Sports Tourism Marketing

Sports Tourism Marketing

Kirstin Hallmann (German Sport University Cologne, Germany), Sören Dallmeyer (German Sport University Cologne, Germany) and Christoph Breuer (German Sport University Cologne, Germany)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6543-9.ch041
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Research dealing with the motives of sports tourists from a marketer's perspective remains underdeveloped. This chapter describes the phenomenon of sports tourism and aspires to examine with an empirical study the motives of winter and summer sports tourists. The first sample (n=339) was comprised of active as well as passive summer sports tourists. The second sample (n=477) only focused on active participants being winter sports tourists. Both samples were sharing a particular profile of consumers: The respondents were predominantly male, medium-aged, well-educated, and affluent. Cluster analysis based on the items of involvement and strengths of motivation revealed the clusters Casual and Committed. The Committed cluster showed a higher level of involvement, whereas sport motivation differed between the two clusters. Implications for marketing are presented.
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Sports Tourism

In the last two decades the sports tourism sector has developed into a significant contributor to the economy (Daniels & Norman, 2003). As a symbiosis of the most important industrial sector worldwide, tourism, and the most important leisure activity, sports, it established a niche market with constantly rising growth rates (Hudson, 2003). Accordingly, academics increasingly paid attention. The sheer number of studies dealing with different aspects of this topic has increased in the last twenty years. Researchers from both domains, sport science and tourism science, after having answered the question of what actually constitutes sports tourism, just started their enquiry of the effects yielded by this unique relationship (Gibson, 2005; Weed, 2005).

It can be argued that the tourism sector’s rise occurred, on the one hand, because this relatively new field of research has just started to describe the underlying phenomenon and, on the other hand, that people had already traveled to sport events in previous times. Hinch and Higham (2011) deemed this progression to be been driven by economic and political forces and the change of social attitudes and values. Therefore, the concept of experience economy developed by Pine and Gilmore (1998) has to be considered. It describes how consumers are not valuing purchases for their rational utility, but rather for their emotional and motivational perceptions that are evoked by and associated with the product. This principle is likewise applicable to the selling of services, which appears to be of higher relevance for the context of sports tourism. Pine and Gilmore (1998) argued that experiences do represent a real, tangible item similar to any other good, service or commodity. People are exchanging valued resources like money, time or physical safety for motivational and emotional experiences that are staged by the organizations offering the respective service. In respect to sports tourism, the tourism provider is staging the experience as part of the offered service.

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