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Surrogate brands – the pull to adopt an 'other' nation, via sports merchandise
by Jonathan A.J. Wilson; Jonathan Liu
International Journal of Sport Management and Marketing (IJSMM), Vol. 11, No. 3/4, 2012


Abstract: This conceptual paper draws from phenomenological inductive reasoning and syllogisms, as a basis for conceptual metaphor theory and critical discourse analysis. It highlights a global phenomenon – which transcends national and cultural boundaries. De facto: sports participation and support necessitate that uniforms distinguish and identify associated parties. As a basic premise, uniform ownership suggests exclusivity and encouraged competition. However, now branded kit, teams, athletes and sponsors are entering symbiotic brand relationships – where they actively seek publics, open to multiple adopted national global identities. Significantly, consumers are choosing to wear sporting merchandise, from an 'other' nation, or region – whom they have no primary affiliation with. Rather, they are governed by a sharing of emotional and psychographic criteria, housed within a complex network of ascribed meaning towards brands. In short, sports uniform no longer demands restrictive monogamous loyalty. This draws consumers towards embracing temporal identities, culminating in an adopted national identity – termed surrogacy.

Online publication date: Fri, 01-Jun-2012


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