The Asian Sports Market: Should It Be Revisited by Turkish Football Clubs?

The Asian Sports Market: Should It Be Revisited by Turkish Football Clubs?

Metehan Igneci, Emel Kursunluoglu Yarimoglu
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7527-8.ch006
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Football is considered the most spectated sport in the world. It cannot be considered as a mere entertainment of ninety minutes, but instead, it is an industry that connects many in one body. Due to difficult financial regulations and fierce competitiveness, Turkey, as a well-established but re-emerging football country, should create new routes to enhance their markets and find new financial supports. In order to achieve sustainable development and compete with the other big clubs of Europe, the football environment in Turkey should position itself globally and expand its operations. This chapter aims to adapt the entry strategies in global marketing to sports marketing. It reveals new marketing implementations for Turkish football clubs in Asian sports markets by defining the entry strategies of global markets and giving insights into the existing implementations of both Turkish clubs and other clubs in Asia.
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Internationalization of services has been investigated in the literature for two decades (Samiee, 1999; Grönroos, 1999). In order to enhance global trade and internationalization, and to eliminate tariffs and other barriers that restrict trade, economic integrations were formed among countries. GATT was signed as a multilateral trade agreement to reduce trade barriers among countries. Multilateral negotiations known as trade rounds were conducted and GATT turned into WTO in Uruguay Round. Samiee (1999) emphasized that service trade was not a part of trade negotiations until the Uruguay Round, and services were brought together gradually under the auspices of WTO.

With these developments, companies started to seek new markets to enhance globally and to find new customers. There are two main market expansion strategies: market development and diversification (Keegan and Green, 2011). Market development strategy involves serving new customers with existing products or services. Global companies generally use this strategy for entering new geographical markets without changing their scope of activities. Diversification strategy is the way in which retailers become active in business outside their normal operations and add stores in different product and service categories (Berman and Evans, 2010). In this strategy, a company enters new geographical markets with new products and services by changing company’s product category.

When companies are ready for entering new markets with diversification or market development strategy, two international marketing strategies can be implemented related to marketing mix: standardization and adaptation. Standardization strategy includes executing each marketing mix element in the same way with the origin country. The company that performs standardization strategy does not change its marketing mix according to the new country’s situations. Adaptation strategy requires various alterations in marketing mix. Product, price, place, and promotion decisions are adapted to the conditions of new country and executed in different ways. McDonald’s has been serving its customers with customized marketing mix for years (BBC News, 2012). It offers Ramadan Menu in Turkey to adapt Turkish culture. It does not offer any pork products in Turkey since the majority of Turkish consumers avoid eating pork. In India, it offers “aloo tikki” which is famous as Indian local taste since Indian people do not prefer to eat beef products. McAloo Tikki Burger contains a spiced potato and accounts for 25% of total sales.

Companies need to think global and act local to adapt the new markets since these new markets have different macro environment elements such as economic, politic, and cultural differences. They also perform glocalization (global localization) strategies to be successful in global markets. Keegan and Green (2011) showed that this strategy is used by HSBC. It thinks and acts both global and local by responding to similarities and differences in global markets, and positions itself as “The World’s Local Bank.” The company that will enter a new market needs to find out how to tailor its global marketing mix to satisfy customer needs and wants, and serve them better.

The internationalization of sport has been seen more important and sport teams begin to focus on the international markets instead of their home market. The increasing in middle class households in China and India together with their large population has been attracting the professional sport teams to these countries (Ratten and Ratten, 2011). This study aimed to reveal new routes for Turkish football clubs in the Asian sports market by defining entry strategies of international market and giving insights of the existing implementations of both Turkish clubs and other clubs in Asia.

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