Keeping it Real or Bridging the Gap? Brand Positioning of U.S. Sport Teams in Germany and China

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Professional team sport brands are increasingly striving to conquer markets abroad. However, little is known about promising brand positioning strategies in international markets. In the context of U.S. team sport brands’ efforts to attract satellite fans in two different target markets (i.e., Germany and China), this research uses three experimental online studies to test the relative effects of two foreign brand positioning strategies (purely foreign vs. locally integrated foreign) on satellite fans’ attitudes toward the strategy and brand interaction intentions. Findings suggest that fans’ responses depend on the target market. While German fans respond more favorably to purely foreign brand positioning, Chinese fans prefer local adaptations of the U.S. brands to Chinese customs. These diverse effects can be explained by different underlying mechanisms: purely foreign brand positioning increases perceptions of authenticity among German fans, while locally integrated foreign brand positioning increases perceived customer orientation and pride among Chinese fans.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Sport Management
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
ISSN0888-4773
DOIs
Publication statusElectronically/ online published ahead of print - 06.09.2021

ID: 5935632

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