Strategic Match of Athlete Endorsement in Global Markets: An Associative Learning Perspective

Yonghwan Chang
Yong Jae Ko
Asli D.A. Tasci, University of Central Florida
Akiko Arai
Taehee Kim


Marketers worldwide consider athlete endorsement a highly effective promotional tool. However, little is known about consumers' responses towards athlete endorsement in global markets - particularly the bi-directional image transfer mechanism. This study examines the image match between athlete endorsers and products using a three-dimensional visual map and comparing image perceptions towards athlete endorsements among respondent groups from Japan, Korea and the United States during the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The results show that image perceptions of selected athlete endorsers, endorsed products and their match are significantly different in these markets.