Segmenting sport fans by eFANgelism: a cluster analysis of South Korean soccer fans

Sanghyun Park, Seungmo Kim, Weisheng Chiu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purposes of this study were to classify soccer fans of K-League in South Korea by using the Sport eFANgelism scale and to examine differences among the identified groups. Design/methodology/approach: Data were collected from 286 K-league fans using a convenience sampling technique. A cluster analysis was conducted to identify different segments, and ANOVA and post-hoc Tukey test were further employed to compare the differences between segments. Findings: A cluster analysis identified three groups of K-League fans according to the levels of their evangelistic behaviors: (1) eFANgelists, (2) stationary fans, and (3) mild supporters. The results of ANOVA and post-hoc Tukey test indicated that each group showed significant differences in four types of evangelistic behaviors (i.e. advertise, advocate, assimilate, and antagonize). Generally, eFANgelists had the strongest evangelistic behaviors, whereas stationary fans had the lowest levels of eFANgelistic behaviors. In addition, mild supporters expressed more hostile behaviors towards opponent fans. Practical implications: The findings of this study help marketers of the league and teams develop tailored marketing strategies to each segmented group. Research contribution: This study first applied the concept of eFANgelism to explore the unique characteristics of different sport fans, contributing to a better understanding of sport consumer behavior.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)182-196
Number of pages15
JournalManaging Sport and Leisure
Issue number2
Early online date13 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management

User-Defined Keywords

  • cluster analysis
  • eFANgelism
  • fan loyalty
  • K-League
  • market segmentation


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