Athlete brand image influence on the behavioral intentions of Generation Z
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We investigated the effect of athlete brand image (ABI) on Generation Z’s behavioral intentions, when controlling for congruency of advertised products. We are the first to apply the relatively new concept of ABI to the intent of behavior in a specific consumer segment in an East Asian context. Data from a survey of 563 Korean respondents were analyzed using structural equation modeling. The results show that congruency acted as a mediator in the conceptual model. The findings also suggest that sportsmanship, role model, and relationship effort appeared to be the most important attributes of ABI. Consequently, athletes and their agents should concentrate on specific attributes to develop stronger brand images. By better understanding the impact of ABI on Generation Z, marketers can effectively target this unique consumer base, which will enable the sustainable development of the advertising market.