The Effect Of Sports Programme Sponsorship On The Corporate Image Of Selected Organizations
This study investigated the impact of sports programmes sponsorship on the corporate image of selected organization in Lagos State. A total of 100 sampled respondents were sourced from four (4) corporate organizations for the study. The descriptive design was adopted and structured questionnaire were used to collect data which was analyzed using descriptive statistics of simple percentage and analysis of variance (ANOVA) at 0.05 level of significance. The findings revealed the following:
Sports programme sponsorship significantly promotes the corporate image of selected organizations in Lagos State.
Sponsorship of sport programme by corporate organization did not significantly increase product and or brand awareness.
1.1 Background to The Study
The international popularity of sports characterized by high level of participation calls for proper development of the nation’s sports industry. This is due to the fact that sports play prominent role in the growth and development of many countries (Ogunbiyi, 2004).
The organization and administration of sports require adequate human and material resources. Onuchukwu, (2003) defined competitive sports as those physical activities which individuals or teams indulge in with the sole aim of winning the other individuals on teams for the purpose of emerging victorious and overall champions. Human and material resources needed in sports can only be provided with funds.
Ibikunle (2004) noted that sports require a huge capital outlay. There is need for sports administrators to scout for individuals, firms, government e.t.c, to support sports in the provision and maintenance of facilities, equipment and supplies and recruitment of sports personnel.
Most of the famous developed and developing countries of the world have at one point in time on the other associated with sports and excelled in different sporting endeavors e.g. Brazil, Germany, France and a host of others became very popular internationally through their excellent performance in sports, (Mohammed, 2002). In Like manner, Nigeria South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana to mention but a few African countries have gained international recognition by virtue of their excellent performances in international sports.
One way by which funds can be made available for effective execution of sports programmes and events is through sponsorship. According to Pope, (2008), sponsorship refers to the provision of resources (money, people, equipment) by an organization (Sponsor) directly to an individual, authority, or body (sponsee) to enable the latter to pursue some activity in return for benefits contemplated in terms of sponsor’s promotional strategy, and which can be expressed in terms of corporate marketing or media objectives.
Apart from government, sports organizers scout to secure sponsorship for their sporting events. Ibikunle, (2004) noted that some business organization like Coca-cola, Nigerian Breweries Guinness, Mobil e.t.c have contributed to the improvement of sports participation in major competition.
Sponsors of sports competitions always plan to promote sports and their products or services. Sponsorship can be viewed as part of profit maximizing behavior of a firm of which the primary notice is to increase sale. The sponsor’s aims are often purely commercial and profit maximization (Gratton and Taylor, 2004). Pope (2007) categorized the sponsorship objectives for business as broad corporate objectives (image based, marketing objective, promotion, increased sales) and media objectives (cost effectiveness, reaching target markets). Turco, (2004) emphasized that the primary objective of corporation engaging in sponsoring is increase public and target market awareness of the company and its products or services.
Companies have classified corporate sponsorship in variety of ways as function of public relations, advertising, sales, promotion and personal selling, as well as a hybrid from communication (Mescon, 2001).
However, the flexibility provided by corporate sponsorship indicates that its desires consideration as an independent element of the promotion mix. Some companies have already began to recognize events marketing as an independent component by establishing separate events marketing department.
Corporate sponsorship can provide many of the same benefits that are provided by other promotion alternatives. Contranting the attribute of corporate sponsorship with other elements of the promotion mix yield and interesting comparison. Advertising and corporate sponsorship both offers geographic target market and cost flexibility. Flexibility in advertising is provided through the use of different type of media and different type of media and different size of aids while corporate sponsorship provides flexibility through different event (Gardner and Shuman, 2004).
A shift towards promotion has taken place because of the perceived decline in advertising’s effectiveness and the clutter association with the number of advertisement aired during commercial breaks. Nigeria sports have been developed tremendously due to the support of the corporate sponsorship, but corporate sponsorship and publicity offers the opportunity for companies to receive free media coverage (Ukman, 2004).
To generate higher levels of creditability than the same level of media advertising and to reach prospects not accessible through normal sales and advertising effort. Corporate sponsorship and publicity are both used to improve companies’ image.
Morakinyo,(2002) noted that in spite of the fact that many administrators in sport seek for sponsorship, not many are successful. Sports sponsorship. Just like any other business Endeavour had been witnessing some problems which have been affecting the growth and development of sport and the sponsors involvement in sports sponsorship. Sandler and Shani (2003) assume that corporate organizations are most concerned about the use of sponsorship activities with products and sports events to build co-operative relationship in order to enhance product or service awareness, visibility and image. They seek to use sponsorship activities to achieve their marketing and media targets or other specific targets, but not all are successful.
According to David (2000), corporate bodies do not increase there product and brand awareness because publicity of events are so poor thereby resulting in very low turnout of people at events. Odegbami (2000) submitted that few sponsors actually get value for their investment in Nigeria sports.
