Ambush Marketing: A Chinese Perspective Yuqi AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 9 Introduction

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Transcript of Ambush Marketing: A Chinese Perspective Yuqi AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 9 Introduction

  • Running head: AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 1

    Ambush Marketing: A Chinese Perspective

    Yuqi Liu

    A thesis submitted to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies

    in partial of fulfillment of the requirements for the

    MASTER OF ARTS

    in Human Kinetics

    Program of Human Kinetics

    Faculty of Health Science

    University of Ottawa

    November, 2013

    ©Yuqi Liu, Ottawa, Canada, 2013

  • AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 2

    Abstract

    As one of the top topics in both scholarly and practical fields of sport sponsorship,

    ambush marketing research usually focuses on protection of the sports sponsor’s rights and

    prevention strategies. According to the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) (2008)

    marketing report, the Chinese government did a great job in preventing ambush marketing. Since

    five years passed, whether China can maintain a high-performing sponsor protection record after

    the Olympics should be evaluated.

    In response to the question, the investigator conducted a qualitative study involving 11

    semi-structured interviews of subject-matter experts and a material/archive content analysis. The

    interviewees chosen were experts from various types of organizations including: (1) government,

    (2) sports organizations, (3) companies involved in sports sponsorship, (4) sports media, and (5)

    academic research institutions in China. The interviews aimed at revealing further insights into

    how ambush campaigns are perceived within China as well as to further its possible sociological

    and economical causes. Results revealed that although ambush marketing was regulated during

    the 2008 Summer Olympics, it is still common in China. The current situation of ambush

    marketing in China is shaped by five factors including: (1) media, (2) legal system, (3)

    government relationships, (4) event organizers’ experience, and (5) contemporary culture.

    The study reveal ambush marketing is with the background that China possesses a

    socialist political background while having a period of capitalistic economic development. The

    importance of the government’s role in maintaining the socialistic culture in economic

    development cannot be neglected. Also, the triangulated contemporary culture (includes

    traditional, communism and capitalism) is a big influence to the "Chinese characteristics" in the

    country’s sport sponsorship.

    Keywords: sport sponsorship, China, ambush marketing, experts

  • AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 3

    Acknowledgements

    I would like to express the sincere appreciation to my supervisors Professor Benoit

    Séguin and Professor Norm O’Reilly. Their attitude and knowledge inspire me to continually and

    convincingly convey a spirit of adventure in regard to research and scholarship. Without their

    guidance and persistent help, this thesis would not have been possible.

    I would like to thank my committee members, Professor Eric MacIntosh and Professor

    Holger Preuss, who provided the useful comments, remarks and engagement through the

    learning process of this master thesis.

    In addition, I want to thank Professor Li Shengxin and Professor Zou Xinxian who

    provided me suggestions in conducting research and contacting the experts while I was in China.

    Thanks to Dr. Li Jingxian who cared about me just like a family member during my stay in

    Ottawa. Thanks for her comments and help in analysing my Mandarin data. Also, I would like to

    thank all the participants in my survey, who have willingly shared their precious time during the

    process of interviewing.

    I would like to thank my parents who financed my education and provided me the chance

    to study abroad, which has brought a lot of positive influences to my life. Their endless love

    makes all my efforts worthwhile. Thanks to all my colleagues and friends’ help and

    companionship during my master years!

  • AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 4

    Table of Contents

    Abstract…………………………………………………………………………..…….…..….....2

    Acknowledgements…………………………………………………………..……………..……3

    Table of Contents………………………………………………………..…...….....……….…....4

    List of Figures…………………………………………………….………...………..……...…...7

    List of Tables……………………………………………………………………………………..8

    Introduction……………………………………………………….…………………..…………9

    Background……………………………………………….…….…………………….…..….…12

    Literature Review…………………………………………..…………………………..………15

    Overview of Ambush Marketing………………………………………………………..…15

    Definition of ambush marketing …………………….…………………………...…..15

    Consumer reaction…………………….……………………………………......….….17

    Ethical debate and legal issue……………………...…………………….…...…...…..20

    Anti-ambush marketing strategies………………………….………………...……....22

    China, Sport Sponsorship and Ambush Marketing...……………………...…………….24

    Chinese Characteristic……………...............................................................................25

    Sport Sponsorship in China………………………………………...…………….…...25

    Ambush marketing Research in China……………………………………………………27

    Methodology…………………………………………………………………………………….34

    Semi-structured interview…………………………………………...…………….………34

    Content analysis of Documents /Archive materials……………………...….…...……….38

    Thematic Data Analysis………………………...…………………...…………..…………39

    Results/Discussions……………………………………………………………………………..42

  • AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE 5

    Theme one: “Chinese Characteristic" Media……………….……………………………46

    Monopolization? Centralization? or Commercialization?..........................................46

    “Sports Media Doesn’t Need to Pay for the Broadcasting Fee in China”……….….48

    Consume Sports: Is China a Market as large as its Population?...............................50

    Media: with its Full Power……………………………………………………...……..52

    The New Media Era………………………………………………………………...….52

    Theme two: “Chinese Characteristic” Legal System …………………………..………..53

    How does IPR Protection Affect Ambush Marketing in China?...............................53

    “As Long as it doesn’t Conflict with the Law”……………………………………….56

    Legal Implement/Enforcement………………………………………………………...58

    Is it priority to Classify Ambush Marketing a Legal Issue in China?........................59

    Theme three: Government relationship…………………………………………………..61

    “The Government is the biggest sponsor in China” ……………………………...….61

    The Government Resources…………………………..….…………………………….64

    How Stakeholders Maintain their Government Relationship? ……...……………...66

    Theme four: Inside Sports Business Education of Ambush Marketing………….……..67

    Sport Sponsorship Education…………………………………………………….……68

    IPR protection Education………………………...………………….………..……….69

    Theme five: Culture: Ambush marketing is still popular in China……………………..70

    Traditional Chinese Culture Affection………………………………………………..70

    Communism Ideals’ Affection…………………………………………………..……..72

    Capitalism Way in China’s Economic Development……………………………...…73

    Current Triangulated Culture in China……………………………...……………....74

  • AMBUSH MARKETING: A CHINESE PERSPECTIVE