The Marketing Implications of Up-and-Coming Sports and of Official International Sports Rating Systems

The Marketing Implications of Up-and-Coming Sports and of Official International Sports Rating Systems

Raymond T. Stefani (California State University – Long Beach, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-7617-4.ch011

Abstract

To effectively market the major international sports, those sports are identified along with their special characteristics. Further, widely available official ranking information about the best nations and individuals at those sports are located so that the special features of each ranking system can be creatively used to arouse spectator and sponsor interest. The three primary sources of recognition are identified: the International Olympic Committee, which recognizes 122 sports; SportAccord (also known as GAISF), which recognizes those plus another 21 sports; while Wikipedia lists those plus another 26 widely played sports for a total of 169. The immense popularity of the up-and-coming e-sports (electronic sports) strongly suggest opportunities for marketing. The 108 sports with ratings systems are covered in the sequence—36 object sports, 59 independent sports, 9 combat sports, and 4 mind sports—followed by the special implications that present themselves for effective marketing. Marketing guidance is then presented for the 61 sports without a rating system. Links to all 169 sports are identified, providing a wealth of individual and team information along with the official ratings. References, internet links, and definitions of all key terms are listed at the end of this chapter.
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Types Of Sports And Three Sources Of Recognition

There is literally a world of information that is free and available via the internet for purposes of marketing sports. The problem is understanding what it is out there and how it is organized.

Let’s begin with understanding what types of sports exist and what organizations recognize the important sports, so our time can be focused on those sports for which marketing is worth the effort. The Official World Encyclopedia of Sports and Games (1979) and Random House Encyclopedia (1983) include many sports with various categories. There are racquet sports, stick-and-ball sports, and water sports categories, for example. A sport can be classified as being a team sport vs. being an individual sport. There is some ambiguity in separating sports into those two seemingly obvious categories. Tennis is an individual sport in singles but there is a team element in doubles. Swimmers compete individually, but placement points can be added to create team competition. Basketball is clearly a team competition. A more organized taxonomy of sports and rating systems is given in Stefani (1999) leading to a survey of recognized federations (the actual groups that organize and regulate competition) and their official ratings systems in Stefani (2011). For this chapter, the latter two studies of sports and sports rating systems are updated through April 2018, an update from November 2013 upon which the previous edition of this chapter was written.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Sports Federation: An international organization that organizes sports competition, as recognized by the International Olympic Committee, Sport Accord, or as listed in Wikipedia for an internationally widely played sport.

Object Sport: A physical sport where contact occurs in an effort to control an object.

Combat Sport: A physical sport in which the competitor comes in direct contact with the opponent in an effort to control the opponent.

Physical Sport: A competition with a set of rules for determining the winner, requiring physical prowess and skill to move the physical competitor and/or a physical object as required by the rules.

E-Sports: A competition with a set of rules for determining the winner, requiring physical prowess and skill to move a virtual person and/or a virtual object as required by the rules.

Rating System: A system that creates a numerical value for each competitor or team. Each such competitor or team is then ranked in ordinal position based on the rating.

Sport: A competition with a set of rules for determining the winner.

Mind Sport: A competition with a set of rules for determining the winner, requiring intellectual prowess and skill. A surrogate could move a playing piece or cards under direct control of the competitor.

Subjective Rating System: A rating system combining the placements provide by a group of experts.

Adjustive Rating System: A rating system in which actual performance is compared to a target based on past performance such that a rating increases, decreases or remains the same depending on whether the actual result for the competitor or team is better, worse, or the same, respectively, as the target.

Accumulative Rating System: A rating system that converts performance to points with a non-decreasing running sum over a window of time. The points involve the result of the competition, importance, and the year that competition occurred.

Independent Sport: A physical sport in which contact is not allowed, as each competitor performs unimpeded by the opponent.

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