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"Champa Bay" Decay? The impact of brand image and championship success on Tampa Bay professional sports

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Derek Hines

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Carol Osborne

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The Tampa Bay (TB) teams of the major sports leagues in America (Football, Hockey, and Baseball) have been experiencing high levels of success over the past few years. Despite all of the success, a lack of support has been evident for the TB Rays while the Buccaneers and Lightning have experienced no such lows. There are many potential contributing factors that may play into why the Rays do not garner their deserved support from the community (such as their stadium location, reputation of the majority owner, or poor marketing efforts), but ultimately can all be attributed to one main point: brand image. This thesis will look to explore these factors by reviewing how the TB Buccaneers and TB Lightning have created positive brand images, how significant the problems are for the TB Rays, and after speaking with experts in the field of sports marketing and surveying college students in the TB area, coming up with potential solutions that could help the TB Rays moving forward.

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"Champa Bay" Decay? The impact of brand image and championship success on Tampa Bay professional sports

The Tampa Bay (TB) teams of the major sports leagues in America (Football, Hockey, and Baseball) have been experiencing high levels of success over the past few years. Despite all of the success, a lack of support has been evident for the TB Rays while the Buccaneers and Lightning have experienced no such lows. There are many potential contributing factors that may play into why the Rays do not garner their deserved support from the community (such as their stadium location, reputation of the majority owner, or poor marketing efforts), but ultimately can all be attributed to one main point: brand image. This thesis will look to explore these factors by reviewing how the TB Buccaneers and TB Lightning have created positive brand images, how significant the problems are for the TB Rays, and after speaking with experts in the field of sports marketing and surveying college students in the TB area, coming up with potential solutions that could help the TB Rays moving forward.