Marketing Effectiveness of the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games: Implications for Physical Activity




marketing, millennial, promotion, sport festivals


Despite a successful inaugural hosting of the Summer YOG in Singapore 2010 and the Winter YOG in Innsbruck (2012), prior research shows many individuals worldwide still lack awareness of this event, especially in the target markets of youth, adolescents, and young adults. This study sought to determine the level of awareness of the YOG, in comparison to other international sport festivals in the young adult market, among a group of Kinesiology students. A 24-item survey was developed based on prior YOG research surveys with the addition of comparative questions related to the 2012 London Olympic Games (LOG) and the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games (WOG), including event logo identification. Marketing effectiveness for the YOG was examined by analyzing the perceptions and awareness of the YOG, WOG, and LOG from a sample of Midwest university sport and exercise science students (n = 286, Mage = 19.8, SD = 3.24 years, 58% male and 42% female). These Kinesiology students were surveyed during the period corresponding to the 2014 Nanjing YOG. Primary research questions focused on personal awareness (M = 2.07, SD = 1.42) and public awareness (M = 2.14, SD = 1.12) of the 2014 YOG, 2014 WOG (logo recognition: M = 3.31, SD = 1.78) and 2012 LOG (logo recognition: M = 3.41, SD = 0.86) through Likert-type scaling from not aware (1), to totally aware (7). Secondary research questions focused on likeliness to attend YOG events in Nanjing, China (M = 1.37, SD = 0.91), to watch YOG events on television (M = 2.51, SD = 1.66), and to follow YOG events on social media (M = 2.19, SD = 1.48). Despite the fact that the YOG was in progress when this survey was administered, students’ awareness and willingness to engage in the events was extremely low, indicating a need for event organizers to focus on more successful and effective marketing to the targeted audience of youth and young adults.

Author Biography

Lawrence W. Judge, Ball State University

Lawrence W. Judge is a professor and associate chair in the school of Kinesiology at Ball State University.