Academic journal article International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship

Development of the Sport Interest Inventory (SII): Implications for Measuring Unique Consumer Motives at Team Sporting Events

Academic journal article International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship

Development of the Sport Interest Inventory (SII): Implications for Measuring Unique Consumer Motives at Team Sporting Events

Article excerpt

Executive Summary

The current study describes the development of the Sports Interest Inventory (SII) and its usefulness in understanding consumer interest in a sporting event. Based upon a review of literature, the SII was developed to specifically examine ten factors hypothesized to emerge as motives leading to spectator interest at the 1999 FIFA Women's World Cup (WWC). These ten factors included: a) sport interest; b) vicarious achievement; c) excitement; d) team interest; e) supporting women's opportunity in sport; f) aesthetics; g) socialization; h) national pride; i) drama; and j) player interest.

Spectators (N=1,321) attending five venues in the United States were randomly surveyed during opening-round matches. The results of the confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) revealed the SII was valid, reliable, and provides a parsimonious 30-item survey that can be completed in 10 minutes. The SII provides practitioners and researchers with a scale that can be particularly useful for women's sport leagues and events, but can easily be adjusted for other sports and events. This scale can be used to assist marketers in: a) developing content for advertising campaigns; b) determining how to present the event in the sport facility; and c) developing consumer profiles useful in selling corporate sponsorship. In addition, demographic items can be utilized in conjunction with the SII to develop and examine various consumer segments.

Multiple Linear Regression (MLR) was utilized to demonstrate one potential application of the SII for sport marketers. The results revealed that spectator interest in attending the WWC emerged from: a) interest in soccer; b) interest in a specific team; c) the excitement of the event; d) a desire to support women's opportunity in sport; e) aesthetics; and f) vicarious achievement. Qualitative data collected through an open-ended response section provided additional support for the SII. However, four additional factors related to sporting events also emerged through this analysis: a) entertainment provided at the WWC was good value for the money; b) the event allowed family members to bond; c) the importance of players' status as role models for young children; and d) the wholesome environment that was present at the matches.

Taken together, qualitative and quantitative results suggest that the Sports Interest Inventory (SII) provides an effective diagnostic tool to examine sport consumer motives. The results offer several implications for sport marketers developing consumer-based marketing strategies for women's sport in particular, namely: a) enhanced community level efforts to build awareness and support for local teams; b) focus promotional efforts on current fans of a "particular" team sport; c) maximize product extensions that contribute to overall excitement of the event; d) design cause-related marketing efforts to target individuals interested in women's issues in general; e) create player-designed promotional efforts around players' status as role models; f) focus on maintaining affordable prices; and g) provide a wholesome, family-orientated environment.

Development of the Sport Interest Inventory (SEI): Implications for Measuring Unique Consumer Motives at Team Sporting Events

During the summer of 1999, Women's World Cup (WWC) "fever" hit the United States. Close to 700,000 fans attended WWC games, far surpassing even the most optimistic projections of the event's organizers (Mitchell, 1999). Pictures from the final game appeared on the covers of a number of major US magazines, including Sports Illustrated, Time, and Newsweek (Morris, 1999) and the US team was named Sports Illustrated's Sportswomen of the Year (Bamberger, 1999). Although the popularity of the event was obvious, the reasons for this popularity were not. Of particular interest was: (a) what created such widespread interest and led to so many spectators attending these matches; and (b) whether these spectators were different than other sport spectators. …

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