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An exploratory examination of the strategic direction of the Gaelic Athletic Association via the application of sports marketing segmentation bases

Damian Gallagher (Department of Marketing, Entrepreneurship and Strategy, University of Ulster, Jordanstown, Northern Ireland)
Christina O'Connor (School of Business, Maynooth University, Maynooth, Ireland)
Audrey Gilmore (Department of Marketing, Entrepreneurship and Strategy, University of Ulster, Coleraine, Northern Ireland)

Marketing Intelligence & Planning

ISSN: 0263-4503

Article publication date: 4 April 2016

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to go beyond the predominantly conceptual or normative approach found in the market segmentation literature and focus not only on its actual application but to review the empirical findings themselves (Foedermayr and Diamantopoulos, 2008) so as to provide the basis for identifying and understanding new segments and assessing the strategic development of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) in Ireland in order to ensure its continued survival, growth and prosperity.

Design/methodology/approach

An exploratory methodology is operationalised in this study using qualitative data obtained from 27 participants possessing relevant knowledge and experience of Gaelic football via a range in-depth interviews and focus groups.

Findings

This study identifies those existing segmentation bases that are both applicable and non-applicable, to the indigenous amateur game of Gaelic football in Ireland, whilst additionally identifying and developing an understanding of new segmentation bases. Furthermore, it highlights the challenges and opportunities that will require strategic management if the GAA is to successfully maintain and develop its domestic market whilst simultaneously developing its overseas markets.

Research limitations/implications

The findings of this study are limited to the indigenous amateur game of Gaelic football in Ireland. They reaffirm the need to develop segmentation bases for individual sports markets. They highlight issues that will have a strategic impact upon the operations of the GAA and make recommendations for addressing and realising the opportunities that these will present.

Originality/value

This study addresses a research gap in the knowledge in regards to the strategic development and application of existing sports marketing segmentation bases to indigenous amateur sport.

Keywords

Citation

Gallagher, D., O'Connor, C. and Gilmore, A. (2016), "An exploratory examination of the strategic direction of the Gaelic Athletic Association via the application of sports marketing segmentation bases", Marketing Intelligence & Planning, Vol. 34 No. 2, pp. 203-222. https://doi.org/10.1108/MIP-09-2014-0188

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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