Understanding sports fans' motivations by text mining #ChongWeiOurHero
Goh, Sherwin Si Win
Date of Issue2017-04-18
National Institute of Education
Sports organisations must understand sports fans’ motivations behind their social media interactions to successfully harness it as a tool for relationship marketing. Few studies have directly analysed sports fans’ contributions on social media, and of these, most examined supporters’ contributions by reading and sorting each comment. Text mining conducts automated analysis of social media comments, making it much less labour and time consuming than traditional content analysis methods. However, its use has hardly been applied to sport. The purpose of this study is to investigate the suitability of text mining in interpreting supporters’ motivations from their social media contributions. Lee Chong Wei’s loss in the 2016 Rio Olympics badminton men’s singles final was the setting for this study. A qualitative approach using text mining and cluster analysis with R Studio was employed to analyse 16972 English tweets under #chongweiourhero, with the results presented as a hierarchical cluster dendrogram. Results indicate that Lee’s fans had the motives of communicating with him, expressing emotion, offering consolation, expressing appreciation and expressing unity when responding to Lee’s loss at the 2016 Olympics on social media. These categories are similar to those found in the study by Kee et al. (2016) which studied the motivations of Lee’s supporters in a similar setting at the 2012 Olympics, but through traditional content analysis methods. The present study validates the suitability of text mining in interpreting supporters’ motives from their social media contributions, and supports it use in aiding sports organizations to harness social media as marketing tool.
DRNTU::Social sciences::Journalism::Reporting on sports
Final Year Project (FYP)