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  • Author: James Zhang x
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James J. Zhang

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James Jianhui Zhang

This lecture was intended to continue the discussions on why and how to establish a distinctive sport management discipline that was initiated by previous Earle F. Zeigler Lecture Award recipients. Through applying the dual process theory (Dijksterhuis & Nordgren, 2006), it was intended to explore the differences between tangible and intangible variables, how they have been studied as distinct perspectives, and how they can be integrated through two application examples, one on service quality of sport event operations and the other on market demand for sport events. Hopefully, this lecture would help reenergize the discussions and inquiries on this important matter. These illustrations are certainly debatable and subject to further empirical examinations.

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Gregg Bennett, Robin K. Henson and James Zhang

The rise in consumer and corporate interest in action sports, also known as extreme sports, has been phenomenal. The apparent popularity of action sports, when combined with the sponsorships, endorsements, and advertising dollars they have quickly garnered, lends itself to scientific inquiry regarding the level and nature of public interest. The purpose of this study was to examine Generation Y's perceptions of action sports, with a specific focus on the expressed popularity of action sports and the relationship between action sports interest and use of the media. The 39-item Action Sports Questionnaire (ESQ) was constructed to examine Generation Y perceptions of action sports, sports related viewing preferences, and sports related media usage among middle and high school aged students. The present findings suggested that these members of the Generation Y (n = 367) niche market preferred action sports over the traditional sports of basketball and baseball. Respondents also indicated stronger preference for soccer, but would prefer to watch the X-Games over the World Cup. There is an indication that soccer and action sports are more popular among the younger generation than some traditional team sports. Males were slightly more supportive that action sports would become more popular in the future, and the male respondents were likewise more familiar with action sports. More members of Generation Y watch action sports than their predecessors, and they likewise tend to be optimistic about the future of action sports if they watch events on television.

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Beth A. Cianfrone and James J. Zhang

Sport video games (SVGs) are a highly consumed media source among 18- to 34-yr-old sport consumers. Many corporations have become advertisers or sponsors of SVGs to reach this consumer segment. This case study examined the systematic relationships among SVG motives, consumption levels, and sponsorship effectiveness. Research participants (N = 213) were SVG gamers who responded to a survey. The proposed hierarchical relationships were tested in a structural model analysis to determine the effectiveness of SVGs. The fit indices showed that the model fit the data well, indicating that, sequentially, SVG motivations influenced game play frequency, awareness of sponsoring brands in SVGs, attitude toward the sponsoring brands, and future purchase intentions of sponsoring products. Researchers and practitioners may consider applying SVG motivational factors to enhance SVG play frequency so as to enhance the awareness of and attitude toward sponsoring brands, which would in turn promote behavioral intentions for consuming the sponsoring brands.

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Beth A. Cianfrone and James J. Zhang

This study examined the differential effectiveness of television commercials, athlete endorsements, venue signage, and combined promotions as assessed by Generation Y consumers. A 2 × 4 independent-group experimental design was conducted, consisting of two experimental conditions (experimental and control) and four video footage interventions with different promotional procedures (television commercial, athlete endorsement, venue signage, and combined promotion). A total of 253 subjects were randomly assigned into the eight groups. The subjects responded to a questionnaire that measured brand awareness in terms of unaided recall, aided recall, and recognition. A factorial MANCOVA revealed that after controlling for differences in the consumption backgrounds of action sports among the subjects, all four promotional procedures effectively increased brand awareness during a televised action sports event. Television commercials were the most effective, followed by combined promotion, athlete endorsement, and venue signage.

