This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Developing and Testing a Consumer Attributes Model to Measure the Effectiveness of Facility Naming Rights Sponsorships in a Professional Baseball Setting




Stephan, John Jr

Type of Degree

PhD Dissertation


Nutrition, Dietetics and Hospitality Management


Although the effectiveness of facility naming rights is generally assumed, there is a general lack of academic research into both how effective these facility naming rights agreements are to both the sponsor and team as well as what consumer attributes affect just how effective facility naming rights are. The purpose of this study is to examine a fan’s reaction to a stadium that has also sold its naming rights to a corporate sponsor and how this relationship impacts their future behavior intentions towards attending future games and purchasing sponsor/team products. This study developed and tested a model that examines what consumer attributes predict their attitude toward the facility naming rights sponsor. An additional purpose of this study is to determine how entering in these naming rights impacts the sponsor with branding aspects. In order to develop and test this model, a survey was developed using previously validated and reliable measures. 657 fans of 2 Major League Baseball teams with stadium sponsors with two different types of products were surveyed that attended a home game. Structural equation modeling was utilized to test the model. The findings reveal that there is minimal spillover effect between the team and sponsor, when measuring game day experience. The findings reveal that there is little downside for a firm to enter into a facility naming rights as fans seem to separate the team from the sponsor, meaning that the sponsor is much more in-control of the consumer’s attitude toward the sponsor. This is beneficial to the sponsor since it lowers the risk of entering iii into an agreement, while also benefiting the team when selling the naming rights. The findings in this study also imply that there is a difference in what factor impact consumers’ attitude toward the sponsor based on the type of sponsor, in this case a service or a good. This study contributes to the facility naming rights/sponsorship literature as the first theoretical model tested in a professional setting measuring facility naming rights effectiveness, as well as introduces the spillover effect theory into sports sponsorship research.