Welcome to the inaugural issue of the International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship. As you will see from several articles in this edition, the sports marketing and sponsorship industry has grown extremely rapidly in recent years.
As the marketplace has become more global, many firms are investing large proportions of their advertising and communications budgets on a medium that can transcend cultural and language barriers. This popularity has filtered down such that national and local markets are also being targeted through the use of sports marketing and sponsorship techniques.
Furthermore, this is not a practice that is confined to North America and Europe. As Meenaghan notes in this issue, while the greatest proportion of spending may occur in these two regions, sport sponsorship and marketing is becoming increasingly popular throughout the world. While the industry has grown rapidly, how ever, research into the area has not kept pace.
While there has been some excellent work carried out, this has been published in a wide variety of areas.
The International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship is a specialist publication that is intended to offer a forum in which practitioners and academics can come together to exchange ideas and further the development of what is still a relatively young industry. It is intended that the journal will offer articles on a variety of topics from differing perspectives.
Some will offer controversial opinions, others will present new research, while still more will present survey reports of industry leaders, consumers, fans and participants. In short, it will attempt to offer thought provoking and informative pieces that will help practitioners shape their approaches and stimulate debate within the industry.
In order to work towards this objective, the journal has been fortunate to recruit some excellent industry specialists and academics from all over the world to sit on its advisory board. This international flavour is reflected in the first edition.
In this issue’s interview, Professor Trevor Slack talks to Alan Pascoe about how he developed API into one of the largest sport marketing firms in the world, and how he is approaching his latest challenge to promote British Athletics through his new company, Fast Track. Tony Meenaghan from Ireland describes the way in which sponsorship has developed, and offers some thoughts as to the direction future research might take us.
Michael Musante, George Milne and Mark McDonald bring a US feel in a piece that evaluates the importance of achieving a fit between a brand and sport personality. Bill Gerrard, an economist from Leeds University Business School in the UK, takes a somewhat innovative approach in discussing reasons why firms enter into, and exit, various sponsorship agreements.
Two North Americans, Alycen McAuley, a consultant, and Bill Sutton, an academic, out line some of the problems sponsors face from ambush marketers, and offer some thoughts as to how this practice might be negated.
Finally, David Stotlar, from the University of Northern Colorado, presents a survey outlining the way in which professional sport executives and sponsors believe the sponsorship industry will evolve in the near to medium future.
Any comments about the content and format of the journal would be welcomed. Further, in future editions we will also be publishing book reviews: please send any copy on this matter to the book review editor Dr David Shani. Enjoy this first issue. John Amis, PhD Editor March 1999