This post is my presentation from the Sport Management Association of Australia and New Zealand (SMAANZ) 2014 Conference.
The post contains the abstract, with presentation video and slides being added after the conference.
Hodgetts, D., & Duncan, M. (2014). A major sporting event can leave a media legacy: a content analysis of print media resulting from the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships at Scarborough, Western Australia. Paper presented at the Sport Management Association of Australia New Zealand Conference, Melbourne, Australia.
Sport organisations at all levels have a reliance on the media to promote themselves and their product to potential members, supporters and sponsors. While there are a number of components in the promotions mix, publicity is particularly prevalent in sport. Publicity is material published in the media that has no cost to the featured organisation (Nicholson, 2006). In contrast to advertising, publicity is particularly beneficial for sport clubs because of the expense incurred by advertising.
Sporting events provide an increased profile, which has been suggested can lead to participation growth, an increased public profile and increased marketing opportunities (Sotiriadou et al., 2008). Media coverage can be a significant benefit before, during and after an event (Dwyer et al, 2000). Conversely it can be detrimental, as with the criticism of the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games (Gratton, 1999).
The Australian Surf Life Saving Championships were held at Scarborough, Western Australia in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2014. Quantitative content analysis was conducted on Western Australia print media annually from 1997. Categories for analysis were inductively developed. Analysis showed an increase of print mentions of surf lifesaving from 30 in total from 1997 to 49 in 2009. Twenty five of the 2009 articles concerned sport, and 15% of the total were about the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships. Corresponding with an increase in articles about the event was an increase in general sport articles.