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A Study of Corporate Sponsorship for Badminton Athletes in Taiwan
Corporate sponsorship has been growing rapidly in recent years. Among the sponsor strategies, individual athlete sponsor influences the most and has become the main strategy for brand marketing. However, sponsor conflicts often occur between athletes and corporates mostly because athletes do not follow the sponsorship obligations. Thus, the study aimed at exploring the status quo of corporate sponsorship for outstanding badminton athletes in Taiwan from the third party perspective. The purposive sampling was adopted. Six athletes from Chinese Taipei national badminton team were selected for interview. Findings were as follows. 1. Currently the athletes of national badminton team in Taiwan were primarily trained by corporate badminton teams of both Land Bank of Taiwan and Taiwan Cooperative Bank. These corporate badminton teams provided better training environments and career counseling. 2. These outstanding badminton athletes had only a limited understanding of sponsorship and how to maintain the long-term relationship with sponsors. However, they did understand what qualities endorsers should possess and how they should provide feedback after receiving corporate sponsor. 3. Sport agents for badminton athletes were rarely found in Taiwan. The majority of sponsor were frequently connected by corporates, coaches, and family or friends. 4. These elite badminton athletes were trained by attending competitions rather than undergoing training. Also, the resources, such as traffic and training care, offered by the national team were insufficient. In this case, corporate sponsorship played a vital role. Therefore, the present study suggested the elite badminton athletes should understand the essence of sponsorship and consider how to maintain a long-term partnership with sponsors. It was also suggested that the government should offer relevant resources for sport sponsorship, training care providing and international competitions supporting in particular. Future research could focus on different type of sports and further explore how to promote the sponsorship between corporates and athletes.
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