The purpose of this article is to investigate sports branding at the personal level by focusing on the evolvement, growth and sustainability of the ANNIKA BRAND – an extension of Annika Sörenstam's success on golf courses worldwide.
A qualitative case study method inspired by “symbolic interactionist” aspects and focusing on Annika Sörenstam's commercial success with personal sports branding and its interdependence with sports branding at the product and corporate levels. Data collection was conducted in accordance with interpretative research traditions and hence based on qualitative semi‐ structured research interviews.
The “hybrid” nature of sports brands draws highly on “emotional capital” and “social currency”. Personal sports branding acts as a “hybrid”, which facilitates “hybrid” branding relationships between personal sports brands and sports brands at the product and corporate levels – often underlining good ROIs for all involved parties if the sports branding process is executed well strategically. This article presents personal sports branding as a hybrid phenomenon, which is dynamic by heart and part of a well‐coordinated process engaging several partners.
The practices and activities of the ANNIKA BRAND is a showcase for sports branding practitioners thinking about sustainable business models.
This paper is unique in offering a roadmap for how personal sport stars may approach brand development and growth while discussing key points of the interdependence between sports brands at the personal, product and corporate levels.
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