Comparing American and Chinese Consumer Perceptions of Professional Sports Leagues' Brand Equity
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The purpose of this study is to explore the differences between American and Chinese consumer perceptions of professional sports leagues' brand equity. The variables observed in this research are brand loyalty, perceived quality, perceived value and brand sustainability. The study focused on American and Chinese consumers due to the significant influence these two target audiences have on professional sports marketing and business strategy. The National Basketball Association (NBA), National Football League (NFL) and English Premier League (EPL) were chosen for this study because of the differences in their traditional fan base. A survey was distributed, and 168 responses were collected. Difference between means and a regression analyses were conducted. The difference between means tests indicated the following: 1) Chinese consumers feel they are more loyal to the NBA and the EPL than Americans, 2) Americans feel the NFL and EPL positively impact society more than Chinese consumers do,and3) Chinese consumers feel being a fan of the NBA provides social acceptance more than Americans do. The second test, the regression analysis, found the following: 1) there is a correlation between Chinese consumer perceptions of the NFL's brand sustainability and brand loyalty, but not Americans', 2) there is a correlation between the EPL's perceived value and overall brand equity, and 3) there is a correlation between Chinese consumer perceptions of the NBA's perceived value and brand loyalty. These results provide valuable information to professional sports league marketers and business strategists on how leagues are perceived in the US and China. This information will help direct their marketing initiatives in the future to improve their brand equity.