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The effect of quality and leverage on the image transfer model: the moderating role of involvement

Manuel Alonso Dos Santos (Department of Administration, Universidad Católica de la Santisima Concepcion, Concepcion, Chile) (Department of Marketing and Market Research Department, University of Granada, Granada, Spain)
Ferran Calabuig Moreno (Department of Physical Education and Sports, Universitat de València, Valencia, Spain)
Vicente Prado Gascó (Universidad de Valencia, Valencia, Spain)
Jonathan Cuevas Lizama (Universidad de Valencia, Valencia, Spain)

International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship

ISSN: 1464-6668

Article publication date: 25 June 2020

Issue publication date: 6 April 2021




The aim of this study is to examine the influence of perceived sponsorship leverage on perceived product quality and the image transfer model, under moderation by fan involvement.


A self-report online survey was carried out after the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. Responses were received from 422 individuals in 21 countries. The leverage scale was validated using exploratory factor analysis. Then, partial least squares–structural equation modeling was employed to examine the validity and reliability of the scales and test the structural model. Finally, multigroup analysis was used to examine how involvement moderates the influence of leverage.


Attitudes toward sponsorship and purchase intention are influenced by the perceived leverage and quality of the product. The multigroup analysis shows that perceived leverage does not influence the attitudes of individuals with low involvement. The influence of perceived leverage on perceived product quality is greater in individuals with high involvement.

Research limitations/implications

Sponsors should use collateral marketing strategies to target specific segments of individuals with high and low involvement separately. Showcasing the sponsoring products of brands renowned for their high quality could positively influence the results of sponsorship.


This article contributes to the sponsorship literature by exploring how sponsors can capitalize on collateral marketing actions. It also contributes to the theory of image transfer by exploring how perceived product quality can influence the effectiveness of sponsorship.



Alonso Dos Santos, M., Calabuig Moreno, F., Prado Gascó, V. and Cuevas Lizama, J. (2021), "The effect of quality and leverage on the image transfer model: the moderating role of involvement", International Journal of Sports Marketing and Sponsorship, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp. 353-368.



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