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Khirey B. Walker, Chad S. Seifried and Brian P. Soebbing

have been provided that office to achieve such a mission. It should be noted that these employment activities are similar to those practiced by many other third-party regulators such as those involved with banking; stock exchange (e.g., NASDAQ and New York Stock Exchange); religion; politics; law (e

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Jason Daniels, Thilo Kunkel and Adam Karg

are enhanced by our findings, with the role of positioning and importance of organizational planning presenting key activities. Critically, brand traits and recall can be manipulated by managers over time, with strategies and actions around branding a team’s history, culture, key on- and off

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Wendy White Morrow and P. Chelladurai

A successful national sport organization, Synchro Canada, was described in terms of three structural characteristics (formalization, centralization, and complexity) and five processes (activities to ensure resources, work flow, control, identification, and homeostatic activities) based on evidence from documents and, to a limited extent, from interviews. Eighty-five subjects from four constituent groups (administrators, judges, coaches, and athletes) responded to a questionnaire that assessed their perceptions regarding the contributions of the selected organizational characteristics to Synchro Canada's overall effectiveness. The analyses showed that the organization's structures and processes were consistent with the literature in organization theory. From an overall perspective, the respondents perceived the structural and process characteristics as contributing to overall effectiveness. However, the coaches as a subgroup viewed the dimensions of activities to ensure resources, control activities, and centralization as detracting from effectiveness.

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Tim Berrett and Trevor Slack

Sport sponsorship is frequently described as a strategic activity, and thus, it is influenced by both competitive and institutional forces. Using a sample of 28 Canadian companies, this study explores the influence of competitive and institutional pressures on those individuals who make decisions about their company's sport sponsorship initiatives. The results show that the sponsorship activities of rival companies were influential in a company's sponsorship choices. This was particularly the case in highly concentrated industries. We also show some evidence of a first-mover advantage in sponsorship decision-making but found preemptive strategies to yield little competitive advantage. In addition to these pressures from the competitive environment, institutional pressures from companies in the same geographic area, in the form of mimetic activity, in the form of involvement in social networks, and through the occupational training of the decision makers—all played a role in the choices made about what activities to sponsor.

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Karen E. Danylchuk and Packianathan Chelladurai

This study described and analyzed the managerial work in Canadian intercollegiate athletics. The directors of 37 Canadian intercollegiate athletic departments responded to a questionnaire eliciting perceived importance of, time devoted to, and percentage responsibility for 19 managerial activities carried out by athletic departments. These managerial activities were largely patterned after Mintzberg's (1975) description of managerial work and were verified by a group of experts. Results showed that financial management, leadership, policy making, disturbance handling, revenue generation, and a Mete affairs were perceived to be the most important and most time consuming activities. Information seeking, maintenance activities, and league responsibilities were rated the least important. The athletic directors reported that they were largely responsible for the more important tasks with average percent responsibility of 55%. The average responsibility assigned to assistant directors was 29.5%, and this limited responsibility was significantly but inversely related to the importance of the tasks.

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Lilian Pichot, Gary Tribou and Norm O’Reilly

Successful sponsorship activities in sport often rely on the integration of relationship marketing, internal marketing, external corporate promotion, and strategic management. Although traditional marketing objectives such as brand integration and consumer targeting remain key components of promotional activities in sport, the use of sport sponsorship in today’s environment increasingly implicates personnel issues in the both the sponsor and the sponsee. In fact, sport sponsorship has become a useful tool for some sponsors and sponsees who seek to motivate and involve their employees more in company activities. Therefore, the focus of this commentary is on the internal-communication and human-resources management functions involved in sport sponsorship decisions. The use of mini-case analyses and a dual-perspective (external and internal objectives) approach allows for informed discussion, and suggestions are made for future research.

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Brody J. Ruihley and Robin L. Hardin

Fantasy sport joins competition, sport knowledge, and socialization into one interactive sport activity. This research specifically focuses on the socialization aspects of the activity. This analysis addresses overall satisfaction in fantasy sport, future intentions to return to the activity, and reasons why fantasy sport users (FSUs) do or do not use message boards. Data were collected from 322 FSUs in a questionnaire format using quantitative-scale items and qualitative open-ended questions. The results indicate 62.1% (n = 200) of the sample using message boards in their fantasy sport experience. Reasons for their use were based on the themes of logistical conversation, socializing, surveillance, and advice or opinion. FSUs chose not to use message boards for reasons based on no interest, information, time, and alternative options. Other results indicate that those using message boards have higher overall satisfaction and future use intentions than those not using message boards. This suggests that message boards enhance the fantasy sport experience.

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George R. Milne, Mark A. McDonald, William A. Button and Rajiv Kashyap

This research examines the competitive niche positions of 36 sports and fitness activities reported in an American Sports Activities 1993 tracking study. The article discusses the advantages of viewing competition from an ecological niche perspective and presents a measure of competitive resource overlap (CRO) used in marketing for measuring niche breadth and niche overlap. The empirical study presents an intuitive mapping of the sports market and calculates the niche breadth and niche overlap for each sport. Managerial implications for sporting goods manufacturers, advertising agencies, corporate sponsors, fitness consultants, and other professionals interested in participant sports markets are given.

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Megan B. Shreffler and Stephen D. Ross

Word-of-mouth (WOM) marketing has the potential to effectively contribute to revenue generation as sport organizations continue to create and implement marketing strategies to build and maintain relationships with consumers. While there has been a plethora of research on WOM marketing in the general business literature, the magnitude of the phenomenon must be examined separately in a sport setting because of the uniqueness of sport fans as consumers. This study examined the effect of the transference of personal experiences through WOM activity on brand associations, team identification, and the behavioral intentions of college basketball fans. Through a 4-stage data-collection approach in which both positive and negative messages were used, it was found that WOM activity has a significant impact on some of the measured constructs. The results of the study suggest that negative WOM has a greater impact on consumers than positive WOM, providing significant theoretical and managerial implications.

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Terry R. Haggerty and Denise Denomme

Multivariate analyses of responses from 327 undergraduate student members of 17 university recreational sport clubs indicated that eight variables jointly explained 35.3% of the variance in members’ organizational commitment. They were (a) the importance of management related items, (b) the emphasis the club placed on delivering its service, (c) the lack of emphasis the club placed on status related items, (d) the emphasis the club placed on social aspects, (e) members’ current involvement in physical activity, (f) reduced travel time to club gatherings, (g) increased preparation time for club activities, and (h) gender, with males expressing more commitment than females. The study concluded that management related factors were among the most important aspects in affecting member commitment in sport clubs. Implications for practicing managers and researchers were addressed.