Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the contribution of qualitative methods and techniques in extending the understanding of relationship marketing theory. Design/methodology/approach – The study investigated six Australian sporting organisations using multiple data collection methods including semi‐structured interviews with several senior executives within each organisation, secondary and historical data sources and participant observation. The application of triangulation and multiple case studies is discussed in relation to their contribution toward a greater understanding of relationship marketing practice in the professional sport industry, as well as the barriers to the adoption of this strategy. Findings – Using triangulation and a multiple case study approach provided a richness of information which, upon analysis within and across cases, revealed a number of commonalities and some limited diversity. Using this approach maximised the depth of information and increased the transferability of the findings to allow for the development of a conceptual model, which advances relationship‐marketing theory. Originality/value – Triangulation has not been used extensively in case study research nor has a multiple case study approach been commonly applied to the sport industry. This paper deconstructs the methods and their subsequent contribution to the findings of this study.
Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jun 12, 2009
Keywords: Relationship marketing; Qualitative methods; Leisure activities; Australia
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