Title: Sport mega-events and tourism: contrasting the influence of host country and event
Authors: Norm O'Reilly; Anahit Armenakyan; Irene R.R. Lu; John Nadeau; Louise A. Heslop; Erdinc Cakmak
Department of Sports Administration, College of Business, Ohio University, 1 Ohio University, Copeland 514A, Athens, Ohio 45701, USA
School of Business, Faculty of Applied and Professional Studies, Nipissing University, 100 College Drive, North Bay, ON, P1B 8L7, Canada
Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, 929 Dunton Tower, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Ottawa, ON K1S 5B6, Canada
Department of Sports Administration, College of Business, Ohio University, 1 Ohio University, CSC 3rd Floor, Athens, Ohio 45701, USA
Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, 1726 Dunton Tower, 1125 Colonel By Drive, Ottawa, ON K1S 5B6, Canada
NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences, P.O. Box 3917, 4800 DX Breda, The Netherlands
Abstract: This is an empirical, descriptive study of tourists at sport mega-events. Its purpose is to describe tourists who attend sport mega-events. As an empirical study, it surveys tourists at two major sport mega-events in two different countries: the 2008 Olympic Games in China and the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. Building on a growing body of literature related to the marketing of sport mega-events, results support that both the place (China versus South Africa) and the attraction (Olympic Games versus FIFA World Cup) influence - across a number of place image variables - the nature and composition of the tourists who are attracted to the sport mega-event. The findings suggest that the sport mega-event can be used by the host country to target potential tourists who have limited interest in the event. Further, this research finds that the tourist view of the sport mega-event is influenced by the host country and the nature of the event. The research responds to a key need in both the literature and in practice, where understanding of tourists in the SME context is needed for countries, regions and communities.
Keywords: place image; sports mega-events; Olympic Games; FIFA World Cup; tourism destinations; host country; events; tourists; sport marketing; event nature; SMEs; small and medium-sized enterprises.
Int. J. of Sport Management and Marketing, 2016 Vol.16, No.3/4/5/6, pp.280 - 296
Submission date: 12 Sep 2015
Date of acceptance: 25 Mar 2016
Available online: 22 Jul 2016