Communicating the Athlete as a Brand: An Examination of LPGA Star Suzann Pettersen

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Elsa Kristiansen Norwegian School of Sport Sciences

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Antonio S. Williams Indiana University, USA

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This article explored how a renowned LPGA golfer, Suzann Pettersen, has built and leveraged her personal brand. Using the athlete brand-equity model as the theoretical framework, a qualitative case study was built by means of interviews and document analyses. Specifically, this case detailed how Pettersen and her management team endeavored to build and manage her personal brand equity through organization-produced and -controlled brand-communications strategies. The findings of this case shed light on the challenges and opportunities that athletes and their constituents face when managing human brands. Moreover, the findings of this case support the use of previously proposed sport-branding conceptualizations in a real-world setting.

Kristiansen is with the Dept. of Cultural and Social Studies, Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Oslo, Norway. Williams is with the School of Public Health, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN.

Address author correspondence to Elsa Kristiansen at elsa.kristiansen@nih.no
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