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Online posting intention: do the social communication and brand equity of esports matter?

Xi Wang (School of Culture and Creativity, BNU-HKBU United International College, Zhuhai, China)
Xinyi You (School of Culture and Creativity, BNU-HKBU United International College, Zhuhai, China)
Yulan Xu (School of Culture and Creativity, BNU-HKBU United International College, Zhuhai, China)
Jie Zheng (Department of Apparel, Events, and Hospitality Management, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa, USA)

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship

ISSN: 1464-6668

Article publication date: 4 December 2023

Issue publication date: 19 January 2024

301

Abstract

Purpose

Social media's role in engaging participants in sports events, particularly during the pandemic, is acknowledged. However, previous studies often utilized sports events for diverse objectives but overlooked brand equity's influence on sports event development. And very limited research explores social media's impact on brand equity in esports events, despite its significance. Therefore, this study aims to explore how social media affects esports event brand equity and participants' satisfaction and engagement with social media through brand equity's influence.

Design/methodology/approach

The study focused on League of Legends World Championships (LOLWC) participants, who completed a self-judged questionnaire online. The questionnaire included demographic details and latent constructs. Data analysis involved two steps: exploratory factor analysis (EFA) to assess measurement scale validity and structural equation modeling (SEM) to study relationships between traits.

Findings

The results reveal that, within the esports event context, controlled communication exerts a meaningful and dual impact – both directly and indirectly – on the fundamental components of brand equity. This, in turn, serves as a catalyst for increasing participant contentment and their posting intention.

Originality/value

This study applies brand equity theories to the esports domain, exploring participant-based brand equity concepts, user behavior and the influence of social media communication on event branding and engagement. It also recommends strategies for event improvement, emphasizes controlled communication for brand equity and highlights marketing's role in brand awareness, association and participant satisfaction. Additionally, it suggests government regulation to address cyber violence during esports events.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Funding: This research was funded by BNU-HKBU United International College Research Start-up Fund, grant number UICR72021129.

Citation

Wang, X., You, X., Xu, Y. and Zheng, J. (2024), "Online posting intention: do the social communication and brand equity of esports matter?", International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, Vol. 25 No. 1, pp. 161-187. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSMS-09-2023-0189

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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