Building a female athlete brand on Instagram

Female athletes receive less media coverage than male athletes across the United States, the United Kingdom, and Switzerland. However, at the same time, participation in sports has increased throughout the years.

Alexandra Bosshard, 2021

Bachelor Thesis, School of Business FHNW
Betreuende Dozierende: Larssyn Staley
Keywords: Female athletes, brand building, athlete brand image, social media, Instagram
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Gender equality in sport is increasing, however, women in the US, UK and Switzerland receive only a fraction of media coverage. In Switzerland, the women's share of media coverage for sport is 13%, somewhat less than for men with 87%. Overall, the media coverage for women stagnated between 2015 and 2020 at an average of 23% (Kleinreport, 2021).
This paper is focusing on two different perspectives: First, a content analysis of English-speaking and Swiss established brands reviews their current behavior on Instagram and highlights differences. Secondly, a need assessment is conducted with selected Swiss athletes by use of a questionnaire and interviews. Lastly, the paper concludes with a guide to help Swiss athletes by offering up-to-date research in order to develop their brand on social media.
The results showed that no size fits all and that only 6.67% of the respondents can identify themselves as a brand. Overall, the athletes automatically correlate brand building with sponsorships and partnerships and rarely see it as an asset to attain sponsorships or partnerships. Furthermore, the need assessment showed that values and principles are crucial for the athletes to start building their brand. Therefore, I adapted models recommended by previous research by including the athletes' needs and set values and principles at the core of the model. In terms of social media platforms, previous research and this research agree on using Instagram as a social media platform.
Studiengang: Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Fachbereich der Arbeit: Strategie, Marketing & Kommunikation
Vertraulichkeit: öffentlich
Art der Arbeit
Bachelor Thesis
School of Business FHNW, Olten
Autorinnen und Autoren
Alexandra Bosshard
Betreuende Dozierende
Larssyn Staley
Sprache der Arbeit
Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Standort Studiengang
Female athletes, brand building, athlete brand image, social media, Instagram