1.2 Statement Of The Problem
This study examines the impact of sports programme sponsorship on the corporate image of selected organizations in Lagos State, Nigeria. In view of the aims of corporate organizations in the sponsorship of sports which is to create publicity, build their corporate image, create public relations and make contacts with the local community as well as marketing and promotion.
Since sports propel healthy image, the idea is to carry over the image of the company and their product. In view of this, it has been said that sports programmes can better achieve their objective through corporate organizations’ sponsorship of those events.
The problem of this study therefore is to ascertain the impact of sports programmes sponsorship on the corporate image and brand sale of selected organization in Lagos State, Nigeria.
1.3 Purpose of The Study
The purpose of the study as to:
- Ascertain if sponsorship of sports programmes will promote the corporate image of selected organizations in Lagos state, Nigeria.
- Determine if sports programme sponsorship is an effective way of increasing product and or brand awareness of selected organizations in Lagos State, Nigeria.
1.4 Research Questions
This study sought answers to the following questions.
- What is the impact of sports programme sponsorship on the corporate image of selected organizations in Lagos State Nigeria?
- Will sports programme sponsorship serve as an effective and veritable tool of increasing products and or brand awareness of selected organizations in Lagos State, Nigeria?
1.5 Research Hypotheses
The following hypotheses were postulated for the study:
- Sponsorship of sport programmes will not significantly promote the corporate image of the selected organizations in Lagos State, Nigeria.
- Sponsorship of sport programmes by corporate organizations will not significantly increase product and or brand awareness of selected organizations in Lagos State Nigeria.
1.6 Significance of The Study
The focus of this study is to determine the impact of corporate organizations’ involvement in sponsorship of major competitions, what informs their involvement level and how best to improve on it for a positive turn-around of sports industry.
Admittedly, sponsorship benefits both parties and this makes it different from other forms of corporate assistance like charity, philanthropy and patronage. Sponsors are expected to have economic gains through product acceptance and better position of the companies’ product using sports activities as a medium of advertisement and promotion.
Therefore, this study will not only affect the organizational climate and survivals of our sports industry, it will also create awareness in the numerous potentials corporate sponsors’ out there to come and take advantage of sponsorship to boost their business. It will equally encourage those “partial sponsor” to be more involved in sponsorship for an optimum benefits in the act.
Since the study aims at determining the benefits which sports sponsorship brings to the image of corporate organizations, its findings would provide a helpful guide to the knowledge about sports organizational principle and practices and more importantly, how best to exploit the potentials corporate sponsors’, yet untapped despite their abundance in our country.
In fact, the study will benefit our corporate organizations’ inform awareness of the benefits of sponsorship on their business.
1.7 Delimitation Of The Study
The study was delimited to the following
- Four (4) corporate organizations in Lagos State, Nigeria.
- One hundred (100) respondents used for the study, (25 staff from each corporate organizations spread across marketing, sales/promotion, public relations and administration/ management departments.
- Simple random sampling techniques were adopted in selecting respondents.
- A self- structured questionnaire in Likert format and Thurstone style format was used for data collection.
- Descriptive research design.
- Simple percentage and analyses of variance(ANOVA) was used as statistical instrument for data analysis.
- The 0.05 Alpha level of significance was used in testing stated hypotheses.
1.8 Limitation of The Study
The major limitation encountered during the course of this study was that the respondents were reluctant to respond to the questionnaire due to their workload and companies’ policy of not revealing vital information of companies’ strategies, but the researcher persuaded them in responding.
1.9 Operational Definition of Terms
The following key terms are being defined according to there operational usage in this study.
This is a means of promotion, that is a deliberate financial support given to an event to achieve brand awareness, enhance corporate image, increase good will and raise employee morale.
Such sport may range from funding and organizational assistance to the provision of retail goods.
This is the support that is provided to various events by corporations with the intent of achieving specific objectives. The objectives underlying the sponsorship may be to create maintain or reposition the corporate image, to generate sales revenue, to create community support etc.
These are establishments or companies that voluntarily take up finding of sports programme. For example coca-cola, Nigeria Brewies, MTN, Globacom, Liver brothers Nigeria Plc etc are official sponsors of some gains in Nigeria.
This is a structure that sees to the process of determining what is needed, who does it and how it will be done effectively. The design specifies the relationship among tasks and people who perform them. An organization has attributes such as identity, clear boundaries, performances, formal rules, procedures and hierarchy of authority.
There are two types of organization: formal and informal organization.
This is a group of people authorized to act as individual for business purposes. Limited and public liability companies (Plc’s) are potentially capable of being sponsors of sports programme.
This refers to the measurement of achievement in sports competitions by an individual, organization, state or a country via the athletes in terms of quantity and quality of output. It is an evaluation of the total medals won locally, (among amateur athletes), nationally (among states) or internationally (elites professional athletes among nations).
Product service promotion:
This is a process of transmitting information, creating awareness and interest on a product or service, which finally result in a desire to buy or patronize such products), or service respectively.
This is a name, term, sign, symbol, or design or a combination of them intended to identify the goods or services of one seller or group of sellers and to differentiate them from those of competitors.
This is using several or different types of communication to support marketing goals.
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