • netnography
    • blogs


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