The overarching purpose of this study was to examine the impact of star athletes on the consumer-based brand equity of professional sport teams. Through a comprehensive review of literature and a test of content validity by an expert panel, preliminary scales were developed to measure the characteristic attributes of star athletes and the areas of brand equity that were affected by these traits. Research participants (N = 195) were professional sport fans that responded to a survey questionnaire in a classroom setting. After conducting factor analyses on the results, two factors (On -Field and Off-Field) for the star characteristic variables and six factors (Brand Loyalty, Brand Awareness, Brand Image, Brand Value, Perceived Quality, and Brand Reputation) for the areas of brand equity emerged. Multiple regression analyses revealed that the On-Field and Off-Field factors combined to exert the greatest, significant effects on the Brand Awareness and Brand Image components.
Pifer, N. D., Mak, J. Y., Bae, W. & Zhang, J. J. (2015). Examining the relationship between star player characteristics and brand equity in professional sport teams. Marketing Management Journal, 25(2), 88-106.