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Karen Danylchuk, Robert Baker, Brenda Pitts and James Zhang

This study examined the perspectives of sport management academicians regarding their experiences supervising international graduate students. Fifteen experts were interviewed and provided their perspectives on practices used in international student involvement—specifically, student identification, recruitment, acceptance, orientation, progress, and retention, and the inherent challenges and benefits. The primary challenges cited by the majority of participants were language and cultural differences in learning; however, all participants concurred that the benefits of supervising international students far outweighed the challenges. These benefits included, but were not limited to, bringing international and global perspectives into the learning environment, which was positive for both students and professors. Findings from this study may provide program administration with insights on key factors affecting the quality of delivery of sport management education to international students. Consequently, high-quality programs can be developed to meet the needs of students from diverse cultural and educational backgrounds.

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James J. Zhang, Dale G. Pease and Dennis W. Smith

This study assessed the relationship between broadcasting and the attendance of minor league hockey games in terms of 5 media forms: cable television broadcasting, commercial television broadcasting, radio broadcasting, broadcasters, and overall broadcasting media. A random sample of spectators (N = 2,225) responded to a survey on attendance level and media use conducted in the arena during the intermissions of games from 6 second-half 1994-1995 season home games of an International Hockey League (ML) team. CM-square, f-test, and regression analyses revealed that viewing home games on cable television and away games on commercial television, listening to games on radio, and the quality of television and cable broadcasters were all positively associated with attendance, with approximately 6-11% game attendance variance explained. It is concluded that the current broadcasting arrangement is positively related to game attendance in providing information for and increasing the interests of spectators.

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Heather J. Gibson, Christine Xueqing Qi and James J. Zhang

Although there is growing awareness of the relationship between hosting mega-sporting-events and destination image, there is little empirical evidence documenting what images people hold before an event. The purpose of this study was to investigate the images young Americans hold of China both as a tourist destination and as the host of the 2008 Olympic Games. Specifically, the relationships among destination image, travel intentions, and tourist characteristics were explored. A total of 350 college students were surveyed before the close of the Athens Olympic Games. Overall, the respondents perceived China and the Beijing Olympic Games positively. Destination image was significantly (p < .05) predictive of the intention to travel to China and the Olympic Games. Hierarchical regression analyses revealed that destination image partially mediated the relationship between past international travel experience and intention to travel. The theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed with a view to promoting China as a tourist destination and the host of the Olympic Games.

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Jerred Junqi Wang, James J. Zhang, Kevin K. Byon, Thomas A. Baker and Zhenqiu Laura Lu

Building on schema theory, the current study highlighted the role of brand-event personality fit (BEPF) in sport-event sponsorship communications and empirically examined its impact on sponsors’ consumer-based brand equity (CBBE) in the setting of American college football. Three studies were conducted to refine a sound measurement scale of BEPF and examine the structural relationships between BEPF and CBBE. Research findings confirmed the validity and reliability of the proposed BEPF measurement scale and revealed a series of positive relationships between crucial subdimensions of BEPF (i.e., responsibility fit, emotionality fit, and aggressiveness fit) and CBBE (i.e., brand awareness/association, perceived value, and brand loyalty). The findings offer brand managers specific references as to which aspects of BEPF should be prioritized in their promotional communications to build CBBE. Event marketers could also use the findings to communicate with corporations regarding potential or continued sponsorship agreements.

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Beth A. Cianfrone, Galen T. Trail, James J. Zhang and Richard J. Lutz

Sport video games (SVGs) are a popular form of sport media and sponsorship, and advertising in SVGs is increasingly common. This study assessed the effectiveness of SVG in-game advertisements in 3 consumption domains: cognitive, affective, and conative. An experimental study was designed with 89 gamers randomly assigned to 1 of 2 conditions: (a) experimental, playing an SVG with advertisements, or (b) control, playing an SVG without advertisements. Consumption background and identification level were incorporated as covariates to ensure group equivalence. Participants responded to a questionnaire measuring brand awareness, brand attitude, and purchase intentions. MANCOVA revealed that after controlling for the effect of covariate variables, the experimental group had a significantly (p < .05) greater mean brand-awareness score than the control group. Mean brand-attitude and purchase-intention scores were not significantly (p > .05) different between groups. The findings indicated that SVG in-game advertising was effective in creating awareness.