The Relationship between the Need to Belong and Instagram Self-Presentation among Adolescents

Siwi Sarita, Julia Suleeman


This research aims to identify the correlation between need to belong and self-presentation that adolescents show on Instagram. Need to belong is defined as a need to form and maintain at least a minimum quantity of interpersonal relationship. It is innately prepared (and hence nearly universal) among human beings. Instagram self-presentation is defined as the use of behavior to communicate some information about oneself to others through Instagram. Need to belong is measured using Need to Belong Scale (NTBS) (Leary, Kelly, Cottrell, & Schreindorfer, 2013). Instagram Self-presentation is measured using Self-Presentation Tactics Scale (SPT) (Lee, Quigley Nesler, Corbett, & Tedeschi, 1999), adapted to the context of the use of Instagram. Three tactics of self-presentation, ingratiation, enhancement, and supplication, are included in the SPT items. Two hundred four adolescents (from young adolescents to late adolescents) aged 10-22 years old and users of Instagram participated. Results show that there is a positive significant correlation between need to belong and Instagram self-presentation, particularly the ingratiation tactic of self-presentation. This is in line with adolescents’ need to get approval. Parents and teachers can make use of this result and focus on appropriate approach in dealing with adolescents.

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