Public relations for players

2016-10-12T15:17:05Z (GMT) by James Skinner
Bruce and Tini (2008) indicate that with sport it is the media rather than sales and advertising strategies that are the key to conveying sports’ unique imagery and meaning. They suggest that the impact of high-profile scandals, however, can turn what is mainly positive media coverage into unbalanced and misinformed press that has the potential to cause long-term damage. As this media coverage is harder to control than advertising or sales promotion there are positive and negative implications that need to be managed by the sports public relations professional. If a player or a sport organisation receives positive press, Bruce and Tini suggest that it will assist in forming a stronger connection with fans and create and further channel the need and desire for more sports content. Unsavoury or bad press about players and sport organisations has the potential to call into question a player’s reputation and lead to poor public perception of the sport organisation or sport. This can then filter through to future participation problems and a reduction in a range of revenue streams including sponsorships and player endorsements. As will be highlighted in this chapter, this is particularly the case in professional sport given the extensive media scrutiny afforded to it. How sports public relations professionals deal with potential player(s) crisis and the wider implications for the sport organisation and sport requires a detailed understanding and ability to implement crisis communication strategies. As such, there is little doubt that public relations has a key role to play in professional sport. With particular emphasis on the work of Summers and Morgan (2008), this chapter explores the role of public relations in professional sport with particular emphasis on how public relations and communication strategies can be used when dealing with potentially damaging

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