Research question: While the literature on sponsorship of sport has gained interest among scholars in diverse fields such as management, marketing, and psychology in recent years, scant attention has been paid to the extent in which sponsoring may serve as a strategic lever that is mutually beneficial for sponsors and sponsees. We, therefore, ask: What constitutes strategic sponsoring in professional sport?
Research methods: In addressing our research question, we selectively review the literature on sport sponsoring, link it to the basic tenets of the resource-based view, and conceptualize this literature into a framework for strategic sponsoring in professional sport.
Results and Findings: In developing our framework, we consider the concept of regime as the key defining working principle of strategic sponsorship activities. We then elicit six different regimes: the cause regime, loyalty regime, appropriability regime, value-differential regime, heuristics-based regime, and associational regime. Each one of these regime types is further related to the six sponsorship activities identified in our literature review.
Implications: In proposing how various regimes serve as generative mechanisms for altering the resource and knowledge-bases of sponsors and sponsees, we provide a conceptually rigorous framework of strategic sponsoring that expands the limits of extant views of sport sponsorship. Hence, our multi-level framework advances sponsorship theory through a more rigorous framing, and it provides practitioners clues for rethinking their sponsorship programs.
Demir, R. & Söderman, S. (2015). Strategic sponsoring in professional sport: A review and conceptualization. European Sport Management Quarterly, 15(3), 271-300.DOI:10.1080/16184742.2015.1042000