Marketing Hockey Strategically (EMHS) 642

Marketing Hockey Strategically

HCKY 642

Delivery Mode: Paced

Credits: 3

Prerequisites: None

Faculty: Faculty of Business

Program: Certified Hockey Professional Designation

Manager: Terry Beckman

Course Overview

More so than in other professional sports, the bulk of the revenues of a professional hockey franchise derive directly and indirectly from ticketing sales and ingress spending. Fans attending and following games and their geographical markets differ (a) in their ability to pay for tickets, (b) in the amount they will spend on concessions and other merchandise, and (c) in their capacity to attract advertisers and sponsors. Moreover, the appeal of other entertainment options—sports and otherwise—differs among various groups of fans and in different markets. For this reason, the focus of this course is on identifying, understanding, and targeting the fans, viewers, and spectators with the greatest potential to increase a franchise’s profitability and valuation.

Toward this end, the course begins with a discussion of consumer behaviour, fan psychology, market segmentation, and competitive/competitor analysis. It then moves on to strategic brand management and, more specifically, to the ways in which a franchise can define, build, and manage its core brand, brand extensions, and brand alliances so as to cull, cultivate, and attract the most desirable fans, viewers, and spectators from a long term business perspective. This then leads to the development of an overall marketing strategy, which will guide a franchise’s marketing communications (EICH-643), game day strategies (EGMM-644), and hockey operations (EHOP-645).

Course Objectives

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  • apply core marketing concepts such as the marketing concept, segmentation, targeting, positioning, and branding
  • understand and apply basic concepts of consumer psychology, specifically focused on sports and hockey consumers
  • identify various variables that comprise the behaviour of hockey fans/consumers
  • demonstrate knowledge of the ways in which consumers choose between competing market offerings
  • draw upon the above knowledge to develop strategies and tactics to reach and influence hockey fans
  • apply the concepts of brand and brand equity in the context of sports and in particular hockey clubs
  • use branding concepts such as brand building and brand extensions in the hockey context

Course Materials

Foster, G., O'Reilly, N., & Davila, A. (2016). Sports business management: Decision making around the globe. New York: Routledge.

Additional readings are provided in the course’s Digital Reading Room.

Course Outline

The course is divided into eight parts, as follows:

Week Topic
1 Decision Making in the Sport Business Ecosystem: Applications
2 Stakeholders 1: Leagues, Clubs, Owners, and Management
3 Stakeholders 2: Professional Athletes and Players’ Associations/Union
4 Stakeholders 3: Global Sporting Bodies, Federations, and Events
5 Hockey Marketing 1: Core Concepts and Tactics
6 Hockey Marketing 2: Sponsorship, Endorsements, and Brand
7 Hockey Marketing 3: Impact, Tickets, and Venues
8 Hockey Marketing 4: Digital and Broadcasting Elements

Course Evaluation

To receive a passing grade in this course, students must meet these minimum standards:

  • receive a minimum of 60% on the participation component (i.e., Weekly Discussions); and
  • receive an average grade of 60% over all course components.

Marks for this course will be distributed as follows:

Activity Weighting
Individual Exercises - 6 exercises at 5% each 30%
Participation - 8 weeks at 5% each 40%
Group Exercises (small group) - 2 exercises at 15% each 30%

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.