Proper identification of event sponsors is a key concern in sponsorship communication. Although practitioners have assumed that event sponsors are identified primarily through pure recollection, the authors show that sponsor identification involves a substantial degree of construction. Results from three experiments indicate that sponsor identification is biased toward brands that are prominent in the marketplace and semantically related to the event. These biases appear to emanate from the constructive processes whereby, during identification, respondents use the prominence and relatedness of available brands as heuristics to verify their recollection of event-sponsor associations. The effects of relatedness on sponsor identification seem stronger and more robust than those of prominence, which appears to be invoked only for large events. Both effects are robust across methods of identification assessment though less pronounced when the accuracy threshold is high.
Johar, Gita, and Michel Tuan Pham. "Relatedness, Prominence, and Constructive Sponsor Identification." Journal of Marketing Research 36, no. 3 (August 1999): 299-312.
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