The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of spectator's sponsor associations with pro-baseball title sponsorship on sponsor identification and brand response among professional baseball spectators using structural equation models. The objects of this study were over 19 years old home spectators, in 2009 CJ MAGU MAGU probaseball league, of 4 teams in the metropolitan area: LG, DOOSAN, SK and HEROES. One hundred spectators were sampled from each of the 4 teams, respectively, totaling 400 spectators through a convenient sampling method. Data processing was done for exploratory factor analysis using SPSSWIN Ver. 12.0 and confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation model analysis using AMOS 7.0. Consequently, it was found that first, sponsor ability had a significant influence on sponsor identification, while the social responsibility had not a significant influence on sponsor identification. Second, sponsor identification had significant influences on all of brand awareness and attitude toward brand.
The use of famous athletes in advertisement by companies for promoting products is especially widespread. These athletes are not the only “endorsers”, rather, people who make agreements with companies and promote products in advertisements are also called endorsers. It is said that companies use many athletes as endorsers because they expect to accomplish a number of marketing objectives, such as capturing consumers' attention, building a positive image of a product, and increasing consumers' purchase intentions. However, a focus on the concept of endorsement by athletes alone has not been clarified yet. The purpose of this paper is to discuss and clarify athlete endorsement from several points of view. To do so, this paper will first examine the definition of “athlete endorsement”, and then review how athletes influence consumers' purchase behaviors as endorsers. Finally, it will consider the unique features of athlete endorsement towards the end of the paper.
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