Authors: Wayne W. Smith; Robert E. Pitts; Stephen W. Litvin; Rhonda W. Mack
Addresses: College of Charleston, 66 George Street, South Carolina, 29424, USA ' College of Charleston, 66 George Street, South Carolina, 29424, USA ' College of Charleston, 66 George Street, South Carolina, 29424, USA ' College of Charleston, 66 George Street, South Carolina, 29424, USA
Abstract: The sponsorship decision criteria for a local, but significant, non-sporting event is examined via in depth interviews and a grounded theory-based qualitative methodology. Transcripts of in depth interviews of the key sponsorship decision makers at 30 sponsoring firms across a range of business categories were systematically coded to identify sponsorship decision criteria. 29 of the 30 respondents mentioned 'fit' as a key criterion in the decision to sponsor. Further probing during the interviews revealed that the concept of 'fit' takes on multiple dimensions and meanings: 1) an altruism component of community goodwill and personal linkage; 2) a marketing component of both business-to-business and business-to-consumer; 3) an internal organisation component of employee relations and employee involvement were determined to be variations in the defining of the concept. Findings are discussed and directions for future research identified.
Keywords: corporate sponsorship; festivals; sponsorship decisions; fit; business-to-business; B2B; decision making; festival sponsorship; non-sporting events; altruism; community goodwill; personal links; marketing; business-to-consumer; B2C; employee relations; employee involvement.
International Journal of Hospitality and Event Management, 2016 Vol.1 No.4, pp.293 - 304
Received: 19 Feb 2015
Accepted: 14 Aug 2015
Published online: 09 Feb 2017 *