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Understanding fan motivation for interacting on social media

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  • Stavros, Constantino
  • Meng, Matthew D.
  • Westberg, Kate
  • Farrelly, Francis

Abstract

Social media provide fans with an additional means to engage with their team and are a valuable forum for sport organizations to better understand fan motivations and strengthen fan relationships. This study contributes to emerging research on the nature of social media use by revealing the motivations underpinning the desire of fans to communicate on the Facebook sites of several National Basketball Association (NBA) teams. Our findings indicate that fans exercise four key motives as they draw value from the social media enabled connection to the team: passion, hope, esteem and camaraderie. Further, and in light of our understanding of these motives, we identify how this platform can be used to facilitate interaction, a key construct in relationship marketing. A content analysis, using a netnographic methodology, was undertaken to explore online comments by fans of eight purposefully selected NBA teams over a two-week period during the off-season. This period represents strong potential for isolating highly identified fans who are motivated to seek engagement and interaction. Implications for sport managers to further relational goals are identified.

Suggested Citation

  • Stavros, Constantino & Meng, Matthew D. & Westberg, Kate & Farrelly, Francis, 2014. "Understanding fan motivation for interacting on social media," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(4), pages 455-469.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:spomar:v:17:y:2014:i:4:p:455-469
    DOI: 10.1016/j.smr.2013.11.004
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Popp, Bastian & Woratschek, Herbert, 2016. "Introducing branded communities in sport for building strong brand relations in social media," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 183-197.
    2. Næss, Hans Erik, 2017. "Authenticity matters: A digital ethnography of FIA World Rally Championship fan forums," Sport Management Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 105-113.
    3. repec:gam:jijfss:v:5:y:2017:i:4:p:25-:d:117169 is not listed on IDEAS

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