Communication and Marketing in the Fight Against Racism in the Sports Context: A Theoretical Reflection on European Football

Communication and Marketing in the Fight Against Racism in the Sports Context: A Theoretical Reflection on European Football

Bruno Barbosa Sousa, Filipa Costa Magalhães, Ana Teresa Pedreiro, Vasco Ribeiro Santos, Adrian Lubowicki-Vikuk
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-9187-1.ch016
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Racism is a global hierarchy of superiority and inferiority that has been politically, culturally, and economically produced and reproduced for centuries by the institutions, in different countries, depending on their colonial history. In that sense, racism cannot be seen as a concept that is equal in every region of the world. Racism in sport is a research topic that has been particularly valued in recent years (and decades). There are several episodes of racism that occur in sport (among fans and athletes). In this sense, sports institutions (European and global) regularly invest in social marketing campaigns to raise awareness of this social phenomenon. Therefore, social media has allowed football fans to engage in discussions concerning football and other subjects. This chapter presents a brief theoretical reflection with three (European) examples of marketing campaigns against racism in sport (UEFA, Premier League, and F.C. Porto). This chapter presents inputs for marketing, ethics, and management in sport. At the end, lines of future research will be presented.
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2. Organizational, Business And Marketing Ethics

According to De Waegeneer and Willem (2019)Mullane (2015), and Walters and Tacon (2018), all types of sports organisations, such as; (international) sports federations, professional and amateur sports clubs and local sports services, implement codes of ethics, with the purpose of preventing unethical behaviour.

As concern over ethics grows in companies, forums dedicated to the promotion of ethical practices and models, studies on the subject, the introduction of disciplines in various courses have emerged around the world, naturally leading to the development of the area of business ethics (da Costa et al. 2020; Robertson, Voegtlin & Maak, 2017).

The football sector has increasingly come under scrutiny following a number of corruption scandals. Italian football in particular has demonstrated to be very vulnerable to a number of corruptive practices carried out by dishonest sportsmen, white collar criminals, and organised crime syndicates. A widespread culture of illegality seems to affect the football environment, to the point that corruption-related illegal and unethical behaviours have become endemic along the years (Lavorgna & Di Ronco, 2015, p. 260).

For various reasons, business ethics has decisively influenced companies' behaviour and respective communication actions, particularly marketing campaigns (Jones, Parker & Ten Bos, 2005). In a society where advertising and brand notoriety and experience are crucial to the SMEs’ image (Ferrell, et al., 2019; Pina & Dias, 2020), consumer demand is constant and the community's attention to ethical issues is more visible, companies have been forced to change their behaviours and attitudes to ensure a responsible commitment to the community. However, there are still organizations that focus simply on selling their product and attracting the consumer in their marketing campaigns by not respecting ethical principles (Islam, 2020). This makes campaigns too aggressive, biased, negligent and sometimes even fraudulent (Dias et al., 2013).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Internal Marketing: Is the promotion of a company's objectives, products, and services to employees within the organization. The purpose is to increase employee engagement with the company's goals and fostering brand advocacy.

E-Satisfaction: The contentment of a consumer concerning his or her prior purchasing experiences with a given retail-oriented website.

Racism: Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism by an individual, community, or institution against a person or people on the basis of their membership of a particular racial or ethnic group, typically one that is a minority or marginalized.

Marketing Tools: The techniques and materials used by those who are involved in the promotion of goods and services.

Consumer Behaviour: The study of individuals, groups, or organizations and all the activities associated with the purchase, use, and disposal of goods and services, including the consumer’s emotional, mental, and behavioral responses that precede or follow these activities.

Social media: Is the collective of online communications channels dedicated to community-based input, interaction, content-sharing, and collaboration (e.g., websites and applications, forums, microblogging, social networking, social bookmarking, social curation, and wikis are among the different types of social media).

Social Marketing: Social marketing is an approach used to develop activities aimed at changing or maintaining people’s behaviour for the benefit of individuals and society as a whole. Combining ideas from commercial marketing and the social sciences, social marketing is a proven tool for influencing behaviour in a sustainable and cost-effective way.

Relationship Marketing: Relationship marketing corresponds to marketing work focused on the relationship with customers and suppliers.

Football: Any of several games played between two teams on a usually rectangular field having goalposts or goals at each end and whose object is to get the ball over a goal line, into a goal, or between goalposts by running, passing, or kicking.

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