An Analysis of Research Methods in Leading Sport Marketing Journals: A Call for Historical Research

Dylan Williams
Patrick Tutka
and Chad Seifried

General marketing scholars have advocated for historical research since the 1980s, leading to a substantial increase in history-based marketing articles. With general marketing embracing historical research, the present content analysis assesses leading sport marketing journals, their article methodologies, and the presence of any studies that utilize the historical method and/or incorporate historical or archival data for analysis. Comparatively, the present study shows sport marketing scholars primarily analyze the field through pure monomethod (i.e., quantitative or qualitative) approaches, but many researchers also use historical or archival data. With recent calls to improve sport-study through diversifying methodological choices, we suggest the historical method should be an attractive interdisciplinary alternative because it offers a distinct data collection and analytical approach capable of studying important questions. Further, historical research can advance theory, predict future patterns or trends, inform decision-making processes, and identify future research activity. Overall, we see an opportunity for more history-based scholarship in sport marketing journals.