Revisit: Summer AMA 2016


SPORTSIG solicits participation in AMA Summer Academic Conference, Atlanta, 5-7 Aug 2016

American Marketing Association 2016 Summer Marketing Educators’ Conference
August 5-7, 2016 – Atlanta, GA
Sports & Special Events Marketing Special Interest Group (SPORTSIG)

Emotional Brand Attachment in Sports Marketing

Abstracts should be limited to 500 – 700 words in length and be on any topic related to research or education in sports marketing, however abstracts related to the themes discussed below are especially encouraged.

Over the last decade academic researchers in marketing have made significant advances in understanding consumers’ attachment to brands – a construct founded on self-expansion and attachment theory. The brand attachment construct has gained the attention of researchers and practitioners alike because of its ability to more accurately predict actual consumer behaviors than other brand oriented constructs like brand awareness, brand loyalty and brand attitude strength. In a 2010 manuscript published in the Journal of Marketing, Park et al (2010) suggests that brand attachment “serves as the ultimate destination for customer–brand relationships.” The sports context offers a unique arena to further examine this important construct and contribute to the growing body of theoretical knowledge.

The AMA Sports & Special Events Marketing Special Interest Group encourages papers for a special session at the AMA Summer Marketing Educators’ Conference focusing on:

  • Self-expansion theory (Aron et al. 2005) posits that people possess an inherent desire to incorporate others (here sports brands) into their conception of “self” (Park et al. 2010). What are the antecedents of this process for sports brands?
  • Dunn and Hoegg (2015) research suggests a brand’s ability to be a relationship partner is determined by the extent to which the brand has human-like qualities. Thus, it would be interesting to examine if brand attachment occurs more readily for brands with more anthropomorphic qualities or for brands that typically represent social communities (e.g., sports teams).
  • Attachment theory posits that such a relationship develops over time as the self and the entity evolve. How long does this process take? Are there distinctive stages of development that can be developed? What are the factors that accelerate and/or deter the development?
  • According to Park et al. (2010), a cognitive reorganization takes place over time such that the self expands to include the entity and people develop a positive feeling of “oneness” with the entity (Aron, Aron, and Smollan 1992) and tend to view the entity’s resources as their own (Mittal 2006). What strategies can sports brands pursue to foster the feeling of “oneness”? How do emerging digital technologies play a role?
  • What role do emotions of joy (after a big win or a successful season) or disappointment (after a big loss or poor season) play in the creation of long-term brand attachment?
  • What are the conceptual and empirical differences between brand attachment and other previously developed critical sports brand equity drivers like team loyalty, fan engagement?

Key Dates:

Deadline for submission of abstracts: January 15, 2016
Notification of inclusion in session proposal: February 1, 2016
Requirements for submission: Each submission should contain a 500-700 word abstract that includes the title of the paper and the names/affiliations of the authors. In addition, you must include an alphabetical list of references. The submission should be single spaced, and use 12-point Times New Roman font.

Questions & submissions should be directed to:

SPORTSIG Chair: Darin W. White, Ph.D.; Professor of Marketing & Sports Marketing Program Coordinator; Brock School of Business, Samford University,; @Sports_Biz_Prof

SPORTSIG Vice Chair: Jonathan Jensen, Ph.D.; Assistant Professor; Assistant Professor in the Department of Marketing, International Business, & Sport Management in the Girard School of Business at Merrimack College,, @jajensen23

For additional information about the AMA Summer Educators’ Conference visit:

About the SPORTSIG:

The mission of SPORTSIG is to expand the knowledge base in the field of sports and event marketing and further develop the academic community dedicated to this field through collaborative scholarly activities and outputs focused on the research, teaching and practice of sports marketing. Follow us on Twitter @AMA_Sports_SIG.