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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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Beth A. Cianfrone, Jessica R. Braunstein-Minkove and Alyssa L. Tavormina

Sport executives concerned with maximizing ticket sales often explore different communication channels to reach potential consumers. Advertising and selling discounted tickets through daily deals (e.g., Groupon and Living Social) is an increasingly popular method, yet there is little research on the extent to which sport organizations are using daily deals. A mixed-method design was employed to examine sport organizations’ use of daily deals, including how sport daily deals are most commonly used and the rationale for their use. In Phase 1, a content analysis of Groupon and LivingSocial daily deals e-mailed over 31 days in 11 U.S. cities provided a framework for exploring the types, frequency, and characteristics of sport ticketing deals. In Phase 2, the perspectives of 7 sport-organization executives served as guiding metrics in developing a deeper understanding of daily-deal usage. Findings can inform sport marketers’ ticketing and promotional strategies and provide a basis for theoretical daily-deal application.

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Beth A. Cianfrone, Glynn M. McGehee and Robert H. Brison

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Glynn M. McGehee, Beth A. Cianfrone and Timothy Kellison

Sport organizations, the media, and the public frequently interact. Messages conveyed by organizations and the media likely impact both groups’ communication strategies to reach target audiences and control messaging. This triad of communication—team–media–public—is often examined in segments (e.g., media framing or public reaction to media), even though the three interact. Thus, the purpose of this study was to examine differences in message themes and responses from all perspectives on a common topic. Following a major announcement from a professional sport organization, the researchers conducted a content analysis of communication from three perspectives: the team, local press, and citizens. The results showed that each of the three sources provided distinct, original content that became increasingly linked to that of the other sources over time. Sport practitioners could use the findings to better understand the influence of outside sources of communication and utilize social media in their public relations efforts.

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Edited by Jeremy S. Jordan

Contributor : Beth Cianfrone, Stephen Dittmore, David Shonk and Ellen Staurowsky

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Thomas A. Baker, Kevin K. Byon, Beth A. Cianfrone and John Grady

The purpose of the study was twofold: a) to conceptualize and measure student-athlete “likeness” in the NCAA Football sport video games (SVGs) and b) to examine the impact of use of likeness on SVG consumption (i.e., purchase intention and word-of-mouth). Data (N = 621) were collected from NCAA Football SVGs users with experience in purchasing and playing the game. Descriptive statistics, t test, factor analysis, and hierarchical regression analyses showed that student-athlete likeness featured in NCAA Football SVGs were well perceived by gamers. The results indicated that dimensions of the student-athlete likeness were empirically supported in that the factors (i.e., identity value and identity use) were found to be positively related to purchase intention and word-of-mouth. Results were discussed with regards to theoretical and practical implications for sport managers in the legal and consumer behavior perspective.

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Jeremy S., Beth Cianfrone, Laura Cousens, Laura Misener and David Shonk

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Jeremy S. Jordan, Beth Cianfrone, Laura Cousens, Simon Brandon-Lai and David Shonk

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Anastasios Kaburakis, David A. Pierce, Beth A. Cianfrone and Amanda L. Paule

The NCAA maintains a balance between amateurism and the increasing need for generating revenue. In this balancing act, there are various policy considerations and legal constraints. These legal and policy entanglements bore such class action suits as Keller v. Electronic Arts, National Collegiate Athletic Association, and Collegiate Licensing Company (2009) and O’Bannon v. National Collegiate Athletic Association and Collegiate Licensing Company (2009), which question current revenue generating practices of the NCAA. The purpose of this study was to examine the perceptions of NCAA Division I men’s football and basketball student-athletes toward amateurism and the particular use of student-athletes’ likenesses in college sports video games. Findings point to a lack of clarity and understanding of the agreements and consent forms student-athletes sign annually. Respondents demonstrated confusion in regard to financial aid opportunities, parameters of their scholarships, and whether they endorse commercial products. A majority of respondents expressed the desire to receive additional compensation. Recommendations include clarification and focused rules’ education from compliance and financial aid officers, as well as introducing new amateurism policy, concurrently avoiding costly litigation.